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How's the current at The Wall?

 
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14612

PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 3:25 pm    Post subject: How's the current at The Wall? Reply with quote

Looked like great wind there yesterday/Friday (thunderstorms destroyed the same wind further east), but how's the current this spring? IMO, that whole stretch sucks when the current is too strong, as it kills the swell, and I hate driving the extra distance (from the east) only to find washing machine terrain.

Better yet, does anyone know of a real-time current source via internet or telephone?

BTW . . . Roosevelt had a period of significant whitecaps -- probably 5.0 wind -- from both west and east simultaneously yesterday. At the east end of the park, clear to the main/central jetty, was solid NE wind in the low 20s, while off the ferry landing literally a serious stone's throw to the west was a solid WSW wind in the low 20s. Where the two blasts met head-on directly off the main launch was glassy . . . and probably NOT a good place to be on a kite 'cause the wind's only escape route was straight up. Weirdest weather event I've ever seen there.

Mike \m/
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jimoak



Joined: 21 Apr 2006
Posts: 144

PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2007 8:17 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The current was fine, good swell yesterday. A classic wall day.
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gmclean



Joined: 08 Mar 2001
Posts: 81

PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 9:48 am    Post subject: Wild weather Reply with quote

Hi Mike,

I like your description of the crazy wind event at Roosevelt. Looking east from The Dalles I could see the clouds building but it looked fairly isolated in the satellite image, right over you I think! Sorry I missed that in the forecast, it is pretty tough to call the location of localized convection but maybe I should have mentioned some possibility of thunder showers. The windgrapch made it look like the wind came back up, was that not the case?

Thanks,

George McLean
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Temira



Joined: 15 Jun 1999
Posts: 84
Location: Hood River

PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 11:09 am    Post subject: almost epic Reply with quote

There was a lot of current at The Wall the other day, I thought. But that's perfectly ok, because there were also lots of big, breaking swells. Worth driving out at $3.35 a gallon, for sure!

When's the air going to warm up, anyway?
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14612

PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 1:28 pm    Post subject: Re: Wild weather Reply with quote

gmclean wrote:
Hi Mike,

I like your description of the crazy wind event at Roosevelt. Looking east from The Dalles I could see the clouds building but it looked fairly isolated in the satellite image, right over you I think! Sorry I missed that in the forecast, it is pretty tough to call the location of localized convection but maybe I should have mentioned some possibility of thunder showers. The windgrapch made it look like the wind came back up, was that not the case?

Thanks,

George McLean


H'lo, George . . . yes, it came back up, before it got knocked down again about the time one got rigged for it, then teased again before falling off again -- the usual stuff that accompanies squally conditions. I learned years ago that immediately after I see wind out east I check the radar; if it's squally I often pass unless I'm in the mood for The Swim . . . or several of them. This time the squalls were mostly staying farther east, so I went despite them, only to have one overhead as I arrived just in time to see even the guys on very big boards limping ashore. When the number of 15-60-minute swims followed by 15-25-minute hikes in a dry suit exceed even the number of sails rigged, it's time to stay home and mow the lawn.

Mike
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14612

PostPosted: Sun May 06, 2007 1:35 pm    Post subject: Re: almost epic Reply with quote

windbabe wrote:
There was a lot of current at The Wall the other day, I thought. But that's perfectly ok, because there were also lots of big, breaking swells.
When's the air going to warm up, anyway?


If there's swell, the current's fine. It's when extra-strong spring runoff current, dominant some years, leaves nothing but random upwellings with no pattern from the dam to Maryhill that the magic is gone, leaving only voodoo (or doo doo if it gets really strong).

May is forecast to be cooler than normal, which suits me fine when camping. I just want the water to warm up so I can get out of this dry suit and so my bare foots are a little warmer.

\m/
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bobgatpdx1



Joined: 13 Oct 2002
Posts: 384

PostPosted: Mon May 07, 2007 2:04 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here's a link to the US Army Corps of Engineers website with more data than you could ever want about the John Day Dam (The Wall is just below this dam):

http://www.nwd-wc.usace.army.mil/perl/dataquery.pl?k=id:JDA

If you select:
"Outflow Discharge (KCFS) - Daily" or
"Outflow Discharge (KCFS) - Hourly" you can generate graphs or tables showing how the flow in the dam varies of the course of a year or just the last few days.

Looks like peak flow is in late May, and minimum flow is late Sept. It's interesting to see how much the flow varies between night (low flow) and day (high flow) - when they run the dams hard to generate more electricity.
bobg
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wsmike



Joined: 07 Jun 2003
Posts: 412

PostPosted: Mon May 14, 2007 7:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

By June 1st water temp should be near 60 degrees at the Dalles dam, and by June 15th should be about 63 degrees. You can chart data here:

http://waterdata.usgs.gov/wa/nwis/uv?cb_00055=on&cb_00010=on&format=gif_stats&period=31&site_no=14105700

Nother good link for water temps on the columbia (see the total dissolved gas reports):
http://www.nwd-wc.usace.army.mil/report/columbia.htm

Right now temp is right around 55 degrees all along the columbia, except way up by Pasco its around 52 still. Some dude at the Hatch yesterday was trying to tell me that the water is colder west of Hood River due to snow melt. Well, it may feel colder but according to the data its about the same as the water at Dougs, at Stevenson and at Hood River. Can't argue with the facts (unless you're Steven Colbert).
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