Outlook: Winter FAR from Over

OK guys, topic of discussion today will be slightly different from our normal discussion on the current aspects of the atmosphere and whats going on. We are going to spend some time in the long range discussing what is coming in the future in terms of winter for us. THE BOTTOM line is Winter is FAR from over.

What has the theme been this winter? Swings of Extremes: Cold to warm, wet to dry, windy to not windy, sunny to cloudy, etc ;). Well, this will continue through to the end of winter whenever that might be…see below!

SO, first thing first…we get a relaxation in the pattern this week as a system moves into the great lakes and runs across the region well to the north of us. This brings a big warmup, BUT SHORT LIVED warmup to the midwest into the East. What happens is as the system crosses the region it brings a Westerly flow, and behind that system as the week goes on the Jet relaxes, we get some systems and a bit of troughing in the west and as we always say, cold in the west, warm in the east, and vise versa.


This lasts until the beginning of next week when we see our next possible threat coming for the east coast along with cold arctic air.


SO what happens here? The H5 charts show it well. Storms in the Pacific force Ridging in the west to build up. The PNA goes positive as well, and as the ridge builds it pushes the Jet up in the west…what goes up must come down, and so in the east we see the jet dive south, along with a trough fresh with Arctic air.


So what happens with this? Whenever looking for a storm, especially snow storms we look to the front or back ends of fresh arctic air injections. So we have the fresh arctic air. We have a boundary setting up as well. This is our pathway for storms to form. See in the image above, the red circle outlines the initial energy for the storm, and the line follows the boundary. So, the question right now is, does the boundary set up to far east so a forming storm goes out to sea? Or does it form along the East Coast so that we see a storm? Listen these are all details we will iron out over the next 7 days. The time frame for this threat would be Tuesday-Wednesday. Right now that is all it is, a threat, but the East coast should keep an eye on this from the Mid Atlantic up into Maine.

Along with the long range we go back to the dying El Nino. The latest #’s put us at +1.5265°C anomaly for the 4 nino regions down from +2.66°C in late November. Here are the current SST’s in the pacific basin, and below that an image of the net change since November 25th when the Nino peaked.




As we saw in December, the MJO although active was less of a player in the big field as it was likely being suppressed by the Nino and the fact that they share the same playing field and because the Nino is so much larger it overcame what effects the MJO had. Because the Nino is dying now, we see the MJO becoming for of a player for our region. Here we see it in phase 6 at a moderate magnitude going into phase 7. What happens after that is up for debate, does it continue onto phase 8, or go into the circle of death and becme negligable. Ideally we want it go into Phase 7 though weak, then strong phase 8-1-2-3 which are all cold for us.

ECMF_phase_51m_small (1)

Regardless, the MJO is lagged for us in terms of its effects, and we see many threats of cold shots, including another possible Sudden Stratospheric Warming event coming, as well as an active pattern for storms. Do all these storms line up right with the cold and what not? Who knows…we shall see..but the “threats” are there and in no ways is winter over yet. We see the southern trough dominate on the Euro woth ridging overhead through the 46 day period as well, which generally leads me to believe in the activeness as storms will try to form along those boundaries wherever they may set up. February should end up around normal in terms of temperature, and depending on how things go March could be the same, if not colder.

Have a great night guys and enjoy the vacation if you have it!

Forecaster: Remy M.

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