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February 2019 Winter Speculation

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26 minutes ago, weathertree4u said:

I don't think i said you did. I was making an observation.

An observation based on what?  I don’t think anyone has been banging the drum for March.  I think many of us have noted snow chances get much tougher pretty much each day going forward.  I even noted to take the Weeklies with a HUGE grain of salt.  I don’t think folks on this forum are kicking winter into March which is what I took from that statement.  Maybe I was wrong.   I don’t think anyone has consistently promoted March as saving winter.  And I don’t think many folks are writing of this month either, but we understand that modeling has been iffy at best.

Since it was brought up, my thoughts on March would be normal March climatology.  The usual low chances for a late season storm north of 40 and at higher elevations.  The chances are not zero, but they are not high.  It will likely depend on blocking which models have notoriously struggled with this winter.  However, with an active STJ and cold lurking...I think it would be unwise to write-off a month that has given us some big storms on rare occasions.

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SOI down to -23............:mellow:   :)   :o

I was typing the below out just as the above conversation about March started and didn't intend this to be a part of it.

 

So, crankyweather has postulated that we flip hard to Spring after/ around March 15th. Setting aside any and all wintry potential for the next month just for a minute, any thoughts on this?  It's partly an IMBY pattern question because to be honest, I'm ready. I don't mean this as a winter cancel post or any thing like that.  I've laid out my thoughts on the pattern between now and March 15 or so and whether it turns out to be crapulous bloviation or a fair assessment, I've kinda speculated myself empty for now.

But, wondering if the flip at that time sounds reasonable, or do we finally get the epic pattern in early - mid March and 40 and rain through April? You'd think that the Pac jet would just keep on trucking, but this pattern (aside from blip impact from strat last month) has run about 60 days, so should be due for a switch soonish. 

 

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The March flip during any year is always always a tough call.  One would think a March flip to warm around mid-month is accurate, but this winter has yet to play nice. I doubt early spring is any different.  Did I notice yesterday a tweet about a wind reversal yesterday?  If so, that could be a thorn.  Right now an active STJ is right in line with El Niño climatology.  All it takes is one system taking the low road with cold in place and things get interesting.  Until that cold air and the active wx pattern diminish, anything can happen.  Last year we had cold and were bone dry.  This year we are warm and rainy.  As the wavelengths change heading into spring, the wx is notoriously tough to predict.  So, I think March will be March...some surprises, some cold, some frozen in the usual places, some severe, and hopefully some sun.  My biggest concern right now is the threat of prolonged flooding.

...as for February, definitely not writing it off.  With the SOI in the tank and the MJO heading into favorable phases, I suspect we get a system or two which will at the very least have to be loosely watched.

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The PNA is stubborn. EPS joined the warmer CFS, kind of relegating the colder ECMWF weeklies. Still, the door is open for cold the end of the month.

Tropical Pacific convection signal is disconnected. One forecast broke down the MJO forecast (normally 15 degrees north/south of equator) to 0-15 N and 0-15 S. Most influence was Southern Hemisphere. Overall the monster forecast signal shown a few days ago has faded anyway.

Stubborn SER means next week system kind of fell apart. I know we keep pushing it back; however, end of the month looks slightly colder than normal. West trough is forecast to lumber east, at least Central. Would allow cold air into our region.

March blocking may start to fade mid-month. Assuming 6-8 weeks of influence from SSW, it expires mid-March. Bring on severe weather season!

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Yeah.......

giphy.gif 

giphy.gif 

I've been a little tongue and cheek lately because I'm kinda patterned out (and who doesn't love a good snow map lol), but to be honest the above pattern looks realistic to me.  Well, not sure how realistic the amounts are, but that firehose aimed up the eastern valley is. 

I was wishing the SE ridge would either flex a little more or get squished, but looks like it won't, at least with this next system. 

EDIT: Ensemble means aren't quite as amped, but still:

12Z-20190212_GEFSMA_prec_meanprecacc-192 

giphy.gif

 

Who knows maybe it'll change tomorrow, but pretty good agreement between GFS and Euro.

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6 minutes ago, Wurbus said:

Next weeks system looking more like 2-4 inches or rain. Exactly what we don't need! :raining::flood:

Tired: ski season

Wired: jet ski season

 

I particularly love the 6z FV3 at 102, driving a 998 low directly over KTRI and directly into the Blue Ridge.

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45 minutes ago, weathertree4u said:

Nearly everyone in here has way more knowledge than I but have hopeful outlook for the next few weeks. Every model run is not going be blockbuster 

Me too! The look on the models for the second half of February is much better then what was about to hit last year during this time. 

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12z Euro accumulated precip. There's currently water standing in my yard...doesn't look like that will change much in the next 10 days. 

 

 

EURO Accumulated Precip.png

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This Saturday morning storm is kind of interesting:

giphy.gif 

giphy.gif 

Coming in late at night on Saturday morning, would be primo timing. Not too far from something for some of our far northern posters in Kentucky. 

Has a really unusually amped look on all models, for a lil piece of trailing energy after a bigger storm. 

Looks like some energy in Canada maybe influencing it so maybe some surprises in store? If I wasn't tied up this weekend, would consider chasing to Lexington for snow and bourbon. 

 

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The 12z GEFS at 500 looks pretty decent at hour 300.  It is way out there, but that is a pretty decent look.  Wish we had it about right now...but it is not a bad look for later winter.  The thing to keep in mind is that temps will have to be much colder against the norms at that time year.  We also probably need any storm to occur at night at lower elevations.  Definitely a good look, but we have multiple things working against us then...angle of the sun, length of day, etc.  However, it is a time of year(as John has noted...) when we get our biggest storms - early and late season.

Just saw the map that math/met posted.  Whew.  That is a lot of water on already saturated ground and with rivers already high.

 

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1 minute ago, Math/Met said:

12z Euro accumulated precip.

I was looking at the Euro control since it goes out to 360 and man oh man. One after another, after another aimed right at the eastern valley until the very end of the run. 

 

 

And......

wait for it....

The Euro has some kind of tropical looking critter in the Caribbean toward the end of its run 

giphy.gif 

:facepalm:

KDKX_2019021200_precip_360 copy.png

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One thing looking at the Caribbean vort map made me wonder about, is this idea that models do better with warm/ wet vs. cold and snowy idea. 

What if it is just that there is less in the way upstream of these subtropical ridges like the SE ridge to cause model error.  For example, here is a GFS infrared forecast for the next 15 days. 

giphy.gif

It seems to me we are on the NW side of a big old ridge that runs across the Atlantic. The SE ridge is just one side of it. The air circulates west from Africa across the Atlantic, to the Caribbean, then NW toward us, it then gets caught up in the Westerlies and goes back to Africa/ Europe. 

Further north, the westerlies are stuffed with disturbances that change up the flow and as they do, modeling adjusts to reality and different runs show those adjustments.  But look at the easterly flow off of Africa. Is there anything in the way to change that up? Not much that I can see. So maybe that is why ridge patterns seem to be more easily modeled? One piece of the puzzle is pretty set in stone. 

Now that doesn't mean in any way that those disturbances in the Westerlies can't impact that ridge's alignment or beat it down, but you would think models would have an easier time with at least the upstream easterly and then southeasterly flow toward us from the underbelly of that big anticyclone. 

This is meant as a more of a general comment on our overall location in the global picture, not specifically for this upcoming period, but trying to figure that out did make me wonder. 

Thoughts? 

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Until the snow pipeline cuts off in Seattle, we're going to be hard pressed to find winter here. It's ridiculous that we can't buy a decent event but Hawaii is setting snow records and Seattle is having it's snowiest winter in 50 years but alas that's the story of winter here and I don't expect anything to rewrite this script. This will probably go down as my least favorite winter ever and that's saying a lot because the last two were not pleasant for a snow lover, since I'm not a huge fan of late March and Early April snow.

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6 minutes ago, John1122 said:

Until the snow pipeline cuts off in Seattle, we're going to be hard pressed to find winter here. It's ridiculous that we can't buy a decent event but Hawaii is setting snow records and Seattle is having it's snowiest winter in 50 years but alas that's the story of winter here and I don't expect anything to rewrite this script. This will probably go down as my least favorite winter ever and that's saying a lot because the last two were not pleasant for a snow lover, since I'm not a huge fan of late March and Early April snow.

I agree.  Just the fact the pattern has shown in the long range and never materialized is a reason to put this winter in the least favorable.  The LR has been one big tease for the last 7-8 weeks.

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1 hour ago, Math/Met said:

12z Euro accumulated precip. There's currently water standing in my yard...doesn't look like that will change much in the next 10 days. 

Stepped out for lunch after the initial onset of rain this afternoon and the amount of running and ponding water was absolutely staggering. I fear we may soon see levels on the Nolichucky not eclipsed since 2004.

 

Several area school systems dismissed early in preparation of potential flooding woes, and it appears they were right to do so. Local children have seen nearly as many flood days as they have snow days this winter!

 

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40 minutes ago, tnweathernut said:

Just the fact the pattern has shown in the long range and never materialized is a reason to put this winter in the least favorable.  The LR has been one big tease for the last 7-8 weeks.

It has just been incredible. Except for Dec for NE TN folks, it has always been 8-10 days away. Ya know, some winters just look bad from the get go, some have bad stretches, and some are ok, but it does seem to me like this one has taken the cake thus far. I can handle torches, I'm ok with a thaw, I like snowfall and even some rain and T-Storms, but this winter has consistently been "almost loaded". 

Not saying it can't or won't change in the next couple of weeks for one more run at it, but man, up to this point.... 

I guess that's what you get with a La Nada though. You can have elements of Ninos and Ninas, but I guess you never know which ones you get. We got a La Nina pattern for the past 60 days, often with El Nino levels of moisture and ONI temps of 0.7, 0.9, 0.8 (for the past three month sets). Still no official Nino declaration on ONI data and not sure that there will be. Maybe y'all that know more about ENSO can clear that up, I'm not sure how it works and exactly where we stand as of now. 

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Just now, Holston_River_Rambler said:

It has just been incredible. Except for Dec for NE TN folks, it has always been 8-10 days away. Ya know, some winters just look bad from the get go, some have bad stretches, and some are ok, but it does seem to me like this one has taken the cake thus far. I can handle troches, I'm ok with a thaw, I like snowfall and even some rain and T-Storms, but this winter has consistently been "almost loaded". 

Not saying it can't or won't change in the next couple of weeks for one more run at it, but man, up to this point.... 

I guess that's what you get with a La Nada though. You can have elements of Ninos and Ninas, but I guess you never know which ones you get. We got a La Nina pattern for the past 60 days, often with El Nino levels of moisture and ONI temps of 0.7, 0.9, 0.8 (for the past three month sets). Still no official Nino declaration on ONI data and not sure that there will be. Maybe y'all that know more about ENSO can clear that up, I'm not sure how it works and exactly where we stand as of now. 

Maybe next year we get the actual weak Nino and combine it with non-existent solar.  I know it's the south and all, but we seem pretty good at going on crappy winter "streaks".  Would be nice to work into a 3 of 5 year period where winter slaps us in the face.  Might have a better chance of hitting little lotto though.

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17 minutes ago, tnweathernut said:

Maybe next year we get the actual weak Nino and combine it with non-existent solar

Some of the New England posters were talking earlier in the winter about some theory about delayed ENSO states. Wouldn't it be something if SSTs are so wonky that we get what looks like a weak La Nina late fall but it turns into a Nada and somehow that gives us Nina cold and Nino precip? 

I think Typhoon Tip said the theory had something to do with the amount of water vapor the super nino of 15 -16 put into teh atmosphere or something like that. I will try to fish it out of the older posts. 

It's in NE December discussion II, pages 68-9. Not going to recount it all here since it brings up some things that we may not want to talk about in this thread. 

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I've seen some mets saying next year will possibly be a mod-strong Nino. The strong Nino is often a deathnell but danged if I didn't get snowslammed in the first year of it a couple of years back. Granted that second year hangover from it was poor but that's the new pattern, huge or nothing.

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2 minutes ago, weathertree4u said:

Just out of curiosity and this may be posted in wrong place but was the snow in Seattle expected two weeks out? 

I'm not sure about two weeks, but from a week out the GFS nailed the snow in the NW, Upper Midwest and New England. It only missed the snow it was showing in the south.

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3 minutes ago, weathertree4u said:

Just out of curiosity and this may be posted in wrong place but was the snow in Seattle expected two weeks out? 

I believe the general look at 500 was forecast well in advance.  I remember a couple of weeks ago thinking the PAC northwest could have a lot of winter if the maps verified.  By comparison, it's hard to believe Boston is sitting at 2.3" (or they were several days ago)

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1 minute ago, tnweathernut said:

I believe the general look at 500 was forecast well in advance.  I remember a couple of weeks ago thinking the PAC northwest could have a lot of winter if the maps verified.  By comparison, it's hard to believe Boston is sitting at 2.3" (or they were several days

Well, I am sure there are snow lovers in Seattle that are enjoying the pattern 

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We had discussed this before, but TyphoonTip had said that because most of the Pacific basin was warmer than average that the gradient between the warm SSTs and the rest of the basin was not strong.  Gradients in air and water are what cause currents to move in the oceans and the atmosphere.  Temperature gradients cause pressure gradients which can cause wind which moves the atmosphere.  Weaken those gradients...and weather patterns change.  I still strongly contend that until the AMO flips, we are in for a stretch of bad winters.  There is a very strong correlation in E TN to the AMO.  As for La Nina, I wonder if the gradient might be stronger since the basin is AN for SSTs.  BN SSTs would create a stronger gradient in a basing that is AN.  As for next winter...so many things will be in play.  The QBO should be nearing the end of its positive cycle by the end of next winter(maybe we can get it to flip early or to decline...).  If the Nino is strong...that is trouble.  However, predicting the ENSO state at 12 months out is iffy at best.  We also have to consider the PDO.  That said, sometimes scenarios that look like certainties never materialize.  Who is to say that we don't get a favorable MJO setup next winter despite the ENSO.  Maybe we are entering a time frame where the ENSO is not coupling with the atmosphere in expected ways.  I think each winter is its own animal so to speak.  We won't know(Captain Obvious here) what next winter is like until probably December 1.  What I would like presently is a stretch of 2-3 weeks of dry weather.   Cause right now, all of this ocean water is making a mess of my yard and jogging routes.

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I have almost gotten to the point I will be skeptical of everything moving forward. 

Going into this year we had virtually everything pointing to a fantastic mid to late winter.  An early SSW with a split and big time wind reversal.  LR map after LR map things were looking optimal.  Experts almost across the board were laying their chips down for an extended winter stretch.  Virtually every index we look at was favorable. 

Now here we are blaming the MJO for ruining winter for the east and probably not sure of that, even though many (myself included) think it's largely to blame.  Even some saying the SSW not only didn't help, but hurt?   We just haven't advanced to a point where LR forecasting is anything but an educated guess.

We did have a recent winter where LR forecasts were for warmth that never arrived.  So I guess it goes both ways, but it drives a person mad trying to figure out what could go wrong.  I guess in a nutshell in the south, just about everything can go wrong for snow lovers...  lol  

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