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Discussion papers | Copyright
https://doi.org/10.5194/essd-2018-62
© Author(s) 2018. This work is distributed under
the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License.

  04 Jun 2018

04 Jun 2018

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This discussion paper is a preprint. It is a manuscript under review for the journal Earth System Science Data (ESSD).

Spatial and seasonal patterns of near-surface humidity in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, 2005–2010

Wendy H. Wood1, Shawn J. Marshall1, and Shannon E. Fargey2 Wendy H. Wood et al.
  • 1Department of Geography, University of Calgary, Calgary AB, T2N 1N4, Canada
  • 2Department of Geography, University of Victoria, Victoria BC, Canada

Abstract. Near-surface humidity was monitored from 2005 to 2010 in a mesoscale network of 232 sites in the foothills of the Rocky Mountains in southwestern Alberta, Canada. The monitoring network covers a range of elevations from 890 to 2880m above sea level and an area of about 18,000km2, sampling a variety of topographic settings and surface environments with an average spatial density of one station per 78km2. Hourly screen-level temperature and relative humidity were recorded over the study period, forming the basis for daily mean relative humidity and vapour pressure estimates. Hourly air pressure measurements at Calgary Airport are adjusted for elevation to calculate specific humidity from the vapour pressure. Daily mean specific humidity, relative humidity, and vapour pressure from the multi-year study are available at https://doi.pangaea.de/10.1594/PANGAEA.889435. This manuscript describes the processing methods used to quality-control and gap-fill the data. Overall data coverage for the study period is 89%. Inverse-distance weighting techniques are used to estimate the missing 11% of data, based on neighourhood values of daily mean specific humidity. We report monthly mean lapse rates of specific and relative humidity. Plots of seasonal and spatial humidity patterns illustrate the relations between humidity variables and temperature, elevation, and longitude in the region.

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Near-surface atmospheric humidity data from a mesoscale meteorological network in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains, 2005-2010 W. H. Wood, S. J. Marshall, S. E. Fargey, and T. L. Whitehead https://doi.org/10.1594/PANGAEA.889435

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We recorded hourly temperature and relative humidity in a dense meteorological network in the foothills of the Canadian Rocky Mountains over the period 2005–2010. The observations reveal spatial patterns of specific and relative humidity, their relation with the terrain, seasonal cycles in the humidity patterns, and humidity characteristics of different weather systems. The results provide guidance to ecological and hydrological models that require downscaled weather data in mountain terrain.
We recorded hourly temperature and relative humidity in a dense meteorological network in the...
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