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February 14, 2019/report

happy valentine's daySummary:  Finally, the valley floor has actually received legitimate precipitation this morning as a disturbance embedded within the atmospheric river of air moved through, overpowering the rain shadow.  Bakersfield over the past hour has picked up .14 with heavy rain spreading into the Tehachapis, the southern Sierra Nevada, and much of southern California.  In the meantime, just west of San Francisco we find the center of a colder low which will spread showers over the area Friday.  We may actually get a break this afternoon through the early morning hours with the exception of the Sierra which will receive continuous precipitation.


Upstream, two more semi arctic disturbances will move from north to south into the Pacific Northwest and northern and central California.  One will arrive Friday and one late Saturday and one Sunday night through Monday morning.  these storms have their origins in northwest Canada so snow levels which currently are at about 8,500 feet or higher will drop back down to 2,000 to 3,000 feet by Friday evening and 2,000 feet over the weekend, possibly even a bit lower in heavy showers.  Isolated thunderstorms cannot be ruled out Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons, assuming there are breaks in the overcast that would allow the sun to warm the ground.  That, in turn, allows warm air to move skyward where it would mix with very cold air aloft.


Yesterday at this time, it looked like next week would be dry, but some models show another very cold low forming and driving rapidly southward into California from Canada Wednesday afternoon and Thursday morning for another chance of showers with low snow levels.


It’s interesting how the eastern Pacific high is remaining just off shore enough to allow arctic disturbances to move southward into the United States for such a long period of time.  There’s even another chance of another disturbance next weekend, but we will have to study that as we move through the remainder of the week.



Forecast: Showers tapering off for a time this afternoon and evening.  Periods of showers Friday through Monday morning with very low snow levels.  There will be a small chance of isolated thunderstorms with localized heavy rain and snow and hail Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons.  Partly cloudy Monday afternoon through Wednesday.  A chance of light showers Wednesday afternoon through Thursday.


Short Term:                                                                        

Madera 64/44/57/39/54 Reedley 64/43/55/40/55 Dinuba 63/43/56/38/53
Porterville 64/42/56/39/53 Lindsay 63/43/56/40/53 Delano 64/45/57/41/55
Bakersfield 65/45/57/41/56 Taft 64/46/57/42/56 Arvin 65/45/58/41/55
Lamont 64/44/58/41/56 Pixley 64/43/56/41/55 Tulare 62/43/55/38/53
Woodlake 63/43/54/38/53 Hanford 63/43/54/40/54 Orosi 63/42/55/38/53


Seven Day Forecast:


Showers likely



AM showers



Partly cloudy



PM showers possible



AM showers possible



Two Week Outlook:  February 21 through February 27:  It’s been a while but this model is now indicating a high chance of dry weather during this time frame.  This model does show a consistent northwest flow aloft which would mean a continuation of below average temperatures.


February:  This model indicates the eastern Pacific high will be the most dominant feature during the month of February.  There will be the usual exceptions, but overall this would result in above average temperatures and drier than average precipitation over much of the west and colder than average temperatures east of the Rockies.


February, March, April:  At least this model projects about equal chances for either above or below average precipitation.  There is actually a greater possibility of below average rain over the Pacific Northwest. Generally speaking, temperatures should remain at least marginally above average.


Winds:  Mount Tom, which is at an elevation of 8,982 feet is reporting winds out of the northwest at  47, gusting to 83 MPH.    In comparison, the valley is rather tranquil.  For now, the strongest winds are along the far west side of the valley where Kettleman is reporting gusts to 33 MPH and further north up at Firebaugh there are gusts to 30 MPH.  Winds at the vast majority of places in the remainder of the valley are no more than about 20 MPH.  Winds for the remainder of the morning will be generally out of the southeast at 10 to 15 MPH with gusts to 35 MPH along the west side.  Winds this afternoon will be mainly out of the west to southwest at 10 ot 20 MPH with stronger gusts at times.  Winds Friday through Sunday will be mainly out of the southeast at 10 to 20 MPH with stronger gusts.


Rain: Expect periodic showers through the evening hours, tapering off later tonight and for a time Friday morning.  After that, the first of three very cold storm systems will affect the area for off and on showers later Friday through Monday morning.  The precipitation pattern with these systems will be showery in nature, so widespread heavy precipitation this weekend over the valley floor is not likely.  There is a small chance of isolated thunderstorms Friday, Saturday, and Sunday afternoons.  If they occur, they would be accompanied by localized heavy rain and small hail. Dry weather will finally bring its smiling face into the area Monday afternoon and remain through at least Wednesday morning.  Some models are showing yet another very cold low moving in from western Canada Wednesday afternoon into Thursday for another chance of generally light precipitation and low snow levels.  There’s one model indicating yet another system for next weekend.

Frost Discussion: All locations will be above 32 degrees through Sunday morning.  I cannot rule out low to mid 30s Monday morning, depending on the exit strategy of that last arctic low as it moves into the Great Basin.  Right now, it looks like it will be headed out Monday afternoon.  There is some indication low to mid 30s will be evident Tuesday morning, depending upon residual cloud cover, with a chance of upper 20s in the coldest locations.  It now appears we may have increasing cloudiness Wednesday which would prevent any chance of frost, but models are quite a bit different in how to handle this new system.  For now, though, we’ll go with above freezing conditions after Tuesday morning.

Afternoon Dew Points Today: Low to mid 40s. Low to mid 40s. Humidity values ranging from 55%/95% at Hanford.  Bakersfield 45%/90%

Actual Humidity February 13, 2019: Delano, NA  Porterville, 80%/46%


Percentage of Sunshine Today/Tomorrow: Visalia: Today: 0%, tomorrow 0%  Bakersfield: Today: 0% Tomorrow: 0%


ET Rates Over the Past Seven Days: Stratford .37, Parlier .43, Blackwell .NA, Lindcove .39, Arvin .58, Orange Cove .42, Porterville .41, Delano .NA Courtesy University of California *=estimate, NA=not available. 


Seven Day Soil Temperatures: Stratford 52, Parlier 48, Blackwell 54, Lindcove, 54, Arvin, 50, Orange Cove 51, Porterville 49, Delano NA


Record Temperatures: 79/25. Average Temperatures: 62/39

Heating Degree Days this Season: 1503 -453

Courtesy of the NWS

Average temperature for February so far: 475 -1.3


Precipitation:  Seasonal total/average/above or below average

Since Oct 1, 2018  Fresno: 6.70 season. or +.10. Month to Date: 2.14 +1.20

Since Oct 1, 2018,  Bakersfield:  3.20, or -.49.  Month to Date: .52 -.05

Water year season is from October 1st through September.


Chilling Hours November 1st through February 28: Orange Cove, 728,  Parlier, 715 ,  Arvin, 649 Shafter, 706  Stratford, 718, Delano NA, Lindcove, 1019, Porterville, 1447

Hours at 45 or below 45.


Sunrise: 6:47 am  Sunset: 5:39 pm. Hours of Daylight:  10:48

Yesterday’s Weather:

MAE   : Madera               253 : DH1600 /  65 /  52 / 0.06 /

FAT   : Fresno Airport       333 : DH1600 /  64 /  51 / 0.04 /

HJO   : Hanford Airport      242 : DH1600 /  63 /  47 / 0.05 /

NLC   : Lemoore Naval AS     234 : DH1600 /  60 /  46 / 0.13 /

BFL   : Bakersfield Airport  496 : DH1600 /  66 /  50 / 0.01 /

VIS   : Visalia Airport      292 : DH1600 /  64 /  46 /    M /

ATEC1 : Avenal               787 : DH1556 /  61 /  45 / 0.20 /

PTV   : Porterville Airport  442 : DH1600 /  67 /  45 / 0.03 /

TFTC1 : Taft                 759 : DH1556 /  70 /  48 / 0.00 /

LOSC1 : Los Banos            120 : DH1600 /  60 /  36 / 0.02 /



Next report:  Thursday afternoon/February 14