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Gregory L. Johnson, Christopher Daly, George H. Taylor, and Clayton L. Hanson

Abstract

The spatial variability of 58 precipitation and temperature parameters from the “generation of weather elements for multiple applications” (GEM) weather generator has been investigated over a region of significant complexity in topography and climate. GEM parameters were derived for 80 climate stations in southern Idaho and southeastern Oregon. A technique was developed and used to determine the GEM parameters from high-elevation snowpack telemetry stations that report precipitation in nonstandard 2.5-mm (versus 0.25 mm) increments. Important dependencies were noted between most of these parameters and elevation (both domainwide and local), location, and other factors. The “parameter-elevation regressions on independent slopes model” (PRISM) spatial modeling system was used to develop approximate 4-km gridded data fields of each of these parameters. A feature was developed in PRISM that models temperatures above and below mean inversions differently. Examples of the spatial fields derived from this study and a discussion of the applications of these spatial parameter fields are included.

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