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Glasgow, Montana
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About Our Office

Mission  |  Staff  |  About the Area  |  Office History

Our Mission

The National Weather Service (NWS) provides weather, hydrologic, and climate forecasts and warnings for the United States, its territories, adjacent waters and ocean areas, for the protection of life and property and the enhancement of the national economy. NWS data and products form a national information database and infrastructure which can be used by other governmental agencies, the private sector, the public, and the global community.

It is accomplished by providing warnings and forecasts of hazardous weather, including thunderstorms, flooding, hurricanes, tornadoes, winter weather, tsunamis, and climate events. The NWS is the sole United States official voice for issuing warnings during life-threatening weather situations.

Our Staff

Meteorologist in Charge Donald Britton
Warning Coordination Meteorologist Tanja Fransen
Science and Operations Officer Bill Martin
Observation Program Leader Matt Moorman
Electronic Systems Analyst Craig Paju
Information Technology Officer Robert Oslund
Office Administration Jeanie Anthony

Lead Forecasters
Ruth Ann Ebert
Greg Forrester
Patrick Gilchrist
Ted Jamba
Victor Proton
General Forecasters
Grant Hicks
Richard Maliawco
Steven Templer
Brad Mickelson
Vacant

Hydrometeorological Technicians
Brian Burleson
Rex Morgan
Interns
Amy Campbell
Vacant
Electronics Technicians
Mark Siverly
Vacant

About the Area

WFO Glasgow Station Information: WFO Glasgow provides 24 hour forecast and warning services for a twelve county area in northeast Montana. Aviation forecasts are issued at least 4 times a day for Glasgow, Wolf Point, Sidney and Glendive. A fire weather forecast is issued during fire season, and year-round, when requested, forecasters sometimes do a spot forecast for either state or federal prescribed burns or any wildfire. We provide river forecasts, and flood related watches, warnings and advisories. In the summer, we issue Tornado, Severe Thunderstorm and Flash Flood products, and in the winter we focus on winter weather events and high winds. We have a cooperative observation program that has over 70 volunteer weather observers who report temperature and precipitation information. We also do a twice a day weather balloon release to get atmospheric information over this region. There are 9 NOAA Weather Radio transmitters that cover northeastern Montana. Outreach is an important program within the office, and each year about 12 Skywarn Spotter training courses are taught. We also provide talks on other topics as requested. School tours keep the staff busy in the fall and spring.We have a full staff of 15 meteorologists, 3 hydro-meteorological technicians, 3 electronics technicians, an information technology specialist, and an administrative assistant.

General Info: It takes a hearty personality to enjoy Montana's many wonders. The western 1/3 of the state is mountainous with lots of pine trees, and the eastern 2/3 are plains and badlands with cottonwoods and poplar trees along the river valleys. Glasgow is a community of about 3500 people located on US Highway 2, a region referred to as the "Hi-line". It's really easy to get to know people, and everyone is friendly. You can't drive anywhere without someone waving to you on the road and you may not even know who they are!

Climate and Topography:  The Glasgow climate has abundant sunshine, low relative humidity, moderate winds and pronounced temperature extremes.  The record low is 59 below on February 15, 1936 with a record high of 113 degrees on July 31, 1900.  The annual rainfall is 11.61 inches, with most of the precipitation falling during the summer growing season.  Average snowfall is around 36 inches.  The Milk River comes through Glasgow, which places the majority of the town in a valley bottom.  The river is generally pretty tame, but ice jams, heavy snow melt,  or heavy rains in the springtime has caused some major flooding in the past.  The Missouri River flows into Fort Peck Reservoir and then continues on to North Dakota after passing northward through the Fort Peck Dam.

Recreation:  The biggest attraction to this area is Fort Peck Lake and Dam.  At the time the dam was built as part of a major depression era public works project, it was the largest dam of its type in the world, and the dam from one end to the other is 7 miles long.  The lake has a very long convoluted shore.  It has been estimated that if the shoreline along Fort Peck Lake was stretched out, it would run from Fort Peck to Atlanta, Georgia. In the summer, a lot of people spend time on the lake either fishing, just cruising around, or swimming and water skiing.  In winter, there is ice fishing for the hardier folks who don't mind spending prolonged hours of fishing in a little shack at sub-freezing temperatures. 

There is an event center in Glasgow with an indoor ice rink in the winter and which holds other events throughout the year.  Other Glasgow recreational facilities include a bowling alley, a movie theater, a rifle and skeet range, a country club with 9 hole golf course and an active saddle club.  The Glasgow Civic Center Recreation Department offers a seasonal swimming pool, tennis, indoor racquetball courts, a sauna, and cardio and resistance training equipment. There are several baseball, basketball, racquetball and volleyball leagues. Regional fairs and rodeo events are highly popular and well attended.  There is a new fish hatchery and the Fort Peck Interpretive Center which highlight regional dinosaur discoveries, the Lewis and Clark journey, local wildlife, and the making of Fort Peck Dam.   There are a lot of campsites around the lake as well.  In the summer, the Fort Peck Theater brings professionally produced dramas and musicals to the area, which  draw many locals and visitors.

Hunting is also a big recreational activity for the locals, and it draws people from other parts of the country.  More information on hunting and fishing can be obtained from the Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks office here in Glasgow.

Schools:  We have two preschool programs and three public schools: a grade school (K-3), a middle school (4-6), and a high school (7-12).  Class sizes for the entire grade level generally range from about 60 up to 100 students.   The mascot is the Glasgow Scotty Dog.

Health Care:  A century-old commitment to accessible, quality health care has established progressive regional medical center facilities. The Frances Mahon Deaconess Hospital keeps pace with modern medicine by providing caring, qualified professionals with state-of-the-art technology.  Specialized services of larger medical facilities are made available with the hospital STAT Air Ambulance based at Glasgow.   The Glasgow Clinic has several family practice doctors and nurse practitioners, as well as an OB/GYN.  There is an orthopedic surgeon on staff at the hospital as well.  Visiting specialists (ENT, Oncology, Neuro-Surgery, Dermatology, etc.) come to the hospital either bi-weekly or monthly.

Nemont Manor retirement complex is a modern 100 unit retirement facility that provides apartment living for the elderly. Valley View nursing home can provide for 112 full-time residents.  And Prairie Ridge Village provides both independent and assisted living for seniors in its 34 bed facility that features one and two bedroom apartments.  We have a chiropractor, two dental clinics, an optometrist; several massage therapists, mental health professionals and three pharmacies.  There are also two veterinarians in the community.

Other businesses and state and federal agencies:  The Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad and the FMDH hospital and associated clinics and facilities are the largest employers in the area.  Farming and ranching is the main business in this region.  There are also several state and federal agencies such as the BLM, USACE, USPS, FBI, USDA, Montana Fish, Wildlife and Parks, Montana Department of Natural Resources and Conservation, Western Area Power Administration and the USGS.

Churches: There are sixteen churches in Glasgow, with an active Ministerial Association. There are thirteen Protestant Churches, a Latter Day Saints Church, and a Roman Catholic Church.

Communications:   Free over the air digital television rebroadcasts of 8 channels are available in the area, including rebroadcast signals from Montana and North Dakota affiliates for all major networks.   There is a local AM/FM station, and we have cable TV. Satellite TV and radio are also popular options in the area.

Housing:  Housing is affordable in this region, with rent starting at $400 and up.  There are usually quite a few homes available in the $80,000-$200,000 dollar range, and not quite as many above or below that.  Housing is also available outside of Glasgow within a half hour drive in rural areas and in the communities of Fort Peck, Nashua and Hinsdale.  There is no MLS listing service in Glasgow, and prospective buyers need to contact the local real estate offices individually.

Shopping:  Locally, we have two grocery stores, a variety store, four gas stations, three furniture stores, a hardware store, and two lumber supply businesses. There are quite a few specialty shops as well (automotive, home décor, clothing, florist, sporting goods etc).  The closest shopping malls are within a 300 mile radius in Minot, ND,  Billings, MT, Great Falls, MT and Regina, Saskatchewan (It's about a 4.5 hour drive to each location).  The closest chain box stores are about 150-170 miles away at Miles City, MT, Glendive, MT, Williston, ND, Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan and Havre, MT. (2.5-3 hour drives).

Taxes:  We have an income tax in Montana, but no sales tax.  The one thing that catches most people in shock when moving here is registering a vehicle.  That can cost you up to $400 dollars depending on the year and make, because a tax is charged when registering.  It does goes down a bit each year as the vehicle ages.  If you go to North Dakota to shop, and spend more than $50, showing your Montana drivers license will give you a sales tax exemption in that state.

Montana DOT link: http://www.doj.mt.gov/drivingvehicletitleregistration.asp

Transportation:  The Amtrak Empire Builder comes through Glasgow every day; an east and a west bound train.  We have an airline (Silver Airways) that flies in and out several times a day.  They fly you to Billings, and you can catch connections to Denver, Boise, Salt Lake City, Seattle, Phoenix and Minneapolis.  We have a Ford/Lincoln/Mercury and a Chevy/GM/Cadillac dealer in town, and several used car dealers as well.  There is a Dodge/Jeep dealer 50 miles to the east.  You can rent a car through the local dealers, but there are no companies that specifically rent vehicles.  There is also a local transit bus that can assist with transportation within a 50 mile radius of Glasgow.

Area Information Resources:

Glasgow Chamber of Commerce:  http://www.glasgowmt.net/

Our Office History

Glasgow Office Photo
May 8-10, 1805…Captain Meriwether Lewis and Lieutenant William Clark expedition survey from what is now Signal Hill NWR transmitter site, name Milk River and collect weather observations before moving further up the Missouri River. Capt. Clark reenactment photo
Bud Clark, a descendant of Capt. William Clark reads from the Journals 200 years to the day of Lewis and Clark visiting the site above the Missouri and Milk River Confluence on May 8, 2005 Photo by Mike Fransen

Fort Buford photo
Fort Union (above) and Fort Buford (below)
June 23, 1828…Fort Union Trading Post is established and the American Fur Company begins informal record of weather commentary. Fort Union is dismantled and abandoned for nearby US Army Fort Buford in 1867. Fort Buford surgeon staff conducted the US Army Signal Corps weather observations program until November 23, 1893.
February 9, 1870…President Ulysses S. Grant assigns weather observational duties and storm warning responsibilities to the US Army Signal Service Corps, Division of Telegrams and Reports for the Benefit of Commerce. Army Signal Corp poster
Fort Assiniboine photo
Fort Assiniboine in the late 1800's
October 6, 1879…Fort Assiniboine starts systematic weather observation record shortly after construction is completed. Fort Assiniboine weather observation program is transferred to United States Weather Bureau (USWB) when the Havre Weather Bureau Office (WBO) opens in May 5, 1902.
July 23, 1887…Jim Hill's Great Northern Railroad (St Paul, Minneapolis and Manitoba Railway Company) construction crews reach Siding #45, the future site of Glasgow, MT, as they extend the Great Northern rail line from Minneapolis, MN to Seattle, WA. Paralleling the US-Canadian border, the Great Northern Railroad is labeled the "Hi-Line", a name eventually applied to northeastern Montana along US Highway 2. Jim Hill photo
Montana State Flag November 8, 1889…Montana is granted statehood as the 41st state.
July 1, 1891…Weather observing, forecasting and warning responsibility is transferred from the US Army Signal Corps to the US Weather Bureau. The Organic Act of 1890 is approved by Congress and signed by President Benjamin Harrison to create a civilian USWB within the US Department of Agriculture (USDA). US Weather Bureau logo
Territorial map March 17, 1893…The Montana Legislature approves the creation of Valley County from the northern portion of Dawson County.
March 30, 1893…John J. Kerr, the first Valley County Attorney, becomes the first USWB cooperative program observer in Glasgow, Montana. John Kerr photo
Williston WBO photo November 23, 1893…The Williston Weather Bureau Office (WBO) is opened on the Rawson block of downtown Williston, ND, when Fort Buford observations cease.
June 6, 1902…The community of Glasgow is officially incorporated. Glasgow photo
old drugstore photo July 1, 1905…William Wallace Mabee, Valley County probate judge and druggist, takes over as the Glasgow cooperative observer.
May 1, 1907…The Glasgow cooperative observer site is moved between several business locations on the 300-400 block of Front Street (now 1st Street South) from 1907 to 1911. Old Postcard of Glasgow's Front Street.
Courtesy of Valley County Pioneer Museum
Early Homesteaders (Ollingers) between Glasgow and St. Marie.
Courtesy of Valley County Pioneer Museum
February 19, 1909…The Enlarged Homestead Act permits settlers to claim 320 acres, double previous, for agricultural use.
May 1, 1911…The Glasgow cooperative observations are collected from the 2nd Street South site of the Imperial Lumber Company block. Imperial Lumber Company photo
May 1, 1916…The Glasgow cooperative site is transferred to L. E. Jones, secretary of the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce and Agriculture Committee. Photo courtesy of Valley County Pioneer Museum
Elmer Hall photo
Home of Elmer Hall photo
Photo of Elmer Hall and his home with the Cotton Region Shelter in the foreground
April 1, 1921…Elmer Hall, local druggist, takes over as the Glasgow cooperative observer from his home at 305 5th Street South. Elmer "Doc" Hall becomes the longest serving Glasgow cooperative observer, volunteering 25 years.
July 1, 1936…Ellendale, ND kite soundings cease as USWB radiosonde program expands. Ellendale was the last USWB kite station. Weather kite photo
-60F temperature photo Feb 15, 1936 – The record coldest temperature ever measured occurred through northeast Montana, and across the majority of the northern Plains. These record low temperatures still hold to this day.
photo of insect infestation NOAA Photo Library- Drought leads to insect infestations that sweeps through the region in the 1930s July 1936… The record warmest month on record at Glasgow, with seven record high days set during this month. The record high temperatures set during this month still stand for the majority of the northern Plains.
September 28, 1936…Six-hourly airways observations are conducted at the Fort Peck dam construction site by US Army Corps of Engineers (USACE) chemistry laboratory personnel. The observations are telephoned to Chicago for transmission over USWB circuits. USACE personnel also establish a cooperative weather station on November 10, 1934, though observations actually started on August 1, 1934. USACE Administration Building photo
USACE Administration Building in Fort Peck
Department of Commerce logo June 30, 1940…The USWB is transferred into the Department of Commerce from the Department of Agriculture.
December 12, 1940…Elmer Hall assumes the task of taking six-hourly airways observations when USACE construction is complete on Fort Peck dam. The USACE continues the Fort Peck cooperative station."Doc" Hall takes the airways observations until June 30, 1943.
Elmer Hall Residence in Glasgow's south Side along with the 1939 Milk River Flood
December 4, 1942…The Central Analysis Center (CAC) is created in Washington DC. The CAC is renamed the Weather Bureau Army-Navy Analysis Center (WBAN Analysis Center) in 1947, the National Weather Analysis Center (NAWAC) in 1955, the National Meteorological Center (NMC) in 1958 and National Centers for Environmental Prediction (NCEP) in 1995. Men working at charting tables photo
Army Air Corp patch December 10, 1942…The Glasgow Army Air Field (AAF) begins B-17 flight crew training and starts hourly airways observations. Army Air Force weather observations ceased at Glasgow AAF on December 6, 1943.
military plane photo
June 6, 1943…The Glasgow WBO opens in the second floor of the First National Bank Building at 501 1st Avenue South. The Glasgow office takes six-hourly airways and upper air observations. Rabals (72.2 MHz) are launched at 0300Z. Pibals are taken at 0900Z, 1500Z and 2100Z from the bank building roof. One month overlap in surface climatology observations between "Doc" Hall and WBO site during June, 1943. Rabals/Raobs had meteorological instrumentation attached to large balloons, and Pibals were used just to track the wind speeds and direction with a smaller balloon. First National Bank photo
First National Bank Building in Glasgow
rooftop observation site photo
Glasgow WBO roof observations around 1945
April 4, 1944…Glasgow WBO begins launching upper air soundings at 0300Z and 15Z. The office is open between 0200-2300 LST.
May 18, 1950…Hourly aviation observations are collected and transmitted by USWB employees between 0600-1800 LST. Three and six hourly observations continue unchanged. photo of observation symbols
old photo of NWRC Building
NOAA Photo showing the old NWRC building in Asheville, NC
November 5, 1951…The National Weather Records Center (NWRC) is established in Asheville, NC. The NWRC is renamed the National Climatic Center (NCC) in 1970, then the National Climatic Data Center (NCDC) in 1982.
December 30, 1952…Solar radiation measurements begin with the installation of a Brown solar radiometer instrument on the inflation shelter roof. Photo of rooftop observation site
Glasgow roof observation locations
1950's photo of Billings Weather Office
NOAA Photo NWS Billings Office in the 1950's
March 1, 1953…The USWB Montana state forecast office is relocated to Great Falls from Billings. The Montana public forecast is comprised of nine forecast zones. (In 2008, we forecast for 62 zones in Montana).
June 13, 1953…Severe Local Storm Warning Center (SELS) is created from earlier Severe Weather Unit (SWU) of the Weather Bureau Army-Navy Analysis Center (WBAN) in Washington DC. SELS relocated to Kansas City, MO in 1954. SELS renamed Storm Prediction Center (SPC) in 1995. SPC moved to Norman, OK in 1997. Interior photo of SELS Center
SELS in Kansas City, Late 1960s
Photo of Robert Ronald at Observation desk
Official In Charge Robert Ronald working at the desk. He was the OIC from 1947-1955
January 1, 1955…Glasgow WBO staff goes on a 24 hour/day shift schedule. Hourly aviation observations with three/six hourly coded data and synoptic observations are recorded and transmitted.
July 18, 1955…Construction begins on Glasgow Air Force Base (GAFB). The Air Defense Command (ADC) base is activated in 1958 with the arrival of F-101 Voodoo fighter-interceptors. The runways are extended to accommodate Strategic Air Command (SAC) B-52 bombers in 1960.  GAFB is deactivated in 1968. The facility is temporarily reopened between 1972 and 1976 as a SAC dispersal base and a Safeguard Antiballistic Missile (ABM) supply depot. Hourly aviation observations are collected by Air Weather Service (AWS) Detachment 23 of the 9th Weather Squadron from the control tower Remote Observation Site (ROS). Air Force SAC patch
1950's photo of Glasgow Weather Office
Glasgow WBO in the mid 1950's
October 25, 1955…USWB relocates the Glasgow office to the Glasgow Municipal Airport. The Glasgow WBO is renamed the Glasgow Weather Bureau Aviation Station (WBAS).  The 24 hour/day Glasgow WBAS transmits hourly aviation observations with 3 hourly coded data. Radiosonde runs are done at 03Z and 15Z with Pibals at 09Z and 21Z daily.
October 27, 1955…Glasgow radio station KLTZ becomes the downtown Glasgow cooperative observation station from the First National Bank Building. photo of downtown Glasgow
photo of Upper Air building
Upper Air building at the Glasgow Airport
June 1, 1957…Upper air soundings are shifted 3 hours. Raobs are done at 00Z and 12Z. Pibals are optically tracked from 06Z and 18Z.
August 25, 1957…The Glasgow WBAS adopts a 21 hour/day schedule (0300-2200 Local). Pibal runs are performed once a day at 18Z, when the 06Z Glasgow Pibal is eliminated. photo of Upper Air ballon release
NOAA photo showing a balloon release during WWII when many women filled in while the men were overseas
photo of an eight inch rain gage
NOAA Photo showing an 8" rain gage
January 31, 1959…Cooperative observations at the downtown Glasgow KLTZ radio station cease. Downtown Glasgow KLTZ rain gage had been removed on October 9, 1957.
November 2, 1959…The newly arrived Frontier Airlines adds a three cup anemometer on a 37 foot mast between runways. The anemometer is sited 1,650 feet NE of the Glasgow WBAS with a direct read dial inside the office. Photo of DC-3 aircraft
Frontier Airlines DC-3
photo of Eddie Stensland
Eddie Stensland working at the Glasgow office in the 1950's.
December 1, 1959…The Glasgow office is reclassified as a Supplemental Airways Weather Reporting Station (SAWRS) until December 31, 1961. Special observations are conducted between 0700-1900 LST only.
April 1, 1960…The first weather satellite, Television Infrared Observation Satellite (TIROS), is successfully launched aboard a Thor-Able rocket from Cape Canaveral, FL. photo of a space satellite
ESSA logo July 13, 1965…USWB is transferred into the newly-formed Environmental Science Services Administration (ESSA) of the Department of Commerce by Reorganization Plan Number 2 of 1965.
June 1, 1966…Glasgow Municipal Airport becomes Glasgow International Airport. Glasgow International Airport renamed Wokal Field - Glasgow International Airport in 1996.
photo of Glasgow invitation
Invitation to the Glasgow International Airport Dedication Ceremony
photo of ballon release
NOAA Photo showing a balloon release
June 1, 1968…The Glasgow weather office returns to 24 hour/day schedule and full aviation observation program. The 18Z Pibal ceases and the Glasgow requirement is placed locally "on-call".
May 5, 1969…The Glasgow weather office moves into the Glasgow International Airport Terminal. The Cotton Region Shelter (CRS) and rain gages are relocated 385 feet SSW to near the new airport terminal office. The 24 hr/day Glasgow Weather Service Office (WSO) issues first period adaptive forecasts, disseminates local warnings, takes hourly aviation observations and synoptic reports. The upper-air program continues 00Z and 12Z Raobs, but Pibals are on an "on-call" basis only. photo of Glasgow Airport terminal
Glasgow Airport Terminal.The WSO office was on the back side of the building
NOAA logo October 3, 1970…ESSA is transferred into the newly formed National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) with Reorganization Plan Number 4 of 1970. The USWB is renamed the National Weather Service (NWS) on October 9, 1970 through Department Organizational Order 25-5A.
October 16, 1975…The first Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellite (GOES) is launched with a Delta 2914 rocket from Kennedy Space Center. photo of satellite in space
photo of Ed Tipton
Ed Tipton records a broadcast for the Glasgow NOAA Weather Radio
September 17, 1976…NOAA Weather Radio (NWR) WXL-32 begins broadcast service for central Valley County from a newly constructed airport radio vault.
June 20, 1981…Ocean weather ship "PAPA" (50oN, 145oW) goes permanently off station as an economy measure by Canadian PM Trudeau. photo of ship tied to a pier
Ship PAPA, an important weather observation ship in the Pacific NW owned by the Canadians
photo of Lee Tracy
Lee Tracy analyzing the upper air weather maps.
June 26, 1986…The VIZ B radiosondes are employed with newly installed MiniART Raob ground unit.
November 17, 1989…The Glasgow Weather Service Office Upper Air system is updated to include an IBM 8088 computer that automatically logs the data. It used to print out on a sheet of paper and was then hand coded by the office staff. Glasgow Upper Air system photo
NWS Glasgow upper air computer system
Glasgow ASOS photo
Automated Weather Observation (ASOS) Station at Wokal Field in Glasgow, MT
April 1, 1994…The Glasgow International Airport (KGGW) Automated Surface Observing Systems (ASOS) is commissioned. This site is the official temperature, wind, cloud, visibility, pressure and weather sensor for Glasgow, MT.
May 9, 1994…Valley County Law Enforcement Center is added as a cooperative observer site at 501 Court Square to re-establish a downtown Glasgow site. Temperature is measured with an electronic Maximum-Minimum Temperature Sensor (MMTS) and precipitation determined with a standard eight inch rain gage. Valley Co Courthouse photo
Valley County Courthouse
Construction photo of Glasgow weather office
Photo from the Fort Peck Flyer
September 25, 1994…Moltz Construction Company of Cody, WY "breaks ground" for the construction of the new NWS Glasgow forecast office.
August 14, 1995…NWS personnel move to the nearly completed new NWS office as new employees arrive and staffing starts to overflow at the old airport office. photo of Glasgow staff in front of the office
NWS Glasgow office staff photo
photo of Upper Air inflation building
Upper Air Shelter at it's new location
August 29, 1995…Automation of Field Operations (AFOS) computer system is upgraded and installed. The MicroARTS upper air system is relocated to the new inflation shelter south of Airport Road. The office cotton region shelter (hold thermometers) and rain gages are relocated behind the new office. The upgraded NOAA Weather Radio system is completed.
May 5, 1996…Joe Albert Friday, NWS director, dedicates the new NWS Glasgow forecast office at a ceremony held at the new office. photo of Joe Friday
Dr. Joe Friday, Former NWS Director
photo of plane at Glasgow Airport
Big Sky Airline plane at the Glasgow Airport
July 1, 1996…Weather observations switch from the old Surface Airways Observations (SAO) into the international METAR format and the aviation weather forecast adopts the international Terminal Aerodrome Forecasts (TAF) format.
August 15, 1996…The Glasgow NEXRAD WSR-88D doppler radar is commissioned. Glasgow Radar dome photo
WFO Glasgow WSR-88D Radar Tower and Dome
map of Glasgow CWA hydrographic sites January 25, 1998…The northeast Montana hydrologic program responsibility is transferred to the Glasgow NWFO. This includes the Lower Yellowstone River, portions of the Upper Missouri River, the Poplar River and the lower Milk River Basins within Montana.
October 6, 1998…The Wolf Point L. M. Clayton Airport ASOS (KOLF) is commissioned. satellite photo of Glasgow ASOS location
map of Glasgow County Warning Area
(Map of NWS Glasgow forecast area in northeast Montana)
January 13, 1999…The public forecast and warning program is transferred to the Glasgow WFO. There are 16 forecast zones in the Glasgow WFO County Warning Area (CWA), with a total of 62 state-wide.
January 31, 1999…WFO Glasgow has a full staff of forecasters, including 5 senior forecasters and 3 general forecasters. photo of Ruth Ebert
Senior Forecaster Ruth Ebert
photo of Glasgow office staff
WFO Glasgow office staff
May 24, 1999…Glasgow WFO staff is presented with the NWS Modernization award for record "spin-up" to full service capabilities.
June 1, 1999…The aviation program is assumed by the Glasgow WFO. The office begins issuing forecasts for the Glasgow, Sidney and Glendive Airports. Wolf Point was added in 2002. map of Montana observation sites
photo of NOAA Weather Radio September 2, 1999…Specific Area Message Encoding (SAME) is activated for NE Montana NOAA Weather Radio sites. This allows the public to program their radios to receive the alerts for just the county or counties they are interested in.
May 15, 2000…The Advanced Weather Interactive Processing Systems (AWIPS) computer is commissioned at NWS Glasgow. This replaced the 1970's AFOS technology and integrated all of our satellite, radar, observation and computer model information into one computer system. photo of Ted Jamba
Senior Forecaster Ted Jamba at the AWIPS text workstation
photo of Storm Ready award ceremony
Valley County DES Coordinator Rick Seiler, NWS Director Jack Kelly and NWS Warning Coordination Meteorologist Kim Campbell at the StormReady Ceremony
October 6, 2000…Glasgow, MT becomes the first StormReady Community in Northeast Montana. NWS Director Jack Kelly and Western Region NWS Director Vickie Nadolski attend the ceremony.
February 2001 – NWS adds another general forecaster position to the staff, with the person fulfilling the role of an Incident Meteorologist. photo of Jennifer Zeltwanger
Incident Meteorologist Jennifer Zeltwanger providing forecast support for a major wildfire.
map of fire weather zones
NWS Glasgow Fire Weather Forecast Zones
May 1, 2001…The fire weather program is transferred to Glasgow WFO.
August 7, 2001…First IMET Dispatch from NWS Glasgow to a fire along the eastern boundaries of Glacier National Park photo of IMET communication dish
Satellite dish used for IMET forecasters on incidents.
photo of Mark Trail Award plaque April 17, 2002…MidRivers Communications was nominated by WFO Glasgow and Billings for the NOAA/NWS Mark Trail Award. They were selected as winners and went to Washington D.C. to accept the award. The award was for their work in expanding the NOAA Weather Radio Transmitter network in eastern Montana. They have assisted with the installation of the Circle, Baker, Jordan, Winnett and Broadus transmitters, donating money, tower space and telephone lines.
April 2003 – John Pulasky of the Northern Ag Network receives the NOAA Environmental Hero Award for his dedication to getting weather information to the people of Montana. All four Montana NWS offices have nominated him for this award. photo of John Pulasky at the radio station
John Pulasky receives his award while live on the air. NOAA Administrator Conrad Lautenbacher called into the Berg in the Morning Radio Show and surprised him with the announcement.
photo of Bronze Award ceremony
Meteorologist in Charge Julie Adolphson accepts the Bronze Medal Award from NWS Director Jack Kelly and NOAA Administrator Conrad Lautenbacher
October 24, 2003 – NWS Glasgow is Award the Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award for "Advanced, accurate warnings provided to the citizens of northeast Montana during two significant flash flooding events which resulted in extensive property damage."
June 15, 2003…Gridded public forecast products are released using the Interactive Forecast Preparation System (IFPS). IFPS Gridded Forecast map
photo of Mark Trail award ceremony
NOAA Administrator Conrad Lautenbacher, Norm Parrent and Mark Trail Comic Creator Jack Elrod at the ceremony
June 17, 2003…Norm Parrent, State of Montana DES Coordinator for District 4 receives the NOAA/NWS Mark Trail Award for his assistance in expanding the NOAA Weather Radio network throughout Southeastern Montana.
April 20, 2004…Retired Meteorologist in Charge Jim Rea receives the NOAA Environmental Hero Award for his dedication to the hydrology program in northeast Montana. The award was presented to him by Western Region Director Vickie Nadolski on a live radio show on KLTZ/KLAN. photo of Jim Rea
Jim Rea is surprised live on the air
photo of Isaac Cline plaque December 2004 – NWS Glasgow receives the Western Region Isaac Cline Award for their superb Upper Air Weather Observations
October 2005 – NWS Glasgow is award the Department of Commerce Bronze Medal Award "For life-saving service throughout record breaking blizzards during the 2003-2004 winter season in northeast Montana." photo of Bronze Award ceremony
Meteorologist in Charge Julie Adolphson accepts the Bronze Medal Award from NOAA Administrator Conrad Lautenbacher
photo of Mark Trail Award ceremony
NWS Director DL Johnson, NOAA Administrator Conrad Lautenbacher, Gary Johnson, Mark Trail Comic Creator Jack Elrod and Dennis Brockmeyer with the Mark Trail Awards.
September 19, 2006….Roosevelt County DES Coordinator Dennis Brockmeyer and State Farm Insurance Agent Gary Johnson receive the NOAA/NWS Mark Trail Award in Washington D.C. for their work to expand the use of NOAA Weather Radio across Roosevelt County and the Fort Peck Reservation. State Farm awarded the county a $5000 grant to purchase over 200 NOAA Weather Radios that are utilized in businesses and critical facilities.
December 1, 2006…Community Collaborative Rain, Hail and Snow (CoCoRaHs)reporting program started in Montana. CoCoRaHs logo
photo of Upper Air inflation building
Hydro-Meteorological Technician Jim Branda walks to the upper air building to release a balloon
July 19, 2007…The Radiosonde Replacement System (RSS) is installed and operational. This replaces the early 1970's technology that we had been using for upper air observations. The new system has a GPS tracking unit that makes the position data of the balloon more accurate.
aerial photo of Glasgow Forecast Office
Aerial View of NWS Glasgow Fall 2008

This history of the role of the government in weather for northeast Montana would not have been possible without the dedicated research of retired Meteorologist in Charge, Jim Rea. Thank you Jim!

Photos are from the NOAA Photo Library, NWS Glasgow collection, Jim Rea collection, and Valley County Pioneer Museum


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National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration
National Weather Service
Glasgow Weather Forecast Office
101 Airport Road
Glasgow, MT 59230

Tel: (406) 228-4042

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