A spectacularly beautiful fall day!

Previously I have written blog posts about how crappy the weather can be in Portland. I may have even ranted about it. When it rains non-stop for a week or two it can get really old. Gray skies, damp and windy days are very common most of the late fall to late spring.

This is about the weather here in Portland but it’s not a complaint. Today it was 68 degrees, blue sky; sunshine and I drove with my sunroof open. The leaves in Oregon change later than a lot of other areas of the country. Some trees have completely changed colors while others are just beginning to. It was just a beautiful fall day!

Overall I really should not complain about the Portland weather.

  • We have very little snow. Usually it only snows every couple of years or so. However, when it does snow it tends to be layered, snow, ice, snow, ice.
  • We don’t have hurricanes or tornados.
  • Summer forest fires are frequent but they are in the rural areas of the state especially southern, central and eastern Oregon.
  • We have an occasional minor earthquake but haven’t had one that caused any damage since 1993.
  • In parts of the state, even in the city sometimes there are creeks and rivers that flood due to a really long spell of rain or a fast snow melt.

So here’s what I saw today. The beautiful blue sky and the wonderful colors of the changing leaves.

What’s the rainiest city in the United States?

The clock’s ticking. The spotlight’s getting hotter. What’s your guess?

Chances are you just lost one billion dollars. Seattle? Wrong. Portland? Not even close. The rainiest city in the United States is Mobile.

Seattle’s ranking? Number 41. Portland? 42.

In a study on the top 10 rainiest cities in the United States released by San Francisco-based WeatherBill, Inc., Mobile averages more than five feet of rainfall annually. Portland gets about three feet. Cities in the Southeast dominate the list until the Northwest makes its début at number 24 with Olympia. The capital city of The Evergreen State maintains its rainy day reputation by being the city with the most rainy days annually (63 days) but the Northwest’s rainy day pride doesn’t last long: Mobile comes in second on the most rainy days list with 59 days.

But I have to say after 25 days of rain in April and the last 20 days with measurable rainfall I think Portland and Seattle may have moved up on the list a few points. This morning the sun is out and the sky is blue. Time to celebrate!

What’s with this crazy weather?

Since early last week it has been in the 90s everyday. I suspect that July overall will go down as a record setting month for temps in the high 90s and consecutive days over 100 degrees. When we left to go to Kauai on the 3rd we joked that we were going to Hawaii where it was in the high 80s to cool down. On the 3rd the temperature was forecasted at 96 degrees which was about where the temps were the previous 4 or 5 days.

By this weekend the forecast is calling for a cooling trend. That is if you can call high 80s to low 90 s cooling. I mean after all this is Oregon not Texas for Pete’s sake. Plus I am tired of all of the conversations about how HOT it is. If it were raining everyone would be bitching about the rain.

Driving home from work today I had my AC cranked down to the max at 60 degrees but with the hot sun shining in my west facing passenger window in to my  car with black leather interior I got a bit toasty sitting at the stop lights.

7-28-2009 6-38-35 PM

Freakish storm rolls through the Willamette Valley

This afternoon a freakish thunder, lightening, wind and rain storm rolled through the Willamette Valley from Eugene to SW Washington. Funnel clouds were spotted in several places along the I5 corridor. In the Portland area over 35,000 homes lost power. Right now at 7:15 PM  it is only 59 degrees after a high yesterday of about 90 degrees. The Rose Festival Waterfront Village was shut down due to the weather.

More about the storm and some great photos on the KATU website.

This storm ended the area’s about two a week stretch of dry, sunny and hot weather.

Welcome to Portland in June! The big question now is what is the weather going to be like on Saturday for the big Rose Festival Parade and the Great Urban Race?  But then again it is not like there it has never rained on the Rose Festival Parade.



What’s that ring around the sun?

I have only ever seen a ring around the sun while I have been on Isla Mujeres. That may because I am on the beach and there is nothing to block the view of the sun. It did rain early the next morning.

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I did a Google search and found several articles explaining these rings.
“These rings are caused by ice crystals within thin cirrus clouds, and there several different kinds of sun rings you can see depending on the weather conditions.

One of the most common ones is called a 22° halo. They get this name because the ring is located 22 degrees away from the Sun itself. Both the Sun and the Moon block a 1/2 degree region of the sky at a time, so the ring around the Sun is about 44 times larger than the Sun itself.

Why do you get a ring at exactly 22°? The ring is formed because of the ice crystals suspended in the cirrus clouds. If you could look at the crystals under the microscope, you would see that they’re hexagonal in shape, and act as prisms for the Sun’s light. As light passes through the two sides of the prism, it’s deviated by exactly 22°. Since the ice crystals are jumbled up randomly in the sky, most of the light is deflected away. But from every position you’re always able to see the deflected light from some of the crystals in the sky. And this is why you see the bright ring around the Sun.”