Phenomena along the California coast

Jeff Braun

Various phenomena along the California coastline evident in GOES visible imagery are examined.

The first example is from 26 July 2006.

Click on the 18:00 UTC surface analysis below:

A low over the interior of California exists, where temperatures are hot (90’s). Offshore and to the northwest is a high pressure system, leading to northerly flow off the coast of California and Oregon.

GOES visible imagery (14:30 – 01:53 UTC):

What is occurring at the various capes (points), at Cape Mendocino and Cape Blanco etc?

What is occurring to the north and south of Cape Mendocino (the large cape in northern California)?

The next example is from 23 September 2006.

Click on the 18:00 UTC surface analysis below:

The analysis shows a low off the coast of southern California with an inverted trough extended northward along the coastline.

GOES visible imagery (15:00 – 01:15 UTC):

Low-level clouds move towards the coastline and spread out along the coastline. In some regions, you can observe a reflection of the cloud line back in the opposite direction of which that came from.

Note what is happening around Point Reyes (northwest of San Francisco Bay). Why does a clear spot become evident (around 21:00 – 22:00 UTC) northwest of the point? Why does fog advect inland along and just north of the point soon after the clear spot develops?

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