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MARCH 1998 MONTHLY REVIEW

Compared to Famous Februrary and it's 14" rains ,March started and remained "a lamb".  Despite 13 days of rain, and frequent frontal zones passing by, only 2.22" fell in Pacifica for the month. The dominant storm track shifted north into British Columbia early in the month with only weak tails dragging by Central Calif. March is generally our second/third wettest month on average, but like December '97, came up well short of normal. March is also generally the "wildest" time of year weather wise, as often the coldest core lows of the season barrel in from the northern Gulf of Alaska, bringing our "classic" cold fronts. As the core lows pass close by, they can adopt strong N/S tracks, plunging down the coast then inland over Central and Southern California. As they progress east, these type of lows frequently are the progenitors of the first real tornado outbreaks of the year in Texas and Oklahoma. By mid-March, that is exactly what our storm track this year evolved into. Virtually all storms hitting the Central Coast now are packing cold, unstable air with T'Storms, complete with cold air funnels/tornadoes and occasional snow on the hills down to 2,000'. Because the troughs were generally fast movers, accumulations were minimized. By month's end, the GOA track continued to bring low after low down the coast, and T'storms and strong convective activity accompanying most post frontal passages. Current SST indicates El Nino is waning, but it's effects are now forecast to be felt well into our normal dry season (May-Jun). For only the second time this century and third time in since records started in 1849, San Francisco has recorded over 40" of rain, with more falling regularly. In Pacifica, YTD now stands at 40.94", the highest total rainfall by far in my experience. Despite the Cold Rain & Snow (Deadheads arise!) March brought unusual warmth in the beginning, peaking at almost 69F on the 11th. But the nice weather was short-lived, and the coldest temps of the month (41F) followed on the 29th. Due to calm air, much frost noted in sheltered valleys and canyons, which in these parts can be only a few square blocks. Very strange to drive along a neighborhood street with houses on one end of the block incrusted in white, and the other end dry.
 

MONTHLY CLIMATOLOGICAL SUMMARY MARCH 1998

Pacifica, Ca   Elev.: 540'  Lat: 37.36'N   Long: 122.27'W

Temperature(°F),  Rain (in), Wind (mph)

                                      HEAT  COOL        AVG
    MEAN                              DEG   DEG         WIND                 DOM
DAY TEMP  HIGH   TIME   LOW    TIME   DAYS  DAYS  RAIN  SPEED HIGH   TIME    DIR
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
 1  53.5  59.4  12:15p  47.5   6:30a  11.5   0.0  0.00   2.3  16.0   5:30p     W
 2  54.8  61.2   1:15p  50.7  12:00m   9.0   0.0  0.09   3.2  18.0   3:00p    NW
 3  51.1  56.7   1:45p  45.6  12:00m  13.8   0.0  0.00   5.1  27.0   7:00p     N
 4  48.4  57.8   1:30p  41.5   6:45a  15.3   0.0  0.00   1.9  13.0   9:45a    NE
 5  47.0  49.8  10:15a  43.4   1:00a  18.4   0.0  0.27   2.6  21.0  11:30p    NW
 6  49.0  56.1   1:45p  41.5   6:30a  16.2   0.0  0.01   3.0  20.0   1:00a     N
 7  48.0  55.7   1:15p  42.5   4:00a  15.9   0.0  0.10   1.9  12.0   2:45p    SE
 8  52.2  59.2   3:00p  47.6   4:00a  11.6   0.0  0.01   2.9  12.0  10:15a     N
 9  53.9  64.1   2:15p  47.8   4:15a   9.1   0.0  0.00   3.2  18.0  11:15a   SSW
10  56.2  68.3   2:30p  48.7   3:45a   6.5   0.0  0.00   1.8  14.0  11:30a   SSW
11  58.6  68.5  12:00p  49.9  12:30a   5.8   0.0  0.00   2.3  12.0  10:45a   ESE
12  56.1  59.9  11:00a  52.2   4:30a   8.9   0.0  0.14   3.0  28.0   9:45p   ESE
13  54.7  60.9   3:30p  49.9  12:00m   9.6   0.0  0.05   2.3  17.0   8:00p     S
14  56.1  63.1   2:30p  49.7   3:00a   8.6   0.0  0.00   3.1  14.0   6:00a   SSW
15  55.9  63.7  10:45a  51.7   6:45a   7.3   0.0  0.01   3.0  16.0   3:15p     S
16  55.3  61.3   2:00p  52.9  12:45a   7.9   0.0  0.02   2.9  13.0   1:45a     S
17  56.2  65.1   1:30p  49.7  12:00m   7.6   0.0  0.00   2.7  13.0   7:30a   SSW
18  55.8  67.4  12:15p  48.4   5:30a   7.1   0.0  0.00   2.0  16.0   7:30p   SSW
19  55.2  59.3   3:00p  51.2  12:15a   9.8   0.0  0.00   2.4  14.0   5:30p     S
20  55.7  59.5  12:45p  52.7  10:15p   8.9   0.0  0.00   3.0  14.0   9:15a     S
21  55.9  59.0   4:30p  53.6  12:15a   8.7   0.0  0.05   4.5  21.0   3:30a     S
22  59.9  65.9  12:45p  55.1  12:15a   4.5   0.0  0.01   5.8  26.0  11:00a     S
23  58.1  62.9   9:00a  54.6  11:15p   6.3   0.0  0.61  11.2  46.0  11:45a     S
24  57.6  64.4   1:00p  52.9   7:00a   6.3   0.0  0.03   6.8  25.0   3:30p     S
25  55.3  61.1   1:30p  50.9   6:45a   9.0   0.0  0.01   3.1  18.0   3:45p    SE
26  54.4  59.1   1:00p  52.1   6:45a   9.4   0.0  0.00   5.7  28.0  12:00p   WNW
27  52.7  60.0   1:30p  45.9  12:00m  12.0   0.0  0.10   4.3  22.0   4:15p     S
28  48.8  54.6  12:15p  44.1  12:00m  15.7   0.0  0.05   6.2  36.0   6:15p     N
29  50.3  58.5   2:45p  41.1   5:30a  15.2   0.0  0.00   2.4  13.0   7:30a   NNW
30  51.9  60.3  11:30a  45.0   3:45a  12.3   0.0  0.05   2.6  18.0   3:30p     S
31  47.5  50.8  12:30p  45.7   8:00a  16.8   0.0  0.61   4.8  30.0   6:45p     S
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Tot 53.8  68.5    11    41.1    29   325.1   0.0  2.22   3.6  46.0    23       S

Max >= 90.0:  0
Max <= 32.0:  0
Min <= 32.0:  0
Min <=  0.0:  0
Max Rain: 0.61 ON  3/31/98
Days of Rain: 13 (>.01 in) 4 (>.1 in) 0 (>1 in)
Heat Base:  65.0  Cool Base:  65.0  Method: (High + Low) / 2