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Thursday, October 15, 2009

What's Going On At The National Weather Service?

I'm no weather expert, but I've noticed lately the weather experts are not weather experts, either. Sure, I hear you saying: "What else is new?" But hear me out. Until recently, I actually thought the guys at NWS did a pretty good job. Maybe they have somebody new, a complete guppy, on the Coastal Maine desk. That's probably it.

The problem is at NWS in Gray, Maine. Here's an example: A couple of weeks ago, I heard on the weather radio there was going to be an easterly gale. I went on-line, dialed up the Matinicus Rock Light NDBC page, and brought up the Latest NWS Forecast 2. The Penobscot Bay forecast called for northely winds to 15 knots, while the Stonington to Port Clyde out to 25 nautical miles forecast called for east winds 15 to 25 knots with gusts to 40 knots. This was for a low tracking through the center of the state toward the Gulf of St. Lawrence. Like I said, I'm no expert, but that's impossible. It can't be both, and it's unlikely to be easterly or northerly with a low tracking inland, basically up Rt. 95. In fact, that night it turned out to be southeast and backing.

So, what do we have today? Almost a repeat performance in accuracy, except this time it's a low tracking south and east of us. Great. I moved my boat because one hour earlier NWS was calling for easterly winds to 40 knots. Now, as you can see, it's northeast to only 25 knots.

Meanwhile, when is somebody going to inform NWS in Gray, Maine that Stonington to Port Clyde out to 25 nautical miles ***IS*** Penobscot Bay.

Here's the current forecast:

ANZ151-153-160915-
PENOBSCOT BAY-CASCO BAY-
303 PM EDT THU OCT 15 2009

...SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 2 AM EDT FRIDAY THROUGH
SATURDAY MORNING...

TONIGHT
NE WINDS 5 TO 10 KT...INCREASING TO 10 TO 15 KT WITH
GUSTS UP TO 25 KT AFTER MIDNIGHT. SEAS 2 TO 4 FT...BUILDING TO 3
TO 5 FT AFTER MIDNIGHT.

FRI
NE WINDS 10 TO 20 KT WITH GUSTS TO 25 KT...BECOMING N 10 TO
15 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. SEAS 3 TO 5 FT. A CHANCE OF RAIN OR SNOW
IN THE AFTERNOON WITH VSBY 1 TO 3 NM.

FRI NIGHT
N WINDS 15 TO 20 KT WITH GUSTS UP TO 25 KT. SEAS 4 TO
7 FT. A CHANCE OF SHOWERS IN THE EVENING.

SAT
NE WINDS 10 TO 15 KT WITH GUSTS UP TO 20 KT. SEAS 4 TO 6 FT.

SAT NIGHT
NE WINDS 10 TO 15 KT...INCREASING TO 15 TO 20 KT AFTER
MIDNIGHT. GUSTS UP TO 30 KT. SEAS 2 TO 4 FT. A CHANCE OF SNOW AFTER
MIDNIGHT.

SUN
NE WINDS 15 TO 20 KT WITH GUSTS UP TO 25 KT. SEAS 3 TO 5 FT.
A CHANCE OF SHOWERS.

SUN NIGHT
NE WINDS 15 TO 20 KT...INCREASING TO 20 TO 25 KT AFTER
MIDNIGHT. SEAS 4 TO 7 FT. A CHANCE OF RAIN.

MON
NE WINDS 20 TO 25 KT...BECOMING N 15 TO 20 KT. SEAS 4 TO
7 FT...SUBSIDING TO 3 TO 5 FT. RAIN LIKELY.

TUE
W WINDS 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 2 TO 3 FT...SUBSIDING TO 1 TO 2 FT.


ANZ150-152-154-160915-
STONINGTON ME TO PORT CLYDE ME OUT TO 25 NM-
PORT CLYDE ME TO CAPE ELIZABETH ME OUT TO 25 NM-
CAPE ELIZABETH ME TO MERRIMACK RIVER MA OUT TO 25 NM-
303 PM EDT THU OCT 15 2009

...SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM 2 AM EDT FRIDAY THROUGH
SATURDAY MORNING...

TONIGHT
NE WINDS 5 TO 10 KT...INCREASING TO 15 TO 20 KT WITH
GUSTS UP TO 25 KT. SEAS 2 TO 3 FT...BUILDING TO 4 TO 6 FT AFTER
MIDNIGHT. A CHANCE OF RAIN OR SNOW AFTER MIDNIGHT WITH VSBY 1 TO
3 NM.

FRI
NE WINDS 15 TO 25 KT...DIMINISHING TO 10 TO 20 KT IN THE
AFTERNOON. SEAS 6 TO 9 FT. A CHANCE OF RAIN.

FRI NIGHT
N WINDS 15 TO 20 KT WITH GUSTS UP TO 30 KT. SEAS 6 TO
9 FT. A CHANCE OF RAIN AND SNOW SHOWERS IN THE EVENING.

SAT
NE WINDS 15 TO 20 KT WITH GUSTS UP TO 25 KT. SEAS 5 TO 8 FT.

SAT NIGHT
NE WINDS 15 TO 20 KT...INCREASING TO 20 TO 25 KT AFTER
MIDNIGHT. SEAS 4 TO 7 FT. A CHANCE OF RAIN AFTER MIDNIGHT.

SUN
NE WINDS 20 TO 25 KT WITH GUSTS UP TO 30 KT. SEAS 5 TO 8 FT.
SHOWERS LIKELY.

SUN NIGHT
NE WINDS 15 TO 25 KT...BECOMING 20 TO 25 KT AFTER
MIDNIGHT. SEAS 6 TO 9 FT. RAIN LIKELY.

MON
N WINDS 20 TO 25 KT...BECOMING NW 15 TO 20 KT. SEAS 6 TO
9 FT...SUBSIDING TO 3 TO 5 FT. RAIN LIKELY.

TUE
NW WINDS 10 TO 20 KT...BECOMING W 10 TO 15 KT. SEAS 2 TO
4 FT...SUBSIDING TO 1 TO 2 FT AFTER MIDNIGHT.


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