A lot of chatter the past few days on the signals, pattern and potential.
A lot of disbelief, skepticism, and >14 months of frustration also included.
So let's just look at the data to understand why the potential now is better than it has been in a LONG time!
Comment: This winter is a LOT different than last winter. Maybe the same results for some, but a different approach - so at least we're not totally insane. Potential has been there this winter, but mixed signals have resulted in missed potential for many, and some sweet results for others.
What's different now? Simple - Coordination. Pic below is PNA, NAO and AO respectively. Note the Euro data on PNA and AO - nice. 3/1 date noted for reference.
When is the last time we saw this setup? ah...2010/11?
Why am I encouraged? These signals help us understand potential for winter storms in the MA. The "ideal" set up is +PNA, -NAO, -AO. Even more - a WEST BASED -NAO is more supportive for winter storms from DC on up. An east based -NAO favors NYC and up.
Along with the nice looking signals, the energy continues to flow in from the northwest and the STJ remains active and juicy.
Put all of this together and we currently have 3 shots in the next 10 days (maybe beyond?) for a significant winter storm from DC north.
Here's the key: All this potential, great signals, etc., don't gaurantee a darn thing. Gotta love it! Timing and track still are key variables! Gotta hate it!
And so, with the three potential events, which result do we see?
Given a lot can change over this time period - here's my take on the current ODDs of each event outcome.
Note: the author of this blog reserves the right to change the ODDs at any given time as new information is made available, including, but not limited to, injuries, model failure, bad initialization, bad data, good data (huh?), lack of data, mother nature, acts of God, acts of heavy drinking, price of tea in China, and unexplained rashes.....
Also - reality says fairly equal odds none of this plays out and we end up in 2 weeks saying "another let down! these models suck!"
I'll take the ride and see how it plays out. So until then, continue to "hug a model" - preferably a tall blond one! :)
LOL Snowtrain! I don't think blocking will be too strong, but have to tell you I was thinking the same thing! I think the models are still catching on to the blocking being set up. We'll see. It's still 9 days away. Love to hear from others on this point.
12Z runs were ok. You could see their typical bias in placements and progression for this amount of time out.
After the 12z runs today I am "liking" the potential more than I did before. The ridging out west is beginning to look better and there is definitely blocking in place, potentially too much! But I like the s/w scooting out of the rockies around the end of the month with no chance of heading towards the lakes. It's looking more like a Miller A potential which favors out latitude much more than a transfer situation of a Miller B. Especially given it will be March and a Miller A can drag down the cold into the coastal plain much better than a Miller B with a primary heading to our west which tends to warm the lower levels of the atmosphere. Still way out there though!
Awesome blog. I like our chances (relatively) of an old fashioned widowmaker from the 1st through the 5th.
I agree with your assessment of the upcoming three chances. This weekend is plain rain. No way it trends cold enough to help us. Next week could be interesting but will probably be rain. The next one is the big one that could finally get us the snow.
here is some food to chew on . linked is the weather channels winter storm names. you will notice the next storm up is the letter "R" now will there be some sort of miracle for the "R" storm to represent for the PHILA area... ohh how fitting it would be http://www.weather.com/news/winter-storm-names-20121001
Another great blog FM. 3/1 is the only storm I'm interested in right now. Euro having a 975 off Carolina can only come down to a sub 965 near us. Gfs showing something pretty similar is very interesting. So I'll keep my eye on that for now but not holding out hope since I'm in one of the snow drought zones still :/.
Philly - yes! the old temps, sun angle, length of day, etc. - aarrggg!! We can't catch a break!
Jonathan - I think Euro is is taking back its King title. GFS did ok for a little bit, but is having trouble hanging with the big boy. I don't know why NCEP doesn't remove the off runs and focus on improving the main runs!
Nice blog! I like the upcoming pattern and it looks like the setup could be good through March 10th! The problem I see is with the time of year and temps. I'm not really seeing that big arctic high around that you want. That is important, especially as you get past the prime of winter. That would be a real kick in the head.....we get nothing but cold rain while New England gets pounded.
Jeff - right now looks like 3/1 is the best option. I think when patterns set up it takes a little bit for things to pop, at least my observations over the years - so first couple may be part of the setup. But things move so fast recently - Who knows??
Snowtrain - It's crazy isn't it?
Look at 00Z CMC last night - it basically said "3/1? wha??" unbelievable. Must be defective 4D glasses.. :)
It is a convoluted mess trying to look past 5 days this winter. The whole winter has been very complex with a ton of disturbances moving along the jet streams making it so difficult to forecast outside of 48 hours. Looking back to our blockbuster winters of 2009 thru 2011 it was so much easier for the models to get a good handle on the overall pattern that year b/c it was fairly cut and dry except for the Boxing Day Storm of course.