Hot and dry through Tuesday – then it’s monsoon time!…

A colorful sunset last night – pic taken 7/12/2023

A colorful sunset last night – pic taken 7/12/2023

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Thursday – 13 Jul 2023 – 3:00pm

The past…

At Stevens Field the high temperature yesterday afternoon was 87 and the low this morning was 50. Humidity bottomed out at 15% yesterday afternoon.

The peak wind at Stevens Field yesterday afternoon was 26mph. Here in O’Neal Park we had a peak wind of 27mph.

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
8398 / 19394430 / 1941

Precipitation summary… No measurable precip has fallen recently.

Forecast discussion…

Water vapor satellite this afternoon – The high is in the process of reforming off the CA coast along the ridge axis.  Clockwise circulation around the high means we’ll get dry, warm northwest flow in our area.  Note the spotty showers and weak thunderstorms over southeast AZ, southern NM, and extending south into Mexico. It’s weak, but this is the beginning of the first surge of monsoon moisture.  Unfortunately, that moisture can’t move into our area until the high shifts towards us the second half of next week.
Water vapor satellite this afternoon – The high is in the process of reforming off the CA coast along the ridge axis.  Clockwise circulation around the high means we’ll get dry, warm northwest flow in our area. 
Note the spotty showers and weak thunderstorms over southeast AZ, southern NM, and extending south into Mexico. It’s weak, but this is the beginning of the first surge of monsoon moisture.  Unfortunately, that moisture can’t move into our area until the high shifts towards us the second half of next week.

Radar shows nothing in our area this afternoon.

Forecast Highlights…

*** FIRE DANGER IS VERY HIGH and will gradually get worse as temps warm and fuels continue to dry out. ***

Very high fire danger

*** Stage 1 Fire Restrictions are in effect for the lower elevations of San Juan National Forest. The minimum fine for violating campfire restrictions is $530. ***

Map of Stage 1 Fire Restrictions
Map of Stage 1 Fire Restrictions

*** Record high temps possible Friday through Tuesday. ***

Rest of Today through Tuesday… The subtropical ridge will shift west towards southern CA and keep us dry. The bad is news is that the stagnant pattern will result in near record temps.  The good news is that the upper level gradient will weaken resulting in slightly weaker afternoon winds.

Winds… Each afternoon winds will peak in the 20-25mph range.

Temps… Lows tonight will be in the mid-40s to low 50s. ** Friday through Tuesday highs will be in the high 80s to high 90s.  The warm spots, like our friends in Arboles, will break 100. ** Morning lows will be in the mid-40s to mid-50s.

Record high temps…

Friday 94 occurred in 1934

Saturday 92 occurred in 1948

Sunday 92 occurred in 1956

Monday 91 occurred in 1910

Tuesday 92 occurred in 1909

record highs

Wednesday through Friday… Monsoon moisture will start to filter into our area. Things will start slowly with just a few scattered showers and thunderstorms each afternoon, mostly over the mountains. Unfortunately, we’re more likely to see erratic gusty winds and lightning, than we are rain these first few days.

Winds… Afternoon winds will peak mostly in the 20-25mph range, but isolated stronger gusts are possible near showers and thunderstorms.

Temps… Highs will be in mid-80s to low 90s and lows will be in the mid-40s to mid-50s.

NBM precip to late Friday evening shows 0.13” in the Pagosa area and around 0.25” in our mountains. This will be spotty convective precip so amounts will vary considerably.
NBM precip to late Friday evening shows 0.13” in the Pagosa area and around 0.25” in our mountains. This will be spotty convective precip so amounts will vary considerably.

Next weekend and beyond… The monsoon will ramp up a bit with more moisture and a better chance for afternoon showers and thunderstorms. Temps will cool a few degrees back towards average. 

Euro ensemble 15-day total precip to 28 Jul at 6am expects 0.66” in the Pagosa area and up to 1.75” in our mountains.
Euro ensemble 15-day total precip to 28 Jul at 6am expects 0.66” in the Pagosa area and up to 1.75” in our mountains.

My next post will be on Saturday afternoon.

– Shawn

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I’ve been a “weather geek” since I was young child. I joined the military out of high school and was lucky to get my dream job in weather. I have 20 years of military weather experience which includes forecasting the weather all over the world. Highlights were six years in Alaska and making life and death weather decisions during deployments. I love mountains, I love snow, and I love summertime thunderstorms. I spend a bunch of time playing outdoors and found my paradise in Pagosa Springs. I do Pagosa Weather as a community service. Hopefully you find us helpful!
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