About This Website

This website was created for the residents of Willowsford Farm, located near Ashburn, Virginia to provide local weather data and forecasts. The weather station is privately owned and operated and the data should not be used for official weather information.

About Willowsford Farm

One of the most unusual aspects of Willowsford is that it is made up of four non-contiguous villages located just east of the Bull Run Mountains, which are a mountain range of the Blue Ridge Mountains in northern Virginia in the United States. The Bull Run Mountains are located approximately 20 miles (32 km) east of the main chain, across the Loudoun Valley. The Bull Run Mountains, together with Catoctin Mountain in Virginia and Maryland, make up the easternmost front of the Blue Ridge. Two of the villages (The Grange and The Grant), are in Ashburn north of Route 50, and two (The Grove and The Greens) are in Aldie, south of Route 50. The Willowsford Farm weather station is located in the Grange. Willowsford Farm is a farm-to-table community that integrates a residential community, functioning ecosystem services and viable, people-oriented agriculture. A big part of the community is the Willowsford Conservancy maintains 2,000 acres of open space, woodlands and natural habitat. From trail maintenance to forest management, Willowsford Conservancy has become a national model for how residential communities can support a thriving ecology in their own back yards, while enjoying it fully today and protecting it for the future.

About the Weather Station at Willowsford Farm

The weather station at Willowsford Farm is a Davis Vantage Pro2. The exterior sensor unit shown at the left consists of a solar powered suite of sensors that measure temperature, humidity, rainfall, wind speed and wind direction. The electronic components, including the wireless transmitter, are located in a weather-resistant shelter under the solar panels. The shield protects against solar radiation and other sources of radiated and reflected heat. The rain gauge is an automatic tipping bucket type. The temperature, humidity, and rainfall sensors are mounted on a stainless steel mast about 5 feet above the grass. The wind sensors (cup anemometer and wind vane) are mounted about 10 feet above ground level on a stainless steel mast.
 
The interior console unit shown at the left measures barometric pressure, indoor temperature and humidity and receives the data wirelessly from the exterior sensor suite. A data logger attached to the console is connected to a Windows computer via a serial-to-usb connector, which is ingested into Weather Display software and then uploaded via ftp to 1and1.com web hosting for display on willowsfordfarmweather.org.
 
The Weather Display software then sends the data to the Citizen Weather Observer Program (CWOP) (unique identifier is FW2194), NOAA's Meteorological Assimilation Data Ingest System (MADIS), the Weather Underground and the Mid-Atlantic Weather Network. The computer running Weather Display is a Dell Inspiron Laptop 3542 PC running Windows 10 with an Intel Core i3 Processor running at 1.9 GHz, 8GB RAM, and 500GB of storage.
 
Page 31 of the CWOP Weather Station Siting, Performance, and Data Quality Guide contains a table called "Determining Optimal Sensor Siting for Your Location". The table provides a method to score the optimal location of a weather station based on several factors. The Willowsford Farm weather stations scored 23 out of 30. The less than perfect score is due to the limited availability to properly position the wind sensors.
Sensor Optimal Sensor Location Willowsford Farm Location CWOP Score
Wind speed and direction 32 feet above ground. No obstructions. Mounted on a stainless steel mast 10 feet above ground. Trees are below sensor level. Roof apex above sensor to the north. 3 of 10
Temperature and Humidity In open, 5 feet above grass. In open, 5 1/2 feet above grass mounted on 4 x 4 post. 10 of 10
Rainfall In open, 2 feet above grass. In open, 6 feet above grass mounted on 4 x 4 post. 10 of 10

The weather station is located at:

Latitude: 38 57' 41.4972" N (deg min sec), 38.96178 (decimal)
Longitude: 77 33' 59.7852" W (deg min sec), -77.56643 (decimal)
Elevation: 102 meters (335 feet)

This video shows the wind sensors operating during a freezing rain event

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