the latest...

Check archived posts (right column) and stats (above) for general information.

Sunday, March 31, 2013

back and forth... (pm.31.mar.13)>

Sunday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 52.9F (11.6C)
Afternoon high temp: 68.5F (20.3C)
Rainfall: 0.31" (8mm)

Our skies have rapidly cleared again before sunset this evening, after a round of thundershowers which drifted down from the mountains late this afternoon.  We've had quite the variety of weather on this Easter Sunday (and final day of March), with beautiful sunny skies for most of the morning, and then that round of thunder, briefly heavy rain and even a spell of small hail between about 3:30 and 4:30pm.

The weather pattern across our part of the world is quiet, but we're still dealing with some afternoon instability, due to the great disparity between temperatures at different levels of the atmosphere.  Although the air should be warming up in the upper-levels, it could still be unstable enough tomorrow (Mon) afternoon for more thundershower development over the mountains.  Otherwise, we should get to enjoy plenty of sunshine with temperatures near the warmest of 2013 to greet the month of April.

Late Tuesday into Wednesday yet another upper-level disturbance will drop in from the west-northwest, providing us with the potential for occasionally showery conditions, while sending temps downward again.  We should clear out again by Thursday, as a very dry airmass settles into our area for the end of the week.  April, by the way, is the second driest month of the year in Dharamsala, on average.

The outlook for the next 5 days can always be found on the CURRENT FORECAST tab above.

gorgeous start... (am.31.mar.13)>

The sun is shining brightly again early on this Easter Sunday morning.  I've recorded an overnight low temp of 52.9F (11.6C).

All eyes will be on the Dhauladhars by mid-day, to see if we get another explosion of clouds and thundershower development up there.  The instability is being generated by the combination of milder air arriving in the lower-levels of the atmosphere and lingering colder air aloft.  It only takes a few hours of strong springtime sunshine working on the air mass to get things bubbling over the mountains.  Otherwise, the weather pattern looks pretty good for us between now and Tuesday morning.

The next upper-level disturbance will swing across northern India from late Tuesday through Wednesday, bringing an increasing chance of scattered showers again, along with a drop in temperatures.  In the meantime, it looks like we will be challenging or perhaps exceeding the warmest temps of 2013 thus far as we say 'goodbye' to March and 'hello' to April.  Enjoy -- just be prepared to sprint for cover if those mountain rumblings materialize again!

Your CURRENT FORECAST is on the tab above.

Saturday, March 30, 2013

mountain instability... (pm.30.mar.13)>

Saturday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 50.9F (10.5C)
Afternoon high temp: 67.6F (19.8C)
Rainfall: trace

Thundershowers over the mountains have quickly dissipated early this evening, leaving us with clear to partly cloudy skies just before sunset.  We've had a really nice day here in the immediate McLeod Ganj area, but there were thundershowers with small hail just up-mountain from us starting around 1:15pm -- and it looks like there was a healthy dumping of new snow on the higher Dhauladhar peaks.

The flow in the upper-atmosphere is very light, but as expected, there remains enough cold air up there in the wake of our recently-departed upper-level disturbance to create unstable conditions during the afternoon hours.  That instability should diminish somewhat on Easter Sunday, but if you plan to be venturing up to Triund and beyond, be aware of the potential for a period of PM thundershowers once again.  Apart from that, things should be fairly quiet until about Tuesday afternoon, when the next disturbance will be dropping in from the northwest.  We may see a more general area of showers develop at that time, continuing through Wednesday.

I think our temperatures are on track to hit 70F (21.1C) early next week -- corresponding with the arrival of April.  Unfortunately, the milder weather won't last long, as a blast of cooler air will accompany that new disturbance during the middle of the week.

Check your CURRENT FORECAST on the tab above.

a bright morning... (am.30.mar.13)>

It's a bright and sunny Saturday morning.  My overnight low here in the upper part of town was 50.9F (10.5C), and there was a trace of rainfall from a brief period of showers last night around 9pm.

The weak upper-level disturbance that has been influencing our weather since late Wednesday night has finally moved off to the east of us.  In its wake, we have some colder air lingering in the upper atmosphere, along with a bit of weak circulation up there.  Although things are looking pretty good for this Easter weekend, we'll need to keep an eye on the afternoon instability factor, which could trigger a couple of random showers and/or thundershowers over the mountains.  Yet another weak disturbance is expected late Tuesday into Wednesday which will provide us with more scattered shower potential.  No major storm systems are expected, but we're definitely not in for day after day of totally sunny conditions, either.

The temperature trend over the course of the next few days looks to be in our favor, with a gradual warm-up expected.  The normal/average high temp for the first of April is right around 72F (22.2C).  It doesn't look like we'll make it that high, but we could surpass 70F (21.1C) finally -- for the first time this season.

Check the tab above for the CURRENT FORECAST.

Friday, March 29, 2013

easter weekend... (pm.29.mar.13)>

*Update @ 9:09pm... I had gusty winds and a few sprinkles of rain here during the last hour, but I haven't seen any more lightning.

*Update @ 8:07pm... This atmosphere is in a state of flux.  It's cloudy again with thunder and lightning to our south-southeast.  Looks like we could be in for a thundershower yet tonight, with this upper-level circulation directly overhead.  Current temp: 55.2F (12.9C), humidity: 67%.

Friday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 50.5F (10.3C)
Afternoon high temp: 66.6F (19.2C)
Rainfall: none

It is partly cloudy during the half hour before sunset this evening, with some fizzling thundershowers in the mountains to the northeast.  After a cloudy start, we ended up with quite a lot of sunshine today, allowing temperatures to warm up nicely.

It may not look or feel like it, but the center of our latest upper-level disturbance is spinning around almost right overhead this evening.  It has weakened considerably during the past 12 hours or so, and has only been able to trigger some isolated shower action today -- most of which has remained in the mountains.  This system will continue to push eastward overnight and Saturday, leaving us with a bit of lingering instability, but most likely not enough to generate any significant showers or thundershowers here at our elevation.  Other than isolated thundershower potential over the mountains, our Easter weekend is looking pretty good.

I wish I could say that we're in line for a definitive turn to sunny and warmer weather as April arrives, but it looks like the jet stream flow will continue to be embedded with occasional minor disturbances.  This will keep us flirting with periods of cloudiness and the risk of passing afternoon showers through the middle of next week.  Temperatures will be fairly pleasant, but should remain on the cool side of normal for this time of year.

The latest updated outlook can always be found on the CURRENT FORECAST tab above.

potentially wet... (am.29.mar.13)>

*Update @ 3:51pm...  There has been very little redevelopment of showers or thundershowers across northern India so far today, except for some scattered activity in the higher mountain areas.  It's turned out to be a very pleasant day, thus far.  Current temp: 66.2F (19.0C).

*Update @ 10:15am...  Looking pretty good out there at the moment.  The clouds have broken up a bit, giving us more sunshine already this morning than we saw all day yesterday.  The risk of some shower/thundershower development remains, though.  My current temp is 59.9F (15.5C).

It is mostly cloudy at sunrise on this Good Friday morning.  I haven't recorded any additional rainfall overnight, leaving us with 0.13" (3mm) since late yesterday morning.  The low temp since midnight here on Tushita Road below the Mountaineering Center has been 50.5F (10.3C).

The upper-level disturbance dominating our recent weather situation is along the Punjab border with Pakistan, and is expected to continue moving slowly northeastward and be centered almost directly over us by this evening.  This system is a real weakling compared to last weekend's storm.  There have only been scattered light rain showers thus far, with very little thunder in its vicinity.  However, it may have a few tricks yet to dish out during the next 12-18 hours or so -- so continue to be prepared for the development of a few showers and/or thundershowers.

The atmosphere will remain a bit unsettled on Saturday and perhaps into Easter Sunday, keeping a risk of a thundershower in the forecast, though I think we'll be seeing an increasing amount of sunshine.  And although there are no significant storm systems thereafter, we're still not getting into a totally sunny, dry and uneventful kind of pattern -- at least through the middle of next week.

It's been said over and over again that our temperatures are running well below the average for the March-to-April changeover, but we could see some healthy moderation in the next few days.

The CURRENT FORECAST tab above has the details.

Thursday, March 28, 2013

unpleasant... (pm.28.mar.13)>

*Update @ 8:21pm... It's quite windy at the moment, with very light rain.  Despite the occasional showers which have been happening since late this morning, I've only got 0.13" (3mm) in my rain gauge.  Current temp: 51.1F (10.6C).

Thursday's stats:

Low temp: 49.5F (9.7C) -- around 1:15pm
High temp: 62.4 (16.9C) -- around 10:50am
Rainfall: 0.10" (3mm)

It's cloudy this evening, after a generally gloomy day.  There were only a couple of brief breaks in the clouds, allowing some fleeting glimpses of sunshine -- with off and on showers from late morning.  After a mild start, temperatures rose little, and then actually plummeted once the rain showers got going.  We ended up much cooler than expected.

A disorganized area of low pressure in the upper atmosphere is centered over the middle of Pakistan this evening.  This system will wobble its way eastward during the next 48 hours, passing through Punjab and Himachal by tomorrow evening.  Although there have been no areas of widespread significant rainfall, we'll continue to see scattered showers and perhaps some thundershowers circulating around this system as it passes by.  Rainfall amounts are still expected to be relatively light, but we'll have to see if our mountain micro-climate factors will come into play later tonight into Friday, which could give us a spell or two of heavier rain.

Sunshine potential should be on the increase over the weekend, although lingering instability will be responsible for mountain cloudiness and perhaps a stray shower or thundershower somewhere in the area.  Then, yet another upper-level disturbance will be flirting with northern India by Tuesday.

The high temperature for March has only been 70.0F (21.1C) thus far.  It looks unlikely that we'll surpass that benchmark before month's end -- despite the fact that normal/average high temps are right around 72F (22.2C) for the 1st of April.

Remember to check your CURRENT FORECAST in detail -- on the tab above.

shower risk... (am.28.mar.13)>

*Update @ 2:31pm... Occasional light rain showers started up around 11:30am, but I have only 0.09" (2mm) in my rain gauge here in the upper part of town.  Temperatures have taken a nose dive -- currently 50.9F (10.5C).

It is cloudy and breezy this morning -- and I've recorded a very mild overnight low of 55.9F (13.3C).  There were a couple of periods of very light rain showers between 3:30 and 5:00am, but I have nothing measurable in the rain gauge.

Our latest upper-level disturbance is centered over southern Pakistan this morning, and will be lifting very slowly to the east-northeast over the next three days or so.  As I've been mentioning, this isn't a very strong system but it is quite large, so due to the slow movement, we're in for an extended period of rather unsettled weather.  As the atmosphere moistens up and the center of circulation moves in our direction, scattered showers and thundershowers will likely develop -- with the best chances of some measurable rainfall expected between this afternoon and Friday evening.  Computer models are keeping our rain amounts generally below 2cm (0.80"), but mountain factors can wreak havoc with those projections.  Just be prepared for sudden thundershowers!

There should be gradual improvement on Saturday, with any shower action most likely confined to the higher mountains by the time we get into Easter Sunday, and even Monday and Tuesday of next week.  Unless we can get a good dose of sunshine, temperatures won't be able to warm up much today or tomorrow (Fri), but it's now starting to look like we may get a significant bump in temps during the first part of next week.

Check the CURRENT FORECAST on the tab above.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

increasingly disturbed... (pm.27.mar.13)>

*Update @ 8:40pm... My current temp is 59.9F (15.5C), which is the warmest I've recorded at this time of the evening so far this season.  This warmer air is surging northward in advance of our approaching upper-level disturbance.

Wednesday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 54.0F (12.2C)
Afternoon high temp: 66.6F (19.2C)
Rainfall: trace

Skies are partly cloudy this evening after a day of battle between clouds and sun.  The mid- and high cloudiness dominated, but we did get some partially sunny periods that made for a relatively pleasant Holi.  I even personally witnessed a few brief sprinkles right around the noon hour, which most likely went unnoticed by most.  Temperatures were a bit cooler than expected, and continue to run a few degrees below normal for late March.

All these clouds today were the by-product of a new upper-level disturbance which is now located over southwestern Pakistan -- generated by a combination of increasing moisture and some slight warming in the higher levels of the atmosphere.  This disturbance will be moving slowly east-northeastward between now and Saturday, increasing our chances of some scattered showers and thundershowers.  Right now it looks like we won't get any long-lasting, heavy rainfall, but be aware of the potential for a few periods of wet weather during the remainder of this week.  Temperatures will be pleasant if we can muster any sunshine tomorrow (Thu), but then we should have a turn to cooler temps again if/when the showers appear.

Rain chances are expected to diminish starting on Saturday, but mountain instability on Easter Sunday into Monday will keep the risk of a random shower in the forecast, especially higher up.  Still looking like temps will be on the cool side of normal/average as April arrives...

Get your CURRENT FORECAST on the tab above.

high cloudiness... (am.27.mar.13)>

There are lots of high clouds across the area early this morning, but temperatures are mild.  I recorded an overnight low of 54.0F (12.2C), and it's 56.8F (13.8C) at 7am.  Humidity is rather low, at 40%.

It's Holi, and that means there will be rogue gangs in certain parts of town dousing people with multi-colored powdered paint.  It's nice to have sunshine on Holi, but from the way satellite pics are looking at the moment, we may not get too much of it today.  Although there are no showers to be found, extensive high cloudiness blankets much of eastern Pakistan and northwest India.  There should be a few breaks here and there, allowing occasional sunshine through, but I think those high clouds will hold the majority today.

Our next upper-level disturbance is currently located over southern Afghanistan, and is still expected to move slowly across northern India tomorrow (Thu) into early Saturday.  This system isn't nearly as dynamic and well-organized as last weekend's rain/thunder-maker, but it will likely stir up some scattered shower and thundershower action -- especially from Thursday afternoon through Friday evening.  Lingering instability will keep at least some afternoon mountain thundershowers in the forecast through Easter Sunday and perhaps into next week as well.

Temperatures will be very sun-dependent today and Thursday, with this mild air mass in place.  If we get a couple of hours of sun, we could get close to 70F/21C.  It will then cool down again over the weekend, keeping us below average for the March/April transition.

The CURRENT FORECAST is on the tab above.

Tuesday, March 26, 2013

temps creeping up... (pm.26.mar.13)>

Tuesday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 51.3F (10.7C)
Afternoon high temp: 66.9F (19.4C)
Rainfall: none

It's partly cloudy across the area early this evening, after a day featuring a mix of sunshine and clouds.  There were both high, thin cirrus clouds drifting in from the west-southwest and afternoon cumulus cloud development along the front slopes of the mountains.  Temperatures today continued their ascent, but are still running a few degrees cooler than normal for this time of year.

Holi is arriving here in India, and it looks like the weather will be cooperating for the most part.  The weak ridge of high pressure which has been in control for the past couple of days will hang on for one more day, providing a mix of sun and mainly high clouds... along with a continuing warming trend.

A large but relatively weak upper-level disturbance will then move into northern India on Thursday, and hang around until Saturday.  I still don't think it's going to be that big of a deal, but the risk of a few showers and thundershowers will be on the increase, with temps cooling down a couple of degrees (again) as we end the month.  The extended range weather charts are still devoid of any evidence of a leap into the temperature range we would expect as April arrives.

The CURRENT FORECAST is on the tab above.

calm and quiet... (am.26.mar.13)>

We have clear skies early this morning.  It's been a quiet night, with a low temperature of 51.3F (10.7C).

Things should remain generally quiet for the next couple of days, thanks to a weak ridge of high pressure drifting across northern India.  There are some thin cirrus clouds along the crest of that ridge, which could dim our sunshine a bit later today.  Also, be aware of the typical build-up of cumulus clouds over the mountains during the afternoon which will occur if our spring sunshine can trigger enough instability up there.  Temperatures will continue to moderate through Thursday, taking us back closer to average for late March.

A very disorganized but large-scale upper-level disturbance will move in on Thursday, and hang around through most of the weekend.  This system will bring in a large pool of colder air aloft which is expected to generate a classic springtime instability scenario -- scattered thundershowers mainly during the afternoon/evening hours.  We shouldn't see long-lasting heavy rains, but be prepared for the potential for some showery weather nonetheless.

Check the CURRENT FORECAST tab above for specifics.

Monday, March 25, 2013

peaceful for now... (pm.25.mar.13)>

Monday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 48.0F (8.9C)
Afternoon high temp: 64.2F (17.9C)
Rainfall: none

The clouds which developed over the mountains this afternoon are rapidly dissipating as of 6pm, leaving us with mostly clear skies as sunset approaches.  It has been a very nice Monday, with lots of sunshine and temperatures about 9F/5C warmer than we had yesterday.

It's still several degrees cooler than normal for the final week of March, but we should continue with a gradual warm-up into at least the middle of the week.  Other than some mountain instability during the afternoons which will generate some cloudiness and perhaps a stray shower, it's looking good for Holi festivities.

A new upper-level disturbance will be easing into northwest India by Thursday, however, and will lead to an increase in rain chances for the following few days.  We're not looking at a well-organized storm system, just a broad area of weak low pressure aloft which will keep things rather unstable and unsettled into at least the first part of the weekend.  Rainfall amounts shouldn't be anything like we just got hit with on Sunday.

CURRENT FORECAST tab above has the details.

so much nicer... (am.25.mar.13)>

The sky is totally clear this morning as the sun gets ready to peek above the mountains.  I recorded an unseasonably chilly overnight low temp of 48.0F (8.9C) which occurred close to midnight -- but it's already up to 52.0F (11.1C).  In case you missed it, our total rainfall between late Saturday night and late Sunday afternoon was 2.47" (6.3cm).

Our weekend storm event only lasted 18 hours, but it was quite the drama-queen -- delivering heavy rain, intense lightning and thunder, and even a few episodes of small hail.  It also kept temperatures in the late February range during its stay.  Now, what remains of the upper-level circulation has lifted well northeast of us into western China, leaving us with a rather non-descript kind of weather pattern for a few days.  A very weak area of high pressure will try to build in, allowing temperatures to rebound nicely, but the atmosphere is going to remain slightly unstable.  That means the risk of mainly afternoon cloud and thundershower development exists over the mountains, which will have to be watched.

A new disturbance will drift into northwestern India by Thursday and Friday, bringing with it another increase in rain chances.  At this point, though, it doesn't look anywhere near as potent as yesterday's storm.  All in all, this last week of March should balance out fairly normal for the season, despite temperatures continuing to run a couple of degrees cooler than average.

The CURRENT FORECAST is located on the tab above.

Sunday, March 24, 2013

march or monsoon?... (pm.24.mar.13)>

*Update @ 8:13pm... There are two areas of thundershowers now -- one well off to our east, and the other to our northwest.  Both of these should stay away from us, so I'm fairly confident that we're finally out of the clutches of this recent storm system.

Sunday's stats:

Low temp: 45.1F (7.3C)
High temp: 55.6F (13.1C)
24-hr rainfall: 2.47" (6.3cm)

My rain tally doubled between the report early this morning and late this afternoon.  That huge total (above) is about two-thirds of the normal amount we would expect to receive during the entire month of March, and about twice as much as most of the computer models were forecasting for this storm system.  Suffice it to say, it's been extremely wet since about 10:30pm last night!  Consequently, temperatures have been held down as well -- on the order of about 15F/8C cooler than they should be this time of year.

I haven't been mentioning snow, but there were a few inches of accumulation during the past 24 hours a hundred meters or so below Triund.

There has finally been some clearing as of about 5pm, but there are still some lingering clouds around, as well as the potential for more thundershower development during the next few hours.  The center of our upper-level storm system is weakening rapidly, but continues to spin around in the vicinity of the Pak/Kashmir border, just west of Srinagar.  This circulation is still drawing moisture northward across Himachal Pradesh and keeping the atmosphere rather unstable in the near term.

Although there could be a random shower or thundershower on Monday, overall conditions will be much improved, with much more sunshine along with moderating temperatures.  The nicest weather of the week should occur on Tuesday into Wednesday -- coinciding with Holi -- but then the risk of some scattered showers and thunderstorms will increase again late Thursday into Friday.  Temps should be on the rise during the next several days, but this pattern isn't really conducive for getting us up to where we should be for the very tail-end of March.

The CURRENT FORECAST is always available on the tab at the top of the page.

chilly and wet... (am.24.mar.13)>

*Update @ 2:45pm... Now 2.21" (5.6cm) of rain here at my location at the top of town.  Frequent thundershowers are still coming and going... but there are hints that things could be winding down by late afternoon.  Current temp: 50.7F (10.4C).

*Update @ 11:34am... That glimpse of sun was very short-lived, obviously.  It has been raining rather heavily with more thunder and some small hail again during the past half hour.  No signs of any definitive improvement in our near future.

*Update @ 10:42am... And now, a glimpse of sun.  I have 1.62" (4.1cm) in the rain gauge.  Current temp: 50.5F (10.3C).

*Update @ 10:18am... Sparks are flying out there at the moment.  Lots of intense cloud-to-ground lightning.  I had a couple of minutes of small hail shortly after the last report, and the rain has been moderate to heavy at times.  No chance to check the rain gauge, though.  Temps have cooled down again... currently 46.8F (8.2C).

*Update @ 9:38am... Our atmosphere is still very unstable as the center of the counter-clockwise circulation associated with this upper-level storm system approaches the Pak/Kashmir border.  Scattered thundershowers continue to develop along the southwest slopes of the mountains as moist air gets pulled northward into the much colder air aloft.  I have 1.39" (3.5cm) in my rain gauge since late last night.  Current temp: 50.4F (10.2C).

*Update @ 8:33am... Total rainfall here in the upper part of town has now reached 1.34" (3.4cm).  Current temp: 48.9F (9.4C).  Scattered thundershowers continue to develop and move northeastward.

Overnight low temp: 45.1F (7.3C)
Rainfall up to 6:30am: 1.21" (3.1cm)

What a night it has been!  The large area of rain and thundershowers developing southwest of us last evening continued to expand and intensify, with a bit of thunder and lightning arriving just before 10:30pm.  Then, we had an extended period of moderate to briefly heavy rainfall for most of the remainder of the night.  At sunrise this morning it is raining lightly, with cloudy skies and an unseasonably cold temp of 48.5F (9.2C).

The upper-level circulation responsible for this turn to wet and cold weather is squarely over northern Pakistan early this morning, and is expected to gradually weaken as it moves into western Kashmir by late tonight.  Right now we're actually on the back edge of last night's large area of rain, but there will likely be more development of showers and possibly some thunderstorms from eastern Pakistan into northwest India before this system is finished with its business.  We've already reached computer model projections for rainfall totals (3cm/1.2"), but it looks like we could pick up another 1-2cm (0.4-0.8") today into this evening.  So, even if we get some clearing at some point today, be aware of the potentential for more rain/thunder development.

These temperatures are way below normal for late March, but as soon as things dry out and we get a few hours of sunshine, we should see a decent rebound.  Still, the week ahead looks unsettled -- with occasional clouds competing with the sunshine, along with a chance of mainly mountain thundershower development during the afternoons.

The latest CURRENT FORECAST is available on the tab above.

Saturday, March 23, 2013

waiting for rain... (pm.23.mar.13)>

*Update @ 8:27pm... There is explosive development of thundershowers just to our southwest over east-central Pakistan and northwestern Punjab happening now.  Although this new activity is moving in our direction, humidity here at 6500ft is just 36%, so we'll need to see a major moistening of the atmosphere very quickly to get significant rainfall overnight.  Those trusty computer models say "yes", it's going to happen, so we have an interesting night ahead...

*Update @ 7:01pm... Just in the past half hour since I've finished up posting the updated forecast, clouds have rapidly developed/moved in from the southwest.  It looks from satellite pics that there is a lot of thundershower development going on west and south of us as this system continues to push into our area.  My internet connection(s) have been absolutely crappy this evening, but I'll try to post updates if I can.

Saturday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 56.3F (13.5C)
Afternoon high temp: 68.5F (20.3C)
Rainfall: none

We're in the midst of a very nice evening... with partly cloudy skies, comfortable temps, and humidity around 40%.  There seems to be very little evidence of an approaching storm system at the moment, does there?

Cloudiness this morning dissipated before the noon hour, leaving us with a good amount of sun during the afternoon and now into the evening.  This doesn't mean our rain chances have disappeared though; an upper-level storm system continues to circulate along the Afghanistan/Pakistan border, and will move slowly east-northeastward during the coming 24-36 hours.  There are scattered thundershowers over Pakistan into northern Rajasthan and extreme southern Punjab at the moment, moving toward the northeast.  All of the computer models are in agreement that rain chances will dramatically increase in our immediate area overnight into Sunday morning, with amounts around 3cm (1.2") still looking quite likely.

By Monday morning rain chances should diminish, but our general weather pattern is going to remain rather unsettled and unstable through much of next week -- keeping us from being able to enjoy totally sunny and dry conditions.  Normal high temps for the last week of March are in the low 70s (F) or 22-23(C), but we should remain cooler than that for the next several days at least.

Check the CURRENT FORECAST tab (above) for the latest updated forecast.

system on approach... (am.23.mar.13)>

Skies are mostly cloudy early on this Saturday morning, with a humidity reading of 51%.  My overnight low temperature here on Tushita Road below the Mountaineering Center has been 56.3F (13.5C).

Not the most fantastic weekend shaping up for us.  Satellite pics show quite a lot of mid- and high-level cloudiness across much of Pakistan and northern India, ahead of a rather deep upper-level low-pressure system now swirling around over central Afghanistan.  Showers and thundershowers will break out over Pakistan later today, with the main energy expected to move across our area between late tonight and Sunday night.  There could be some thundershower development here this afternoon, but I think tomorrow is going to be the wetter day of the weekend.  Computer models are still showing the potential for around 3cm (1.2") of rain.

Clouds will hold temps down, but if we do manage a sunny break or two today, it will be quite pleasant.  Sunday should be significantly cooler, if the rain does indeed materialize.

Unsettled conditions next week will keep us from getting any 100% sunny days, and will also prevent any really major warm-up from occurring. 

The updated CURRENT FORECAST is available on the tab at the top of the page.

Friday, March 22, 2013

weekend action... (pm.22.mar.13)>

*Reaching 100,000 hits tonight.  Thanks to all of you. --->>>

After two weeks "out of station", as they say, I am back in McLeod and excited to get back on top of our weather situation.  After checking my automated thermometers, I was surprised to see that temperatures never warmed up much more from what we were already experiencing during the first week or so of the month.  Between the night of 8 March and the morning of 22 March I recorded a low of 45.3F (7.4C), and a high of 70.0F (21.1C).  That low temp most likely occurred during the rainy spell between Wednesday and Thursday of last week.

Today, the sunshine during the first half of the day boosted our high temp up to 68.7F (20.4C) -- but that is just a shade lower than normal for this stage of March.  We've had thickening clouds during the afternoon, and it remains mostly cloudy as we approach sunset this evening.

A period of active weather is on the way this weekend, thanks to a sprawling upper-level disturbance which is currently centered well to our west over northern Afghanistan.  It looks like this system will be gradually shifting eastward between now and Monday morning, further destabilizing our atmosphere and bringing us increasing chances of some showers and thundershowers.  Right now, the best rain chances appear to be from Saturday night through Sunday night, with amounts in the neighborhood of 3cm (1.2") possible.

Although there should be some improvement starting on Monday, the weather pattern is expected to remain on the unsettled side through most of next week.  That means we'll continue to see alternating sun and clouds, along with a chance of some random thundershowers, mainly during the afternoons.  Temperatures should be balancing out below normal for the season.

Your updated CURRENT FORECAST can be found on the tab above.

Monday, March 18, 2013

spring's evolution... (pm.18.mar.13)>

There are no organized storm systems anywhere near our part of the world, but the upper-level pattern remains a bit disturbed.  That's going to keep occasional cloudiness and even the risk of some mainly afternoon mountain shower development in the forecast this week.

All in all, it looks like a fairly normal late March weather pattern as we approach the vernal equinox -- or the "official" first day of spring here in the northern hemisphere.

A surge of warmer air is expected to bubble northward during the latter part of the week, which could deliver the warmest temperatures of the season on Friday and Saturday.  Afterwards, a stronger upper-level disturbance moving in during the latter half of the weekend will bring us a better (though brief) shot at more widespread showers and thundershowers.

I'm planning to be back home in McLeod Ganj on Friday, and am looking forward to resuming detailed coverage of weather forecasts and stats!

Friday, March 15, 2013

acceptable... (am.15.mar.13)>

After some welcome springtime rainfall during the past 36 hours or so, things are much improved this morning, with sun shining across most of northern India.  There remains a weak area of low pressure in the upper atmosphere, however, and its associated cold/unsettled air aloft could lead to some cloud development and even some random showers later in the day along the mountain slopes.

A mildly unstable situation will continue into early next week, with the potential for mainly afternoon clouds, along with isolated mountain showers -- otherwise the overall weather pattern should be relatively quiet.  Temperatures will moderate a bit, but will likely remain a bit cooler than we were enjoying earlier in the month.

Extended range computer model data shows a nice ridge of high pressure building into northwest India by the middle of the coming week, providing some very pleasant conditions for late March, including a nice warming trend.

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

spring moisture... (pm.13.mar.13)>

The storm system we've been anticipating for more than a week is now knocking on the door.  It's not a particularly dynamic system, but there is a good amount of springtime moisture involved, along with a surge of significantly cooler air being drawn in from the northwest.

Showers and thundershower potential will be on the increase tonight and Thursday, with some significant rainfall amounts looking quite likely before the atmosphere settles down over the weekend.  The latest computer model data is showing 3-4cm (1.2-1.6") rainfall totals for our area, which is pretty healthy for this time of year.

It should remain a bit on the unsettled side on Friday into Saturday, due to colder air and some weak circulation remaining in the upper atmosphere -- but no significant storm systems are expected as we move into next week.  However, cooler temperatures should hang around for several days... it may take a while to rebound to the very mild early spring temps that have been so common during the first part of March.

Saturday, March 9, 2013

a changing pattern... (pm.09.mar.13)>

An upper-level disturbance is making its way across the western Himalayas this evening, and will be the main influence on our weather between now and Sunday.  The main batch of energy, as expected, is passing to the north of us, but there remains a chance of a couple of showers and/or thundershowers popping up.  There has been no rainfall for the month of March up until today, so any rain would be more than welcome -- especially after our recent extended streak of dry and unseasonably mild weather.

The pattern is now shifting into a more active phase.  A weak ridge of high pressure will attempt to build back in on Monday and early Tuesday, but then the next storm system is still on track for the middle of the coming week.  Showers and thunderstorms will be more likely on Wednesday and Thursday, as temperatures bounce up and down, but trend generally downward compared to what we've been enjoying during the past 9 days or so.

I'm not in McLeod Ganj now, and won't be returning for a couple of weeks -- so I'll be able only to provide abbreviated updates.  Feel free to post your own observations and information via the comments section below.

Friday, March 8, 2013

above the norm... (am.08.mar.13)>

It's a bright and sunny Friday morning with humidity near 50%.  My overnight low temperature here on Tushita Road just below the mountaineering center was 54.3F (12.4C) -- very consistent with low temps this whole week.

We've been warming by small increments nearly every day lately, and another degree or so (F) will put us at 70F for the first time this year.  If clouds hold off until maybe 3pm, we have a good chance of reaching that milestone.  This air mass has become a bit more moist during the past 24 hours, and some slightly cooler air is starting to arrive in the upper-levels -- so that could trigger significant cloud development over the mountains.

There's still a weak storm system on the way for the weekend, but it looks on track to pass north of us and die out as it does.  Even if it doesn't stir up much in the way of shower/thundershower action, it's going to be the first phase of a change in our weather pattern which will last into next week.  Colder air will be arriving aloft, leading to a less stable situation, and setting the stage for a potentially stronger storm system by Wed/Thu of next week.  It's not going to be a return to winter, by any means, but it will likely put us back toward normalcy for March.

Check out the CURRENT FORECAST on the tab above.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

temps peaking... (pm.07.mar.13)>

Thursday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 55.2F (12.9C)
Afternoon high temp: 68.9F (20.5C)
Rainfall: none

It's quite hazy just before sunset this evening, with a few clouds hanging along the mountains.  Morning sun gave way to a significant build-up of mountain clouds during the early to mid-afternoon, but not before boosting our high temp to yet another new high for the season and the year.  Humidity topped 70% during the afternoon.

High pressure over the northwest third of India which has been providing stable conditions for the majority of the past week is going to be breaking down during the coming 48 hours or so.  There won't be dramatic changes initially, but our atmosphere will be transitioning into a more unstable phase into next week and possibly beyond.  An upper-level disturbance will deliver a glancing blow to northern India this weekend, with colder air arriving aloft -- and that means we'll have at least a small chance of a couple of showers and/or thundershowers between late Saturday and Sunday.

It looks relatively quiet again for Monday and Tuesday, but an increasingly active jet stream will bring in another potential thundershower-maker for the middle of next week.  Temperatures could start to trend downward... or at least back into the slightly-below-normal range by that time as well.

The latest outlook on the CURRENT FORECAST tab at the top of the page.

we're getting spoiled... (am.07.mar.13)>

It looks like we're in for lots of sunshine again, with 100% clear skies at sunrise this morning.  My overnight low was a mild 55.2F (12.9C) -- humidity stands at 39%.

We are getting spoiled rotten.  This kind of extended streak of sunny, mild/warm weather is not normal for this early in the spring season!  Yesterday's high of 68.4F (20.2C) was the warmest temp I've recorded since the middle of October, and we stand a good chance of rising a bit above that both today and Friday.  General high pressure will maintain control of our weather pattern, providing us with mostly sunny skies apart from a few PM mountain clouds and perhaps some high cloudiness beginning to stream in tomorrow (Fri).

A storm system organizing in the vicinity of the Caspian Sea will move eastward as the weekend approaches, but looks like it will then weaken as it passes well to our north on Saturday into early Sunday.  However, temperatures in the upper-atmosphere will be cooling down considerably, and that may create some instability for us here in northern India which could lead to the development of a couple of showers and/or thundershowers.  At this point it doesn't look like anything major, but could be the precursor of a shift in the weather pattern for next week.

Enjoy these beautiful conditions -- but maybe it would be a good idea not to get too attached.  The CURRENT FORECAST on the tab above.

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

the right combo... (pm.06.mar.13)>

Wednesday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 54.3F (12.4C)
Afternoon high temp: 68.4F (20.2C)
Rainfall: none

Afternoon cloudiness over the mountains has already dissipated before sunset this evening, leaving us with mostly clear skies to end the day.  Our early spring sunshine helped boost the high temp at my location on Tushita Road up to its new high of 2013.

A quiet and unseasonably mild weather scenario continues to prevail across our part of the world, thanks to a general area of high pressure again poking in from the southwest.  The moisture content of the air is quite limited and the atmosphere fairly stable -- and that combination should continue until perhaps the latter half of the weekend.  We may not get a lot of additional warming out of this air mass, but still maybe enough to get us to 70F (21.1C) during the next couple of days.

An upper-level disturbance moving in our direction may start to affect us late Saturday or Saturday night with a chance of a shower or a thundershower, which will last into Sunday.  With each run of the computer model data I am less convinced that we're going to get much out of this system -- but it is nevertheless something to watch since the month of March has been totally rainless so far.

The CURRENT FORECAST is available on the tab above.

more good stuff... (am.06.mar.13)>

We have clear skies and 47% humidity just before sunrise this morning  My overnight low here in the upper part of town has been 54.3F (12.4C) -- after a high yesterday afternoon of 68.2F (20.1C) which was the warmest of the year thus far.

Fantastic early springtime weather should continue for the next few days, as a high pressure ridge builds back into northern India.  There was a bit of instability yesterday, thanks to a pocket of colder air in the upper-atmosphere that stirred up a couple of random showers in the higher mountains from Kashmir into Himachal.  We may again see some afternoon cloud development over the mountains today, but by and large it should be more stable all the way through Friday, giving us plenty of sunshine.  Temperatures will remain above normal for this stage of March, with the magical 70F (21.1C) still a good possibility by the end of the week.

A disturbance scheduled to move across the western Himalayan region over the weekend is still looking less than impressive.  It will be weakening as it approaches us, with most of the energy expected to pass to our north.  At any rate, there is a little better chance of a couple of showers or thundershowers from late Saturday into Sunday, along with a slight drop in temperatures.

The updated CURRENT FORECAST can be found on the tab above.

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

a sunny start... (am.05.mar.13)>

Our sunshine is back in full force early this Tuesday morning.  I've recorded an overnight low of 53.6F (12.0C), and humidity is hovering around 40%.

There is still a broad area of very weak low pressure in the upper atmosphere across northern India.  This could lead to some cloud development over the mountains again this afternoon, along with a chance of a random shower in the higher elevations -- otherwise it looks like a nice day on the way.  And it promises to get even nicer as the week progresses, as high pressure builds back into the northwest third of India.  Temperatures will probably rise another degree or two (C) by Friday, keeping us on the plus side of normal for early March.

The potential storm system we've been watching for this coming weekend doesn't look impressive at all, but could still bring a change in the weather pattern starting late Saturday, with at least a mentionable chance of a couple of showers or thundershowers for the latter half of the weekend.  March is behaving very well thus far!

Check the CURRENT FORECAST tab above for the updated 5-day outlook.

Monday, March 4, 2013

mild wx continues... (pm.04.mar.13)>

Monday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 54.3F (12.4C)
Afternoon high temp: 66.7F (19.3C)
Rainfall: none

There are a few clouds lingering along the mountains at sunset this evening, and it's quite hazy downhill to the south and southwest.  Today's sunshine was more limited than in recent days, with a good amount of high clouds this morning, and then a significant build-up of mountain cloudiness during the afternoon.  Still, temperatures remain near the warmest of this young spring season.

A rather disorganized upper-level disturbance is currently moving across the western Himalayan region, creating a small amount of instability, but only one or two isolated showers along some of the higher mountain ranges.  This weak system will move off to the east tomorrow, but a slightly more moist atmosphere along with marginally cooler air aloft could stir up a random shower or two... again, mainly in the mountains.  By Wednesday, high pressure will again be building across northern India, leading to stable conditions and temperatures which will continue to run a bit above normal for the first part of March.  It's still possible that we could nudge 70F (21.1C) by the end of this week, for the first time this season.

Computer models are showing a moderate intensity storm system moving into our neighborhood by the latter part of the weekend.  Right now it doesn't look like much to get excited about, but we could see a better chance of a few showers and thundershowers by Saturday night into Sunday.

A reminder -- the CURRENT FORECAST is now available on the tab above.

a minor disturbance... (am.04.mar.13)>

A batch of high clouds is moving across the area early this morning, which should limit our sunshine for at least part of the day.  My overnight low temp has been 54.3F (12.4C), with early AM humidity at 40%.

The weak upper-level disturbance we've been watching the last couple of days is arriving now.  It's going to be pretty much a non-event -- apart from occasional high cloudiness which may hold temps just slightly below yesterday's.  There's also a very slight chance of a random light shower somewhere in the area today or tonight, but if it happens, it will barely wet the rain gauge.  By tomorrow (Tues), this weak system will be moving east of us and a strong ridge of high pressure will build back across northern India for the remainder of the week.

Normal high temps for this week are around 64-65F (18C), but we should remain a bit warmer than that... and perhaps significantly warmer than that by Friday, when we could have a shot at our first 70F of the new year.

Updated 5-day outlook available on the CURRENT FORECAST tab above.

Sunday, March 3, 2013

close to perfect... (pm.03.mar.13)>

Sunday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 54.1F (12.3C)
Afternoon high temp: 67.5F (19.7C)
Rainfall: none

Everyday recently we've been reaching temperature milestones.  Today's high temp was the warmest I've recorded since way back on the 19th of October, and is about 2C/4F above normal for early March.  There were a few clouds over the mountains this afternoon along with some very thin wisps of high clouds moving in from the west, otherwise the sun has been the main player.

The weather in March is notorious for being able to go either way -- extremely nice or extremely ugly -- but we've definitely been seeing the finer side since the month began.  The big high pressure ridge responsible for our recent sunny and comfortable conditions will take a minor hit tomorrow (Mon) and Tuesday, thanks to a weak upper-level disturbance which will move across northern India.  It still appears that an increase in clouds is all we'll get out of this system, but our warming trend should come to a halt until it passes.  There's also an outside shot at a brief light shower somewhere around the area, but measurable rainfall is unlikely.

That ridge of high pressure will bounce back and strengthen again during the latter half of the week, allowing us to warm up another degree or two.  Then, by late Saturday, we may be dealing with a stronger weather system capable of ending our streak of warmer-than-normal temps, while giving us a better chance of some thundershower action into early the following week.

The latest 5-day outlook always available on the CURRENT FORECAST tab above.

super sunday... (am.03.mar.13)>

We have full sunshine again this morning, and humidity is a low 34%.  I recorded a very mild overnight low temp of 54.1F (12.3C).

Not much news to report -- a high pressure ridge continues to dominate the weather pattern over a wide area from the Arabian Sea across virtually all of central and northern India.  This is bringing the first real warm spell of the new spring season not only to us, but to the entire western and central Himalayan region as well as the Plains of north India.  Temperatures will continue to surpass previous highs of 2013 thus far -- rising well above normal for the first week of March.

There is a broad band of high clouds off to our west in association with a weak upper-level disturbance which will track across our area from Monday into Tuesday.  With very limited moisture and weak dynamic energy, an increase in clouds is all that is expected, it seems.  There is one computer model trying to squeeze out some light precipitation late Monday into early Tuesday, but I'm going to hold off putting any showers in the forecast at this point.  By Wednesday, strong springtime high pressure should build back in -- even more robustly -- into at least the early part of next weekend.

You can always check the latest updated 5-day forecast on the CURRENT FORECAST tab at the top of the page.

Saturday, March 2, 2013

a great leap... (pm.02.mar.13)>

Saturday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 52.0F (11.1C)
Afternoon high temp: 66.4F (19.1C)
Rainfall: none

The last time I recorded a temperature as high as 66.4F (19.1C) was on the 1st of November, 2012.  So, it's been a little more than four months since we've enjoyed these kinds of pleasant conditions.  Other than just a few scraggly cumulus clouds which tried to develop over the mountains this afternoon, we had wall-to-wall sunshine today.

It looks like this early springtime air mass may be able to warm up even a bit more during the coming several days, which will take us precariously close to 70F (21C) for the first time since the middle of October last year.  I don't know about you, but I'm still a little disoriented by such a rapid and dramatic leap into this comfortable temperature category.  But -- it's for real, with no regression back to cooler weather expected for at least the next week or so.

A weak upper-level disturbance is expected to slide just to our north across Jammu & Kashmir on Monday into Tuesday morning.  At this point it appears that only an increase in clouds will accompany it, with rain chances remaining minimal.  There could be a more significant storm system on the distant horizon, but it shouldn't begin to affect us until next Saturday at the earliest.  It might not be a great idea to pack up all the winter gear just yet, as March is capable of pulling tricks.

Check the CURRENT FORECAST on the tab above.

decisively warmer... (am.02.mar.13)>

The overnight low temp here in the upper part of town was 52.0F (11.1C) -- so our recent dramatic warm-up is shifting into high gear now.  It is totally sunny again this morning.

I've just bumped up high temps a degree or two, and that may not be enough.  Warming from the surface into the mid- and upper-levels of the atmosphere is happening more quickly and decisively than expected, and looks like it is going to hold firm right through the next several days.  It's quite a shock, really, to be enjoying such a radical turn of events after the wet and cold weather of the last couple of weeks.  Temperatures will rise slightly above early March normals today, and then will likely remain above normal for much of the coming week.

General high pressure from the Arabian Sea into northern India will pretty much hold firm, apart from a very weak disturbance expected to slip by late Monday into Tuesday.  Only a wave or two of mainly high cloudiness should be associated with this little disturbance -- with rainfall potential remaining low.

In case you missed it, updated 5-day forecasts can now be accessed by the CURRENT FORECAST tab at the top of the page.

Friday, March 1, 2013

march beauty... (pm.01.mar.13)>

Friday's stats:

Early morning low temp: 45.5F (7.5C) -- just after midnight
Afternoon high temp: 62.2F (16.8C) -- warmest of 2013
Rainfall: none

We have nearly 100% clear skies this evening at sunset, after an incredibly beautiful day.  March has launched in fine fashion, with sunshine and only a few afternoon cumulus clouds over the mountains, along with temperatures rising to their warmest since the first week of December.  We've waited many weeks for this.

I was concerned this morning that lingering moisture in the air might condense into cloudiness along the front slopes of the mountains this afternoon, but apparently we've finally dried out enough to prevent that phenomenon from spoiling our sunshine.  Much warmer temperatures in the upper atmosphere have also created a more stable situation for us, for the first time in quite a while.

The transformation of our weather pattern from a winter one into a spring one will continue over the course of the next week or so.  Temperatures will continue to moderate from the surface into the highest levels of the atmosphere, while moisture remains at a minimum.  Other than an occasional period of high cloudiness, we should see lots of sunshine over the weekend and into early next week, as temps actually climb a bit above normal for early March.

Extended range computer models are hinting at a storm for next weekend, but that's a long way off... it's better to ignore that for now and savor these pleasant conditions during the next several days.!

The CURRENT FORECAST is on the tab above.

stunning sunshine... (am.01.mar.13)>

We have a stunningly beautiful sunny morning to start the month of March.  My overnight low occurred around midnight -- 45.5F (7.5C) -- but it's already up to 50.4F  (10.2C) as of 7:45am.  Humidity is 40%.

Things are still looking very positive with regard to our warming trend during the first few days of this new month.  The weather pattern is quiet, with a weak west-northwesterly flow aloft and warming underway throughout all layers of the atmosphere.  I'm a bit paranoid about afternoon cloudiness developing here along the front slopes of the mountains, as it's one of those things that is really hard to predict until it starts happening... but we'll at least have a sunny first half of the day.

During the last half of February our temps were below normal on all but just a couple of days, so it's going to be nice to warm up to where we should be for this stage of the early spring season.  It still looks like we're in line for a stretch of pleasantly mild days.

I've decided to move the 5-day forecast to a permanent tab at the top of the page -- CURRENT FORECAST -- where it's easier for me to keep it updated, and so that you don't have to scroll and click around looking for it.!