Cle Elum called Suncadia (see picture above)--and the management really pushes the sun angle in their advertisements.
And a major new solar energy array is going to be installed during the next few years in our state: The Teanaway Solar Reserve, costing over 300 million dollars! Guess where it will be--right outside of Cle Elum.
So what is this all about? Why Cle Elum?
I believe the reason is that there is a band of territory on the eastern slopes of the Cascades that is one of the sunniest places in the region...one with more than 300 days of sun a year.
You can get a hint of what is going on by looking at a few satellite images....here is a sample.
If you look closely you will frequently see a roughly N-S band of clearing or less clouds east of the crest, and Cle Elum and vicinity gets a piece of it.
Why does this exist? The flow over the region is generally westerly...air coming from the west. Western Washington get the marine clouds and storms, and the clouds and precip are enhanced as they rise over the western slopes of the mountains. But east of the crest the air is descending strongly and that tends to cause the clouds to evaporate--giving you the clearing. The bowl..the lower areas of eastern W--are sunny enough in the summer, but tends to fill with fog and low clouds in the winter.
So if you want the most consistently sunny location you go for the eastern slopes, far enough away from the crest not to get any of the blow-over from the western side.
You guessed it--that location includes Cle Elum. Now there are surely other locations with similar benefits on the slopes to the north and south....but Cle Elum has certain benefits...like I90.
But don't think sunny Cle Elum is paradise...they do have one issue. Wind, and lots of it. Suncadia during some periods might be called Windcadia....but that is only an attraction for meteorologists!
Thank You and Good article The Cascade Subsidence Zone this time, hopefully can benefit for you all. see you in other article postings.
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