I was recently made aware of an interesting weather conditions visualizer that I’ve had some fun exploring over the past few days. You can find it at http://earth.nullschool.net/. It wasn’t obvious to me, but if you click on the “earth” at the lower left, you can play with several different settings. The photo above is a screen capture where I had displayed total precipitable water along with the 1000 hPa wind (which, if I am understanding it correctly, is somewhere in the neighborhood of 100 meters above the surface). A couple of prominent features stand out – the low pressure (note winds are swirling in counter clockwise) at the end of the Alaska Peninsula and a plume of greater precipitable water extending up from the lower latitudes to Southeast Alaska. This shows where the rain has been coming from over the past couple of days at least.
In any case, I’ve had fun checking out different settings and have hopes that it will help me understand the bigger picture of how our local weather connects in with broader scale happenings.