So Far So Good

7/14 Wednesday 9:40 am

A number of areas had their highest rain totals of the season yesterday afternoon and evening. Most areas saw a heavy mist in the overnight and early morning hours today.

I can’t share all of the totals but I will cover quite a few. I am going to share the automated sensor totals first, followed by the email reports I got last night and this morning.

Automated data as of 5 am Wednesday:

Bayfield area 0.20″ to 0.25″, Forest Lake 0.20″.

Falls Creek 0.50″, Durango West 1 & 2 0.42″, Rafter J 0.40″ to 0.50″, Shenandoah 0.40″, Vallecito north 0.40″, Marvel/Red Mesa 0.35″.

Ouray 0.58″, Silverton 0.50″, Tamarron south 0.55″.

Skyridge 0.67″ to 0.75″.

Dolores 0.80″

Durango downtown (main and 12th) 1.13″, Lakewood Meadows 1.2″.

Deep Creek Mesa (1 mile west of the town of Telluride) 2.48″

Email reports as of 8 am Wednesday:

Bayfield 0.21″, CR 503 0.25″.

Trappers Crossing 0.33″.

Elk Stream Ranch (south of the top of Mancos Hill) 0.63″.

Dolores 0.80″, Glacier Club 0.80″.

3 miles NW of Mancos 1.0″, Animas Valley Elementary 1.0″, Enchanted Forest at 8,000 1.1″, 1.5 miles south of Purgatory 1.55″.

Today could be a complicated forecast. According to short-term high-resolution model guidance, PWAT values are starting off at around 200% of normal. They will peak around noon. Then, this afternoon they back off just slightly. After 5 pm they jump back up through midnight to over 200% of normal.

CAPE values follow a similar path. The values will be very low from noon to about 3 pm this afternoon. This means the models are expecting cloud cover which would limit surface heating. After 3 pm they begin to rise. Then this evening,  just like the PWAT values, the CAPE values rise dramatically peaking at over 1600 between 8 pm and 10 pm.  This tells me the model is picking up on a wave of energy moving through the area causing instability in the atmosphere which would lead to evening thunderstorm development.

Here are the forecasted CAPE values from noon to midnight.

For what it is worth here are the forecasted precipitation totals from now through 6 am Thursday.

I say “for what it is worth” because one thing we have learned is that during the summer the model will favor the western portions of the forecast area, only to have those totals show up in the eastern portion of the forecast area. So don’t get too excited if the map shows your area getting hit. Conversely, don’t get too disappointed if the map shows your area getting low amounts. The model handles the north and the south better than it handles the east and the west.

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