Back to scattered PM Poppers…

Rainbow

After a day of very little activity, some sunset storms moved in producing this nice double rainbow. Photo by Shawn Prochazka.

7-15-21: 9am update…

While most of us found some rain in our gauges over the past 24 hours, yesterday’s rain event did not live up to expectations. What originally looked like a great day of off/on rain turned out to be our typical summer scattered storm scenario. The shortwave trough moved through our area while our skies were cloudy and our surface temperatures were relatively cool. Had we had more sunshine I think we would have seen a greater coverage of storms yesterday afternoon. But, just as in sporting events, no matter how good your team looks on paper, you won’t know the final score until the game is played!

Below are remote sensor and COCORAHS rainfall reports over the past 24 hours. As you can see, there were some rain lottery winners.

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COCORAHS Rainfall reports over the past 24 hours.
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Remote rainfall sensor rainfall reports over the past 24 hours.

The good news is that most of the heavy smoke has moved out of our area, at least temporarily. The latest EPA Air Now graphics show that we are in between smoke plumes as of this morning.

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Nice to catch a smoke break today!
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Now that our shortwave trough has pushed through, drier air (yellow) will be filtering into our area from a NW flow. Despite the drier air in the mid levels of our atmosphere there will be enough trapped moisture on the surface to generate afternoon scattered storms over the next few days.

The shortwave that was supposed to give us a great chance for rain yesterday, has pushed off to the east. High pressure will start building over our area, reducing our rain odds to scattered storms in the afternoon. Thankfully, even though our mid level moisture will be drying out, there is enough residual moisture in the lower atmosphere to spark PM Poppers for the foreseeable future. By late next week, high pressure will move to our east and we could actually see our first signs of a traditional monsoon setting up with a SW flow.

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The latest NWS 3 day rainfall forecast has shrunk to below a tenth of an inch as an average for us.

My forecast…

The rest of today…A chance for scattered afternoon storms with highs in the lower 80s. With a NW flow, look for storms to your NW, moving SE today.

Friday-Sunday: Continued chances for afternoon thunderstorms. As is the case with convective activity, there will be rain lottery winners and losers. Each day we could see 0-0.25 inches of rain with double that total in the mountains. Lows will remain in the 40’s and highs will ramp back up to the 80’s with more sunshine and less storm coverage. The models are forecasting a chance we will finally slide into a typical monsoon pattern by late next week…keeping my fingers crossed!

For any of you visiting our area, watch out for rapidly changing weather conditions when storms move in! Temps can drop 20 degrees in minutes, winds can gust to 40mph and lightning is always a possibility.

My next post will be Saturday the 17th.

-Mark Langford

Check out my Pagosa Peak Cam (myearthcam.com) for watching hikers, bikers and of course, the weather.

Pagosa Springs historical data

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
8492 / 19484633 / 1962

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