Monday, January 31, 2011

WRF Canyon Wind Forecast

The latest 1.3 km WRF forecast is in (initialized using the 6-h GFS forecast for 1800 UTC 31 Jan), which includes a forecast projection through tomorrow evening.  It produces a broad region of downslope winds along the northern Wasatch tomorrow afternoon and evening with sustained winds between 30 and 40 knots.

Note that the center of action has shifted southward from the earlier WRF simulation.  The strong winds downstream of the Cottonwoods seem odd.  That is an unusual place for downslope winds.  Perhaps this reflects the lower height of the model topography.  It's also a bit unusual for the downslope flow to be strongest in the afternoon, although this time of year the solar forcing is fairly weak, so that might reduce the diurnal variability.

As previously mentioned, we've never used this model before to examine downslope winds, and it is unclear if reliance on a single high-resolution model might lead to serious "crash and burn," so it will be interesting to see how it verifies.


  1. Jim,

    We love reading your blog. Where can we access the high resolution WRF output for Utah? I've seen it through the University of Arizona, but not at the highest resolution, and not focused specifically on Utah. Just curious.


    This is done on a shoestring, so don't count on it for reliability.