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WALKING A VERY FINE LINE

NOW MORE THAN EVER I NEED YOUR HELP WITH OPERATING EXPENSES

THE FUTURE OF THE SITE DEPENDS ON YOU. 

Hi everyone, as you know, TSwails.com is a no-pay site; existing on voluntary subscriptions or personal donations. If you find value in the site, I'm asking kindly that you make the donation you feel is worthy. I'm suggesting $20.00, roughly a nickel a day. Less than 5% of my readers donate, so your gift is not only appreciated, it helps immensely. Your contribution, whatever you can swing, supports the content, infrastructure, and operational costs. Thanks for anything you can do.


GONNA BE A TIGHT CUT...

If you think our weather has been dull lately, you are 100% correct. For example, the Quad Cities is in a stretch where precipitation the past 19 days has amounted to just .01". During that period, typically amounts would have been near 1.10". Now, if all goes according to plan, that streak comes to an end late Wednesday evening when a storm comes close enough to finally bring light rain or rain changing to snow to much of the area.


Looking at the satellite imagery Tuesday night, the energy is evident as it emerges from Colorado. It currently looks as though it will take much of the day for moisture to advect out of the Gulf and reach the central Midwest.

Notice too, all the yellow to the south indicating dry air. This is one of those systems that will produce most of its precipitation north of the baroclinic boundary, where lift or up-glide creates it. That implies the heavier rain (and some snow) falls across my northern counties, something we've been anticipating all along.

The tricky part is going to be defining the precise position of the warm front which sets up ahead of the advancing surface low. It's north of that boundary where the primary precipitation band forms due to a robust period of warm advection Thursday night. The warm front will also produce a decent range in temperatures, with mid to upper 40s far north to mid 50s far south. Aside from increasing clouds, Wednesday will be dry.


TRACK ISSUES...

Wednesday night is when there are some serious disagreements with precipitation placement and type. Unfortunately we had this problem yesterday and while there is better agreement in most models, the one I would typically trust the most with 12 hours to go (the EURO), is the outlier. It tracks the surface low SE of the Quad Cities, which is the solution that is furthest south. That allows for more of the area near and north of I-80 to get into heavier precipitation due to its holding the baroclinic boundary further south. The GFS takes the low a bit NW of the Quad Cities and the 3k NAM sends it all the way to Dubuque. Take a look.


The EURO

The GFS

The 3k NAM

That range of 80–100 miles from south to north makes a significant difference in the sensible weather that results. As a forecaster, this is one of those times when you weigh the evidence, which is heavily in favor of a track further north (to at least the north side of the Quad Cities). Look at the difference this makes in total precipitation going from the heaviest (the EURO) to the lightest (the HRRR). Dubuque's range of totals goes from .73" to .03". In all cases, amounts south of I-80 are light, with the HRRR indicating little if anything anywhere!


The EURO

The GFS

The 3k NAM

The HRRR

The other problem this presents is how much snow, if any, falls? The EURO shows enough for a slick commute Thursday morning near HWY 20, but the other solutions indicate little if any. Here's what's showing.


The EURO

The GFS

The 3k NAM

The HRRR

The EURO has been good to me over the years in short range outcomes such as this, but without support from any other models, I think I have to toss it. It's too far south, too wet, and too snowy in the far north. We still have a couple more model runs before precipitation begins Thursday evening, which allows me to confirm my suspicions or make a change. At least for now, this is looking like a glancing blow for the north at best. That does not appear to be the case for our friends in far northern Iowa and much of southern Wisconsin. I will follow up Thursday with something fresh as soon as I get back from a mid-morning visit to the Cardiologist.


LIFE AFTER A MINI-STROKE...

By the way, many of you have asked how I'm recovering from my recent TIA stroke, so here's an update. First of all, a TIA event is a "transient ischemic attack", a stroke that last only a few minutes. It occurs when the blood supply to part of the brain is briefly interrupted. TIA symptoms, which usually occur suddenly, are similar to those of stroke but do not last as long. Since they are short, they usually don't cause long-term damage. However, a TIA may be a warning. About 1 in 3 people who have a TIA will eventually have a stroke, with about half occurring within a year after the TIA. Often called a ministroke, a TIA can serve as both a warning of a future stroke and a chance to prevent it.


Most likely, I threw a small clot when I underwent surgery for an irregular heartbeat. (I had a similar ablation surgery 5 years ago to correct the same issue). For whatever reason, I went out of rhythm again last fall. I had been taking blood thinners for the last 5 months to reduce the chances of stroke, but the surgery proved to be too much.


Anyway, because my event was brief, I have recovered from the double vision and balance issues that I suffered. I feel good, but I have a bad hip and will be going under the knife again soon to get a total hip replacement. If that's not enough, I also have Achilles tendonitis in my left foot, with 5 bone spurs on the back of my heel. I will need surgery for that, but hopefully not this year.


Ironically, all of these issue may have come from my love of sports. I played basketball and baseball at Iowa City West and was a runner for most of my life after sports. I did that to keep my heart healthy and stay in shape. However, it is common for runners to develop irregular heartbeats. Also, the pounding on my foot and hip from athletics and running probably led to those injuries as well.


So what's the lesson. Sit on your butt, be a couch potato! Okay, strike that comment from the record. I think more than anything, I'm just getting old. Arthritis and aches and pains are part of the game. I honestly have no regrets and have lived an incredible life. I truly am one of the luckiest men on earth for many reasons, not the least of which is the exceptional support and friendship so many of you have shown over the years. Thank you again for your prayers and thoughts.


I'm also indebted to the exceptional professionals in the medical field who have put health back together again. I'm doing what the doctors tell me, and this is just one more chapter in my life. Hopefully, my experience has helped those of you who have faced a stoke or adversity, to come out on the other side. I'm very grateful for this new lease on life. Roll weather....TS Additionally with my recent health issues, I very much need to reach my fund-raising goals. To keep things as they are, I'm in humble need of your donation to the site more than ever. If you use it and find value in it, please consider a contribution. Thanks to you who have already helped the cause!

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