Weather Blog

Green comets, blue Sequim skies, and happy new rain year!

Green comets, blue Sequim skies, and happy new rain year!

I've been out of town for a few days taking in the sights of New York City, and after coming home to, oh, about 1,400 e-mails I figured I'd do a potpourri blog to catch up on what's happened in the past few days:

Happy New Rain Year!

October 1st marks the official start of the rainy season (No, not June 1st, wise guy) and in conjunction, also marks a time when we reset an annual rain gauge.

The National Weather Service tracks rain over two periods in Seattle -- the traditional January 1-December 31 but also from October 1 to September 30 -- the "water year".

Since most of our rain falls predominately between October and March, tracking the water year rain gives a good idea of how individual autumns and winters stacked up, as opposed to resetting the count to zero right in the middle of the wet season.

Other cities do this too, but the dates vary depending on local climate. For example, Los Angeles tracks July 1 to June 30 for their water year.

For Seattle, our water year ended up at 45.26" -- well above normal. In fact, it's 8.19" above the normal 37.07", or about 22% above normal. We had a wet autumn before the dry January came, plus of course our wet spring and really wet September. (We're about 5" ahead of normal for the calendar year measurement.)

Speaking of September, it finished at 4.80", making it the third-wettest September on record at Sea-Tac Airport.

A Comet Is Coming!

A green comet, that is.

According to "Green comet 103P/Hartley 2 is approaching Earth for a close encounter on Oct. 20th. At that time, the comet will be only 11 million miles (0.12 AU) from our planet and should be dimly visible to the naked eye from dark sky sites. It already looks great through backyard telescopes."

That link above has some photos or you can see a very short time lapse video of it here, courtesy Dr. Dale Ireland in Silverdale:

Is the "Blue Hole" out in Sequim?

Tired of the gray and want to find someplace sunny? Maybe you want to see if our banana belt of Sequim has some hard to find sunshine?

Sequim Valley Airport has installed a new webcam. The view looks south across the ramp with aircraft, windsock the Olympic Mountains in the background. The new camera updates every ten minutes with a time-lapse addition.

You can find it at

McChord Airmen drop by the land of ice

Finally, some new photos from Issaquah's Jeff Fogg, back down at Antarctica for another tour this winter. These are of the McChord C-17s that are helping supply McMurdo Station.

From Jeff: "All the C-17 Jets than land here are from McCord AFB. Here is just 1 of the things they bring in here on the "Ice" besides cargo and passengers..."