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Weather Extremes of the West


A rare and deadly twister rips through parts of Oregon and Washington. Haboobs strip paint off cars in Arizona. A dramatic two-hour temperature gyration -- from -4 F to 54 F and then back to -4 F -- breaks plate-glass windows in Spearfish, South Dakota. Most of the wildness of the western frontier may have gone the way of the buffalo, but weather, as meteorologist Tye Parzybok illustrates in Weather Extremes of the West, is still a wild beast. This 7 1/2" x 9 1/2" paperback has 282 pages with tons of color photographs and illustrations. See table of contents below.

Weather Extremes of the WestTable of Contents

Introduction1
Introduction to Climate2
Introduction to Weather7
Climate and Weather in the West12
How to Use This Book15
1. The Pacific Northwest's Coast, Western Valleys, and Mountains19
The West Coast's Deadliest Twister: Washington and Oregon20
It Rains All the Time: Seattle22
The Blue Hole25
The Columbus Day Storm27
Thermal Low: Willamette Valley32
The Pineapple Express and the Flood of '9634
The Brookings Effect: Oregon37
Coho Winds and Silver Thaw: Columbia River Gorge40
2. The Cascades45
Rain-on-Snow Events: Great Pacific-Northwest Floods47
Ninety-Three Feet of Snow: Mount Baker51
The Wellington Avalanche: Stevens Pass, Washington56
Extraordinary Precipitation Gradient: North-Central Oregon58
3. The Pacific Northwest's Inland Empire and High Deserts61
Dust Devils: Eastern Washington63
The Heppner Disaster: Oregon64
Oregon and Washington Hot Spots67
Oregon's Icebox: Seneca67
The Inland Northwest's Worst Winter Storm: Spokane70
4. California's Coast, Western Valleys, and Southern Mountains73
The Fog Belt: San Francisco75
El Nino Storms78
Santa Ana, Diablo, and the Catalina Eddy: California Winds83
Intense Precipitation: San Gabriel Mountains90
5. The Sierra Nevada93
Dangerous Snowstorms94
The Washoe Zephyr: Nevada98
6. Desert Southwest99
The Nation's Hottest Spots: Death Valley and Yuma101
Daily Temperature Extremes: Arizona and California107
Extreme Evaporation: Mojave Desert109
Southwest Monsoon113
Hurricane Alley of the West116
Horrible Haboobs: Arizona120
Desert Snowstorms123
Lightning Capital of the West and Lightning-Ignited Forest Fires127
7. Snake River Plain and Great Basin135
Sloshers and Northern Invasions136
Winds of the Desert and Wasatch Canyons: Utah138
Great Basin High and Inversions142
State of Extremes: Nevada146
8. Northern Rocky Mountains149
Rime Ice151
Coldest Place in the Lower Forty-Eight: Rogers Pass, Montana153
Precipitation Extremes: Montana154
The Teton-Yellowstone Tornado157
9. Central Rocky Mountains161
Champagne Powder and World-Record Snow Intensity: Colorado167
Not Quite the Icebox of the Nation: Fraser, Colorado167
Lake Effect Snow: The Great Salt Lake169
10. Colorado Plateau and Southern Rocky Mountains175
Where Has All the Snow Gone? San Francisco Peaks, Arizona176
New Mexico Snow: Sandia Crest178
In a Flash! The Canyonlands182
The Albuquerque Box Effect185
11. Southern Great Plains and Adjacent Foothills189
Thunderstorm Alley of the West191
Colorado Low195
Black Blizzards200
Blue Northers: Texas Panhandle203
The Marfa Dryline: Western Texas206
Heat Bursts: Oklahoma209
Tornado Alley211
12. Rocky Mountain Front and Adjacent Foothills219
The Denver Cyclone220
Deadly Downbursts: Denver, Colorado223
Snow Eater: Boulder, Colorado226
Front Range Flash Floods231
Temperature Roller Coaster: Montana237
Back Door Cold Fronts239
13. Northern Great Plains243
Deep Freezer244
Temperature Flip-Flops: South Dakota245
Rapid City One-Hundred-Year Flood248
Hail Alley252
Blizzards258
References262
Glossary266
Index272