California - North Area 7 Day
Significant Fire Potential
Issued: Wednesday, Sep 17, 2014 Parameters:
|Predictive Service Area||
|NC01 - North Coast|
|NC02 - Mid Coast|
|NC03A - Bay Area-Marine|
|NC03B - Diablo/Santa Cruz Mtns|
|NC04 - Northwestern Mtns|
|NC05 - Sacramento Valley|
|NC06 - Northeast CA||
|NC07 - Northern Sierra|
|NC08 - East Side||
*** Strong S-SW Winds and Dry Along and East of the Cascade-Sierra Crest This Afternoon ***
A strong Pacific low pressure trough is approaching Northern CA. S-SW winds ahead of the low are already locally gusty in wind-prone areas. Strong gusty winds (gusts 30-40 mph) will become more widespread along and east of the Cascade-Sierra crest this afternoon. Light rain will move onshore from Sonoma County northward this afternoon, and spread east and south overnight. Thursday will be cool and cloudy with scattered light rain as the low moves over the North Ops area. Light rain will finally move east of the Cascade-Sierra crest during the afternoon hours on Thursday. Showers will gradually diminish Thursday night. Isolated embedded thunderstorms are also possible with this system. Rainfall totals will be 0.25-0.50 inches in far NW CA and just a trace to 0.20 inches elsewhere.
On Friday the trough will become a closed low pressure area over Central CA. High pressure and light offshore winds will develop over the North Ops region through Sunday, bringing a warming and drying trend. At this time this pattern does not look strong enough to be considered a High Risk situation. Isolated thunderstorms are possible over the Central Sierra Saturday and Sunday.
A broad low pressure trough will move in with moderate westerly winds Monday and Tuesday. Light rain is possible again in far NW CA with this system. Strong high pressure is expected to follow late in the week with a warming and drying trend, and a potential for moderate offshore winds.
Most inland fuels are above the 90th percentile and in some cases at record levels for ERC, as well as for larger-dead fuel dryness (5.5-8% ranges). Live fuels are at the point of fire season where they are normally driest anyway, and the longer-term drought combined with a dry late summer are making those generally as dry or drier than has ever been observed. Humidity will be increasing in western areas today, but the eastern third of NorCal will stay dry enough that with the widespread moderate to strong winds , we will keep 'High Risk' in the Eastside and NE Calif PSAs.
The very dry conditions are a result of our record level drought conditions. Most of North Ops remains in Extreme to Exceptional drought: http://droughtmonitor.unl.edu/Home/StateDroughtMonitor.aspx?CA
North OPS: Preparedness Level 3
National: Preparedness Level 2
MACS Mode 2
For more information about this product, please go to: http://gacc.nifc.gov/oncc/predictive/weather/Fire%20Potential%20Documentation.htm
And for more information on the national product please go to:
Forecasters: Leach 9/17/2014 0945 MDT