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Weather Forcast KML

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Weather Forcast KML

Postby Pfeiffer » Wed Dec 12, 2012 9:40 pm

I found a cool application that runs inside Google Earth. It gives you a location-specific weather forecast for any 1-square mile area. This is not merely the nearest reporting weather station, it is specific to both LOCATION and ELEVATION. In short, detailed weather prediction for any location on the trail.

For example, here is the current forecast ON TOP of Forrester Pass:
http://forecast.weather.gov/MapClick.php?&textField1=36.6944&textField2=-118.3735
36.7N, 118.36 W, Elevation 12,359 ft

Now type in "37.11N 118.68W" in the location field (where it says city-state-zip). The forecast now shows you the grid location containing the hut on top of Muir Pass. If you got this far, I think you can see the potential for hikers with a smart phone (and in service range).

Here is how to get the KML file, which works graphically inside Google Earth:
http://www.srh.noaa.gov/gis/kml/
on this page, look in the center at the "Forecasts" column, then click on "Your Local Weather Forecast"
download this small file (700 bytes) and run it inside Google Earth. It will give you a link for a forecast similar to above, for any location you are looking at.

Postholer, as a suggestion/request, can you make this work on your google maps page? You have lots of great data overlaid all in one place. It would be awesome to be able to zoom in and click to get this level of weather detail at ANY location along the trail.
:idea:
Pfeiffer
 
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Re: Weather Forcast KML

Postby postholer » Thu Dec 13, 2012 6:11 pm

Pfeiffer wrote:It would be awesome to be able to zoom in and click to get this level of weather detail at ANY location along the trail. :idea:


Excellent idea! Here's something to take a look at. If you visit the mobile version of the postholer site you'll find a WX Forecast link. With that you can do one of 2 things, select a pre-defined location along one of the triple crown trails and get a 7 day 'point forecast' OR specify lat/lon and get a 7 day 'point forecast' for your exact location/elevation (coordinates are decimal degrees). I *think* that is what you are asking for.

These or any weather forecast can (and should) be retrieved and saved before you get into a remote area while you have reception. The above are simple text which makes them very easy where bandwidth may be difficult to obtain. Loading full point and click forecast maps on your phone may not be an option where reception is poor.

What I really like about the kmz link you mentioned is the meteograms. Those are only available where a physical weather station exists, not at every point. How I wish oh wish meteograms were available like point forecasts!!!

If I'm missing some information on the forecast page (or missing the point altogether!) *please* let me know and I'll add it.

Thanks!!!
-postholer
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Re: Weather Forcast KML

Postby Pfeiffer » Thu Dec 13, 2012 8:41 pm

I took another look at the mobile application. Putting coordinates directly into the WX Forecast feature does exactly what I was thinking. I guess I didn't take the time to really look at it. Actually, your WX Forecast is even better, since it is text only (as you said, ideal for limited bandwidth). For on-the-trail use, you already have everything we need in the mobile app.

My original post was a little disorganized. I guess I was talking about 2 separate things. The other half of what I was suggesting, was within the full-feature online maps. I use the KML graphical forecast in google earth (outside the Postholer website) all the time. I was suggesting that it would be cool if I could turn that on while I am inside the postholer online map platform (so I don't have to have both running at the same time in two different windows).

You have lots of excellent resources all in one place with the your online mapping platform. The active fire perimeters and snow depth features are great. Can you do something like that with weather info too?
Pfeiffer
 
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Location: Palm Springs,CA

Re: Weather Forcast KML

Postby postholer » Thu Dec 13, 2012 9:34 pm

Pfeiffer wrote:The active fire perimeters and snow depth features are great. Can you do something like that with weather info too?


Ideally, I think clicking anywhere on the postholer google map should give you a point forecast, not just text but something more elaborate. Is that what you are thinking? If so, I'll look into creating that!

I quickly tried the overlay that you suggested and of course it worked fine in google earth. It didn't work with the postholer google maps as they are slightly different animals.

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