Friday, April 10, 2009

On the Train Again

The forecast for a late afternoon departure isn't all that bad:

KBDR 101120Z 1012/1112 VRB05KT P6SM FEW100 SCT250
FM101600 19008KT P6SM BKN080 BKN250
FM102100 12008KT P6SM SCT040 BKN080 OVC250
TEMPO 1021/1101 5SM -RA SCT030 OVC080
FM110100 06010KT 4SM -RA BR BKN016 OVC030
TEMPO 1102/1106 2SM RA BR OVC010
FM111000 01010KT P6SM OVC015

For the time of interest (about 2100Z) it looks like layered clouds with periods of light rain (the TEMPO group) accompanied by lower ceilings and reduced visibility. Still, nothing too bad.

The freezing level plot is not comforting:

But for me the DCA terminal forecast is the decision-maker. Here it is:

KDCA 101131Z 1012/1112 13005KT P6SM SCT090 BKN150
FM101600 17009G15KT P6SM SCT040 BKN150
FM101900 19011G18KT P6SM BKN050CB BKN120
FM110200 03008KT P6SM VCSH BKN030 OVC050
FM110600 04010G14KT 5SM -RA OVC015

For the period of interest (about 2330Z) I'd be looking at gusty southerly surface winds and cumulonimbus clouds at 5000 feet (that's the BKN050CB).

Put it all together: IFR departure, risk of icing enroute, chance of convective activity on arrival in the gathering dusk -- on the whole I opt for Amtrak.

No comments: