"Camelot" Climate Index


What's your perfect climate? Lots of sunshine and hot temperatures? Four distinct seasons? Lots of snow for skiing or tornadoes for storm-chasing? Or maybe that decreed by King Arthur in the Broadway musical "Camelot".


In reality, it's totally subjective with no one-size-fits-all solution. With that caveat, the Camelot Climate Index (CCI), as portrayed below, was designed (as a grad school project) to be a "pleasant" climate with mild temperatures and minimal precipitation. In its latest iteration, the primary data used are from the NCDC 30-year normals for the period 1981-2010. A complete description of the methodology can be found here. Enjoy.


Camelot Climate Index

City

State

INDEX

San Diego

 CA

89

San Francisco City

 CA

87

Los Angeles City

 CA

86

Sacramento

 CA

80

Eureka

 CA.

79

Las Vegas

 NV

78

Fresno

 CA

78

Redding

 CA

76

Galveston

 TX

76

Key West

 FL

76

Tucson

 AZ

76

El Paso

 TX

76

Yuma

 AZ

75

Honolulu

 HI

75

Kahului

 HI

75

Phoenix

 AZ

75

Seattle SeaTac Ap

 WA

74

Apalachicola

 FL

73

Cape Hatteras

 NC

73

Lihue

 HI

73

Portland

 OR

72

Albuquerque

 NM

72

Tampa

 FL

71

Midland-Odessa

 TX

71

Norfolk

 VA

70

Atlanta

 GA

70

Miami

 FL

70

Roswell

 NM

70

Charleston Ap

 SC

70

Jacksonville

 FL

70

Abilene

 TX

69

Lake Charles

 LA

69

Reno

 NV

69

Savannah

 GA

69

Wilmington

 NC

69

Charlotte

 NC

69

Boise

 ID

69

New York C.Park

 NY

68

Grand Junction

 CO

68

Pensacola

 FL

68

Lubbock

 TX

68

Greensboro-Winston-Salem Ap

 NC

68

Amarillo

 TX

68

Oklahoma City

 OK

68

Washington Nat'l Ap

 DC

68

Boston

 MA

68

Macon

 GA

68

Asheville

 NC

68

Greenville-Spartanburg Ap

 SC

68

Salt Lake City

 UT

67

Philadelphia

 PA

67

Cheyenne

 WY

67

Richmond

 VA

67

Spokane

 WA

67

Columbia

 SC

67

Denver

 CO

67

Lynchburg

 VA

67

Raleigh

 NC

67

Knoxville

 TN

66

Dallas-Fort Worth

 TX

66

Louisville

 KY

66

Atlantic City Ap

 NJ

66

Pueblo

 CO

66

Austin/City

 TX

66

Flagstaff

 AZ

66

Memphis

 TN

66

Billings

 MT

66

Harrisburg

 PA

66

Brownsville

 TX

66

Great Falls

 MT

66

Shreveport

 LA

65

Corpus Christi

 TX

65

Providence

 RI

65

Dodge City

 KS

65

Ely

 NV

65

Birmingham Ap

 AL

65

Concordia

 KS

65

Lander

 WY

65

Nashville

 TN

65

New Orleans

 LA

65

Fort Wayne

 IN

65

Wichita

 KS

65

Paducah

 KY

65

Baltimore

 MD

65

St. Louis

 MO

65

Pocatello

 ID

65

Chattanooga

 TN

65

Port Arthur

 TX

65

Springfield

 IL

64

Omaha (North)

 NE

64

Helena

 MT

64

Dayton

 OH

64

Little Rock

 AR

64

Montgomery

 AL

64

Sioux City

 IA

64

Evansville

 IN

64

Kansas City

 MO

64

Indianapolis

 IN

64

San Antonio

 TX

64

Milwaukee

 WI

64

Springfield

 MO

64

Detroit

 MI

64

Minneapolis-St.Paul

 MN

64

Tupelo

 MS

64

Peoria

 IL

64

Lincoln

 NE

63

Des Moines

 IA

63

Cleveland

 OH

63

Chicago

 IL

63

Jackson

 MS

63

Fort Smith

 AR

63

Avoca

 PA

63

Columbus

 OH

63

Tulsa

 OK

63

Toledo

 OH

63

Topeka

 KS

63

Portland

 ME

63

Rapid City

 SD

63

Greater Cincinnati Ap

OH

63

Green Bay

 WI

63

Houston

 TX

63

Albany

 NY

63

Buffalo

 NY

63

Columbia

 MO

63

Winnemucca

 NV

63

Rochester

 NY

62

North Platte

 NE

62

Allentown

 PA

62

Hartford

 CT

62

Pittsburgh

 PA

62

Lansing

 MI

62

Moline

 IL

62

Huron

 SD

62

Valentine

 NE

62

Binghamton

 NY

62

Sheridan

 WY

62

Blue Hill

 MA

61

Madison

 WI

61

Fargo

 ND

61

Missoula

 MT

61

Williston

 ND

61

Bismarck

 ND

61

Grand Rapids

 MI

61

Burlington

 VT

60

Alpena

 MI

60

Duluth

 MN

60

Concord

 NH

59

Syracuse

 NY

59

Quillayute

 WA

59

Sault Ste. Marie

 MI

58

Anchorage

 AK

57

Elkins

 WV

56

Hilo

 HI

54

Nome

 AK

53

Juneau

 AK

51

Mt. Washington

 NH

36


Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather
 

Posted

25th Anniversary of Dec 1995 West Coast Mega Storm

See: https://ggweather.com/dec1995/

Today and tomorrow (Dec 11-12) mark the 25th anniversary of what is arguably the strongest storm to hit the San Francisco Bay Area and the West Coast in the past 70 years. It is the only time in that period that saw SF Bay Area winds in excess of 100 mph at sea level and over 130 mph on Mount Diablo. And at the same time, San Francisco recorded over 5 inches of rain in a 30-hour period while Kentfield had in excess of 11 inches. It is the strongest storm, and benchmark of the Bay Area Storm Index (BASI) with a rating of 10.0.

Dr. John Monteverdi (Emeritus Professor of Meteorology at San Francisco State University) and I have put together a webpage with some of the highlights from this remarkable event.  See https://ggweather.com/dec1995/





Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Phone: (650) 712-1876
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 


Posted

A Climatological Look at Dry Autumns

A Climatological Look at Dry Autumns

  

With a very dry start to the 2020-2021 California rainfall season, and no rain in the forecast through the end of the month, this is a look at what has happened in similar seasons. San Francisco, with the longest continuous rainfall record in the state back to 1849, is used for comparison.

To date, San Francisco has only had a paltry 0.54", which is just 12% of the normal July through November average of 4.55".

Below is a breakdown of the 16 seasons that had less than one-inch to begin the season. Of the previous 15 seasons, 5 of them finished the season above normal rainfall, and 10 finished below normal. Likewise, for seasons with a moderate La Niña, there was one season (1995) with above normal SF seasonal rainfall and two that ended below normal.

But caveat emptor, this data is climatology and NOT a forecast. 




Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather
 






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Posted

21st Century La Niñas and California Precipitation



Below is a graphical catalog of the eight La Niña Sea Surface Temperature Anomalies (SSTA) that have occurred since the turn of the century; along with the corresponding California precipitation anomaly, and the previous year's ENSO category.

In broad strokes, over the seven previous La Niñas, four were DRY (2007-8, 2008-0, 2011-12, 2017-18) and three were WET (2005-06, 2010-11, 2016-17) across most of California. And it is interesting to note that all three of the wet years followed El Niño years, while the four dry years followed La Niñas.

The latest forecast from CPC and IRI are pushing this winter into the Moderate La Niña category, and briefly into the Strong range. Last year there was a weak El Niño.



Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 

Posted

Updated Oceanic Niño Index Graphics


With renewed interest in La NIña I have updated the graphics depicting the Oceanic Niño Index (ONI). Most notably and to make the data more readable, separate time-series graphs for the periods of 1950-1989 and 1990-present have been added. This is in addition to the previous 1950-present time-series. See https://ggweather.com/enso/oni.htm.






Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Phone: (650) 712-1876
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 

 

 

Posted

La Niña 2020 - No Sure Thing

The NOAA Climate Prediction Center (CPC) announced this morning that we have entered into a weak La Niña pattern that is expected to last through the winter. https://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/analysis_monitoring/enso_advisory/ensodisc.shtml



But, what does that mean as far as this winter's rainfall across California and the United States? Given past climatology, it can mean almost anything!  This is dramatically illustrated by the past two La Niñas, both weak, which occurred in the winters of 2016-2017 and 2017-18. Their rainfall patterns looked dramatically different, especially in the West and California. See https://www.ggweather.com/ca_enso/ca_lanina.html and https://ggweather.com/enso2016/us_lanina.html 

For comparison in California, below are the seasonal percentage of normal rainfall for the 11 La Niña events since 1950:


 

And likewise, the precipitation anomalies for the United States.


The bottom line is that with most ENSO (El Niño Southern Oscillation) events, and especially with weak La Niñas, there is no clear signal that can be used as a predictor. What is often forgotten, is that while ENSO events have a strong influence on a given year's weather, they are not the only game in town and the impact of ENSO is influenced by a myriad of other interacting factors like the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO), Pacific North America (PNA) pattern, Arctic Oscillation (AO), Pacific Decadel Oscillation (PDO), Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO), etc. STAY TUNED!

Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 

Posted

California Rain and Fire Climatology

The recent spate of large fires has pushed 2020 in the unenviable position of already having the 3rd most acreage burned. And there are are still over four months of the year left, and the dry Fall months with offshore winds are often when things get worse. To date, 2020 has seen approximately 1.35 million acres burned, behind only 2018 which had 1.85M acres burned and 2008 with 1.38M acres.



The potential for a bad year has been exacerbated by the exceptionally dry 2019-2020 rainfall season, that statewide averaged just 73% of normal (21.78").



And looking at the combination of the two shows a real bias toward drier years having more acreage burned across Califonia. 

However, there are almost as many caveats as there are datapoints. First, the impacts on the state are more than just the number of acres, but where they are and do they include inhabited areas. And, the rainfall dataset is for a single statewide average and does not take into account if the rain fell more in areas that saw more acres burned.  But the pattern is compelling and should be a cautionary tale for dry years.

Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 

 

Posted

Comparing 2006 and 2020 California Heat Waves


How does the current heatwave compare to the July 2006 event? A quick analysis shows them to be quite similar. Both show the West being dominated by large 500 millibar highs centered over the Great Basin. For the dates chosen, in the approximate middle of the hottest 7-day periods, the current high is only slightly stronger. 



There are many metrics that can be used to compare, but here I have looked at the warmest 7-day period, based on daily maximum and forecast temperatures for July 2006 and August 2020. In most of the nine stations examined, the values are comparable. The largest outliers were in Redding and Livermore which were 5 degrees hotter in 2006, and Fresno which was 4 degrees hotter. 
 

There are many caveats to be applied to such a simple analysis, including the influence of nighttime minimums, the humidity given the recent influx of subtropical air, changes in population, etc.


Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Phone: (650) 712-1876
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 

 

Posted

Hottest Week of the Year?

For many locales across the United States, the last week of July is the hottest time of the year. And given the prolonged heat over much of the country this summer, just the idea that there is cooler weather ahead may be reason to rejoice.

But a few locations, especially along the West Coast, wait until August and even September to peak. And San Francisco is certainly the latest of any major United States city by not reaching its normal highest maximum temperature of 70.4 degrees until September 24th. Yet, just 40 miles away, San Jose has one of the earlier hottest days on average, peaking out at 83.8 degrees on July 10th. 

US Daily Normals can be found at:  https://ggweather.com/normals/daily.htm

  



Jan Null, CCM
Certified Consulting Meteorologist
Golden Gate Weather Services
Email: jnull@ggweather.com
Web: http://ggweather.com
Twitter: @ggweather

 

Posted