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What's up with the forecasts???????
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akelly__



Joined: 16 Aug 2006
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sat Jun 23, 2007 3:42 pm    Post subject: ISOBAR forecast? Reply with quote

Hey everyone - Tom mentioned the isobar forecast as the best tool for gauging the cape - when I click into this in the nav bar I only get numeric readings. What am I missing?

Thanks
Sean
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cosmicharlie



Joined: 06 Oct 2015
Posts: 0

PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 6:24 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Dunoyer wrote:
I'm surmising that some weather set ups are often repeated, and therefore deliver confident computer model predictions. And there are those rogue set ups, where no one is quite sure, so the meteorologists make a prediction anyway with low confidence. I think it helps a lot to know how confident the meteorlogist is of his/her forcast. Lately, I'm home when it's windy, and at the beach when it's calm, all of this while religiously analyzing the iwindsurf forecasts. Something is wrong with this picture!
As with many understandings, experience helps. Spending some time outdoors in your target locale instead of inside a windowless room like Pueno's ward would be the best aide.
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Wind.Man



Joined: 12 May 2001
Posts: 39

PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 9:12 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I have never posted in this forum, but I can not agree more with what's being said here. I sent Matt an email regarding the subject. Case in point - forecast for Cape Cod - Sat, Jun 23 - forecast was for nw winds in the moring with a switch to sw. sw winds were to build into upper-teens, low twenties in the evening hours (around 3-4pm acoording to forecast). The wind never switched. Of course there was NO 11:30 update to state that the switch was delayed or not going to happen.

The best part, however, was in the 6pm forecast for Sun, June 24. IN this forecast, Matt called for the winds to again switch from NW to SW. He states in this forecast that "the switch should occur earlier than Saturday". Are you kidding? Not only did they not update Saturdays forecast, but they obviously were not even paying attention as the switch never happened.

What am I paying for? The only reliable thing on this site is the meter readings (and even those are 3-4mph high). I find the whole thing frustrating.
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alex177



Joined: 04 May 2002
Posts: 36

PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 11:31 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Speaking about meter/sensor readings. Last Friday at 6pm, the sensor at Pleasure Bay showed 20NW when the water in the bay was like a mirror (see the image). One hour later, when the wind picked up (I was planing on 5.7) the sensor still showed 20NW. Go figure...


pb.jpg
 Description:
Pleasure Bay on June 22, 06 at 6pm. The sensor's reading is 20NW
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 Viewed:  9308 Time(s)

pb.jpg


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tom_eberhard



Joined: 04 May 2000
Posts: 25

PostPosted: Sun Jun 24, 2007 10:00 pm    Post subject: Re: ISOBAR forecast? Reply with quote

akelly__ wrote:
Hey everyone - Tom mentioned the isobar forecast as the best tool for gauging the cape - when I click into this in the nav bar I only get numeric readings. What am I missing?

Thanks
Sean

You're looking at the observations, but you want the forecasts. You're just missing the last step, from the top:
click Pressure / Isobar fx. map time says: "Latest observations", so click on the little down arrow next to "latest observations", a bunch of times should show up. Click on the first one that says "forcast", then the next, then the next. I didn't sail today (june 24th) but it looks like it was ok at West Dennis for about 2 hours from about 4 to 6. (Anything over 20 is ok by me).

Check out the gradients for tomorrow (Monday the 25th), now that's the kind of gradients that I'm looking for. I could be tighter towards the end of the day, but the low tide is at 3:00 which is good. As the tide goes up a theory I've heard says that it compresses the air above it, which is good for a knot or two. The gradients for 2:00pm and 5:00pm look good. The 8:00pm gradients are less tight. Temperature between 2 and 5 is forecast in the 80's which is good for the thermals.
I also looked at www.wunderground.com for any large systems, unfortunately there's no large high pressure system to the south or any low pressure system to the North, which would help. By the way, to figure out what the pressure systems does: "Low pressure=counter clockwise, high pressure=clockwise"
So... I'm going to keep an eye on the sensor during the day. The forecast might be off by 1 or 2 hours in each direction. I'll probably leave work at 3:00ish, and go to West Dennis.
Tom.



IsobarsFx_June25_2007.jpg
 Description:
Very nice setup. Tight gradients. Could use a more SW orientation, but this is good enough. The winds run mostly parallel to the gradients. (yes parallel, not perpendicular.)
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IsobarsFx_June25_2007.jpg


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mattman



Joined: 20 Jun 2000
Posts: 92

PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2007 3:06 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I see Wind Man posted here as well as used the forecast feedback link on the forecasts. I wish all of you would use that feedback link as we truly crave what you have to say. I know it says CONSTRUCTIVE feedback on the link which simply means we don't want a bunch of "you guys suck" statements... instead let us know where we missed and how we can do better and do it ASAP while the weather setup is still fresh in our minds.

Here is the response I sent to him:


<name deleted>,

That was truly a challenging day. I thank you for taking the time to give
us feedback. Indeed I did not get the forecast correct for Cape Cod in
the afternoon and for that I apologize. I special updated many other
regions that day but given the trends at Nantucket and Horseshoe Shoal I was
confident that the winds would fill in as I hoped they would. For that
reason, I didn't special update Cape Cod as I truly thought (even at 4pm) it
was still going to come on. In fact I was so sure that I referenced it in
my 6pm forecast. Hindsight...probably not a good idea.

You will note that in my forecast text I did say that the high confidence was on the morning NW flow and the low confidence was on the afternoon SW.
I said that so people might not make a long drive based on a low confidence forecast but placing the numbers in the tables was probably not a good call on my part.

I am a windsurfer too and sometimes I find myself trying to look for wind and forecasting more optimistically when truly I need to divorce myself and tell it like it is. Perhaps I was a little too eager on Saturday.
However, my forecast for Sunday seems to have been spot on. In many
respects it was the learning from Saturday that made Sunday's forecasts possible. Thanks to your and other's input we knew that we needed to pay more attention.

I hope you will continue to use our service and I'm sorry you feel you have had a bad run with us. NOAA is good at what they do and that is public safety. As we try to be more precise, which is what windsurfers want, sometimes that precision can come back to bite us as it did on Saturday.
For NOAA, they can just broad brush the region with a single number because they don't care about precision.

Again, thanks for taking the time to give us your thoughts.

Cheers,
Matt
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dcharlton



Joined: 24 Apr 2002
Posts: 399

PostPosted: Tue Jun 26, 2007 7:37 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Matt,

You were spot on Sunday and to my benefit, I got a great session in at Kalmus. Thank you.

I will try and incorporate my feedback to the specific forecast feedback loop you mentioned earlier.

I didn't mean for my post to be "you guys suck" but I was pretty frustrated with both the 3 week combination of no wind with forecasts that looked doable. There was probably a little "kill the messenger" sentiment from my post and I apologize if I was overly harsh. I've gotten a lot out of your service for the last 5 years and will continue to use you.

PS: I am playing half day hookey tomorrow so all bets are off if I get skunked tomorrow Wink

DC
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cosmicharlie



Joined: 06 Oct 2015
Posts: 0

PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 5:54 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

The forecasts have been good the last few days for Cape Cod. I find that if they miss, the forecasters will be a little conservative the next time.
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Wind.Man



Joined: 12 May 2001
Posts: 39

PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 6:06 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Wanted to post and thank Matt for taking the time to discuss this issue with all of us. I have had the opportunity to meet Matt at the beach once, and he is a very nice guy. I know everyone at iwindsurf is trying to do the best forecasts they can. I think we've all gotten skunked and frustrated at some point - when it happens a few days in a row, I think frustration can get the best of us. Forecast has been spot on this week. Matt seems to really care about getting the forecast right, and for that, I thank him.
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jkrouwer



Joined: 10 Apr 2000
Posts: 20

PostPosted: Wed Jun 27, 2007 6:10 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Matt,

You said -

"I special updated many other regions that day but given the trends at Nantucket and Horseshoe Shoal I was confident that the winds would fill in as I hoped they would. For that reason, I didn't special update Cape Cod as I truly thought (even at 4pm) it was still going to come on."

This is precisely why you should have made a special update forecast. If things don't seem to be going well, but you're still confident, people would like to know that. To me, no special update means either no change OR no one's looking. I posted before an example of a forecast for little wind, it became windy, there was never a special update.

Someone suggested to attach a confidence level to every forecast and update. That's a great idea.
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