Friday, September 30, 2011


8:55 AM EDT 10/1/11

THE WEEKEND POWDERHOUND REPORT: As Phillip Seymour Hoffman says in the movie Twister..."THIS is the fun part baby." We love October because it reveals the essence of the winter pattern, provides supporting data from other regions and usually puts out an early season storm or two that gets everybody talking.  Last week's snow in Siberia was accompanied by a sprinkling across Alaska and northern Canada. While you might expect that to be normal this time of year, it's important to note ANY snow cover building up on land above the Arctic circle helps counteract the near-record meltoff of Arctic Sea Ice this year. Graphic 1- National Snow & Ice Data Center: 

The September 30 graphic from the National Ice Center shows this buildup of snow in the Northwest Territories, and down the Coast Range of British Columbia. Even Whistler-Blackcomb is reporting early snow: ( The resulting increase in sunflight reflectivity cools the atmosphere further, allowing southward moving high pressure systems to develop strong surface pressures to the colder ground surface.

We will map out other regions later today, but for the Mid-Atlantic,  given the current 45- to 60-day pattern starting with the Sep 26 Midwestern storm, we see this sequence: 

  1. Late October: Major cold snap, hard frost after a Midwest to Northeast storm; 
  2. Mid-November: "Indian summer" false warmup for a few days;
  3. Around Dec 1: Sharp reversal to significant cold, ending with a brief snow event...yep, you guessed it, in the neighborhood of Dec 5-10. 
We are excited for you to know of partnerships our team has with accomplished forecasters elsewhere in the country. The enclosed Winter forecast graphic is courtesy of our Affiliate CirrusWeather in Kansas. who spells out in nice detail some of the concerns for the winter ahead. Above-normal Gulf of Mexico waters in conjunction with what might be a frequent "clipper" pattern may give rise to the "Ice threat" noted for the Mid-South, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest. Lots of Gulf moisture surging domes of high pressure with a clipper bearing down could lead to more Ice than snow storms for some areas. This would make for a winter similar to 2006-2007, such as the infamous "Valentine's Day Massacre of February 2007." 

AFFILIATE CIRRUS WEATHER: and for their perspective on the winter pattern ahead.  

NEW WINTER STORMCAST ZONE: Lead Forecaster Ben Redmon of Michigan Weather Watchers will be leading development of our newest Winter zone for the Western Great Lakes. If you have friends, family or colleagues out that way, let them know our team is on their side! (

Lead Powderhound Mr. Foot, Forecaster Connor and the Winter Stormcast Team.

Happy Powderhound Friday!  

7:55 AM EDT 9/30/11 | SIBERIAN SNOW SURPRISE | Hey everyone, it's Forecaster Connor from Central Maryland, and have we got news for all the Powderhounds out there. As part of our team's  relaunch of popular "Winter Stormcast Zone" for later today, we have breaking weather for you all the way from Siberia! 

For those yearning to get a glimpse of what the winter pattern may hold, this early season event may provide some long range clues. On Wednesday and Thursday, an enormous amount of snow fell over Russia's Far East and southern Siberia regions.  Meteorologists from the area have said that "two weeks worth of snow has fallen over the last two days," This September snow hit left hundreds of people stranded, closed airports, and even shutdown schools...all this in a place that you would think deals well with snow! 

Clear evidence of just how much area was covered can be seen in NOAA's Daily Snow & Ice Chart from the National Ice Center. More details on the story and a video link are in this article.

Why does this matter? One of the many indicators our Winter Stormcast team monitors is how Siberian snowcover builds up in October. This normal climate trend can be a predictor of North American winter patterns. Now that the snow season there has kicked off there early and big, it makes us think hmmm.... an early kickoff here too? Make sure to tell your friends where to find the real scoop on all things snow... right here in the FF Winter Stormcast Zone! Stay tuned for the "Friday Powerhound Report" coming later today. 

You can also follow our latest Winter Stormcast regional updates on your mobile phone or tablet in these zones run by different forecasters around the country:

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