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MAG5035

Meteorologist
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About MAG5035

  • Birthday 03/14/1986

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  • Four Letter Airport Code For Weather Obs (Such as KDCA)
    KAOO
  • Gender
    Male
  • Location:
    Altoona, PA

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  1. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    Muddy Februarys are worse. Haha
  2. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    I think I'm officially in go big or go home mode coming into March with this pattern shift. If we don't get rocked with a big time snowstorm or have the wintry version of the rainstorm train we're stuck in... the biggest memory I'm going to have of this winter is the fact it got to nearly 80ºF here two days in a row in February. And I thought last February was the ceiling of how warm it could get at this time of the year. That makes it 3 winters in a row that has had stretches with all-time monthly record warm type temps (Christmas week 2015, Feb '17, this year). I'm glad we actually managed to get a couple snowfalls this month but precip wise we're largely throwing away what already is the #5 wettest month on record (out of 123) according to climo data for State College. It's got a legit shot at #1 given the waves of rain progged to still traverse PA the next several days. I'm sure the other climo stations statewide are on similar footing (esp western PA). At least the early spring kayaking would figure to be pretty solid in central PA this year.
  3. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    The mesowest station a few blocks away from the house had 78ºF as a high this afternoon and upper 70s were common around town (car had 77ºF). I don't know if we had temps this warm during about the entire month of May last year. Absolutely insane.
  4. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    As long as he bans the term "American Pie February". This is the second year in a row he's used it and we've had record breaking warmth in both haha (esp after tomorrows projected highs). The Phase 7 MJO really did slow this whole process down. It has spent every single day in February in the phase and counting. If it would have more quickly progressed to 8 like it went through 5 and 6, we might have been talking about this shift in the pattern already occurring. We are starting to see most guidance project it going through at least 8-1 now instead of going into the circle, so that's a plus. They are also starting to show this -NAO development a lot more solidly now and it certainly looks like the real deal. There's a lot in this potential upcoming pattern that screams volatility and we have really extreme teleconnection indices being projected. PNA as low as -6 (ESRL site) , NAO to -4 (also ESRL), AO diving down towards -5. The PNA is also supposed to be swinging toward neutral (a major swing in amplitude) as the NAO dives. So we're talking a massive shift in the pattern, and usually these types of shifts turn into big storms. So certainly the threat is there, and now I think the big coastal threat will be on the table. The presence of a blocking regime via the NAO allows for the longer duration coastals with the anomalous easterly flow from the Atlantic that are hallmarks of the big ones, and something we've really been lacking this winter to this point. After worrying that the NAO amplitude might not be enough to offset the really negative PNA, I also wonder about the projected amplitude of the NAO now if the PNA neutralizes. A -3 to -4 type NAO invites the possibility of storms getting suppressed below us, or at least the prospect of a confluent type setup that has a razor edge in the event of a big snow event. At any rate it's going to be interesting to watch how this all shakes out as we wait out this warm week. Model forecasts are going to be highly changeable. As such, individual events that will prob pop up in the longer range shouldn't be the main focus. Rather, the big picture of the pattern should be first as it comes into focus. Things may pop up in the medium range as well, much like our last event did.
  5. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    I'm actually 4 miles down the road now near the PSU Altoona Campus now haha, but it's still pretty much the same as Bellwood. Yea it was a nice storm, no complaints here... other than the fact that the snow is going to be well on it's way to gone by Monday or so. 3.4" is the total I got here. We got a piece of that intense band that kicked the event off and that appears to have set up the bigger totals your way and over to the counties that ended up needing warnings. It looks like the heavy axis of snow ended up setting up a bit further into south central PA, which I noticed the HRRR picking up on just prior to and starting the event today.
  6. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    3.0" so far here with a bit of a lull in snowfall. This has been a pretty decent storm today. Good to see this one ended up being loaded with more moisture and making for bigger totals.
  7. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    Euro wasn't too bad for most of the subforum, 2 or so up through wsptwx and 2001kx and generally 3-4" for the LSV (10:1 map). Kuchera and Cobb maps were fairly close to the 10-1 output in our region. 15z SREFs were very robust on QPF and snowfall in the region. Even Willamsport had almost a 5 inch snowfall mean. They're probably a bit too amped up, but the vast majority of SREF members were showing decent numbers to make up that mean (not a few large outliers skewing the mean). The NAM's newfound stinginess on QPF distribution across the subforum today is probably a bit much, I kinda like the Euro's look. Edit: 3k NAM at 18z looks a little more back in line with things. We're probably looking at a general 1-3" for most of central PA and the chance for a zone of 3-5" in the southern tier Sus Valley where the best moisture influx and forcing seems to be being progged. Given the moisture source region this system could certainly end up wetter or a bit further north still as well.
  8. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    It's about the difference between 0.5" and 1" for this part of true central haha. It looks good for the LSV, but not for much of any other part of the subforum. NAM has really tightened the northern extent to the snowfall over the last few runs since 18z last night.
  9. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    Well we already have been seeing the effects of the -PNA, with the southeast ridging pumping up warmth and lots of rain to close out this week. We're lucking out with this wave this weekend, which is timed well enough in the heels of tonight/tomorrows system to traverse the eastern US while it is still cold enough for our area. I mean really the weekend system in itself is a good example of the ability to still winter when the pattern is downright lousy for it. Right after that getting into next week (coinciding with the biggest drop in the PNA ) is when more troughing dumping into the west and pumping up what looks to be an even more anomalous ridge in the eastern third of the country. It's right around then that the NAO is supposed to go negative. We're probably looking around at least another 7-10 days before we MAY see the establishment of a -NAO help us out. There's still a lot of other factors going on and I think we're still in a transition period where the models are still trying to hash out the mid-long range. Guidance is still kinda split on what to do with the MJO.. either taking it into Phase 8/1 or losing the pulse into the circle without ever coming out of 7. I have felt we've needed this strong pulse to continue to traverse into phase 8 (which pretty much amounts to the pulse of tropical convection moving across the western Pacific toward the western hemisphere, etc to help force this -NAO we've seen being modeled. I want to be optimistic about the chances in March, and I am to a degree... but I'm still uncertain how well things are going to come to fruition. Or if they do.. it may well be later in March. We can do just fine without a -NAO. However, if we're going to be playing with a pretty solid -PNA pattern... we better have a pretty robust west based -NAO to force the southeast ridge down enough, or we'll be dealing with a lot more rainy waves and limited chances for snow.
  10. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    It's nice to see the NAO finally going negative on the model forecasts. It's not so nice seeing such a negative PNA.. like really negative.. down under -6 at one point! That's an overpowering magnitude even if we reverse to a -NAO eventually. Even half that magnitude implies some of the troughiness and cold air dumping into the west is going to suggest the SE ridge is going to be an influence in response with or without a -NAO.
  11. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    I know the central PA bubble is a thing with certain events but I don't think I've seen it so many times in one winter. Pittsburgh officially as of the 11th had 36.9" which was good for 140% of normal to date and I think that's rather close to climo for the whole season for them. That's outpacing my measured seasonal total here by over a foot. I think it's a product of the progressive pattern we've had this year, we've had no downstream blocking or even a good well placed high pressure system to help any developing coastals (the few that we've had) get that strong easterly flow off the Atlantic that usually takes away the snow hole. This system Sat Night while a fast mover should be able to run a pretty good slug of moisture through PA so I don't think the snow hole will be as pronounced. It's kind of a similar system to the one we saw two Sundays ago, and the GFS/Euro was really playing up the snow hole on that one but it ended up grabbing some more Gulf Moisture.
  12. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    We've had a pretty good portion of this winter be supportive in the temp department but not in terms of an active storm pattern, pretty much from mid-December to almost mid Jan and then to open up February. Now that we have an active storm pattern we're in a rough spot with how the pattern is positioned currently. I'm always a fan of racking up snow when it comes but it is a bummer when whatever we get is likely going to barely last an extra day or so afterwards. I like to go snowboarding and stuff much like you like to go snowmobiling so I look at the bigger picture of the several days preceding and following the potential snowfall as still a net loss. The local resorts are going to really get adversely affected by the warm weather and significant rainfall that's coming both within the next couple days and also probably next week as well. But on the other hand, I would consider it extremely lucky if any of us get this snow event considering the setup. I did say the other day that outside of a well timed wave that we're probably mostly out of the game for at least the next week to 10 days... so this would def fall in the well timed wave category. I do remain cautiously optimistic about getting into March. It probably is one of the better signals from modeling we've seen recently regarding the development of a -NAO, and I think we're going to need it to succeed with more snow events and have a solid end game in March.
  13. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    Lol if the 12z Euro has it's way, you'll be able to do that in a few days. It pulled the canderson P-Day miracle out a hat with a significant snowstorm for most of our region (heavy snow favoring southern half). 95 corridor from Baltimore to Boston gets whacked. There's support from the Canadian which also has a similar big snowstorm. Some rumblings of it on GEFS ensemble guidance but GFS/GEFS not really there with it too much at the moment (too far southeast/weak). We're talking mid-range with this.. approx in the 108-120hr range so it's certainly a viable threat if it starts showing up more consistently in the next model cycle or so. This would be on the heels of the next system (mostly rain) that should briefly drop in a frontal passage with some decent cold. Timing is big, so is amplitude.. Euro simply has a more amplified shortwave than the GFS with some southern stream interaction despite a zonal and progressive flow. It's enough to fire off a bigger storm. Will be interesting to see what further runs do with this. Models had been playing around with a potential system but much further south.
  14. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    The current Nina we're in hasn't been a particularly strong one, generally in the weak to maybe the low edge of moderate category. The last 3 month running average (NDJ) was right at -1.0ºC. We're actually not in an official classified Nina yet, needing 5 consecutive three month average periods of -0.5ºC or more to be considered a full fledge episode. I'm sure that'll be official once Feb is over and DJF gets calculated as we're still running comparable nina conditions (-0.9ºC as of today). So from the ENSO perspective addressing the possible influence on March is probably a bit of a toss-up. We ran a weak Nina last winter too (although started earlier and went to neutral by late in the winter) and we had our big March snowstorm. There are a couple other positive March examples, like March 99. That was in the midst of a much stronger Nina episode. I was looking at the archived Penn State observation data and 1.5" the whole month of February turned into over 17" in the first 15 days of March that year via three separate events with the headliner being a March 14 Miller A that got most of our region and the whole LSV a pretty sizable snowstorm. I'm pretty sure H-burg saw at least the latter 2 of those events. Before March that winter as a whole was a much bleaker one overall for snow lovers than this one has been (record warm December, mixy January, not much snow in Feb). So I guess what I'm getting at is we can definitely turn things around quick even in March and that I don't think the Nina is having an overbearing influence on this current winter other than maybe running a more progressive, northern stream dominated pattern. I think as I mentioned the other day, that the MJO is going to be a big key into the end game for late in the month and going into March. It wasn't a big key early in the winter as we didn't have the strong magnitude when it was cold in December/early Jan. I personally think this current, stronger MJO pulse can help facilitate a negative NAO IF we can maintain the stronger magnitude if/when it gets to phase 8. There has been some signs of blocking showing up in the long range of the model guidance. With a pretty solidly negative PNA forecast to continue we could really use a negative NAO developing to help force a low zonal storm track across the country that doesn't cut us. The pattern over the Pacific itself (EPO, WPO) has still looked okay. I'd be careful when looking into the long range guidance (not that you shouldn't be leery to begin with), but it figures to be quite changeable as it sorts out what ultimately starts setting up pattern wise. So while I'm pessimistic about the rest of this month, or certainly the next 8-10 days that take us to the last week of the month.. I still maintain optimism in that the pattern will eventually get back into something that will give us some more chances. And if we do actually end up with a legitimate -NAO I think that can put the big storm option on the table as well.
  15. Central PA - Jan/Feb 2018

    I've been growing progressively more pessimistic about the prospects for the rest of the month in terms of cold and snow. It's funny how differently things can evolve from how they looked just a week or two ago. I was looking at this current time and onward a couple weeks ago as just getting into the period of where we could see a decent reestablishment of a cold pattern and a shot at bigger storms. It ended up we see the period of winter weather coming in a week early in the first week of Feb and it's a good thing we cashed in on at least some snow because as it looks right now that might've been our best snow prospects of the month outside of a well timed wave. EPO remains negative, but PNA and NAO have become more of an influence. PNA is quite negative and NAO has become pretty positive as of late.. making for a much stormier pattern across the US but also one that doesn't benefit us very well as models have been portraying a pretty sizable Southeast/W Atlantic ridge that maintains the Eastern third of the US in above normal heights. The look of the pattern across the US being progged going forward is also quite indicative of a Phase 7 MJO if one compares to its JFM tendencies on temp departures, which is where the decent ongoing MJO pulse currently is in the middle of. It can be a stormy pattern that favors cutters more often than not and that has been playing out to a degree in the last week despite getting positive snow. There's still a good bit of time and a lot of potential going forward to late Feb and into March but I think a major key to this is whether or not this progresses into the more favorable 8 and 1 phases...and with how much magnitude. The big thing a lot of models have been doing in the last week or so has been keeping the MJO mired in phase 7 for awhile and moving towards 8 but also losing magnitude and going towards the circle. I personally think a strong MJO run through 8,1, etc may be what is potentially needed to help force the NAO out of it's seemingly perpetual state of positivity. The question is if it can get there and if it does.. how long does it take to get there. Predicting the MJO progression is something that models can certainly struggle with so this could still in quite a flux. But I feel for this coming week and probably at least the next 10 days or so overall I'd say we're mostly out of the game right now... which is a bummer because we're going to be eating up prime snowstorm climo. We also have the strat-warm event going on but one has to remember that it's not an exclusive (or well understood) teleconnector to Northeast US cold. There's also the whole rest of the northern hemisphere that arctic cold can be released into after a SSW event.
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