NEWS:

June 29, 2009: This site is running the code developed by Tad Hurst.

I've done some tuning to make the estimates for Marshall, Crestline and Soboba a bit less optimistic. Why not submit your favorite site? I need site name, lat, long, LZ and launch altitudes and the zipcode.

- Alan

See the southern California RASP Model The detail grid covers the San Diego sites, but the 4km grid covers most of southern California.

Instructional video on reading the RASP Model


NEW!
Check out the WINDGRAMS


Site Forecasts

Sounding

Station:

KNKX (alt)

Date/Time:

12Z 12 FEB 2016

Temp/Wind data from:

NOAA Digital Forecast
Fri Sat Sun Mon Tue Wed
Site
Name
Wind Above
Launch
Wind Above
Launch
Wind Above
Launch
Wind Above
Launch
Wind Above
Launch
Wind Above
Launch
Torrey Pines Gliderport NW 7 0 NW 9 0 NW 7 0 E 13 218 E 12 0 S 8 0
Blossom Valley W 10 3052 W 10 1106 E 9 2201 E 18 4749 E 16 3052 SW 10 496
Horse Canyon NE 13 4558 W 9 3847 NE 17 3418 NE 18 2969 NE 12 2969 SW 15 1592
Little Black W 10 0 W 10 0 W 8 144 NE 17 709 E 14 526 E 8 0
Marshall NE 9 1871 N 15 808 N 30 808 N 45 808 NE 12 1285 S 15 0
Crestline NE 9 1802 N 17 171 N 29 0 N 43 171 NE 17 1181 S 17 0
Mentone W 6 3387 W 8 1999 NE 17 3106 NE 30 2589 NE 13 3387 S 15 0
Kagel NE 14 1799 N 16 0 NE 18 711 NE 26 0 NE 23 1799 S 14 0
Lake Elsinore W 8 3843 NW 9 2400 N 20 3563 N 21 4121 E 18 4121 S 13 0
Laguna E 8 1959 N 7 1959 E 14 2861 NE 20 1487 E 14 3768 SW 21 1487
Big Black E 13 2581 W 10 1102 NE 13 3260 NE 23 2863 E 20 3716 SW 13 812
Otay Mesa E 12 3000 NW 12 675 E 9 1057 NE 16 3598 E 15 3000 E 9 43
Soboba E 8 589 W 8 37 E 9 37 NE 15 227 E 16 227 SW 13 0
Henninger Flats SW 8 2869 NW 5 1384 N 20 3147 NE 20 3147 NE 17 4310 S 12 0
Palomar W 8 0 W 10 0 NE 14 0 NE 21 0 E 15 0 S 12 0
Thomas Mt E 9 6155 NW 8 6155 NE 22 6155 NE 28 3070 E 14 6155 SW 18 2414
Winchester W 7 841 NW 7 478 NW 7 841 NE 15 841 E 16 841 SW 10 0
Blackhawk NE 7 8265 NW 12 1864 NW 10 2384 NE 16 3349 NE 10 8265 SW 21 1864
Ord N 7 2005 NW 8 809 NE 16 1720 NE 18 1720 E 12 2404 SW 22 809

DISCLAIMER: These estimates are intended to assist in daily site selection only.  No warranty is made concerning the accuracy of these estimates.  These estimates cannot be used to determine if conditions are safe for flying.  Conditions should be evaluated at the launch site by experienced pilots before launching.

Sounding: This is the site at which the weather balloon was released.  If the flying site predicted is far from the sounding site, the estimate is not valid.  Also, the sounding is done at 12Z (4AM PST).  If a front comes through, the sounding is no longer valid. The sounding becomes less valid later in the day.

Thermal Ceiling: the lower of the height at which the thermal stops rising and the cloud level.  We can't fly into the clouds, so it doesn't matter how much higher the thermal goes.  Remember that we can't get to the top of the thermal because of our sink rate.  Our upper limit will be lower than the reported ceiling.

Soaring Ceiling: We will stop going up when the thermal is rising just fast enough to offset our sink.  It is estimated that this happens when the temperature difference between the thermal and the surrounding air is about 2 degrees F. This number is an estimate of the maximum altitude we might reach if we start at launch height, and should be more reflective of our chances of soaring than the thermal top. Please let me know how this compares with actually flying, and I will adjust it as necessary.

Above Launch: The difference between how high we might get and how high we start. This estimate does not account for ridge lift.

High Temp: This estimate is taken from the National Weather Service website.  Puddle temperatures can exceed this temperature. 

Puddle Temp: This estimate is based on the High Temp and the National Weather Service estimate of cloudiness, and the angle of the sun.  When the sun is directly overhead on a sunny day, the puddle temp is esimated to be 25 degrees warmer than the high ambient temperature. This estimate now includes a rigorous calculation of the Sun Angle, and accounts for the seasonal differences in zenith and daylight hours.

Wind: This estimate is taken from the National Weather Service website.

Thermal Type: Blue (no cloud formation) or White (Cloud formation)

Thermal Index: This is the maximum difference in temperature between the rising packet of air (the thermal) and the surrounding air.  The difference in temperature is responsible for the buoyancy of the thermal, and larger temperature differences mean faster rising thermals.  A value of about 10 F or greater often means that the conditions are soarable.  Values above 20 could indicate rowdy thermals.

Validity of estimate: Many factors (including strong wind, fronts, cloud shadows, incorrectly predicted temperatures, etc) can affect the validity of the estimates. 

Author: Tad Hurst