the latest...

**WEDNESDAY 8:00AM -- I'm surprised to see an additional 0.70" (1.8cm) of rain in the gauge overnight. We also had some thunder, lightning and occasionally gusty winds during the wee hours.

Monday, November 30, 2015

crossing into december... (pm.30.nov.15)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 51.8F (11.0C)
High temp: 59.7F (15.4C)
Rainfall today: none
Rainfall for November: 0.91" (2.3cm)

This final evening of November features partly cloudy and hazy skies, along with very mild temperatures for the season.  There were no surprises today, with pretty much every element of our weather conditions falling in line with expectations.  The haze and smog was rather ugly for an hour or two early this afternoon, but that, along with occasional cloudiness, never put a huge damper on the sunshine up here in McLeod proper.  It's been very close to 60ºF the last two days -- which is a pleasant way to end the month.

You can see from the stats at the top of this post that our total rainfall for November was less than one inch -- but it was just slightly above the normal amount of 0.70" (1.7m) -- during what averages out to be the driest month of the year in our area.  Apart from a couple of rather short spells of colder temperatures, the month averaged out a bit warmer than normal overall.  I'll be tallying all those numbers shortly.

Looking ahead, a weak upper-level disturbance will be dropping into the area as we greet the new month, but it looks like it won't have much of a noticeable effect on our weather conditions.  Whatever lingering moisture in our air mass should be swept away as this little system rolls through, dropping our humidity readings back down toward the 25-30% range later in the week.  None of the models are projecting any precipitation with this disturbance, though we will probably see a slight drop in temperatures during the coming two or three days.

A new high pressure ridge will build in by Thursday afternoon into Friday, providing us with a very stable atmosphere, and also another upward trend in temps.  At present, things are looking very tolerable for the opening week of December...

Get a look at details on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab above.

Sunday, November 29, 2015

typically uneventful... (pm.29.nov.15)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 50.5F (10.3C)
High temp: 59.5F (15.3C)
Rainfall: none

Light haze is reducing visibilities a bit just after dark this evening, otherwise our skies are mostly clear.  Today featured a much larger percentage of sunshine than yesterday, but we still had occasional haziness (worse in the valleys below) and some minor cumulus development in the vicinity of the mountains.  Temperatures were just slightly milder than yesterday's -- keeping us running above normal for the very end of November.  Humidity at my location averaged just above 50%.

There's very little to be all that concerned about weather-wise during the coming week, with a typically dull and uneventful set of meteorological variables in place for this time of year.  We've seen some warming aloft occurring the last couple of days, and that has caused yet another moderate inversion to develop across much of northern India.  A weak circulation and pool of cooler air aloft will slide into our neighborhood from the northwest by late Tuesday into Wednesday, but even drier air will also be sweeping in at the same time, so right now there doesn't appear to be any risk of precipitation.  We could have one or two days of slightly dipping temperatures, but then models are still hinting at a significant and rather unseasonable warm-up by the weekend.

Over the course of the next six or seven days there should be a good amount of variability between sun, haze and occasional clouds -- but I think in the end, the sun will win out once we get a retrospective look at the week.

Follow THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK, updated twice daily, along with lots of other info and archives located on tabs above and along the column at the right of the page.

Saturday, November 28, 2015

rebounding already... (pm.28.nov.15)>

Saturday's stats:

Low temp: 50.0F (10.0C)
High temp: 59.1F (15.1C)
Rainfall for today: none
Rainfall for November: 0.91" (2.3cm)

There's hardly any cloudiness to be found out there this evening, but we are still dealing with a light haze.  Today's sky condition consisted of almost equal parts sun, clouds and haze, as temperatures rebounded much more aggressively than I had expected.  My thermometer in the upper part of town went just above 15ºC, which was about one degree celsius (or two degrees fahrenheit) warmer than anticipated.  No complaints!

The shot of cooler air on Thursday night through Friday evening delivered the coldest temps of this new winter season, but already warming throughout most layers of the atmosphere is kicking in, allowing us to quickly jump back a little bit above normal for the very tail end of November.  Just yesterday I mentioned that we might be finished with 60ºF (16ºC) temps for this season and year, but already I think I'll have to take that back, as we could be flirting with those numbers both tomorrow (Sun) and Monday.  Another very brief shot of cooler air is expected during the mid-week period, but extended range models are showing a high pressure ridge building in by the end of the week -- and that pattern hints at some very mild temps compared to normal for early December.

Although we'll have to deal with occasional clouds and haze, there should still be a good amount of sun during the next several days or more... with no significant storms systems and very little chance of measurable rainfall.

Peruse the rest of the site/blog for lots more info and discussion topics... and get forecast details on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab above.

Friday, November 27, 2015

coolest of the season... (pm.27.nov.15)>

Friday's stats:

Low temp: 42.3F (5.7C)
High temp: 54.3F (12.4C)
Rainfall since midnight: 0.15" (4mm)
Rainfall since 7pm Thursday: 0.22" (6mm)

We're back to mostly clear skies early tonight, though it is a little bit hazy.  It has been an interesting 24 hour period, with several rather brief periods of light rain showers between this time last evening and around 6 o'clock this morning.  There were even some impressive displays of thunder and lightning during the overnight into early morning hours -- though the rain gauge tally didn't amount to very much.  Still, nearly one-quarter of an inch of rain during that roughly 12 hour period overnight is significant enough for the final days of November.  It's also worth noting that my overnight low temp (see above) was the coldest I've recorded since THE 16TH OF MARCH.  Yes, winter is gradually arriving... with a fresh dusting of white visible below Triund early this morning.

The upper-level system responsible for last night's active weather has sputtered out and sheared apart as it has been pushing east-northeast of us today.  That has given us generally improving conditions as a flat westerly flow begins to set up over northern India.  That flow will turn more to the southwest by later in the weekend as milder air begins to filter back in -- slowly but surely.  Right now things are looking calm and quiet through the weekend and throughout most of next week, though we're going to have to be on guard and aware of the potential for various types of cloud development issues from time to time.

Our temperatures will attempt to moderate a bit by Monday, but then yet another surge of cooler air will settle across the area by the middle of next week.  It's not for certain yet, but I think we may have seen the last of our 60ºF+ temps for this season, and for 2015.

Get a look at forecast specifics on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK (which is updated both morning and evening), located on a tab at the top of the page.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

temps take a dip... (pm.26.nov.15)>

Thursday's stats:

Low temp: 46.4F (8.0C) -- updated @ 8:50pm
High temp: 58.6F (14.8C)
Rainfall: 0.07" (2mm) -- updated at 8:50pm

It's overcast as total darkness takes over this evening, and there were some random sprinkles of light rain occurring last time I checked.  Today has worked out almost exactly according to expectations, with partly to mostly cloudy skies, cooler temperatures, and a few episodes of brief light rain showers since around 2:30pm.  We did have some decent periods of sunshine in the midst of it all as well, however.  The high temp at my location in the upper part of town was the coolest I've recorded since the 10th of the month -- just over two weeks ago.

Thanksgiving Day is dawning in the U.S. at this moment, so HAPPY THANKSGIVING to our many American readers.  Hope it's a blessed one for you and yours.  

The upper-level low pressure system we've been talking about all week is now churning its way across northern Pakistan, and its very center should be located just over the top of us around 6:00am tomorrow (Fri) morning.  The dynamic energy associated with this system is quite impressive, and if there was more moisture for the whole system to tap into, we'd be getting at least some moderate amounts of rain out of this.  In reality, the moisture supply is very limited, and thus, the rain shower activity has been very scattered and generally light.  I think there is a chance we could at least get enough rain to measure in the gauge tonight into very early Friday morning, but then as the center of the upper-level circulation moves to the east, the precipitation risk will come to an end.

Already we're tasting some cooler air, and it certainly looks like our temperatures will be cooler during the next few days than we've seen since earlier in the month.  But there will be at least a slight moderation in temps as we transition into December, with little if any chance of rain next week -- according to the latest data.

More info is available on tabs at the top of the page, including forecast specifics on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Wednesday, November 25, 2015

moisture-deprived system... (pm.25.nov.15)>

Wednesday's stats:

Low temp: 55.0F (12.8C)
High temp: 61.5F (16.4C)
Rainfall today: none
Rainfall for November: 0.69" (1.8cm)

There's a broken layer of high clouds across the sky this evening, and it remains comfortably mild for the season.  Today was the very textbook definition of a 'variably cloudy' day, with numerous transitions back and forth between periods of sun and clouds.  The humidity reading was quite variable as well -- ranging from 28 to 48%.

For the last few days our main weather feature has been an upper-level low pressure circulation off to our west, and tonight it remains parked over Afghanistan.  It has kept wave after wave of mid- and high cloud development happening in the southwesterly flow ahead of it, but very little in the way of precipitation.  That's due to the very dry atmosphere in place across Pakistan into north India.  This system will finally be on the move by tomorrow morning, and is scheduled to trek directly across Himachal Pradesh on Friday morning.  Most of the computer model data is showing little or no shower or thundershower development in our area, but there is one lone model suggesting that we could get minor amounts of rain sometime between tomorrow (Thu) afternoon and Friday morning.  Let's see.

A batch of cooler air will flow in as this system moves through, dropping our temps a few degrees as the weekend arrives.  Other than that, things are looking very uneventful for us for the November-into-December transition, but that's nothing out of the ordinary for this typically quiet time of the year.

Forecast details can be found on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab at the top of the page.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

still on the mild side... (pm.24.nov.15)>

Tuesday's stats:

Low temp: 54.3F (12.4C)
High temp: 61.8F (16.6C)
Rainfall: none

Although it's not totally overcast, there is a considerable amount of high cloudiness overhead just after dark this evening.  Most of the day was filled with sunshine, though we did see this latest batch of high clouds start to develop and move in during the mid-afternoon.  Temperatures here at our general elevation remain mild for this time of year, with humidity down again today -- as low as 28% for a couple of hours this morning.

The center of an area of low pressure in the upper atmosphere remains over northwestern Afghanistan... pretty close to where it was this time last evening.  A southwesterly flow prevails ahead of this system, funneling unseasonably mild air into northwest India, but also generating this patchy high cloud development.  That upper-level circulation will remain nearly stationary for another 24 hours or so, then begin to move eastward and right over the top of us by Friday morning.  As I've been saying, there's a very small amount of moisture available to this system, but with much colder air aloft and a good bit of dynamic energy, we've still got to keep an eye out for some isolated to widely scattered shower/thunder development around here between Thursday evening and late Friday night.  Otherwise expect this variable sun/clouds scenario to continue on.

Our temperatures should drop a few degrees by Thursday night into Friday as the core of that disturbance moves through, and especially if we do manage to get a period of rain showers.  But then a rebound in temps should kick in pretty quickly by early next week, though things are still looking slightly unsettled as we head toward the first of December.

THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK can be found on a tab above, with tabs linking you to lots of other information as well.

Monday, November 23, 2015

a bit more going on... (pm.23.nov.15)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 54.9F (12.7C)
High temp: 61.1F (16.2C)
Rainfall today: none
Rainfall for November: 0.69" (1.8cm)

It's a really beautiful evening out there, with patches of altocumulus clouds, but enough open sky to reveal a bright moon waxing toward full.  Today there've been more clouds than we've seen in just over one week, but the sun did make a nice showing after about 1:30pm -- boosting temps a few degrees after very little movement on the thermometer earlier in the day.  Humidity has been a bit higher -- in the neighborhood of 40-50%.

A fairly well-organized upper-level low pressure center is located over northwestern Afghanistan at present.  Little wiggles and ripples of upper-level energy are being ejected out ahead of this system, and that's what's caused our cloud development today.  The overall atmospheric situation is going to be in a sort of 'holding pattern' the next two or three days, as that low pressure system loiters well to our west.  By late Thursday, it will push eastward, moving across northern India on Friday into Saturday.  There's still very little moisture projected to be pulled in, but with the upper-level dynamics and a good amount of cooling surging in, there appears to be a concern about a period or two of rain showers and possible thundershowers between Thursday night and very early Saturday morning.  As you can see from the stats (top of this post), November rainfall has been extremely anaemic, so it wouldn't hurt to get a little rain before the month closes.

There will also probably be a noticeable drop in temperatures by Thursday night or Friday... but right now it seems like there could be a fairly rapid rebound by early next week.

Check tabs above for other topical info, including THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Sunday, November 22, 2015

a changing pattern... (pm.22.nov.15)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 53.4F (11.9C)
High temp: 62.6F (17.0C)
Rainfall: none

It's partly cloudy as darkness settles in this evening, after a fairly rapid increase in high clouds during the last couple of hours.  Up until then, it was another day of abundant sunshine and bright blue skies.  I recorded one of the lowest humidity readings of the season during the mid-morning -- 22% -- but we've crept up to around 50% this evening.  Temperatures were absolutely fantastic for this time of year.

The big dome of high pressure aloft which has been sitting on top of us for the last several days is starting to break down a bit, so the inversion in place since the middle of last week will be breaking down as well.  Upper-level energy is beginning to spin into northern India from the west, and will create a less stable situation for us as this new week unfolds.  If there was a decent amount of moisture available, we would be talking about a week filled with off-and-on showers and thunderstorms... but that's not the case, so mostly these disturbances rippling through in the upper atmosphere will be able only to produce occasional mid- and high cloudiness.  There's quite a bit of inconsistency between the models by the end of the week, though, so we'll keep an eye on it day-by-day, as we always do anyway.

It's been cooler than normal downhill from us these past five days, thanks to the inversion I keep referencing, but temps here at our elevation have actually been on the plus side of normal for this stage of November.  But it does look like we could wind up on the cooler side of normal/average by either Friday or Saturday.

Keep on top of the latest forecast details on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab above.

Saturday, November 21, 2015

intricacies and fallacies... (pm.21.nov.15)>

Saturday's stats:

Low temp: 55.9F (13.3C)
High temp: 63.5F (17.5C)
Rainfall: none

Once again this evening we've got mostly clear skies, apart from some light haze, and just a minor scattering of thin cirrus clouds.  My high temp in the upper part of town was the warmest I've recorded since last Sunday, and quite mild for the latter one-third of November.  Even our early morning low was very mild for the season, as we caught a taste of the bubble of warmer air aloft that's responsible for the current strong inversion in place across northern India.  Suffice it to say that it has been another fantastic autumn day around here.

For the last several days we've been talking about that inversion -- consisting of a shallow layer of cooler air trapped in the surface layers, below relatively warmer air in the middle and upper-levels of the atmosphere.  This is a common occurrence across north India during the fall and winter seasons, and can often deliver cooler nighttime temperatures in the lower elevations and onto the plains than we're getting here at 1800 meters (5900ft). And that's been the case the last few nights/early mornings.  That's why it's too bad that the wrong information delivered through modern services via robot mobile apps (and lack of ground-truth info from the IMD) leads many people to avoid McLeod Ganj during the winter season, when we actually have brighter skies, better air quality and quite a few milder nights here than points well below and south of us.  Lucky us -- less tourists means less traffic and chaos.  I'm good with that.

Anyway... this good weather should continue, in general, with sunshine perhaps yielding to a bit more mid- and high cloudiness next week.  Upper-level energy and developing low pressure to our west will try hard to press into Himalayan north India during the next several days, but right now, all of the models are keeping any precipitation development north of us.  Still, we'll have to watch it.  Temps should remain easy to take for this time of year...

Forecast details can be found on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab at the top of the page.

Friday, November 20, 2015

autumn pleasures... (pm.20.nov.15)>

Friday's stats:

Low temp: 52.7F (11.5C)
High temp: 60.4F (15.8C)
Rainfall: none

Our darkening evening sky features some scattered high clouds and a waxing half moon overhead.  It's been another day of phenomenal amounts of sunshine, with only a slight increase in those scattered cirrus clouds during the middle of the afternoon.  We've again had to deal with a slight haze, but the worst of it remains down in the lower elevations.  I recorded the warmest high temp since Monday, but only by a hair.  Humidity again averaged around 40-45%.

A sprawling high pressure ridge in the upper-atmosphere across most of South Asia continues to keep an inversion in place -- with relatively warmer air aloft trapping cooler air in the surface layers.  This is a very stable situation, with very little if any upward vertical motion possible... thus the lack of cloud development and the haze issues further downhill.  It's been great to have a few days in a row of abundant fall sunshine here along the immediate Dhauladhar range.

Upper-level energy and developing low pressure well off to our west will attempt to chip away at this big high pressure ridge during the coming several days, but as of now, it doesn't look like it's going to have much success.  We'll have to watch a bit of shower potential early next week north and west of us, along with a potential for some more extensive patches of mid-high clouds developing... but all in all things are still looking very acceptable and tolerable for late November.

THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK can be found on a tab at the top of the page, along with lots of other stuff you may want to check out.

Thursday, November 19, 2015

rain chance nil... (pm.19.nov.15)>

Thursday's stats:

Low temp: 52.9F (11.6C)
High temp: 60.1F (15.6C)
Rainfall: none

There's some light haze in the air, otherwise we have totally clear skies as the light fades in the west this evening.  Very few of those high, thin cirrus clouds made it into northern India today, leaving us with almost totally sunny conditions here in our area.  The inversion issues have definitely kicked in below us, however, and you only had to gaze down toward Dharamsala, Gaggal and Kangra to see the layer of trapped haze, smoke and dust.  Temperatures at my location on Tushita Road just below the mountaineering center have been fairly steady during the last three days, as humidity ranges between 35 and 48%.

As we've been discussing recently, a massive bubble of warmer air in the upper-levels of the atmosphere has been building into northwest India -- effectively trapping a shallow layer of cooler air in the lower-levels.  This kind of stability puts a cap on the normal upward vertical motion of the air mass during the daylight hours, which keeps all of the built up dust and pollutants stuck near the ground.  This phenomenon is really more of a problem downhill from us toward the plains, but we're catching a bit of the haze at our elevation as well.  As some slightly cooler air moves in aloft over the weekend, the air should begin to stir a bit, which could break up the inversion.  We shall see.

Otherwise, this is a typically calm and quiet weather pattern for the latter half of November, and it appears that we have little if any chance of rainfall during the next week or more.  Upper-level energy approaching from the west doesn't seem like it will ever be able to penetrate the high pressure ridge in place... and decent moisture is lacking anyway.  Still anticipating a moderate rise in temps here at our elevation as we head into the weekend...

Explore the rest of the blog for other info, including THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab at the top of the page.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

issues of late november... (pm.18.nov.15)>

Wednesday's stats:

Low temp: 52.3F (11.3C)
High temp: 59.9F (15.5C)
Rainfall: none

It's a bit hazy this evening, with a few very thin patches of cirrus clouds streaking the sky.  Concerns about an inversion setting up today didn't turn into much of an issue... though we did see a slight increase in haze throughout the day.  Otherwise, there's been plenty of sunshine, mixed with those patches of high, thin cirrus clouds.  Temperatures today were actually very similar to yesterday's -- with a stark contrast between how it feels in the sun versus the shade.

That sun/shade contrast is very noticeable this time of year when we are dealing with such a dry air mass.  If you're standing in the direct sun during the middle of the day, it feels almost HOT, but take a step into the shade and you get a very quick realization of what the air temperature really is.  And our temps the last couple of days are running very close to normal for the middle of November here at our location and elevation.

A ridge of high pressure aloft continues to build into central and northern India, bringing in a bubble of unseasonably warm air in the upper-half of our atmosphere.  However, cooler air closer to the surface trapped underneath the warm air above is the classic recipe for inversion conditions across north India.  We still have to watch for that trapped haze/smog problem, though it will be more pronounced down on the plains.

The end of November is normally one of the most quiet times of the year around here, and that looks to be the case for us -- with no significant storm systems on the horizon.  Models had been wrestling with some kind of system moving in early next week, but the latest data strongly suggests that our air mass will remain too moisture-starved for any significant precipitation to develop.  It still looks like our temps will trend back above normal as the weekend arrives.

More info is available on tabs above, including THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

stability reigns... (pm.17.nov.15)>

Tuesday's stats:

Low temp: 52.0F (11.1C)
High temp: 60.2F (15.7C)
Rainfall: none

Nothing but stars and a waxing quarter moon overhead early tonight -- not a cloud to be seen.  Today has been one of the very sunniest days of this autumn season, and perhaps of the last several months or more.  Full sunshine this morning only gave way to minor traces of cumulus cloud development over the immediate Dhauladhar peaks this afternoon, and all of that fizzled out well before sunset.  In spite of the bright sun, temps today were actually a couple of degrees (ºF) cooler than yesterday, thanks to a central Asian air mass which continues to flirt with us.

A huge ridge of high pressure in the upper-atmosphere is starting to build in from the southwest at this moment, which will bring some dramatic warming in the middle and upper levels during the coming 48 hours.  If that warming aloft outpaces the warming at the surface, then we may be dealing with an inversion during this mid-week period.  That means the potential for trapped haze and smog in the lower layers of the atmosphere.  Our air mass is very dry, but we have to watch how this evolves nonetheless.

The general trend of temperatures should be upward between tomorrow and Friday or Saturday -- barring inversion issues -- taking us well above normal for the latter half of November.  Models are in extreme disagreement about a developing storm system to our west by early next week, so we'll have to keep an eye on some rain shower potential on Monday into Tuesday.

Check out the rest of the site for archives and sponsors -- and tabs at the top of the page for other local information, including THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Monday, November 16, 2015

among the finest... (pm.16.nov.15)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 53.4F (11.9C)
High temp: 62.6F (17.0C)
Rainfall: none

Our sky this evening is 100% clear -- and it hasn't been often we've been able to say that during this autumn season.  What a beautiful day it has been, with sunshine only yielding to some rather feeble cumulus cloud development in the immediate vicinity of the Dhauladhars during the mid-day into the afternoon hours.  Temperatures were slightly cooler than they've been since Friday, but are still running a bit above normal for the middle of November.  Humidity readings have been generally in the 35-45% range.

Weather charts and data continue to indicate a stretch of very calm and quiet weather for us over the course of the coming several days.  A northwesterly upper-level flow will gradually weaken during the next 48 hours, as a large ridge of high pressure builds across nearly all of central and northern India.  With a comprehensively dry air mass in place, there is virtually no chance of any precipitation for us through Saturday at least, but we may be dealing with increasing high clouds by Friday, if not a bit earlier.  I have a concern about a mild inversion setting up by Wednesday, as warmer air flows in aloft, but it may not mean anything tangible for us.  If we can hold on to a majority of sunshine, our temps will be dramatically above normal during the latter part of the week.

Some of the models are wrestling with some kind of a developing storm system by late Sunday through the middle of next week, though so far, there has been very little consistency in how this thing might take shape.  

Keep track of THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK and other local weather info - located on tabs at the top of the home page.

Sunday, November 15, 2015

calm week unfolding... (pm.15.nov.15)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 54.3F (12.4C)
High temp: 63.8F (17.7C)
Rainfall: none

There's a fairly extensive layer of mid-level clouds blanketing the area as night falls this evening.  But we came up with a majority of sunshine again today, though there was a bit more scattered cloud development than we saw yesterday.  Humidity was in the 30-40% range all day, as temperatures remain a bit milder than we would expect for this stage of November.  That's been the case since Thursday, actually.

The center of an upper-level low pressure system is way north of us in Kazakhstan this evening, but a weak low pressure trough extends south of the center itself, and is now swinging across Jammu & Kashmir.  It's responsible for the increased cloudiness we're dealing with at the moment, and I wouldn't be totally shocked if there were some sprinkles or an isolated light shower somewhere around the area overnight.  This system will be out of here tomorrow morning, setting us up for what looks like nearly an entire week of stable and quiet weather conditions.

Temperatures will cool off just a couple of degrees tomorrow into Tuesday, but then a moderating trend will kick in again for the rest of the week.  A massive high pressure ridge will build across most of India by Wednesday, and then dominate the weather pattern through the weekend.  Barring increasing high cloud development by Friday or so, we may be in line for some unseasonably warm temps during the Thursday through Saturday period.  Humidity will most likely average its lowest of season...

There's other useful info to be found on tabs at the top of the page, including forecast specifics on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Saturday, November 14, 2015

a drying air mass... (pm.14.nov.15)>

Saturday's stats:

Low temp: 56.1F (13.4C)
High temp: 65.1F (18.4C)
Rainfall: none

There are only a few traces of mid-level clouds this evening, here at the end of one of the  finest days of this November up til now.  My temperatures in the upper part of town were the mildest since the first day of the month, and we had a greater percentage of sunshine than we've seen on the vast majority of days these last couple of weeks.  Pretty fantastic stuff.

As we've been anticipating, we're catching the first stages of an influx of the driest air of this autumn season -- and our air mass will dry out even more by Tuesday and Wednesday of next week.  Even though there will be a rather potent upper-level circulation moving across Himalayan north India between mid-day tomorrow (Sun) and Monday morning, the amount of moisture available for it to work with will be minuscule.  Thus, none of the computer models are stirring up any precipitation at all across Himachal Pradesh, though there could be some isolated light showers north of us in Kashmir.

By mid-week a strong ridge of high pressure will build across northwest India, providing us with plenty of sun, along with a run of temperatures several degrees above normal for the season.  At least as of now, the coming week is looking like the best of our autumn season thus far... let's see if that really pans out.!

Details of the forecast can be found on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab at the top of the page.

Friday, November 13, 2015

barely measurable... (pm.13.nov.15)>

Friday's stats:

Low temp: 54.3F (12.4C)
High temp: 63.6F (17.6C)
Rainfall: 0.03" (1mm)

We'll call it partly cloudy as night falls, with a tiny sliver of a crescent moon in the southwestern sky.  Today has been a fairly pleasant one, after this morning's thick clouds and scattered very light rain showers (mainly between 8:00 and 9:30am) gave way to partly sunny skies.  You can see from the stats above that our rainfall measurement was a paltry one -- barely enough to register at all, in fact.  If you slept late, you missed it entirely.

There's still a trough of low pressure in the upper atmosphere lingering to our west, however, and that keeps at least a mentionable risk of a bit of isolated shower/thunder development during the overnight hours.  By tomorrow (Sat) a big blast of dry central Asian air begins to sink southeastward into northern India -- and even though there will be a bit of wiggling and rippling coming through aloft on Sunday into early Monday, our air mass is going to be more moisture-deprived than we've seen this whole autumn season thus far, and that should prevent even the most isolated shower development.

All of next week is looking dry and quiet, with fairly typical temperatures for the latter half of November.  That means it will be on the chilly side, but actually quite pleasant during sunny daylight hours.

Keep track of the evolving 7-DAY OUTLOOK with a click on the tab at the top of the page.

Thursday, November 12, 2015

the next thing to watch... (pm.12.nov.15)>

Thursday's stats:

Low temp: 53.6F (12.0C)
High temp: 62.2F (16.8C)
Rainfall: none

We have a broken layer of high cirrus clouds overhead at dusk this evening, but it's only been since around 3:30pm that those high clouds started to arrive in earnest.  The sun hung around longer than anticipated, but I'll bet there aren't too many complaints about that.  In response to the sunshine and a warmer air mass in general, my high temp in the upper part of town was the warmest of the last 10 days.  Humidity ranged from 45 to 53%.

Satellite pics are showing a rather impressive and broad band of cloudiness just sneaking in from the west, in association with our next upper-level disturbance which will be moving from Turkmenistan into Afghanistan overnight.  All of the computer model data is keeping the most significant outbreak of precipitation just barely to our north during the coming 36 hours or so, but we're going to have to be on alert for at least a couple of periods of rain showers and possible thunderstorms -- mainly between early Friday morning and late Friday night.  Cloudiness will also be more prevalent than we've seen the last couple of days.  Of course we'll also get a temporary temperature-plunge in association with a rain/thunder event, with another few inches of snow dusting the Dhauladhars.

By Saturday morning, we'll begin the next trend toward stabilization... and that should mean a good-looking weekend.  Right now the models are showing a push of the driest overall air mass of this autumn season early next week, providing us with quiet and seasonably pleasant weather for a while.

Get a look at other info, including THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK, on tabs at the top of the page.

Wednesday, November 11, 2015

temporary brightness... (pm.11.nov.15)>

Wednesday's stats:

Low temp: 50.3F (10.2C)
High temp: 59.9F (15.5C)
Rainfall: none

It is the evening of Diwali, and as the sky goes dark, the fireworks will get cranking.  The weather is perfect for the festivities, with a scattering of mid- and high clouds, relatively pleasant temps for this time of year... and virually no wind to speak of.  Today we've had a nice break from the persistent cloudiness this month so far, with full sunshine this morning giving way to just a moderate build-up of clouds mainly near the mountains during the afternoon.  This is closer to November's true character than what we've had to deal with recently.

Unfortunately, it doesn't look like today's weather will repeat itself during the coming couple of days.  The next in a very long series of weak upper-level disturbances is already on the way, and will bring an increase in clouds either later tonight or during the day on Thursday, leading to another chance of a couple of periods of showers/thunder -- most likely late Thursday night through Friday.  Again, I doubt that we'll see anything more than light amounts of rain (less than a quarter of an inch), if anything at all, but it will keep us from being totally care-free and apathetic about the meterological situation around here.

By Saturday we will start to see a shift in the overall pattern, which could lead to a longer stretch of quiet, dry and sunnier weather for next week.  Earlier it had looked like there might be one more chance of showers Sunday night into Monday, but the latest models have done away with that feature.  Temperature-wise, there are still signs we might gravitate back to a slightly warmer than normal scenario over the course of the coming week or so.  Check THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK (above) for details.

**HAPPY DIWALI**

Tuesday, November 10, 2015

diwali arriving... (pm.10.nov.15)>

Tuesday's stats:

Low temp: 47.8F (8.8C)
High temp: 55.4F (13.0C)
Rainfall: 0.19" (5mm)

Take a look at those stats and you'll see what a cool day it has been, and also the amount of rain in the gauge as a result of our showers (accompanied by a little thunder) this morning.  Almost all of that nearly two-tenths of an inch of rain fell between 7:30 and 9:00am, though we did have some brief moments of drizzle and very light rain showers all the way until close to the noon hour.  As hoped, the sun did make a reappearance shortly after 2:00pm, and was increasingly present thereafter.  Now at dusk, we have just a few leftover mid-level clouds lingering close to the mountains.

Numerous upper-level disturbances have been rippling through the western Himalayas the last several days -- the latest of which finally had enough juice and fuel to give us our minor rainfall totals earlier today.  There will continue to be some weak disturbances and circulations passing overhead all the way through next Monday, so we're going to be dealing with more alternations between clouds and sunshine, along with another couple of opportunities to pick up some isolated to scattered shower action around the area.  Fortunately it should be dry for Diwali (Wed) and probably on Thursday as well.  But that shower risk will re-enter the forecast very late Thursday through Friday, and again by late Sunday night into Monday.  As I've said, we're not talking about impressive amounts of rain at all -- just enough to keep us on our toes.

Overall, our air mass will be able to support very comfortable daytime temperatures with the help of a few hours of sunshine.  But that's the big question during the coming several days... just how much cloudiness will there be to restrict the sun's potential?

You can always check THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab at the top of the page for forecast specs.

Monday, November 9, 2015

stubborn clouds/haze... (pm.09.nov.15)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 52.9F (11.6C)
High temp: 59.7F (15.4C)
Rainfall: none

Our sky is partly cloudy and hazy this evening, and it's a bit breezy at the moment as well.  It's been another rather chilly day, with hazy sun trying hard to poke through a lot of mid- and high level cloudiness.  If there were any raindrops today, I never saw them.  Humidity averaged 45%.

The overall weather pattern continues to be dominated by a rather brisk westerly flow aloft, which is bringing back-to-back weak disturbances from the vicinity of the Caspian Sea, across Afghanistan and Pakistan and then into Himalayan north India.  Mostly these wiggles/ripples in the upper-level flow are producing extensive patches of cloudiness, but there have been a few areas of scattered showers and thundershowers as well -- pretty much all of it happening to our northwest.

More weak disturbances will roll over us during the coming week or so, but according to the latest data, it's still looking like it will be hard for us to come up with any significant precipitation out of the deal.  Don't be surprised if we get an isolated shower or thundershower -- later tonight into Tuesday, and again Thursday night into Friday -- but the main issue will be the cloud battles.  Usually we get to enjoy lots of bright sunshine during November, but we're being robbed of that so far this year.

Check out all the forecast specifics on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK tab at the top of the page.

Sunday, November 8, 2015

ripple after ripple... (pm.08.nov.15)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 52.9F (11.6C)
High temp: 60.2F (15.7C)
Rainfall: none

It's hazy and partly cloudy out there as the sky goes completely dark on us this Sunday evening.  We did get some sun today, but it came and went very frequently, and never stayed around for long.  It was even completely absent after about 3:00pm or so.  The humidity reading at my location in the upper part of town fluctuated between 39% and 50%, with the high temp exactly equaling yesterday's.

So far, this November has featured more cloudiness than normal, though measurable rainfall has been confined to the period between the afternoon of the 4th and the early morning hours of the 5th.  It looks like we're going to have to resign ourselves to more of these sunshine/cloud wrestling matches over the course of the next week, as the upper-level flow is aligned in such a way as to allow several weak disturbances to ripple across north India.  Although there is a risk of a few scattered light showers in the forecast tomorrow (Mon) and Tuesday, and again on Friday, the potential for significant amounts of rain is very small -- at least the way the data is looking right now.

I mentioned last evening that the models were hinting at a fairly impressive warming trend by the end of the week.  That may still be the case, but with short daylight hours this time of year, we're going to have to get rid of these daily periods of cloudiness to cash in on any kind of decent warm-up.

Check tabs above for lots of other info, including forecast details on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Saturday, November 7, 2015

sun/clouds/sun/clouds... (pm.07.nov.15)>

Saturday's stats:

Low temp: 51.6F (10.9C)
High temp: 60.2F (15.7C)
Rainfall: none

There's quite a lot of high cloudiness out there at nightfall, and actually we've been dealing with varying degrees of that all day.  The sunshine won the majority during the morning into the very early afternoon, but sometime between 1:00 and 2:00pm, it seemed that the sun began having a hard time overcoming the patches of mainly mid- and high clouds moving from west to east across the sky.  Humidity averaged 47% today, with temperatures very similar to yesterday's.

No significant storm systems are showing up on the weather charts, but a rapid west-to-east flow in the upper atmosphere is carrying several weak ripples and wiggles across northern India, and will continue to do so over the course of the coming week or more.  Models are a little more aggressive with a few widely scattered showers or thundershowers sometime during the Monday/Tuesday period, but right now it's looking like rainfall amounts would be sparse.  What we will have to deal with is this battle between clouds and sun, which will make our temperatures difficult to nail down.  With a few hours of sunshine it will be nice and pleasant, but periods of cloudiness will make it feel rather chilly.  This is the time of year when we start to experience a stark contrast between sun and shade.

There are hints of a rather noticeable warm-up by the end of next week, but that's a long way off...

THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK contains forecast details.

Friday, November 6, 2015

quiet weekend ahead... (pm.06.nov.15)>

Friday's stats:

Low temp: 50.9F (10.5C)
High temp: 61.1F (16.2C)
Rainfall: none

There are a few scattered wisps of high, thin cirrus clouds scattered across the sky as the evening light fades.  It's been a fairly nice early November day, with full sunshine this morning giving way to a moderate build-up of cumulus clouds over the Dhauladars this afternoon.  Still, the sun was dominant, allowing the temp at my location on Tushita Road in the very upper part of town to rise to its warmest level since Monday.  Humidity was very consistent near 50% throughout the day.

Our overall weather pattern during the coming several days is not totally free and clean and clear, but there doesn't appear to be anything very dramatic on the way for us.  A general westerly upper-level flow will be embedded with a few very minor ripples/disturbances through the end of next week, but none of those individual disturbances will be able to pack much of a punch.  Right now it looks like the best chance to pick up a few scattered showers across the mountains of Himachal Pradesh will be on Monday and Tuesday -- but even then any rainfall (or snowfall in higher elevations) should be light.  Otherwise, expect alternating periods of sunshine and clouds during the foreseeable future.

Our temps which have dipped a couple of degrees below normal since Wednesday should be creeping slowly upward again -- putting us in the 'comfortable' range for this stage of the autumn season.

Lots of other weather info can be found on tabs at the top of the home page, including THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Thursday, November 5, 2015

general improvements... (pm.05.nov.15)>

Thursday's stats:

Low temp: 45.1F (7.3C)
High temp: 59.1F (15.1C)
Rainfall since 7am: trace
Rainfall since midnight: 0.35" (9mm)

We've got a partly to mostly cloudy sky this evening during the hour after sunset, and there have been some random sprinkles and brief light drizzle in the air recently.  The main weather event of the past 24 hours was a round of rigorous thunderstorms which swept through the area between roughly 2:30 and 4:00am, bringing lots of thunder and lightning, a couple of periods of light to moderate rain, and some gusty winds.  There was also a brief but sharp drop in temps, as you can see from the stats report -- that temp was the coldest of our new fall/winter season.  The rain was over way before sunrise, and our clouds and thick haze gradually gave way to a good amount of sunshine during the mid-morning through early afternoon hours.  But then clouds thickened up again, with a couple of rumbles of thunder and random rain drops during the late afternoon and early evening hours.

A rather difuse upper-level disturbance is moving across Jammu & Kashmir this evening, with only the most isolated and very light shower activity still occurring across Himalayan north India.  This system has behaved fairly close to expectations -- with the only significant rainfall occurring during the overnight hours.  There may yet be a surprise shower sometime before midnight, but I will be shocked if there is enough rainfall to register a measurement.  Stabilizing influences are already building in, and the moisture supply is pretty pathetic, really.

Things seem to be setting up for a quiet and dry weekend, though there are plenty of question marks with regard to what the sunshine vs cloud ratio is going to be.  Our air mass will dry out and humidity will drop a bit, but the mountain lift issues will keep us concerned about cloud development.  By Monday, a new disturbance will glide our way, giving us our next chance of some scattered shower or thundershower action through Tuesday.  Temps will fluctuate up and down in response to daytime sunshine, but should average close to seasonal norms overall during the next seven days.

THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK (tab above) contains the forecast details.

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

cool; shower threat... (pm.04.nov.15)>

Wednesday's stats:

Low temp: 50.2F (10.1C)
High temp: 56.6F (13.7C)
Rainfall: 0.12" (3mm) -- through midnight

There is a light rain shower in progress at the moment, and it's mostly cloudy.  Sunshine today was almost non-existent, apart from a glimpse or two very early this morning, and another few fleeting glimpses during the late afternoon.  Otherwise we've seen our share of cloudiness, along with a bit of light precipitation which first manifested around 12:30pm.  At first it was mainly drizzle/sprinkles, but by 2:30pm, we had a couple of authentic showers which actually registered a small measurement in the rain gauge.  As you can see from today's stats, our temperatures were very cool, and didn't move much at all throughout the day.

After temps averaging out on the plus side of normal since the beginning of October, we've finally dipped a few degrees below normal the last couple of days.  An upper-level disturbance now moving into northern Pakistan is responsible for the increased cloudiness and cooling temps aloft which have contributed to the thermometer's downward trend of late -- and it is also responsible for the scattered rain showers which have been trying really hard to develop across the western Himalayas.  According to all the computer model data available, the best dynamics for a more significant wave of showers and/or thunderstorms will move across our area tonight into Thursday morning.  This system is lacking the kind of significant moisture necessary for sustained moderate to heavy precipitation, but it will be interesting to see what might develop during the coming 12-18 hours or so.

By Thursday evening rain chances should diminish rapidly, as our atmosphere moves into a bit of a stabilization phase.  That should last through the weekend, but then there's yet another disturbance scheduled for Monday into Tuesday which could again bring us a decent chance of a couple of periods of showers/thunder.  Temps could average out a little bit below normal during the next week or so, unless we can get several hours of good mid-day sunshine.

Remember to check out the tabs at the top of the page for the forecast, along with info on other topics that spell out the overall climate around here.

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

minor system approaching... (pm.03.nov.15)>

Tuesday's stats:

Low temp: 53.4F (11.9C)
High temp: 60.2F (15.7C)
Rainfall: none

This evening we have hazy and partly cloudy skies, after a generally hazy and partly cloudy day.  Actually, it was mostly cloudy at times, and the limited sunshine held temperatures a few degrees lower than expected.  The high temp at my location on Tushita Road just below the mountaineering center was the coolest I've recorded since the 8th of April -- nearly seven months ago.  Humidity spiked at 67% during the mid-afternoon.

There's an upper-level disturbance zipping across northeastern Iran right now, which will be reaching northern Pakistan by tomorrow (Wed) night.  The latest runs of the various computer models are keeping the core of this system a bit further north, with less impressive-looking shower and thunderstorm development in our immediate area.  We still have to watch this thing, though, and be prepared for a round or two of rain showers and thunder sometime between tomorrow afternoon and Thursday morning.  If we do get some rain, the colder air aloft will be brought down to the surface temporarily, providing us with some of our coolest weather of the season thus far.  There will also probably be a fresh coating of snow across most of the higher mountain ranges of Himachal.

Although rain chances diminish by late Thursday, things are looking slightly unstable all the way through the weekend into early next week.  That may not translate into any measurable rainfall for us, but I doubt if we will see unlimited sunshine.  We'll still have to deal with some degree of daily cloud development, as temperatures run fairly close to normal/average for early November.

There's other info, including the details of THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK, available on tabs at the top of the page.

Monday, November 2, 2015

no major excitement... (pm.02.nov.15)>

Monday's stats:

Low temp: 55.6F (13.1C)
High temp: 63.6F (17.6C)
Rainfall: none

All of the lower cloudiness has dissipated, but it remains hazy with a few scattered high clouds just after dark this evening.  There was less sunshine today than yesterday, thanks to those scattered high clouds drifting in from the west, and more pronounced cumulus development all along the front slopes of the Dhauladhars.  The high temperature was a couple of degrees cooler than Sunday's, while humidity climbed back toward 55% for a while this afternoon.

An upper-level disturbance trying to get organized just east of the Caspian Sea will be the main driver of our weather situation during the next 72 hours or so, as it shifts eastward into Jammu & Kashmir.  As is normally the case this time of year, there's only a marginal amount of moisture for this system to tap into -- but with a bit of rotation and some colder air aloft, along with the unique mountain factors that we always have to deal with, there's going to be a pretty good chance of a wave or two of showers and or thunderstorms sometime between Wednesday and mid-day Thursday.  At the moment it looks like the very best chance of some kind of action would be during the overnight hours of Wednesday, into early Thursday morning.  A round of thunderstorms would definitely be accompanied by gusty winds, mountain snow, and a sharp but temporary drop in temps.

Precipitation chances decrease again by late Thursday, with another few days of mixed sunshine and clouds and seasonable temperatures through the weekend.  If you're into weather excitement, we kind of have to stretch to find it this time of year.

Tabs above contain lots of other info you might be interested in, including forecast details on THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK.

Sunday, November 1, 2015

graceful november entry... (pm.01.nov.15)>

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 56.4F (13.6C)
High temp: 66.2F (19.0C)
Rainfall: none

We've reached the time of the year when it is totally dark by 6:30pm... funny how that creeps up.  This first day of November has been a fine one, and just about as nice as it can be, actually.  Temperatures are pleasantly mild, humidity in the neighborhood of 45%, and there was a large majority of sunshine today, despite the scattering of cumulus, broken stratus and even some high cirrus that threatened from time to time.

Climatologically speaking, the driest time of the entire year here in the Dharamsala area runs from the second half of October through about the middle of December.  We're obviously well into that period now, and in fact, I only recorded a total of 1.79" (4.5cm) of rain during the entire month of October.  Compare that to the 35-40" (89-102cm) we received during July and then again in August!  There are always exceptions to the rule, but generally speaking, significant rainfall is hard to come by during the fall season around here.

There is an upper-level disturbance on the way, however, which will be sliding in from the west-northwest as we approach the middle of the week.  Models are in fair agreement on some shower and thunderstorm development beginning to threaten us on Wednesday -- but that threat appears to last only into Thursday.  Rapid clearing/drying will kick in again for the end of the week, as our temps remain close to or a bit above normal for the season.  Not bad.

Check out THE 7-DAY OUTLOOK on the tab at the top of the page.