While we are all enjoying nice golfing weather, the prognosis for summer gets more dire with each passing day without rainfall.When I set up this blog I included a lot of weather links, and planned to talk about weather occurrences. The San Francisco Bay area weather lulls you to sleep with mild predictable temperatures, and unless there is rain in the forecast there really is not much to talk about. But rain has not been in the forecast for some time and that is getting to be dramatic.
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The subtleties of the weather in Northern California are dependent upon sea surface temperatures, and those don’t change quickly. The 71% of the earth surface that is water moderates temperatures and wind patterns so that generally changes are seasonal and patterns stay in place rather predictably. This year the sea surface temperatures are not normal, and that has affected the entire United States winter weather pattern and there is no sign that it is going to change back to normal quickly.
Right now things are stuck in an upper air pattern of a ridge over the west coast and a trough over the east part of the country. In the east they have adopted the phrase "Polar Vortex" to describe their weather and in the west we are calling it the "Ridiculous Resistant Ridge". Don’t expect things to bounce back next week because sea surface temperatures don’t work that way.
California just had its driest year on record, and maybe you noticed, and if you did possibly you are thinking that things could get bad. For me things got bad last winter. We have been dealing with salts in the soil all summer and now into winter. The point is, the weather is dramatic right now, you just may not have noticed because it has not been a hardship yet.
So when is this weather going to change? That is a big question, and frankly most people who make a living answering that question agree that climate change has happened and the resulting short term weather patterns are still adjusting to what we might call normal or average. We might be in the new weather normal for our lifetimes. Don’t expect an apocalyptic Hollywood ending to life as we know it, but do expect that your life will change because of the weather.
There will be changes that we need to consider for the golf course in the coming months should there not be any more rain. In my next posting I will review planning that we will have in place should we have our irrigation water restricted.
For more information follow the links below:
The San Jose Mercury ran a recent article about the weather and drought conditions.
Governor Jerry Brown about to declare drought.
To keep up on the current sea surface temperature anomalies go to; http://www.ospo.noaa.gov/Products/ocean/sst/anomaly/
For national long and short range forecasts and discussion (including sea surface temperatures) go to: http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/forecasts/
For current California reservoir water levels go to: http://cdec.water.ca.gov/cdecapp/resapp/getResGraphsMain.action
For current California snow pack moisture go to: