In Brief:

We reach the 80’sF for highs over the next 3 days. There is a small chance of afternoon showers/thunderstorms rolling off the mountains in the afternoon (as we have seen for a few days already).

A big trough moves in again for Friday – kicking off thunderstorms and cooling us to the 60’sF into next week.

Forecast Discussion:

High pressure at the surface (Figure 1) and overhead in the jet stream level (Figure 2) means we warm up. With daytime heating, moisture, and ripples in that upper level flow – we may see afternoon thundershowers the next couple of days. Each day hits the 80’sF (Figure 3). This will feel warm.

The Longer Range Forecast:

The next big trough (not shown) moves in on Friday. We might see severe storms nearby (we won’t know more until closer to the week end -blue line -Figure 3). We cool about 15-20F starting Saturday and continuing on to mid-week next week.

Not a lot of water seems in the offing though. The GFS gives us under 1/4th inch over the next 5 days (Figure 4). Over the next 10 days, snow remains in the mountain and may dust Boulder – but not Longmont (Figure 5). More later!

Figure 1: The forecast surface map for Tuesday early AM from NCEP.
Figure 2: The 500mb forecast upper air analysis for Wednesday morning. Pink dot is Longmont. Red lines are troughs, blue lines are ridges.
Figure 3: the graphical forecast for the next 10 days for Longmont, CO from
Figure 3: the forecast accumulated precipitation map from the GFS and for Colorado,over the next 5 days.
Figure 5: the forecast accumulated snow map from the GFS and for Colorado,over the next 10 days.
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John Ensworth works from Longmont as the Principle Investigator for the NASA Science Mission Directorate Earth and space science education product review through the IGES (The Institute for Global Environmental Strategies – . He is in his 14th year running this review. He is an astronomer (from the 2nd grade onward) and became a meteorologist (in the 5th grade) when a thunderstorm in Arizona rained on his telescope when the weather service had only forecasted a 10% chance of rain. He has college degrees in physics and astronomy and climatology and a graduate degree in meteorology and earth science. He lectures at the Little Thompson Observatory in Berthoud, the Estes Park Memorial Observatory in Estes Park, and for a number of online universities. He built and runs a backyard observatory near Pace and 17th in northeast Longmont where he has lived for 8 years with his wife, daughter, son, and two cats. Invitations to open house nights at this observatory, LTO, and EPMO will be posted with future discussions when they are scheduled. Forecasting severe weather and snow amounts via text lead to this column. He began texting friends about the weather right after the September 2013 flood. The readers of this column will, hopefully, keep him honest in what he ‘thought’ he had forecasted for ‘the most recent’ storm.

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