the latest...

**There have been a few very light rain showers in the area early this Thursday morning. Temperatures remain extremely mild -- near 62ºF/17ºC at sunrise...

Monday, June 30, 2014

the gradual arrival...

JULY RAINFALL  *updated on 3 July

1st-   0.28" (0.7cm)
2nd-  1.22" (3.1cm)
-----------------------

**MONSOON 2014 HAS BEEN DECLARED FOR OUR AREA.  SEE THE TAB ABOVE FOR FURTHER MONSOON INFO.  *updated on 1 July
----------------------------------------------------

JUNE RAINFALL

1st-    1.65" (4.2cm)
18th-  0.75" (1.9cm)
19th-  1.10" (2.8cm)
21st-   0.04" (0.1cm)
25th-  1.69" (4.3cm)
28th-  2.20" (5.6cm)
29th-  2.76" (7.0cm)
30th-  0.71" (1.8cm)  *updated on 1 July
------------------------
total- 10.90" (27.7cm) *updated on 1 July

Apart from the measurement on the 1st of the month (that was mine), my neighbor, Tom, has been monitoring the rain gauge and conducting monkey security operations.  Thanks, Tom!!

The increasingly consistent heavy rainfall since the 25th of the month has taken us above 10 inches, and above normal for the month of June.

We have no official declaration of MONSOON 2014 here in McLeod Ganj just yet, but it's clear that our transition into the season is well underway.

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

out of station...


After nearly six continuous months of weather charts and data and twice-daily blogging (without even one day off) -- I will be gone for awhile.  It's visa run time, and that means I've got to make an exit.

Since weather info and forecasts have a very short shelf life, I'll be taking the CURRENT FORECAST offline while I am away.  However, please continue to check the ANTICIPATING MONSOON 2014 tab above, as I will try to post updates there when I can.  There is also a link to the IMD monsoon page embedded in that post, providing up-to-date monsoon info if you are interested!

Monday, June 9, 2014

hot and rainless... (pm.09.jun.14)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 75.4F (24.1C)
High temp: 90.6F (32.6C)
Rainfall: none

There are a few patchy mid-level clouds around the area at sunset, otherwise we have mostly clear skies.  Despite the clumps of clouds here and there, it has been a mostly sunny Monday, with a high temperature that has again surpassed the previous warmest of the season and the year.  It finally went above 90F at my location on Tushita Road in the upper part of town -- and that is something that happens only a couple of times each year, if at all.  Today has also been the eighth day in a row without even a trace of rain.

A remarkably hot air mass remains sprawled across most of northern India, keeping temperatures a bit above normal for this, the hottest time of the year on average.  In fact, you may have heard that it has been in the 46-48C (115-118F) range in Delhi the last couple of days -- with temps at a couple of recording stations reaching 60 year highs.  Our heat here hasn't been that dramatic, but this has definitely been a noteworthy streak.  And... it doesn't look like it's going to relent anytime soon.

Any kind of significant cooling trend is probably not going to kick in until we start getting our first waves of pre-monsoon moisture, cloudiness, and thunderstorms -- and at this point that doesn't look likely until perhaps the middle of next week at the earliest.  For a long time this year it had appeared that we might not get much of a summer, but as is often the case, we learn that things can turn radically in a short period of time.

CURRENT FORECAST details and other weather info can be found on tabs above.

no break in sight... (am.09.jun.14)>

I can see a couple of patches of mid-level clouds off to the southwest, otherwise we have mostly clear skies early on this Monday morning.  My overnight low temp here on Tushita Road below the mountaineering center was 75.4F (24.1C) -- and that's the new warmest 24 hour minimum temperature of the year.  There's been no rainfall since last report, and the current humidity reading is 29%.

We're still riding the peak of the most pronounced streak of hot weather of the season and the year.  It seems that the heat we missed out on for the most part during May just saved itself to be unleashed in June.  Apart from that risk of an isolated shower/thundershower popping up over the mountains during the PM hours, we've got very little chance of rain all the way through this week, the weekend, and possibly beyond.  Very warm temperatures in the upper-levels of the atmosphere, along with the low moisture content of this air mass should allow this stretch of generally stable conditions to continue on.

Our temps will remain pretty much stationary over the course of the next several days, which means we'll be in the 88-90F (31-32C) range for highs -- with swelteringly hot conditions remaining entrenched just downhill from us.  Until we get some rain, the nights are going to be increasingly uncomfortable as well.

CURRENT FORECAST details are on the tab above.

Sunday, June 8, 2014

7 days without rain... (pm.08.jun.14)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 71.2F (21.8C)
High temp: 88.4F (31.3C)
Rainfall: none

There are some fizzling clouds along the mountains along with some haze hanging in the air, otherwise it is mostly clear this evening.  For the first time in a week, we didn't have a new high temperature for the season and the year today.  It was still right on that magical line between very warm and hot, but it was just a degree (F) less hot than yesterday.  Today was the seventh day in a row without even a drop of rain.

The news I have to report this evening is very good if you're enjoying this hardcore summertime weather, but very bad if you're in the mood for a better chance of some refreshing rainfall.  Although the upper-level winds will be shifting around a bit during the coming week to ten days, the overall weather pattern will remain pretty much the same -- keeping our temps very close to where they've been the past several days, and preventing the combination of moisture and instability necessary to generate any significant shower and thunderstorm action.

There are no strong indications yet of a move toward more of a pre-monsoon situation in the near future, so we get to relish (or despise) this hot and dry weather though the middle of the month...

CURRENT FORECAST details and other info can be found on the tabs above.

get used to this... (am.08.jun.14)>

It's another sunny morning -- there's a bit of haze around but no clouds.  My low temp in the upper part of town has been 71.2F (21.8C), and there has been no precipitation overnight.  The humidity reading is currently 32%.

Apart from the risk of an isolated afternoon shower or thundershower popping up somewhere along the mountains, we should continue to see lots of sunshine during the coming several days.  There are some minor shifts and wiggles occurring in the upper-level pattern -- but nothing that is going to do much to destabilize this very warm summertime air mass in place across the western Himalayan region.

It looks like temperatures may not go much higher than they have the last day or two, but that's OK, since they're already high enough!  88-90F (31-32C) is just a shade above normal for early June... which is the warmest time of the year on average anyway.  At this point, the only thing that's going to allow us to cool down very much would be an increase in moisture leading to some cloud development and/or significant shower activity -- and that doesn't appear likely during the coming week or more.

Get the CURRENT FORECAST specifics on the tab at the top of the page.

Saturday, June 7, 2014

now stifling... (pm.07.jun.14)>

Saturday's stats:

Low temp: 73.0F (22.8C)
High temp: 89.8F (32.1C)
Rainfall: none

Some isolated light rain showers developed over the higher elevations of the Dhauladhars this afternoon, and the leftover clouds are visible up-mountain from us this evening.  Otherwise, sunshine held sway in McLeod again today, despite that PM build-up of mountain cloudiness.  For the sixth day in a row, we had a new high temperature for the season and the year -- to within a small fraction of a degree of 90F.

We've been fully immersed in summertime weather since Monday, with plenty of sunshine day after day, along with temps which have risen to seasonal norms and even a degree or two above.  This very warm weather is a bit surreal, actually, considering the cooler and wetter than normal spring and summer we had endured up until just recently.  But now we seem to be stuck with this -- as there are no significant shifts in the general weather pattern expected all the way through the end of next week.

A brief afternoon thundershower at some point cannot be entirely ruled out, but sunshine and extremely warm temperatures will continue to be the main features to deal with as we head toward the middle of the month.  This time last year we were on the brink of an early monsoon arrival, but the situation this year is entirely different...

CURRENT FORECAST info is available on the tab above.

highs for the year... (am.07.jun.14)>

It's sunny and bright again this morning, after another quiet and warm night.  I've recorded an overnight low temp of 73.0F (22.8C) which is (surprise, surprise) the warmest 24 hour minimum temperature of the season and the year.  There's been no rainfall since last report, and the humidity reading is a low 29%.

We've now had five days in a row of sunshine, steadily climbing temperatures, and not one drop of rain.  A giant ridge of summertime high pressure in place from Arabia into south Asia is responsible for this -- and there will be only slight adjustments to its positioning during the next several days to one week or so.  In the short term, we do have a very minor ripple of energy moving in aloft from the west, and that will provide us with at least a slight chance of a random thundershower somewhere around the area this afternoon and/or evening.  But then it looks like we'll return to near total stability by tomorrow (Sun).  After that, it may be the very end of next week before we have a decent chance of picking up any rain at all.

Temperatures are pretty close to their peak right now -- but it's possible they could rise another degree or two during the coming several days.  It seems unlikely that we'll experience any noteworthy cooling at all, unless we happen to get blessed with a passing thundershower at some point...

Check CURRENT FORECAST details and other info on tabs at the top of the page.

Friday, June 6, 2014

summer heat peaking... (pm.06.jun.14)>

Friday's stats:

Low temp: 72.1F (22.3C)
High temp: 88.5F (31.4C)
Rainfall: none

It didn't quite reach 90F/32C at my location in the upper part of town this afternoon -- but it was darn close.  And the high temp was again the warmest of this season and the year so far.  There was a more significant build-up of clouds over the mountains between late morning and mid-afternoon today, and that may have held our temps down slightly, but we can still call it a mostly sunny Friday.

We're experiencing the very height of the summer season recently, and if you like hot weather, this is your chance to relish it.  General high pressure in the upper-levels of the atmosphere continues to dominate the weather pattern from Arabia into south Asia, and that's producing relatively warm air in the higher levels to keep things fairly stable across a wide area.  There could be a minor bump in the road during the coming 24-36 hours or so, in the form of a weak upper-level disturbance drifting in from the west, however.  That means we have a slightly better chance of a random thundershower or two somewhere in the vicinity between late tonight and Saturday night -- and we could actually use it at this point.  Let's see.

Seasonable heat is expected to continue through much of next week, along with very low chances of significant rainfall.  There are the first hints of a potential pattern shift toward the end of next week, which could increase our chance of some pre-monsoon thunderstorms.

Check the CURRENT FORECAST info on the tab above.

90F on the cards... (am.06.jun.14)>

This Friday morning features full sunshine and very summery temperatures -- even at this early hour.  I'm recording an overnight low of 72.1F (22.3C) here in the upper part of town, and there has been no precipitation.  The current humidity reading is 32%.

We've now had four days in a row of mostly sunny skies and temperatures which have been steadily on the rise.  And it looks like this classic summertime air mass which is sprawled from the Persian Gulf into central and northern India may be able to warm even further during the next day or two.  I'm expecting my thermometer to get very close to 90F/32C this afternoon -- for the first time this season and year.  These borderline HOT temps may peak soon, but there isn't much evidence of significant cooling all the way through next week, to be honest.

Afternoon instability has remained minimal during the past several days, keeping cumulus cloud development over the Dhauladhars from getting out of control.  A couple of the computer models are showing a slightly better chance of some isolated afternoon thundershower development somewhere in our vicinity over the weekend -- but I'm sure we'd agree that a little bit of rain wouldn't be such a bad thing after this recent stretch of sunshine and heat.

CURRENT FORECAST details are available on the tab above.

Thursday, June 5, 2014

heat holds tight... (pm.05.jun.14)>

Thursday's stats:

Low temp: 70.2F (21.2C)
High temp: 87.7F (30.9C)
Rainfall: none

Skies are totally clear just before sunset this evening, at the end of the warmest day of 2014.  My high temp actually nudged its way just a bit above normal for the first week of June -- the first time in several weeks since we've gone above climatological averages.  There was a modest build-up of cumulus clouds over the mountains again between the very late morning and mid-afternoon, but our sunshine was never restricted.

The upper-level pattern from Saudi Arabia into India is a fairly typical one for this time of year, keeping things generally dry and stable across a very wide area.  The exception to that is some isolated/random afternoon thundershower activity that has occurred in some of the higher mountain locations -- but we've been spared any of that so far this week.  Actually, a shower or thundershower would feel pretty nice right about now.

Other than that risk of an isolated PM thundershower one of these days, we should continue to see lots of sunshine, along with fairly low humidity readings, and temperatures which will remain very close to seasonal averages -- and perhaps a bit above at times.

Other information is available on tabs at the top of the page, including CURRENT FORECAST details.

from warm to hot... (am.05.jun.14)>

Every time I post something here lately I'm talking about "the new warmest..." -- and that's again the case this morning.  The overnight low at my location in the upper part of town has been 70.2F (21.2C), which is indeed the warmest minimum temperature for a 24 hour period this year.  There's been no rainfall to report, and we have 100% clear skies again early this morning.  Humidity stands at 35%.

There continue to be just two main issues to be concerned about in terms of our overall weather scenario during the coming several days.  The first issue is our temperatures, which will climb even higher today, and probably into Friday as well.  We could be getting precariously close to 90F/32C for the first time this year -- and according to my records over the years, that usually only happens a few times each summer season, if at all.  It will be interesting to see if the temp does make it that high.  Remember, my observations are taken in the upper part of town, which means it's even warmer (by a couple of degrees F) in the main market.

The second issue is the risk of an isolated afternoon thundershower episode, developing in the mountains.  This pattern is a very quiet one, but there is a subtle balance of temperature, humidity, and wind direction that must occur throughout the different layers of the atmosphere to prevent some kind of convective development over the Dhauladhars.  On any given day we could see that balance upset -- so just keep an eye to the sky by the mid-day and early afternoon hours, to see if the cumulus cloud development up there looks like it might be getting out of hand!

CURRENT FORECAST details can be found on the tab above.

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

summer spectacular... (pm.04.jun.14)>

Wednesday's stats:

Low temp: 68.0F (20.0C)
High temp: 85.8F (29.9C)
Rainfall: none

Clear, quiet and warm evenings have become common during the past few days, and we've got another one in progress right now.  There was a bit more of a build-up of clouds over the mountains early this afternoon -- and it even looked a little threatening to our northwest for about a half hour or so -- but sunshine came out on top yet again.  My high temp was solidly the highest of this summer season, and of 2014.

Temperatures have been warming steadily and consistently during the past three days, as the most summery air mass of the season continues to expand across most of central and northern India.  Up until recently, we've been plagued regularly with upper-level disturbances moving in from the west and northwest which have kept genuine summer temperatures from become firmly established, as they've delivered waves of showers and thundershowers every few days.  This current pattern seems much more reliably dry, at least thus far, allowing our warming to finally gain some momentum.

Typically, the last ten days of May and the first ten days of June ARE the very warmest time of the year here in McLeod -- so this kind of heat is to be expected.  And it looks like it will stick around, as long as we don't get one or two of our famous isolated afternoon thundershowers (courtesy of the Dhauladhar thunder machine) to bless us with some temporary cooling...

The CURRENT FORECAST for the coming five days is on the tab at the top of the page.

on a roll... (am.04.jun.14)>

We have full sunshine and not one cloud to be seen early on this Wednesday morning.  It's also the warmest morning of the year according to my books -- with a predawn low temp of 68.0F (20.0C).  There has been no rainfall since last report, and the current humidity reading is 35%.

There are no changes to the overall large-scale weather pattern expected during the coming week or more, as a weak west-northwesterly flow in the upper atmosphere continues to dominate.  The average moisture content of the air mass in place across northern India is expected to continue dropping as well, as temperatures rise higher and higher.  We're poised for a new high temp of the season and the year this afternoon, then it looks like we'll be transitioning from very warm to HOT as we head into the weekend.  This entire spring/summer season we've only had a couple of days when temperatures actually rose ABOVE normal -- but we could end up with several days in a row of above normal temps by the time the middle of the month arrives.

This pattern does not support significant rain chances for us, but again, let's hold that rather loosely.  We will still have to keep an eye on the cloud development over the mountains around the noon hour into the early afternoon on a daily basis, to make sure our mountain micro-climate factor doesn't surprise us with a sudden thundershower.

CURRENT FORECAST details can be found on the tab above.

Tuesday, June 3, 2014

heat builds... (pm.03.jun.14)>

Tuesday's stats:

Low temp: 66.4F (19.1C)
High temp: 82.7F (28.2C)
Rainfall: none

It's clear and warm out there this evening -- a beautiful end to an idyllic June day.  Other than the fact that our temperatures were a notch warmer, it has been pretty much a repeat of yesterday, with tons of sunshine and only a minor amount of afternoon cumulus cloud development over the mountains.  My high temp in the upper part of town was the second-warmest of this season and year.

Since the late winter, it has been rare to see weather charts that are so uneventful for us here in northern India.  It seems we've never been more than a few days away from some kind of rain-producing system, keeping us from being able to just sit back, relax, and enjoy some calm conditions.  Well -- that kind of benign pattern seems to be finally in place, as a quiet and dry west-northwesterly flow becomes established across the western Himalayan region.  At the same time, there has been some considerable drying of the atmosphere, delivering some classic summertime conditions that are actually a few weeks late.

If you follow this blog regularly, you know that we always have to be aware of the potential for a PM thundershower popping up over the mountains -- even during fair weather patterns.  But other than that back-burner issue, it looks like we'll continue to see lots of sunshine, along with temperatures that should be climbing higher and higher as we head toward the weekend.  Even the extended range data is showing generally quiet weather for us -- all the way through next week.

Get the CURRENT FORECAST specs on the tab above.

warmer and warmer... (am.03.jun.14)>

We have full sunshine at sunrise on this Tuesday morning -- not a cloud in the sky.  My overnight low here on Tushita Road below the mountaineering center has been 66.4F (19.1C), and there has been no rainfall to report.  The current humidity reading is 33%.

Our overall weather pattern is an uneventful one, in terms of the large-scale features -- and that should remain the case at least through this coming weekend.  On the other hand, we've always got to deal with micro-scale features here along the slopes of the Dhauladhars, and that prevents me from being totally confident that there will be ZERO shower/thunder development at some point in the midst of this otherwise very quiet pattern.  At any rate, it looks like we've got generally sunny weather on the way for several days in a row, with some daily cloud development over the mountains during the afternoon hours, and that off-chance of an isolated thundershower.

Temperatures will be heading up, up, up, and up between now and the weekend, taking us to new highs for the season and the year as we progress through this first couple of weeks of June...

CURRENT FORECAST info is always available on the tab above.

Monday, June 2, 2014

nearly perfect... (pm.02.jun.14)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 63.1F (17.3C)
High temp: 80.2F (26.8C)
Rainfall: none

A picture perfect evening is in progress, with almost totally clear skies as sunset approaches.  We've enjoyed a radical and dramatic recovery from our inclement Sunday, with lots of sunshine and temperatures which rose back above 80F.  There was a bit of cumulus cloud development over the mountains between late morning and mid-afternoon, but it never really got going to develop into anything remotely threatening.

The weather charts, both in the near term and the long term, are looking more consistently quiet than they have in recent memory.  The flow in the upper-levels of the atmosphere will be from the west-northwest all the way through this week, as the average moisture content of the air mass over northern India decreases.  This should provide us with lots of sunshine and only occasional cloudiness, along with temperatures which will easily rise higher than they have this entire spring/summer season as we move into the middle and latter parts of the week.  Still, we're not talking about anything excessively hot for this time of year -- just in the neighborhood of normal/average.

The wild card is always the off-chance of some isolated thundershower development over the mountains during the PM hours.  We can't totally discount that possibility on any given afternoon, but overall, this weather pattern should be just about as quiet and uneventful as it ever gets around here...

CURRENT FORECAST details are available on the tab above.

summer resumes... (am.02.jun.14)>

It's clear, calm and serene this morning as the sun begins to peek over the mountains -- and it's been a quiet night.  The predawn low temperature at my location in the upper part of town was 63.1F (17.3C), and there has been no additional rainfall after yesterday's 1.65" (4.2cm) drubbing.  The humidity reading is currently 33%.

After three days of volatility and extreme fluctuations which included a mix of clouds, sun and light showers on Friday, lots of sun and the warmest temperature of the season on Saturday, and then all the thunder, lightning, moderate to heavy rain, and unseasonably cool temps yesterday -- it looks like things are going to even out and calm down for awhile.  We're coming under the influence of a benign west-northwesterly flow, which should be our main weather feature all the way through this coming weekend.  We'll also be on the northern fringe of a giant ridge of summertime high pressure which will extend from Saudi Arabia across the northern Arabian Sea into the central third of India.  All of this spells an extended period of generally quiet and dry weather, with temperatures moderating and warming further -- to the highest of this season and year as the weak progresses.

Of course the big 'BUT' to all of this is our mysterious Dhauladhar mountain thunder machine factor -- which can kick in during the afternoon hours even if the overall pattern appears devoid of any kind of disturbances.  Anyway, it looks like a very summery stretch of weather for us this week, apart from that issue which we have to keep tucked away in the back of our minds...

Check the CURRENT FORECAST details on the tab at the top of the page.

Sunday, June 1, 2014

quickly drying out... (pm.01.jun.14)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 54.1F (12.3C)
High temp: 73.6F (23.1C)
Rainfall: 1.65" (4.2cm)

The shield of clouds left over from today's rain and thunderstorms is visible off to the southeast, otherwise we have mostly clear skies just before sunset this evening.  It was really, really wet until just before 2:00pm, with numerous waves of showers/thunder moving through the area -- but then we started to see some gradual clearing in the northwestern sky, finally leading to a return to sunshine just after 4:30pm.  Temperatures today didn't feel at all like the first day of June -- the predominance of clouds and rain holding them around 15F below normal.

The whole weekend we've been on alert, as a series of upper-level disturbances trekked across northern India.  Yesterday we lucked out, with all of the action remaining to our north, but starting during the wee hours of this morning, we ended up in the target zone for shower and thunderstorm development, as that upper-level energy ran across a lower atmosphere packed with very warm air holding plenty of latent moisture.  It seems we could be just about done with this, though.  Although there is a risk of a random period of showers/thunder before midnight, and perhaps an isolated shower or thundershower on Monday, stabilization is already getting underway.

An uneventful west-northwesterly flow will dominate the weather pattern all the way through the coming week, and at this point, there is no evidence of any significant disturbances on the way.  That should set us up for a lot of summer sunshine with some mainly PM cloud development over the mountains, along with temperatures which will quickly rise toward seasonal normals by the middle and latter parts of the week.  Yesterday's high of 83.9F (28.8C) was the warmest of the year, but we'll be heading higher than that in a matter of a few days...

CURRENT FORECAST details are available on the tab above.

june rumbles in... (am.01.jun.14)>

*Update @ 10:14am... Brightening up just a bit.  Satellite pics show some sharp clearing not far to our west, but there could easily be further thundershower development here along the mountains, preventing that clearing from making a lot of progress.  Still, I think things will improve somewhat toward the afternoon.

*Update @ 8:54pm... Now suddenly looking exceptionally ugly out there again.  Very dark, occasionally gusty winds, lots of thunder/lightning, and a moderate rain shower in progress.

*Update @ 8:38am...  This morning's rainfall total is now 0.78" (2.0cm) at my house.  There have been a couple of moderate to heavy showers in the past hour and a half or so, but it's calmed down again at the moment.  I've got a new low temp of 55.9F (13.3C), which is an impressively chilly way to start off the month of June.

------------------------------------------------------------------
We've had some thundershowers to greet the first morning of June -- there were some random claps of thunder as early as 2:30am or so, with a more substantial round of showers during the past hour.  I've got 0.24" (6mm) in the rain gauge to show for it.  After warm temperatures holding just above 70F (21C) nearly all night long, it dropped to 57.9F (14.4C) here at my location in the upper part of town during the recent shower.  Humidity is currently 70%.

All of the shower/thunder action tracked a bit to our north yesterday, but the upper-level wind pattern has dipped slightly further southward this morning, allowing us to take part in what's been generated by this latest series of disturbances moving across northern India.  There will likely be more scattered showers and/or thunderstorms popping up across much of Himachal today and tonight, but we should be able to squeeze out some sunshine at times as well.  Even so, temperatures will likely be a few degrees cooler than they were yesterday.

A return to a more dry and stable pattern is expected starting tomorrow (Mon), with a fairly quiet west-northwesterly flow becoming established aloft.  That's going to allow the heat to build in yet again -- probably delivering new high temperatures for the season and the year as we head into the middle of the week.  Apart from the threat of an isolated PM thundershower, rain chances will be minimal for most of the week.

Check out other information, along with CURRENT FORECAST details on tabs located at the top of the page.