Planning a trip to SLC Feb 3-6th. Can anyone with access to a reliable 10 day forecast - please let me know how it is looking for next weekend.
Thanks in advance
Marty - There is no such thing as a reliable 10 day forecast.
The forecast models are pretty inconsistent that far out. There seems to be some snow early next week, but after that, the solutions diverge quite a bit.
From what little I know about meteorology, on longer range forecasts, the reliability is often really low. The exception is when you have a general agreement with the range of forecast models (US, Canadian, European,etc) over a number of model runs. Unfortunately, the computing power that is needed to produce the models is such that the humongous supercomputers they use still can only come up with at most 4 models per day... and the data that feeds those models is limited. The result is unreliable long range forecasts.
The solution would be to get faster computers that could process even more data.
can't you just look it up? www.weather.gov
Wish it were that simple. Not only is the NWS site one of the first websites I visit everyday - I read thru their detailed Forecast Discussion - as well. Till yesterday - they had nothing for next weekend. This morning they are referring to "Ridge building back next weekend" -:(
There are a lot of weather related sites. Hoping that others may have more insight than I do. For some reason I can't seem to find detailed weather discussions for Utah. NWS Forecast discussions for tahoe area are way more detailed than SLC. as an example of how much information is out there - take a look at this website for Tahoe area - http://tahoeweatherdiscussion.com/
Doesn't all the data come from the NWS? Wouldn't any other source have the same info (or lack of)? I'm curious, not argumentative. I thought that's the way it was, but I'm not really too into weather forecasting.
You're better off not looking that far out anyway. It changes so rapidly here, that it's better to wait until a day or two out. And even then...
Yes - all data does come from NWS. I think. But NWS website to me has only two interesting pages. the first page - which has very little info. just sunny, or chance of snow. Or the Forecast Discussion page - which has more in depth discussion but is full of technical terms. There are people who understand these terms and can translate it in layman terms - like in the tahoe weather related discussion website I mentioned in my previous post.
Here's the wikipedia page on the Global Forecast System run by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration... it provides insight into the way forecasters work. I once read that the European forecast model has been found to be more accurate the the US GFS model, but it is too expensive for most "non-state" forecast companies.
The NWS is probably the best forecast out there because they have the resources to purchase the data from all forecast model entities (Canadian, European, etc), and put the data together to form the best predictions.
The Global Forecast System (GFS) is a global numerical weather prediction computer model run by NOAA. This mathematical model is run four times a day and produces forecasts up to 16 days in advance, but with decreasing spatial and temporal resolution over time. It is widely accepted that beyond 7 days the forecast is very general and not very accurate, and most nongovernmental agencies rarely use any of the model's results beyond 10 days (mainly because there is no other 16-day model with which to compare). Along with the ECMWF's Integrated Forecast System (IFS), the Canadian Global Environmental Multiscale Model (GEM), both of which run out 10 days, and the Naval Research Laboratory NOGAPS models it is one of the four predominant synoptic scale medium-range models in general use.
The model is run in two parts: the first part has a higher resolution and goes out to 192 hours (7 days) in the future, the second part runs from 192 to 384 hours (16 days) at a lower resolution. The resolution of the model varies in each part of the model: horizontally, it divides the surface of the earth into 35 or 70 kilometre grid squares; vertically, it divides the atmosphere into 64 layers and temporally, it produces a forecast for every 3rd hour for the first 192 hours, after that they are produced for every 12th hour. The GFS is also used to produce model output statistics, both in a short range (every 3 hours, out to 72 hours) and in an extended range (every 12 hours, out to 8 days).
In addition to the main model, the GFS is also the basis of a 20-member (22, counting the control and operational members) ensemble that runs concurrent with the operational GFS and is available on the same time scales. This is variously referred to as a "Global Ensemble Forecast System" (GEFS or GENS) or the "Medium Range Forecast" (MRF). Ensemble model output statistics are also available out to 8 days.
This is the only global model for which all output is available, for free in the public domain, over the internet (as a result of U.S. law), and as such is the basis for non-state weather companies, e.g., Weather Underground, AccuWeather, The Weather Channel and MeteoGroup. (The IFS only has a limited amount of its output available for free, and all of the GEM's content remains under copyright.)