Steve Pierce’s Look Back at Jan-Apr, 2011

Steve Pierce’s report on the year so far was picked up by Joe d’Aleo of WeatherBell, who added several charts showing daily temperatures as well as departures from normal.

Vancouver, Washington (Friday, April 29th 2011) 1:30pm PT  ”This month will go into the record books as Portland’s coldest April in 36 years as well as third wettest in history (1940-2011) at the Portland Airport. Many other stations across the Pacific Northwest are also challenging long standing April records. Here is a look at regional April 2011 temperatures and rainfall at several stations around the Pacific Northwest, through 4/28. These numbers are not likely to change much in the final 36 hours of the month. Astoria, Oregon has still not reached 60 degrees this calendar year, smashing the old record of April 19th 1945 —

Station April 2011 Ave Temp Departure From Normal April 2011 Rainfall Departure From Normal
Astoria 44.8 -3.6 7.94 3.27
Hillsboro 45.5 -6.1 3.42 1.10
Salem 47.3 -2.6 3.82 1.22
Seattle 45.4 -4.6 4.34 1.89
Spokane 41.4 -4.8 1.71 0.53
Eugene 46.9 -2.8 3.47 0.01
Redmond, OR. 39.1 -6.7 0.28 -0.29
Medford 48.8 -2.6 2.10 0.87
Troutdale 47.2 -4.6 4.64 1.21
Vancouver, WA. 47.9 -1.9 4.23 1.92
Portland 47.8 -3.2 5.04 2.56
McMinnville 46.0 -4.4 4.13 1.47
Average All Stations 45.7 -4.0 3.76 1.31
With 5.04″ of precipitation, Portland has now moved into the #3 position on the all-time wettest April list (1940-2011) at the Portland International Airport. But with only 36 hours left in the month and showers decreasing, the chances of overtaking the top spot are fading. Here are the top five wettest April’s in Portland Airport history, through 12 noon today (4/29) —
YEAR APR
1993 5.26
1996 5.12
2011 5.04
1955 4.72
1988 4.57
Here are the top 5 coldest Aprils on record at the Portland International Airport (1940-2011) –
YEAR APR
1955 46.5
1964 46.7
1967 46.9
1975 47.3
2011 47.8
 
Vancouver, Washington (Wednesday, April 27th 2011) 7:45pm PT  ”Spring in the Pacific Northwest is feeling a lot more like late winter, as yet another cold system slides into the region. Snow is expected to fall to relatively low elevations across the Cascades. The pattern of colder and wetter than normal continues unabated across much of the Pacific Northwest. Astoria, Oregon has still not reached their first 60 degree temperature of the calendar year! The old record for Astoria’s “latest first 60″ of the year was set on April 19th 1945. February, March and April combined are among the coldest and wettest on record (1940-2011) at the Portland  International Airport. April is also very close to setting a new record as the wettest in Portland Airport history (1940-2011). To further illustrate just how cold and wet it has been over the past three months, here are a few records I have compiled. All records are for the Portland International Airport (1940-2011) and valid through 4/26:
 
* Number of 60+ degree days this calendar year (through 4/26) = Just 5
* Number of 70+ degree days this calendar year (through 4/26) = Just 1
* Average first 70+ degree day each year = April 1st. Latest first 70+ degree day = 5/5/1967
* A new record was set for the latest “first 60 degree day of the calendar year” on March 31st. The old record was March 27th set in 1955.
* Portland has received measurable precipitation (0.01″+) on 47 of the last 60 days, including 23 days in a row in the month of March alone
 
February 2011
 
* Average temperature was 40.3 degrees, which was -2.8 degrees below normal.
* February was 8th coldest February on record (1940-2011).
* The coldest February on record is 1956 at 35.8 degrees.
March 2011
* Average temperature was 46.1 degrees, which was -1.1 degrees below normal.
* The Coldest March on record is 1955 at 41.5 degrees.
* March 2011 total precip was 6.43″ which was the 5th wettest on record (1940-2011).
 
April 2011
* Average Temperature is 47.8 degrees (through 4/26), which is -3.1 degrees below normal.
* Coldest April on record is 1955 at 46.5 degrees.
* April 2011 is currently the 5th coldest April on record (1940-2011) through 4/26.
* April 2011 is currently the 4th wettest on record (1940-2011) through 4/26 with 4.60″ of precip this month.
* April 2011 is currently the wettest April since 1996 (15 yrs).
* The wettest April on record (1940-2011) is 5.26″ set in 1993.
* Only 0.67″ of precip needs to fall before 11:59pm Saturday night and April 2011 will be the
wettest on record (1940-2011) at the Portland International Airport.
February/March/April (Three Month) Average Temperatures Combined
All data is valid through 4/26 at PDX
* Coldest average three month temperature since 1975! See chart below.
* 6th coldest on record (1940-2011)! See chart below.
YEAR FEB MAR APR AVE
1955 40.4 41.5 46.5 42.8
1964 40.1 43.8 46.7 43.5
1950 38.8 45.1 48.6 44.1
1956 35.8 44.2 52.7 44.2
1975 41.2 44.9 47.3 44.5
2011 40.3 46.1 47.8 44.7
More than 15″ of precipitation fell in Portland from  Feb 1 to April 26, making this the 4th wettest on record (1940-2011) for those three months combined. This ranking is not likely to change by months end. See chart below.
YEAR FEB MAR APR TOTAL AVE PER MO
1961 8.92 6.04 3.59 18.55 6.18
1996 10.03 3.24 5.12 18.39 6.13
1983 7.78 6.80 1.87 16.45 5.48
2011 4.29 6.43 4.60 15.32 5.11
1999 8.73 4.03 1.56 14.32 4.77
Steve Pierce
Vice President
Oregon Chapter of the American Meteorological Society
 
 
Here is a  plot of temperatures since the end of March in Portland Oregon. See how steady the cold has been

And in Astoria, OR, the same storywith persistent cold and an average -1.22C (-2.2F) below normal.

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One Response to Steve Pierce’s Look Back at Jan-Apr, 2011

  1. Steve Pierce says:

    BUUUUURRRRRRR!!!!!!!

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