Monday was a wild and crazy weather day, mostly at the coast. Locally it was a typical blustery November day with gusty 40 mph winds. Along the coast strong winds blew down trees on the Long Beach Peninsula. Winds of 60-70 mph were common from Astoria to Hoquiam.
In some of my other writings, I have defined a bent back occlusion. Our current stormy weather Monday afternoon was because of that bent back occlusion. Normally we have storms that have a leading warm front. The cold front follows with moderate to heavier rain.
A good share of our weather fronts here in the Pacific Northwest are occluded fronts. That is where the cold front catches up with the slower moving warm front and consolidates. In an intense low-pressure system, part of the energy can break off the counterclockwise circulation of the low, swing around and rotate back inland. This is a bent back occlusion. Look at it as the stinger on a scorpion’s tail.
We had the main cold front move inland early Monday with heavy rain and strong winds and then during the daylight hours, the “stinger.” This pattern along the coast produces high winds, possible severe thunderstorms and even a waterspout, funnel cloud or brief tornado.
Another low arrives today for more rain and gusty winds. Unsettled weather is in the offing all week. Snow will pile up in the mountains this week.
Stay warm and dry, and we will chat Thursday!
Patrick Timm is a local weather specialist. His column appears Tuesdays, Thursdays and Sundays. Reach him at http://patricktimm.com.