Wednesday, October 19, 2016


The video below gives the details behind my 2017 Winter Forecast. This is for those of you who are interested in the forecasting techniques. Enjoy!


Original Simplified Text Version

Welcome to the long awaited 2017 Winter Outlook! So what will this winter bring? That always is the million dollar question and often times only mother natures knows the answer. However, a forecaster has to try to make their best calculated estimated on what will occur based on observations, history and long range weather models. Those are the three components that go into developing my forecast. Starting the summer months I begin to observe what is going on in the atmosphere. I then take a look at how these observations might evolved based on history and model projections. As we enter the fall months, I can start to observe in real time how the atmosphere is behaving, find historical years where it has behaved similar, then compare with what the long range models show for the winter season. 





Pacific Northwest:

  • Colder than normal temperatures with rounds of heavy mountain snows due to an active pacific jet stream
New England:
  • A very cold and stormy winter. It will snow frequently this year, especially in the mountain areas. This should make for a banner ski season with well above normal snowfall. 
  • 3 major storms (12+ inches)
Mid Atlantic:
  • I expect an active back and forth winter in this region. Temperatures will be chilly but I do not expect a brutally cold winter. 
  • There will be a lot of storm activity but it will not all be snow. Expect everything ranging from rain events to ice and snow. 
  • For the northern Mid-Atlantic (light blue area) expect frequent wintery precipitation which should average out to just above normal snowfall. 
  • For areas a little further south including Philadelphia and Baltimore/Washington expect average snowfall amounts due to ice and rain cutting down on seasonal accumulations.
  • 1-2 major storms (10+ inches) can be expected in the light blue zone.
Southern States:
  • Not much in the way of snowfall. Chilly at times but your standard run of the mill winter with cold shots followed by spells of warmer than normal weather. 
Ohio Valley/Great Lakes Regions:
  • Very cold for the northern areas in this region (Great Lakes) and slightly colder than normal for the southern areas (Ohio Valley)
  • Above average snowfall due to the frequency of storm systems passing by ( light to moderate snow events)
  • 1 major storm
Western Ski Areas:
  • Decent ski season overall for central and northern Rockies 
  • Some areas more on the southern end of the Rockies might see below normal snowfall due to persistent ridges of high pressure keeping the storm tracks more to the north. 

So as you can see I am predicting an overall very decent coast to coast winter! Skiers should be looking forward to 2017 whether you are planing to head out west or head up into New England. 

Monday, October 17, 2016

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

Tuesday Morning: Cold Shot in the Long Range?


Good morning, quick post today on the long range. For the last few cycles, the weather models have been indicating the possibility of a decent cold shot towards the end of next week. Now anytime we are over a week away, it is very hard to know the exact details. We can however look for hints and imagine how models may trend towards an idea.

Lets take the European ensemble for example. Here is its projection for late next week..

This is an average of many different ensemble member outputs but it shows you what the model is hinting at. For one, we have a deepening trough or area of low pressure south of the Aleutian islands. The normal response to this is a ridge of high pressure in the west and a trough in the east. This trough means cold air would be able to funnel south into the central and eventually eastern states at the end of the 14 day period.

The GFS ensemble is hinting at the same thing..

We will see how this turns out. 

Friday, October 7, 2016

Friday Morning Hurricane Update: Major Bullet Dodged, Matthew Stays Just Offshore


Good morning everyone. Well, the real time track of Matthew is now in and it is good news. Yes the forecasts where all wrong including my own about the major impacts this storm would have but in this case that is wonderful news. Shows you how when a forecast literally comes down to 40 miles computers are in many cases useless! The issue is if a forecaster then downplays the storm and they are wrong, the end result is ten times worse than if they err on the side of caution. There is no better example than Hurricane Matthew which has winds of over 120 mph literally miles off the Florida coast. 

So here is the current storm..

You can see the eye wall circled in red. This is where the most intense destructive winds are in a hurricane. This literally is going to say just 40 miles offshore. The difference of this is huge! 40 more miles west and we have a big natural disaster. Models sometimes cannot handle details that small just like in the winter when we are trying to nail down a rain snow line!

In any event, 100% of forecasts were wrong. The problem is it would have been foolish for anyone to downplay this and be on the wrong side of the bet. Unlike the winter where it is rain vs snow, this is life vs death.

The National Hurricane Center has adjusted their track..

Winds will still be gusting up to hurricane force in places. The rainfall will also be an issue. Here is projected rain through this weekend..

Yellow colors are up to 10 inches. That will cause impacts in verified. 

You can see how this storm just bends up southern coast..

No impacts north of the Carolina's.

Thanks all for now.