Fire danger is “EXTREME” – Could be dry for the next 10 days…

A big ole cumulus clouds brewing over Pagosa Peak – pic taken 8/1/2023

A big ole cumulus clouds brewing over Pagosa Peak – pic taken 8/1/2023

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Wednesday – 2 Aug 2023 – 5:30pm

The past…

At Stevens Field the high temperature this afternoon was 83 and the low this morning was 58. Humidity bottomed out at 19% this afternoon.

The peak wind at Stevens Field this afternoon was 23mph.

Average HighRecord High / YearAverage LowRecord Low / Year
8292 / 19584636 / 1950

Precipitation summary… Most of us didn’t get any precip yesterday, but our friends in Chromo got 0.03” to 0.07”.  My forecast stunk for yesterday. I was expecting a more active day.

Forecast discussion…

Water vapor satellite this afternoon – The Archuleta County cloud shield is doing its job again this afternoon. Moisture will decrease as drier air moves in from the southwest.
Water vapor satellite this afternoon – The Archuleta County cloud shield is doing its job again this afternoon. Moisture will decrease as drier air moves in from the southwest.
Radar this afternoon – Most of the activity has been to our north and northeast this afternoon. A few weak showers developed over northern NM but fell apart as they moved northeast.
Radar this afternoon – Most of the activity has been to our north and northeast this afternoon. A few weak showers developed over northern NM but fell apart as they moved northeast.

Forecast Highlights…

*** Fire danger has worsened to “EXTREME”. ***

Fire danger is extreme

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

Rest of today and tomorrow… The ridge will flatten as a trough skirts well to our north and drier air moves in. There is a slight chance for spotty showers and a thunderstorm, mostly over the mountains.

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 the low to high 80s and lows will be in the high 40s to high 50s.

NWS 72-hour precip expects nothing in the Pagosa area, and 0.03” for Chama, and similar amounts for our mountains.
NWS 72-hour precip expects nothing in the Pagosa area, and 0.03” for Chama, and similar amounts for our mountains.

Friday through next Wednesday… Upper-level flow will turn more out of the west-southwest as the ridge is flattened by a series of troughs moving into the Pacific NW and then west into the northern Plains. Unfortunately, this will dry us out, kick up the winds a bit, and bring slightly warmer temps.

Winds… Afternoon gusts will be 20-25mph out of the southwest.

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

And the longer range?… We could stay dry until around the 13th when a little more moisture tries to move into the region.

Euro 15-day total precip to the morning of 17 Aug expects 0.22” in the Pagosa area.  This looks reasonable to me. The GFS expects 0.55” and the Canadian model expects 0.91” but, unfortunately, I think they are too optimistic.
Euro 15-day total precip to the morning of 17 Aug expects 0.22” in the Pagosa area.  This looks reasonable to me. The GFS expects 0.55” and the Canadian model expects 0.91” but, unfortunately, I think they are too optimistic.

My next post will be on Friday unless something pops up.

– 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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