Upper Air Map Identification for July 6, 2012.
Looking at the upper air map for the entire region from Alaska to the Atlantic Ocean we can identify a few significant features.
The first is the deep low height center over Alaska, this is telling us that at 30,000ft the air is rising upwards allowing for the surface low to still be gaining strength. Also if you look to the west of that closed low you will see what is referred to as a jet max getting ready to enter the base of the low height center. This will further amplify the low height center allowing for the potential strengthening of the surface low that is in the Gulf of Alaska.
The second feature is over the middle of the United States. This is the closed High height center that has been stuck here for some time which is responsible for the massive heat that has been going on for some time now, however as we look to the north of the center there is another jet max just about to go to the east of it. When this happens the ridge may weaken a bit, which is indicative of the surface low which is traveling through the Northern Plains today.