Another day, another great chance for rain!

Stormy

A dark and stormy night at Pagosa Peak…photo by Mark Langford

Friday – 29 Jul 2022 – 9:15am update.

The past…

The high on Wednesday at Stevens Field was 75 and the low this morning was 54. We finally saw widespread rain yesterday!

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COCORAHS rainfall reports for the Pagosa Springs area over the past 24 hours. Shawn and Arleen won the COCORAHS rainfall lottery yesterday with their 1.63 inch total! Great to see so many of you recorded over an inch of rain.
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Remote sensor rainfall reports from the past 24 hours show Pagosa Springs finally getting in on the heavier totals!
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A flood watch has been issued by the NWS for our area from 10am to 10pm today.
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Shawn sent me this graphic of area streamflow, which has risen quite dramatically over the past 24 hours! This explains why we are in a Flood Watch again today.

Forecast discussion…

Finally, we saw a widespread, slow rain event for Pagosa Springs! I can’t think of a better precipitation deliver scenario (other than snow) than what we saw last evening. While most of us ended up with over an inch of rain in the Pagosa area, I have seen some of you reporting totals of over 2 inches at Aspen Springs-3 and over 3 inches about 3 miles south on HWY 84. Thanks to all of you who chimed in on Facebook this morning.

The NWS has issued a Flood Watch for us from 10am through 10pm tonight. The same weather setup is in place…lots of tropical moisture just looking for a trigger to drop heavy pockets of rain. The best chance for heavier rain is today and tomorrow, but rain odds will continue high into next week, just lesser rain totals. The Weather Prediction Center has placed Archuleta County in the Yellow Zone (10-20% chance) for excessive rainfall today. We will continue to see slow moving cells, so once one finds your backyard, you could see some heavy rain.

The Grand Junction radar is down for maintenance until August 2nd. Our only coverage until then will be from Albuquerque, NM, which only goes to HWY 160 and Alamosa’s which can only be seen using the MMRS radar viewer and covers some areas east of town, including Wolf Creek Pass. Here is the link to the MMRS site: Op Product Viewer (noaa.gov)

We continue to be sandwiched between a ridge to our north and a one over Texas. Moisture in the mid-levels and surface is flowing into our area, increasing our precipitable water values to over an inch (monsoon conditions). Latest model runs forecast our monsoon flow to continue at least through the weekend and into next week.

For all of you visiting our beautiful area, please be careful when you go out on hikes, especially in the afternoons. Totally clear mornings can quickly turn into stormy afternoons with 20-30 degree drop in temps, heavy rain, hail, lightning and gusty winds over 40mph! Make sure you pack rain gear because being wet when temps drop to the 50’s can be more than uncomfortable…it can be dangerous.

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Wedged between a ridge to our north and one over Texas, mid-level winds will continue to draw in tropical moisture from the SW all week long.
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The latest NBM model run continues our monsoon conditions through at least August 9th, when this run ends. Another 3.5 inches would be great!
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We are in the Yellow Zone (10-20% chance) for excessive rainfall today. 
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The latest NWS 3-day rainfall forecast is predicting 1.5 inches for Pagosa Springs, 1.5 inches for Chama and 1.4 inches for the mountains, but as we have witnessed this week, these totals will vary.
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We are slowly easing out of the drought, with most of Archuleta County now in Moderate Drought conditions. The SW part of our county remains in Severe Drought, but with recent rains, hopefully we will see better conditions next Thursday when the new graphic comes out.

My forecast…

Pagosa 5 day forecast 7 29 22
* The forecast periods are from 8am to 8am. * With showers and thunderstorms expect brief periods of heavy rain, small hail, gusty winds, and lightning.

Pagosa Springs historical data for July 29th

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
8393/ 19474627 / 1913

Call 877-841-0247 for our “dial up and text” forecast.

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

-Mark Langford

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