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Advances in Meteorology
Volume 2014, Article ID 594965, 9 pages
Research Article

Downscaling Maximum Temperatures to Subkilometer Resolutions in the Shenandoah National Park of Virginia, USA

1Department of Environmental Sciences, Clark Hall, University of Virginia, P.O. Box 400123, Charlottesville, VA 22904-0123, USA
2Shenandoah National Park, Luray, VA 22835, USA

Received 25 April 2014; Accepted 6 August 2014; Published 31 August 2014

Academic Editor: Richard Anyah

Copyright © 2014 Temple R. Lee et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Downscaling future temperature projections to mountainous regions is vital for many applications, including ecological and water resource management. In this study, we demonstrate a method to downscale maximum temperatures to subkilometer resolutions using the Parameter-elevation Regression on Independent Slopes Model (PRISM). We evaluate the downscaling method with observations from a network of temperature sensors deployed along western and eastern slopes of Virginia’s Shenandoah National Park in the southern Appalachian Mountains. We find that the method overestimates mean July maximum temperatures by about 2°C (4°C) along the western (eastern) slopes. Based on this knowledge, we introduce corrections to generate maps of current and future maximum temperatures in the Shenandoah National Park.