Hello everyone and welcome to Snow Day’s final winter outlook for this winter of 2012-2013. So far it has been quite an interesting season of fall with it already being much colder and wetter for large areas of the country as compared to last fall over much of the country when last fall was anything but cold and wet with much above average temperatures last fall and very dry conditions! Now enough of the talk about Fall weather, let’s get started talking about the final Winter Forecast!
One thing that has had a small effect on the weather in the past has been the solar cycle and sunspots. Last winter was starting off in the peak of the new solar max and the temperatures responded over the country with much above average temperatures over the United States. But currently the solar max is not behaving like it should, it is currently MUCH lower in strength then what the Space Weather Prediction center predicted;
As you can see, we are nearing the peak of the solar max, but we are way lower then the projected path. What this is trying to tell us, is that, the solar cycle and solar max will barely have any effect if any at all on winter and its winter pattern. Typically, an active solar max would spell a +NAO/AO across the country, but with this solar max nearly non existent, I really dont see the solar max effecting the NAO/AO this winter.
Last summer and early this fall, many forecasters were forecasting El Nino conditions to develop, and they did, but as time went on through this fall, El Nino conditions along the equator in the Pacific fell apart. Typical warm waters that we normally see with an El Nino are not occurring at this time. And I really dont expect any major changes as we head through the winter. Let’s compare the sea surface temperatures from October 16th and today November 16th;
And November 16th, today;
As you can see, barely any change has occurred, with many a few less blue specs along the equator then what we had on October 16th.
Let’s look at a typical El Nino sea surface temperature chart;
Now, as we compare all three of these, we can CLEARLY see that we are not seeing typical El Nino conditions in the Pacific Ocean, the warmth is just not there. Instead, plenty of blue spots along the Equator instead of large areas of warmth. I have come to the conclusion that we will not see El Nino conditions this winter, rather more neutral winter conditions, neither La Nino now El Nino.
Now for what everyone is looking for, the forecast maps for this winter!
Winter 2012-2013 Temperatures
I have trimmed back the below average temperatures even more so for this winter over the country. I believe with how the current storm tracks and moisture over the fall, I believe this is where the most consistent below average temperature areas will be. The most consistent area of below average temperatures will be over the far north, including the Dakotas and Montana and through the Great Lakes and perhaps the northeastern United States. South of that, I expect average temperatures to rule this winter mainly from I-80 on south. Don’t let your guard down through. I see plenty of sharp temperature contrasts this winter with 2-3 MAJOR arctic outbreaks this winter mainly over the central plains through the Ohio Valley. You may ask, why then do you only have average temperatures? I believe that even with how strong the cold air may be, these arctic blasts will only last 2-3 days at a time then the moderation will begin, mainly up to near average to average temperature levels.The NAO/AO look on par to be average to in the negative range this winter, so it should be no where near what we saw last winter, and I can thank God for that.
Winter 2012-2013 Snowfall
I below two major areas of above average snowfall will set up over the country. One – I believe that an active storm track out of the desert southwest into the central plains will result in above average snowfall from western Nebraska to northern Nebraska on north to the Dakotas and Montana will rule. I am expecting two major winter storms over this area with perhaps one storm containing high winds creating blizzard conditions in early January. South of that, more like average snowfall will rule and over the Ohio Valley as well. A second bigger area with above average snowfall will play out over the northeastern United States. I am seeing 2-4 major nor’easters to strike with high amounts of snowfall and high winds.
Winter 2012-2013 Precipitation
Winter precipitation will be above average over southern California as well as the upper plains states as many Alberta Clippers and Texas Panhandle Low pressure systems will provide this area with above average precipitation. A much more higher concentrated area of above average temperatures will exist over the east coast and the northeastern United States as a few major nor’easters will provide much above average winter precipitation. The south and central and southern plains will receive more like average precipitation.
Winter 2012-2013 Storm Tracks
I believe the storm tracks will be quite active this winter with the east coast getting hit pretty hard this winter by several nor’easter storm tracks and perhaps 1 or 2 Ohio Valley low pressure systems. Another area that I have been focusing on is the central plains, where a few major Texas Panhandle low pressure storm systems will move out of the dessert southwestern United States as well as the typical Alberta clipper system over the upper midwest.
That’s a wrap up for this winter forecast, overall I expect a complete turn around from last winter with much colder weather and more snowfall for everyone this winter, even if you are seeing average temperatures and snowfall amounts, that is still a huge turn around from last winter. Ultimately the northern plains and east coast have to really watch this winter early on as that is when I expect the brunt of the winter to hit with major arctic blasts and winter storms. Feel free to share this link with your family and friends to get the word out about Snow Day’s winter outlook. As always it’s a privilege to serve more and more viewers each and every year and I thank you for your viewership.
Have a great day and remember to THINK SNOW!
Winter Forecast 2012-2013 – Second Update – Written by Craig McPeck
Hello and good Tuesday afternoon everyone! As I write this we are going through a very turbulent weather pattern with already going through two major weather patterns. In the first week we went through a substantial trough of low pressure with a significant winter storm for the northern Plains in North Dakota and northern Minnesota. Right now we are in a lull of a pattern before the next major trough slides into the central parts of the country as well as the Ohio Valley.
But we are talking about the winter forecast correct?! Yes! I have made a few changes to the winter forecast so let’s get right off the bat and start talking about how winter will turn out for the country!
One thing that has had an effect on the weather before is the solar cycle, typically with increased solar activity there would be a tendency for the NAO/AO to go more positive, and right now we are supposively in a peak stage in the solar cycle, but what is very unique about this cycle is that it is probably the quietest solar max in quite some time, so I really don’t think it will have any affect on temperatures;
El Nino is slowly losing it’s grasp on the world, and some people continue to say it will grow back? I really don’t think it will. Global climate models have it slipping to neutral state for this winter and I think that is where it is going to stay.
Let’s compare a typical El Nino with a warm stretch of waters across the equator;
To what we are seeing now;
I would say there is HUGE differences in what you would call a typical El Nino as I am seeing currently very little warm waters across the equator, In fact since the last time I have looked, small specs of colder waters have formed over that area and that further explains that the El Nino we once had is no more, and that will have an effect on this winter with the southern jetstream not being as active as once though with the jet stream staying more so from Montana heading south of the Central Plains and curving back up into the Great Lakes states, but remnant El Nino characteristics should remain.
Winter 2012-2013 Temperatures
I have changed the overall strength and magnitude of the cold air for this winter as well as the size. My first outlook had the below average temperatures covering the entire eastern two thirds of the country. While I believe the cold air will resemble 2009 winter, I don’t think It will be as harsh over the country. I am thinking a high pressure will dominate a large part of the western United States this winter thus sending much of the troughs and cold air from Montana to the northern Plains and Great Lakes states. I took out the below average temperatures in the south because I didn’t think the cold air would stick around as long as the areas up north. But I do think their could be about 1-2 major cold air outbreaks for the far south. I think the upper New England states will stay around average this winter.
Winter 2012-2013 Snowfall & Precipitation
With the strength of the now non existent El Nino I don’t think there will be a huge impact on the southern jet stream but still enough to put above average precipitation as I think there could be two major storm tracks through the southern United States and the eastern United States. I believe a couple low pressure systems could really hit hard the deep south through the Ohio Valley and eastern Great Lakes this winter with quite a bit of snow as well as potentially a couple crippling ice storms for the deep southeast, particularly over Georgia and the Carolinas. I think during these storm systems, cold air will have a problem with getting drawn into the storm systems, so they may become more wintry messes then actual heavy snow systems so will have to watch that closely as I think the direct connection from the polar air may be missing a couple times for the southeastern United States. I also think the Nor’Easter will play a direct role in this winter across the northeast with perhaps a couple good nor’easters affecting those areas. I dont think it will be as crippling as the winter of 2009 but i definitely think the northeast will see more snow than last winter. As for the northern Plains, I believe the Alberta Clipper will play a big roll in this winter with several sharp temperatures swings, high winds and accumulating quick snowfalls. So I think several quick hitting Alberta Clipper snows will hit this area producing a path of snow to the northern Ohio Valley. The jetstream out of California will be higher then average with a cut off flow and the storm systems connecting with the main trough and cold air over the northern Plains producing 2-3 high impact winter storm systems for the Rocky Mountain all the way to the northern Plains. I-70 could get hammered with ice this due to the position of the low pressure systems.
Winter 2012-2013 Storm Tracks
As earlier mentioned I believe the Alberta Clipper will play a big role in the winter with several of these quick hitting snow systems to lay a path of snow from Montana to Wyoming to Missouri and Kentucky this winter. The low pressure system that will be cut off from the main flow in California will merge with the jet stream and colder air a few times this winter equating to a couple good winter storm systems from Kansas to Missouri on north. The NAO/AO shouldn’t be too negative this winter too keep it from going any further south then my track. A couple block buster Ohio Valley lows should form in the Gulf and head northeast through the eastern Great Lakes as well as the typical Nor’Easter this winter pounding the bigger cities, something we really didn’t see last winter.
By Craig McPeck
Folks, we are just 8 days away until the official release of the Winter Forecast for 2012-2013! Would you like to receive the winter forecast 7 days earlier then everyone else? Well you can…for $1.00..that’s it only 1 DOLLAR. Please sign up here: http://letter.ly/snowday
State of the El Nino and forecast on how strong it MAY get
The forecast calls for a middle of the road weak El Nino, some forecasters say it will get to strong status but I really don’t think it will. I would have included NASA’s climate model forecast but the website isn’t loading at the time. I’ll post that at a later date.
Have a great weekend! And THINK snow!