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Planning for the Weather

Discussion related to Sierra Nevada current and forecast conditions, as well as general precautions and safety information. Trail conditions, fire/smoke reports, mosquito reports, weather and snow conditions, stream crossing information, and more.
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby maverick » Wed Jul 04, 2012 11:00 am

Unfortunately this is just a tease, hopefully something starts up by the end of
this month. I have postponed two opportunities to go up due to sunny, cloudless
weather. :\
Just hoping that this stretch of dry sunny weather doesn't lead to some major fires
once we get our first series of lightening storms in the Sierra.
HST= Wilderness Adventurer who knows no bounds, except for their own imagination.

Have a safer backcountry experience by using the HST ReConn Form 2.0, named after Larry Conn, a HST member: http://reconn.org



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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby dave54 » Wed Jul 04, 2012 9:23 pm

I use the fire weather forecasts primarily. They give not only the usual temp and cloud cover, but also humidity, wind speed and direction with gust estimates, atmospheric stability, and other info usually not mentioned by the TV weather readers. Several days before the trip I start checking the RAWS data close to where i am going and compare the actual data to the forecasts. Then I can fine tune the forecast for the general area to the specific area.

I have found for the northern Sierra, particularly the east side, the Reno forecast tends to be more accurate than the Sacto, especially for lightning forecasts. The opposite for winter storms -- Sacto seems to do better for the wet cold storms off the Pacific.
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby no2haven » Thu Jul 05, 2012 10:24 am

The quasi-monsoon was fun to watch in action on 7/2...it sure blows up quickly: all looking from Granite Park to the S/SE.

52-P7024517.jpg
12.40pm

59-P7024551.jpg
1.20pm

61-P7024559.jpg
2.40pm

There were some large thunderheads over French Canyon and the Rock Creek area that I didn't take pictures of. No rain/thunder that I head; it was clear again by 6pm, just in time for the mosquitoes to come out for sunset :\
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby AvFan » Mon Jul 30, 2012 10:07 pm

I'm all over multiple weather sites in advance of a trip but mostly the National Weather Service forecast discussions. From the discussions you can discern the likely weather pattern. Then once on the trip I'm always checking the sky for cloud formation. This time of year I worry mostly about cumulonimbus that turn into thunder storms but each cloud type tells a story.

This site is one of many to show how clouds can help predict the weather.

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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby tim » Sat Aug 25, 2012 10:16 pm

AvFan wrote:I'm all over multiple weather sites in advance of a trip but mostly the National Weather Service forecast discussions. From the discussions you can discern the likely weather pattern. Then once on the trip I'm always checking the sky for cloud formation. This time of year I worry mostly about cumulonimbus that turn into thunder storms but each cloud type tells a story.

What would this formation predict for the next 6-24 hours (this was facing west - other directions had cloudless skies)? It certainly didn't seem to indicate any problems on the horizon, but unfortunately sometimes you just have to be prepared for the unexpected (which many weren't this week). The forecast on Sunday morning (8/19) had said that the recent monsoonal weather and afternoon thunderstorms would clear out from Monday or Tuesday onwards as drier weather came in from the west. At the time one could have easily thought it would be a nice night to sleep under the stars. However, afterwards we talked to numerous people who said it was the scariest night they have ever experienced in the Sierra (an hour of lightning strikes about every 10-20 seconds from 2.30am to 3.30am accompanied by an inch or more of hail).

DSC02561.jpg
Tyndall Creek sunset 8/21
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby freestone » Mon Jul 15, 2013 5:38 pm

There is talk of an "easterly wave" currently over Oklahoma affecting SoCal by late next weekend or early next week. Current thinking is that it will be affecting mostly southern and eastern California, but it's still a possible monsoon threat to the Sierra Nevada as well. If you are planning a trip next week, stay tuned to the NWS forecast discussions. If you like to experience unusual summer weather in eastern California, this could be your chance. Then again, it may just result in a few clouds and buildups.

Image
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby freestone » Wed Aug 07, 2013 5:28 am

Dennis Mattinson recently updated Eastern Sierra Forecast to 395 Travel and Weather. It has lots of real time information done by altitude. Can't seem to find the actual weather forecast or summary however. On his old site, it was on the homepage. Otherwise, it has a very nice look, and is easy to navigate.
http://395travel.com/
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby freestone » Tue Aug 20, 2013 6:06 pm

The weather prediction models are picking up on a tropical system that will rapidly move north northwest early next week. One model brings all it offshore SoCal, another more inland. Either way it could get interesting as it all unfolds. If your a surfer, it's a classic setup for hurricane surf on south facing beaches. If your backpacking, stayed tuned to the NWS discussions this week. Then again, it could all move west into Pacific oblivion and the cool southwest flow will fill in. That cutoff low sitting stationary off California has certainly been an odd feature for this time of year.
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby joshuacourter » Mon Oct 06, 2014 3:59 pm

I primarily use these two methods when I go backpacking/camping. I find them reliable.

1. Weather.gov. Simply put in the nearest down name or zip code in the upper left where it says "Local forecast by "City, St" or ZIP code. Click the "Go" button and the page will refresh to that town. Here is where you can customize it to your exact location. See the Google Map on the right? Use your mouse to move the map to where you will actually be hiking. Then click on that spot. The page will refresh and you will get a customized weather forecast up to 10 days for that location. I tend to click on different elevations to get an idea of what to expect. I also check this the night before or morning of my trip to get the latest.

2. Amatuer Radio. I carry a radio for live weather reports. I have been down in the Kern Canyon and received the NOAA weather broadcasts. If you are not familiar with these frequencies, they broadcast 24/7. Those frequencies can be found HERE. You can buy an inexpensive radio, like a Baofeng, at Amazon.com. Additionally you can tune into National Park and Forest Service frequencies to monitor any wildfire traffic (assuming they are using their local radio system). You do not need to have a license to listen. Only to transmit if you didn't know.

Anyway, those are the two things I use for weather planning besides watching the sky ;)
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby CharlieW » Mon Jul 13, 2015 8:19 am

I'm not sure if it is widely known, but anyone with a DeLorme can get up-to-date weather forecasts, either for present location or specific coordinates or a mountain peak. I just made a thread on this if anyone is interested:

viewtopic.php?f=1&t=13110

To answer the OP, #1 a long time ago. #2 or 3 more recently. Now #3 plus frequent reports via DeLorme.
Last edited by CharlieW on Mon Jul 13, 2015 4:50 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby freestone » Mon Jul 13, 2015 3:25 pm

There is currently an outbreak of tropical storm activity in the Eastern Pacific. One model has hurricane Dolores making landfall on the Santa Barbara coast then drifting it's moisture into the southern Sierra around the 20th of July. The other model has her drifting harmlessly off to the west.

Bulls-eye is on the South Coast. Epic surf a good possiblity, then a drenching:
https://www.fnmoc.navy.mil/wxmap_cgi/cg ... 18&set=All

No threat:
https://www.fnmoc.navy.mil/wxmap_cgi/cg ... 12&set=All
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Re: Planning for the Weather

Postby SSSdave » Mon Oct 19, 2015 11:37 am

I noticed Howard has apparently updated his weather links page. It is by far the most complete listing of weather links for the Sierra region. Also weather links to all manner of planetary weather stuff.

http://mammothweather.com/howards-favor ... ite-links/

One nice listing is all the High Sierra Remote Weather Sensors CDEC links.
Mammoth Pass
Agnew Pass Big
Pine Creek
Bishop Pass
Blackcap Basin
Cottonwood Creek (Owens Valley)
Cottonwood Lakes
Crabtree Meadow
Dana Meadows
Ebbetts Pass
Gem Pass
Monitor Pass
Oak Creek (Owens Valley)
Owens Valley
Rock Creek
Sawmill
Sonora Pass
South Lake
Tunnel Meadow
Tuolumne Meadows (N.P.S.)
Tuolumne Meadows
Upper Tyndall Creek
Virginia Lakes Ridge
Volcanic Knob
Yosemite Valley -
Last edited by SSSdave on Mon Oct 19, 2015 12:35 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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