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Chinook

Mountain West Discussion

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The local NWS keeps talking about how the stronger than normal Gulf of Alaska low is saving this from being a terrible monsoon. The high is over NV, instead of TX, but the GOA low keeps sending in backdoor cold fronts that at least have some moisture with them. On the other hand, Arizona had an incredibly wet July, and I think they're in for a cold winter now, as it doesn't look particularly dry there this month either.

Historically, some places do have stronger relationships between Oct-May precip and Monsoon precip, when one is up, the other is down, but it's pretty weak for the eastern 2/3 of NM & CO from what I can see. 

Will be very interested to see what happens this winter if it is a Neutral - Neutrals in low solar are pretty rare, only nine since 1931 by my count. Last one I'd say was 1996-97. Neutrals also tend to be cold out here with a warm AMO / weak sun.

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I have a sneaking suspicion that this August is going to turn a lot wetter pretty soon. Statistically, 30/31 times, when ABQ has an inch of rain or less in July, another monsoon month - H2 June, August, or September beats it.

We had 0.85" in July. June didn't beat it. So the question is whether its August, or September. Lowest July that was the "top" monsoon month is 0.83", all the others are over an inch.

Some of the models have semi-ideal conditions for the monsoon starting later this week. Moisture would probably make it up into CO & UT too.

It could be September beats it, but it's been 10+ years (2006) since the city has had a wet August (>1.74"), so it's way overdue, given that 2"+ happens every three Augusts or so historically.

 

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August has been consistently cloudy and wet. The north side of Fort Collins will have naturally green grass soon.

 August 2-3: 0.25" here , 0.53" at CSU/center of Fort Collins
 august 4-5: trace.
 august 5-6: 0.17"
 August 6-7: 0.37" drizzle, morning, light rain, afternoon, rain, about 4:00AM
 August 7 drizzle, morning, light rain, afternoon (0.07" ??)

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It's been pretty cloudy here too. Only 0.09" at the airport in August to date but I'd say I've had at least 0.5" at my place. July was 0.85" at the airport, but I suspect I had double that.

August has been very cold nationally to date, except for the NW. My analogs (from May) were pretty cold for August, but if anything they look underdone now, even with a big warm up later in August.

Aug 1-7 2017 Nationally.png

August 2017 US Outlook.PNG

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Feels amazing. The lawn is green and even the unwatered prairie next to our neighborhood is getting greener. The prairie dogs are fat and the hawks are hungry. Was planning to put sod down next month on a piece of yard where the grass all died last year, now I wish I had done it last week!

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AMO continues to run way lower than last year. July came in at 0.307. Down from 0.437 last July.

Was noticing earlier, from 1926-1963, there were 11 super warm AMO years, i.e. >=0.2, Jan-Dec. This year (probably) is number nine since 1994. So hopefully we'll only have a couple more big AMO years before the switch to the cold AMO sometime in the 2020s?

Much easier for it to be cold consistently, and wet consistently when the AMO is neutral or negative in our part of the world. I lean toward 2022-2027, but who knows exactly when it flips?

 

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I would love to get the thoughts from folks here on eclipse viewing along the Mtn West path of totality through NE, WY, ID and OR.  We will be in WY and this constant rain is a bit worrisome. 

 

On another note, Fort Collins just had one of the strongest 30 minute blasts of rain I've seen probably all year.  The city rain gauges show 0.75"/30 minutes near our house. 

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I am not in Fort Collins today! So I missed the thunder and lightning, and I am not sure if any hail fell from this storm. Probably. This will put the August total rainfall at my place at about 2.0"

lbt42Yu.png

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Rained today here. Good 0.52" in under an hour officially. Temperature fell to 64F at 3:30 pm or so, which is always amazing in the Summer. More rain may be coming later tonight, Sat, Sun, Mon.

Still running ~20% below average against Jun 15-Aug 11 rain at the moment.

Also, if anyone looks at the Jamstec and noticed it is down, should be back Tues/Weds - I asked one of their researchers about it on Twitter. They had a power outage.

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On 8/10/2017 at 3:44 PM, CO SciFan said:

I would love to get the thoughts from folks here on eclipse viewing along the Mtn West path of totality through NE, WY, ID and OR.  We will be in WY and this constant rain is a bit worrisome. 

 

FWIW, extended forecasts slightly favor below normal precip west of 100W, and we're entering one of the traditionally driest times of the year after about 8/20. So I'd be optimistic.

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The PDO value for July came in today - +0.10.

Lowest monthly value since December 2013. Of course, it does look like it has reversed back to positive now - the warm ring around the cold blob is back.

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On 8/10/2017 at 3:44 PM, CO SciFan said:

I would love to get the thoughts from folks here on eclipse viewing along the Mtn West path of totality through NE, WY, ID and OR.  We will be in WY and this constant rain is a bit worrisome. 

 

On another note, Fort Collins just had one of the strongest 30 minute blasts of rain I've seen probably all year.  The city rain gauges show 0.75"/30 minutes near our house. 

6-day forecasts from models/ensembles show a trough in California with low pressure and/or a cold front in Wyoming or Colorado. So, it could be partly cloudy or overcast in the late part of the day for CO/WY. Typically, we have more sunshine in the morning, and that's good news, because the eclipse starts at about 10:23 AM for Cheyenne/Denver.

 

Fort Collins partial solar eclipse

Begins: Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 10:23 am

Maximum: Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 11:46 am

Ends: Mon, Aug 21, 2017 at 1:13 pm

 

By the way, I was gone since Wednesday, and it rained at least 0.01" near my house on each day I was gone. Fort Collins is never this consistent with rain.

 

 

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This was on the southwest edge of a storm cell, it just wasn't a supercell, and this wasn't a tornado. Good thing, it would have dropped on me.

PNVa38y.jpg

 

 AUGUST 2017
 August 2-3: 0.25"
 august 4-5: trace.
 august 5-6: 0.17"
 August 6-7: 0.37" some drizzle
 August 7-8: 0.16", some drizzle
 august 8-9: 0.06"
 august 9-10 0.12"
 august 10-11: 0.62" hail of 1/2", wind of 60mph near Fort Collins
 august 11-12: 0.01"
 august 12-13: 0.19"
 august 13-14: 0.03"
 august 14-15: 0.12"
 august 15-16: 0.04"
 august total 2.14"

11 days of precipitation in a row, greater than trace.

 

 

 

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This post is for no other reason than to bump up this main mountain west thread, in this very dry, warm and boring time. Monsoon is done. Bring on winter. Or another hybrid system (but please no 10"+ of rain...).

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What kind of winter are you all expecting? 

The blend of AMO Nov-Apr, PDO Nov-Apr, ONI DJF, Solar July-Jun, ONIp (ONI in prior DJF), Monsoon rains (ABQ), and Modoki (DJF) values that I like (for now...) has a pretty cold winter for most of the interior Southwest, and large areas of the country w/in 1F of normal highs.

One blend below is from my auto-analog system which outputs best years from forecast values, and the other is me manually picking non-El Nino winters at 11 year (+/-1), 30 year (+/-2) and 60 years (+/-3) intervals and blending them together. The 11/30/60 year cycles always seem to produce strong blends if you filter by ENSO.

Rule of 11, 30, 60 Non-El Nino Matches v. ONI & Solar 2.png

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This has nothing to do with the Mountain West, but still this is an astounding statement from the NHC last Friday. I am very sad about the way this has turned out.

---

600 PM CDT Fri Aug 25 2017

...6 PM CDT POSITION AND INTENSITY UPDATE...
...HARVEY BECOMES A CATEGORY FOUR HURRICANE...
...SUSTAINED HURRICANE-FORCE WINDS SPREADING ONTO THE MIDDLE TEXAS
COAST...

Air Force Reserve Reconnaissance aircraft data indicate that Harvey
has become a category 4 hurricane with maximum sustained winds of
130 mph (215 km/h).

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I'd like to point out that the Canadian Model run on 8.31.16 did an excellent job forecasting actual SSTA for Dec 2016 to Feb 2017. Will be watching it closely tomorrow. Here is my verification of it - 

 

Canadian 2016-17 Run from 8.31.17.png

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16 minutes ago, Chinook said:

The Canadian model forecasts a 40% chance of maple syrup and a 60% chance of Tim Horton's.

Give me Tim Horton's and I'll be happy. Neutrals are cold here with the AMO warm - 2001, 2003, 2012, etc, so fairly excited about the winter. Low solar helps too in Neutrals. Of course if the Canadian shows some huge La Nina, that's just another warm winter here. I've got to look more at January 1963, some amazingly cold air made it way south that year and Summer 1962 is not super dissimilar to this year. I'll put the Canadian update here tomorrow. 

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20 hours ago, Chinook said:

The Canadian model forecasts a 40% chance of maple syrup and a 60% chance of Tim Horton's.

Actually I like both together. A burger dipped in maple syrup is really pretty good, especially when you're camping.

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Canadian Model now has a similar, but less extreme version of last winter. Last winter, we had La Nina conditions in Nino 3.4 (-0.4C after several periods of -0.7/-0.8 before), but +0.7 readings in Nino 1.2. The Canadian has a weak La Nina in Nino 3.4 during DJF, but this time it keeps the cooler anomalies further to the west. Unlike last year, when you had La Nina conditions in Nino 3.4 by July, the Canadian thinks they start in October, and then end February. So it would be maybe four trimesters at -0.5C or a little less. Not really enough even for an official La Nina.

SON - maybe

OND

NDJ

DJF

Looks like a positive PDO too, maybe somewhat lower than last. Less positive AMO than last year. The good news for the SW is any La Nina that (briefly) develops look three months behind, since La Nina conditions were present in July 2016 and we're still neutral entering September. I've been saying cold-neutral for a while, and I think still looks OK given the lag from SSTA to weather changes. If we get to -0.5C, -0.6C in Nino 3.4 in October, then maybe the La Nina-ish weather starts to show up in late November/December.

Canadian Winter Forecast 8.31.17.png

Canadian Winter Foecast 7.31.17.png

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Some of the Plains and Midwest may have been 2 to 3 standard deviations below normal for August. The typical summer range of monthly anomalies might be -2F to +2F. Many of these last few years, you can't find many areas that have had colder than -2F for one month out of the summer.

 

yOjIXni.png

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1 hour ago, Chinook said:

Some of the Plains and Midwest may have been 2 to 3 standard deviations below normal for August. The typical summer range of monthly anomalies might be -2F to +2F. Many of these last few years, you can't find many areas that have had colder than -2F for one month out of the summer.

 

yOjIXni.png

Went similarly to what I expected - had this May 15th for August based on a blend of oceans/solar/local conditions. Hot NW, cool middle went fine. Not too bad in the east, near normal. Biggest issue was CA was much warmer than I had.

August 2017 US Outlook.PNG

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Same story here in Fort Collins, it was 98, new record (old record was 94 degrees)

--

RECORD EVENT REPORT

NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DENVER/BOULDER CO

0125 AM MDT MON SEP 04 2017

RECORD HIGH TEMPERATURE SET AT DENVER CO... A RECORD HIGH TEMPERATURE OF 97 DEGREES WAS SET AT DENVER CO YESTERDAY. THIS BREAKS THE OLD RECORD OF 95 SET IN 1995.

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Raindancewx: I don't always reply but always find your seasonal/winter outlooks based on your analysis very informative and interesting - so thank you.  Like most other posters here I sure hope this upcoming fall and winter season is more interesting and exciting (i.e., colder and snowier) than last year's version ;-) 

Chinook: thanks for all you do for the Mountain West discussions.  I was really pleased to see at least the first part of August be cool and wet in many parts of CO, enough to make the entire month below normal temp. wise. 

What is kind of concerning now is the overall warm-to-hot and dry pattern we've slipped into since mid-August (although today's cool temps are welcome).  Sunday Sept. 3 a high of 98* - whew!  I had hoped we were past those kind of high temps for this summer season but I guess not :(

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