An “atmospheric river” of rain on its way, and sure signs that the rainy season is upon us unleashed an unofficial haiku showdown among West Coast National Weather Service branches and other weather poetry aficionados.
“Like the recent rain,” wrote the National Weather Service of the Bay Area on Twitter. “Nonetheless the drought’s still here. Winter’s looking bleak”
The atmospheric river, which used to be called a Pineapple Express, was developing in the Pacific Ocean on Tuesday and is forecast to take aim at the Pacific Northwest Wednesday night through Thursday night, bringing possible heavy rain and minor flooding, according to the National Weather Service in Seattle.
Atmospheric rivers are long, narrow regions in the atmosphere — like rivers in the sky — that transport most of the water vapor outside of the tropics, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. These columns of vapor move with the weather, carrying an amount of water vapor roughly equivalent to the average flow of water at the mouth of the Mississippi River.
According to the Seattle weather service, the Puget Sound region will get a “good shot of rain” tonight and tomorrow with the possibility of 2 to 3 inches in most areas. Other areas, including over the Olympics and North Cascades, will possibly see up to 3 to 5 inches of rain.
It’s expected to remain drizzly on Friday, but we could get a few days of dry weather on Saturday and Sunday before rain returns on Monday and Tuesday, according to Matthew Cullen of the National Weather Service in Seattle.
Want to show off your rainy weather poetry chops? Send us your own weather haikus to firstname.lastname@example.org, and we’ll share some of our favorites soon.