Early season heat wave... late peak in the wildfire season

National Safe Boating Week

Early season heat wave... late peak in the wildfire season

May 20, 2019 — The wildfire season looks to be peaking rather deep into spring this year as we're stuck in a long stretch of dry & increasingly hot weather.  The upper level (500 mb) forecast (GFS) map below is for Memorial Day & shows a strong high pressure area near the Southeast U.S.  Such a pattern causes sinking air which is not conducive to producing much in the way of widespread or heavy rain.

I mentioned in the May 13th post a pulse in the MJO (Madden-Julian Oscillation) that might try to spur tropical development over the Atlantic Basin (including Gulf &/or Caribbean).  The "upward motion" - 2nd map below - is still spreading eastward but the upper level high will likely keep any tropical development away from Florida.  At this point it does not look like our "wet season" will begin before the first week of June.

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Map below shows moisture anomaly (plus or minus):

First Alert CBM Corey Simma found an interesting stat.  The number of wet days through 2019 so far in which Sunday has been the wettest:

Late season snows are still occurring(!) for parts of the Rockies & even Minnesota but for the most part the Lower 48 is done with accumulating snow.  For the season:

May 18 - 24 is "National Safe Boating Week".  Make sure to be careful & smart as we move into the Memorial Day weekend & the summer beyond.  It all begins with a life jacket for everyone on the boat!