Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Ski Season Ends California...and I'm wondering what is going one with our weather?

Here it is mid-July. I'm enjoying the Tour de France, and Motor Racing from around the Globe. Then I watched the local news from Sacramento and saw a groomer grooming some passes at Boreal, atop Donner Summit.

Boreal ran their Castle Peak Quad Chairlift on Saturday and Sunday July 11th and 12th! The talking head on the KCRA3 Newscast said Boreal sold 250 tickets Saturday! I didn't hear a peep about their Sunday results.

Mammoth Mountain was open daily until July 5th, and Kirkwood got into the Independence Day Holiday spirit when they re-opened for July 2-4!

Our cool, lingering Spring, along with the coolish Summer so far, have allowed these resorts to hang on or re-open thanks to the bountiful snowfall of our El Niño-enhanced Winter.

Weather Records were set across Southern California Friday, some going back 84 years! Records for low temperatures...that is record low High Temps.

The Eastern Pacific is rapidly cooling, and has been rapidly cooling since late February. The double whammy of the PDO turning Negative (to the cold side of the cycle), and the end of the moderate El Niño and the development of a new La Niña.

It's been nice and cool here in the Inland Valley for the past two days, and the local weathermen say we'll warm up for the weekend.

I didn't give this weather much thought until Monday night when I watched the Tour de France Rest Day Wrap-Up Show.

This year's tour has been dramatic to say the least. The peloton has been nervous all week, and the Big Story is the unusually high number of crashes and injuries. Behind the Big Story of the race is the heat.

It's really been hot in Europe this Summer. Heat is murder on a three week bicycle race. Add the natural nerves of the opening week of the tour and the Devil's Arithmetic equals crashes. The thunderstorms in the mountains of the Tour have really turned up the Crash-O-Meter as well.

I haven't seen an accounting anywhere in the Cycling Press, but I'd wager that every rider still in this year's Tour has already been on the pavement at least once...with two weeks still to race. Lance Armstrong was on the ground three times again Sunday...all the Contenders have been down, and several have been knocked out of the race. After Tuesday's Stage 9, it was revealed thet the Race Leader was racing with a fractured elbow sustained in Sunday's stage...Aussie World Road Race Champion, Cadel Evans lost the Leader's Yellow Jersey after finishing 8:09 behind the Stage 9 Winner.

I traded away two injured American Contenders when setting up my TdF Fantasy Race Teams, and today two more of Team CorduroyPlanet's riders were forced to abandon by injuries.

Monday, as I daydreamed between commentaries by the Race Analysts, I got to thinking about the heat over Europe and the cooler than usual Spring and Summer we're having out West...La Niña usually goes hand in hand with increased Atlantic hurricane activity.

I checked out the Atlantic Tropical Weather Discussion at the National Hurricane Center's Website, and knocked around the Tropical Weather Observations and Outlooks. I looked at the Weekly ENSO Evolution, Status, and Prediction Presentation , and La Niña is here now. Aside from a cool anomaly in the Eastern Atlantic, there's plenty of oceanic heat in the Atlantic/Carribean Region to supercharge Hurricane Season.

My stereophonic compadre, Jeweler has been doing plenty of High Sierra trout fishing...and posting his success to his Facebook Page. I've been seeing lots of thunderstorms in Jeweler's reports, so I checked out Reno's AFD and there were even Fire Weather considerations therein.

Here again, our wetter, cooler year is helping keep a lid on any real Fire Danger. The NWS Forecasters are just "going by the book", and the book says: "issue Red Flag Warnings when temps are above X degreesF, and winds are forecast to be above Y MPH" Lightning and winds are up, but Fuel Moisture is still way down.

All week the Sierra Sun has been posting the "Lightning Strike Count" for the Truckee Region. There have been no lightning-caused fires that have been named...all were controlled.

I was making conversation over the Monthly Church Luncheon today when I heard myself say: "I think we're gonna have a long, cool Summer"! I may have a problem here...I wonder is there a 12 Step program for weather prognosticators?

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