Cliff Mass

Weather with Cliff Mass
9:28 am
Fri May 23, 2014

Cliff Mass: It's A Holiday Crapshoot, But Consider Moving Your BBQ To Saturday

Showers and sunbreaks lie ahead for our three-day weekend.
Jean-Pierre Chamberland

Well, it's complicated.

The forecast for our long holiday weekend starts wet, then dries out, then gets downright motley as we move into prime barbecue territory.

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Total Eclipse Of the Moon
3:12 pm
Mon April 14, 2014

Seattle-Area Skygazers May See Glimpse Of 'Blood Moon' — If They're Persistent

The "blood moon" glows reddish in the Earth's shadow.
Fred Espenak NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

The Puget Sound region won’t be the best place to take in the lunar eclipse in the wee hours of Tuesday morning. High clouds are likely to obscure the so-called “blood moon,” which flushes reddish in the shadow of the Earth.

University of Washington atmospheric scientist Cliff Mass says the northwest Washington coast might fare better. And cloud breaks might give even Seattle-area moon-gazers a glimpse — if they keep looking.  

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Weather with Cliff Mass
9:16 am
Fri August 30, 2013

Mass: Summer Weather Takes a Bow Over Long Weekend

Matthew Rutledge Flickr

Labor Day marks summer’s unofficial finale, and KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass says the warm weather with make a curtain call this weekend, though the beach-and-barbecue weather will be a memory by Monday.

"Today is the transitional day,” says Mass, a professor of atmospheric sciences at the University of Washington.

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preview of summer
2:21 pm
Mon May 6, 2013

Balmy Monday breaks records in Seattle, Bellingham, Olympia

A couple is seen enjoying the weather on Alki Beach on Monday, May 6, 2013.
Justin Steyer

May 6 isn’t known for much. Perhaps it languishes in the shadow of its older sibling, Cinco de Mayo.

But at least this year, May 6 saw something special when the mercury climbed to a record-breaking high of 87 degrees at Sea-Tac Airport around 5 p.m., crushing the past record high of 79 set in 1957.

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Weather with Cliff Mass
9:05 am
Fri November 23, 2012

Sogginess subsides: A little more rain, then drier days ahead

Those late November storms are a tradition in the northwest. But after some Friday rain, the trend is drying out, says KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass, a professor of Atmospheric Science at the University of Washington.

In this week's weather talk, Mass explains why late November gets more inches of rain than any other period of the year. Hint: It has to do with the jet-stream, heading at us from Asia. After November, that "atmospheric hose" is pointed farther south in Oregon and northernmost California.

For the complete explanation, click the "listen" button above.

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last Winter Storm
3:20 pm
Mon March 12, 2012

Late winter storm slams into Washington, Oregon

Here is the latest infrared satellite photo - simply impressive, said KPLU's weather expert Cliff Mass. You can see the swirling clouds around the low center, which is now crossing northern Vancouver Island.
Cliff Mass

Spring arrives next week, but this week still looks like winter in Washington.

The National Weather Service says a front moving through the state Monday is bringing strong winds and rain to Western Washington, heavy snow to the Cascades and snow in much of north central and northeast Washington.

High winds knocked out power for tens of thousands of people in northwest Oregon and western Washington on Monday.

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Winter Storm
10:45 am
Fri January 20, 2012

250,000+ out of power; transportation disrupted; but storm is over ... for now

More than 250,000 people are without power and all modes of transportation are still a mess, but “this snow/sleet/freezing rain event is basically done,” reports KPLU weather expert Cliff Mass.

However, Mass said on his weather blog, “Now I hate to bring this up ... but the forecast models for the next week indicate some intense weather in store for us. Heavy rains, strong windstorms.”

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Weather with Cliff Mass
10:30 am
Fri January 20, 2012

Rain, big winds in forecast; Cliff Mass: 'We messed up'

A truck drives around a downed tree in Tacoma, Wash., on Friday. Thick ice brought down trees and power lines in the region overnight, following two days of snow and ice storms.
The Associated Press

The big melt continues all day and through the evening, as temperatures settle into the 40's.

KPLU and UW weather expert Cliff Mass says "it should feel quite warm" and generally stay above freezing for the next few days.

Given what's already on the ground – and with heavy rains tonight – it's a recipe for a mess.

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Weather
5:40 pm
Tue July 19, 2011

Why no summer? Will it end?

Lower than normal pressures (in blue) and higher (in green) correspond to where temperatures are below and above normal.
National Weather Service, 7-15-11

Grouchy Northwesterners are starting to call this 'The year of no summer.' While we may be secretly glad to miss the heat wave that’s punishing the Midwest, we're wondering why we’re stuck with clouds … and when will it end?

When I talked to experts, the first thing they told me: It is no coincidence.

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Science
6:00 am
Mon June 20, 2011

Clues to Washington's summer weather...or not

Kids and adults alike enjoy a warm day on June, 4 2011. Will there be more sunny days on the way this summer? It's tough to call.
Erin Hennessey KPLU

With the first day of summer this week, it’s finally beginning to look like it outside. If you think that’s a good sign for the rest of the season, think again. There really isn’t a good way to tell how summer will turn out.

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K-12 Education
5:22 pm
Mon March 28, 2011

Seattle schools win math textbook appeal

High school students in Seattle will continue to use a controversial math textbook after an appeals court affirmed the school board's decision.
Seattle Office for Education

Seattle Public Schools will get to keep using a controversial math textbook. An appeals court struck down a challenge to the "Discovering" math curriculum by a group of parents and local residents who call it “mathematically unsound.”

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winter weather
8:02 am
Wed February 23, 2011

Snow, freezing temperatures

Snow falls on Olympia commuters during the 7 a.m. commute today. More is on the way for most of Western Washington.
WSDOT

The brunt of an arctic cold front is expected to hit Western Washington this afternoon, bringing wind and 2 to 6 inches of snow.  National Weather Service meteorologist Art Gable says temperatures "will drop below freezing and remain below into Thursday morning." A winter storm warning remains in effect through 10 a.m. Thursday.

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Winter Weather
3:13 pm
Tue February 22, 2011

Various forecasts predict several inches of snowfall for region

Snow fell this morning in Snohomish County, delaying some school districts. This view is outside Glendale Elementary in Lake Stevens, where school started on time. Scattered snow showers fell around the region today, and more is on the way.
KOMOcommunities video

Several inches of snow are on the way to Puget Sound's lowlands. Exactly which areas will get the greatest accumulation is something forecasters say is tough to predict, but a number of sources say their models show anywhere from two to six inches in the Seattle area, and up to eight inches or more in Snohomish County and northward.

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Weather
5:32 am
Wed February 2, 2011

Why sunny in Seattle means snowy in Chicago

A skateboarder cruises past the Space Needle in Seattle during a sunny day on Feb. 1, 2011.
Gary Davis KPLU News

You might have wondered -- as you gazed out your sunny window and listened to news of record cold and snow sweeping the midwest and East coast -- is there a connection?

Yes, there is.

"Our weather often is the just the opposite of what it is in the eastern part of the united states," says Cliff Mass, professor of Atmospheric Sciences at the University of Washington. 

"When we are cold, like it was just before Thanksgiving, they tend to be warm," says Mass.

The reason we're yin when they're yang, and vice versa, has to do with the jet stream and "ridges" of high and low pressure in the sky, as Mass explains it.

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