6/17/23 Saturday 6:50 am
Yesterday, the models performed poorly in the lower and mid-elevations. Most of the precipitation fell in the higher elevation areas across northern portions of the forecast area.
Today looks complicated as well. A line of showers has developed in the western portions of the forecast area. It currently extends from Cortez to Telluride to Montrose. Models handled this pretty well. You’ll remember yesterday I mentioned models were showing showers starting early and being more widespread throughout the morning.
The models are still indicating that this precipitation will move east as the morning wears on. Then it gets complicated. It looks like showers could dissipate after the initial line moves through, then there is a chance that by midday, showers could redevelop with the residual moisture and daytime heating. The best chance of this happening will once again be in the higher elevation areas, but I would not rule out a shower elsewhere.
If the line of precipitation decides it does not care what the models think, it could track from SW to NE and miss the southern and eastern portions of the forecast area. I do not expect that, but the models have struggled with the placement and track of precipitation for the last couple of months.
It still looks like on Sunday it will start drying out and we will begin an extended period of dry weather and seasonably warm temperatures. In other words a typical June and beginning of summer. The longer this extended period lasts the better the chances of some of our first fire weather advisories being issued.
The Eastern Pacific is primed for development with temperatures in mid to upper 80s. At this point, the fate of this potential storm is not-forecastable. This is the year, I do see an increased chance for a recurring Tropical Storm. I will be watching every one of them!
I was pleased to hear from officials from La Plata County yesterday. They reached out to give me an official update on our new radar installation. The site was agreed upon. It will be at the La Plata County Airport (DRO). It will be located NW of the cellphone parking lot.
All of the administrative hurdles are over. The vendor has been hired for construction and installation. The sub-contractors are in place and construction is set to begin very soon. For the first time in the process, we finally have a target date. The construction is not very complex, and this type of job is what the vendor does, they just finished an installation in Florida.
As long as construction can stay on track, and the sub-contractors stay in place. And, as long as the weather does not become an issue this fall, the vendor expects to radar to be operational this year, perhaps in late November!
This will really help with storm tracking and short-term forecasting. In the summer it will be very helpful with severe weather tracking. Over time, enough data will be collected to improve longer and mid-term model accuracy. This is great news for all of us in SW Colorado.
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