Friday, February 27, 2015

Friday Morning Comment

I put a lot of detail into yesterday's post so I will just make a few small points today. 

I think northern zones have a good shot at some accumulating snow on Sunday night. Nothing major, but I think the arctic boundary is far enough south where all of northern NJ into New England see's snow. 

As for the mid-week system all model guidance points to a rain storm for many areas with snow to rain further to the north. I am not going to comment any more on this until a few more days pass by. Sure a rain storm is possible, but with so much energy on the field and a split flow jet pattern it is very hard for the models to handle. We have learned more than once this year that jumping the gun too early in either direction is not going to result in a good forecast. I explained yesterday what would need to happen to hold the cold air in place given we have a -PNA trough in the west which normally produces a warm scenario for the east. 

Winter days are really counting down now and the good news for any snow haters is after March 15th it is pretty difficult to get a storm. We are still a few weeks away from that point so do not let your guard down. It is going to be interesting to see if this colder than normal weather pattern holds based on the pattern in the Pacific. Time will tell, but I am not on the "early spring" bandwagon". As long as we have a ridge over AK it drills down colder than normal air into the country. The warm water off the pacific coast aids in keeping that ridge in place. This is a classic positive PDO pattern. I talked about the PDO in my winter forecast. Oh by the way, I will do a review of that forecast when the season is over for anyone who is interested. 

That's all for now. 


  1. I'm still tracking the telecon forecasts, and wow, that EPO is a real diehard! It's fade from neg zone to zero keeps getting pushed further out with every new day's forecast run. Incredible how much the Pacific is driving our weather. There was all that talk about El Nino last year, but it never happened. Instead, the big Pacific show was the +++ PDO and all that warm weather off the US coast, with the strong west coast/AK ridging as a result. IIRC, there were some sudden Arctic stratosphere warming events, but for the most part, it was (and still is) the Pacific dynamics that drove our COLD weather over the past few months. I'm not the expert on this that you are, Mr. W, but I've read that the Pacific also killed the Atlantic hurricane season last year (and kept most of the action for itself, very active 2014 season out there). Will be interesting to see if that effect continues this summer and fall.

    For now, yea, looks like you can count on another 4 or 5 inches of snow by this time next week. EPO is stlll on your side even if you've lost the PNA; also the AO isn't going positive all that quickly. So, still some cold air for the warped-out streams to grab over Point Barrow. Looks like the + NAO even fizzles in a week or so, perhaps allowing Atlantic coastal storms to grow earlier and further to the west. Thus rolling over us. My quick look at this AM's CMC and GFS long-range seem to agree with that. If EPO follows the current script and weakens by next week, looks like we get very wet here in North Jersey. If it keeps on surprising us with its resilience, however . . . then you may yet get your big one as winter's going away present. Yup, stay tuned for the next exciting episode! Gonna miss all this dynamic weather once we get into April. Jim G

  2. Give yourself more credit Jim- you know your weather patterns well. We learned this year that you can not fight the trends of the season (pacific driving this pattern). I will say tho I was suprised we never got a good Negative NAO all the research I did suggested we would of had blocking develop. If we did, oh boy there would have been some monster storms for all the mid atlantic. I think we get a good 2-4 maybe 3-5 for NNJ and New England Sunday night and maybe a little front end snow from the mid week system. It does look to be rain but like I mentioned this morning we still need to wait before we lock it in. The whole el-nino argument for this year was actually pretty well dismanteled by Joe Bastardi at who showed how the water temps near Austriallia did not favor the wind pattern (SOI) similar to the super nino in the late 90's. I give him a lot of credit for that because back in April everyone was pounding the table otherwise.

    Getting back to the PDO, if that thing really does not fade then March will be a colder than normal month. I can only hope we get a grand finalalie but if it is not in the cards let it warm up in march so I can play some golf!

  3. Hey, thanks! I was also boning up on the MJO recently. Maybe that's not a huge driver of US east coast weather, but phase 7 and 8 supposedly encourage west coast ridging and eastern troughs, pretty much what we've seen in February. And yes, the MJO was wandering around 7 and 8 for most of February. But it now seems to be drifting away from those regions. The golfers in my office are also getting restless, so this will be good news. But for us WX nuts (or this one, anyway), it's interesting how even the Indian Ocean was getting in on the act in our frigid February! I will put Joe B's weatherbell site on my bookmark list.

    Those telecon forecasts are fickle, though! Today they have the NAO fading but still somewhat + at mid-March. And now the EPO goes + on the 9th, peaks on the 11th, then heads back toward neutral. PNA stays neg, but tends back towards neutral by mid-month. For the upcoming Wed-Thurs storm though, looks like a near-neutral EPO and a pretty strong + NAO and neg PNA. So no big Greenland blocking and not-so-strong cold flows from the north. So maybe more wet than snow. But things change fast in dynamic periods like this, as those fickle daily telecon forecasts show! All hail to the chaos theory butterfly! Jim G