Monday, February 2, 2015

And now...February

And now...February














Left: 6-10 day precipitation probability 
Right: 6-10 day temperature probability


1:45 PM 2/2 - It's finally here.  What some consider the snowiest month of the year for several Eastern U.S. states. But is February really the month that produces HIGHER snowfall, more frequent snowfall, or does it just feel that way because of big storms? 

We will present the data and let you decide! But if January left you with a lack-luster feel for winter so far, and you're still waiting to see that ONE meaty storm plaster ALL the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast cities with 6-12"...we just want to say:

Be careful for what you wish. 

History is filled with examples of high impact events in this month that made records, broke political careers and in some cases, even changed the course OF history. Consider:
  • The "Great Blizzard of 1899" that on February 11 dropped snow from Florida to New York, shutting down the eastern seaboard for weeks.
  • The "Lindsay storm" of February 1969 in New York City. For simplicity sake let's say the outcome was opposite of the Jan 2015 NYC Blizzard that wasn't. New York City Mayor John Lindsay was faulted for too slow a reaction to the storm, and the public never forgot, removing him from office in the next election.
  • President's Day Storm, February 17-18, 2003 that once held the top spot in Boston for highest snowfall of 27.3" and up to 24.8" in Baltimore.
  • February 11, 2006 snowstorm that blanketed New York City with 26.9" the largest single event snowfall on record.
  • And no February snowstorm list here goes without including the most memorable major blizzards of recent times in the Mid-Atlantic: The February 2010 double Ultra Kahuna, known together as "Snowmageddon."

Will February 2015 help add to memories of snowy times from yesteryear?
We're on the lookout for indications of when white returns to the winter night.

Before snow returns...A question:

Would you be interested in a "FF cookout" 
and if so, when?



For several years now, our team has been interested in organizing a special, festive but down-to-earth get together in honor of our readers. We have circulated ideas that range from a formal "Evening with the Forecasters" to a more casual mid-Spring picnic and cookout. The challenge is that each year we get around to presenting the idea for consideration, winter has already moved on, and with it, much of the engaging dialogue in our comment community.

Over the years, many here have developed a strong connection with fellow Powderhounds, Spring-a-lings and Coastals. (What's a "Coastal?" It's the summer equivalent of a PHound. BioPat can explain.)  We reminisce sometimes about how much fun it was in the bad old pre-Facebook days when this was the only place for comments, and coming home from school to "check the comments" was a big thrill for many of us.  
(Who remembers E.H. Boston, or Uncle Rico, or Terpguy?) 

We think before too many years go by, it is time to have that get together in 2015. We envision a reader reunion / afternoon with the forecasters would be:
  • A low-impact, family-oriented festive gathering at a park in central Maryland;
  • Catered so the food management is handled by professionals;
  • Feature some short "TED-like" talks by forecasters, plenty of meet, greet and photos, multi-media and hands-on weather games for children of all ages;
  • An audience-led Q'n'A roast putting us on the spot, in front of the mic, to spill our favorite tales of forecasting;
  • PLUS lots and lots of your best weather stories which connect all of us together!
The first one would probably be limited to about 100 participants, and we would need some help to organize different aspects of the event. So, while winter rages outside, if you are into event planning, consider warming up with some creative thinking ahead. 

Let us know in the comments if this get-together idea would be of interest to you and your family, what times of year or locations you would recommend, and anything else that can help make this a special day for all. You can also send us your thoughts or interest in helping to team@footsforecast.org and we'll get back to you. 


 





41 comments:

ravensbbr said...

I like Central Alaska's shade of blue/cold better than ours, but I like ours better than Nevada's heat wave. :-)

Unknown said...

BBR--We don't want it so cold that it hurts chances of any snow we may ever get. You know it's either too cold or not cold enough. We need dew points up for a juicy fat snow in the highlands. I used to like that show " Highlander" Now I am one :)>>>I must believe from what I hear from Joe B Sr. and info I look at that we are not going to get thru this thing unscathed. A pummeling several times would be nice. I have to at least get the Kubota blade scraped up.

Anonymous said...

Well according to our Erinaceidae friend, Winter is not yet over. Looking forward to next week!

kyleZ said...

Cold =Dry Warm = Rain we have to break this pattern come on winter we are losing time need atleast more than six inches of powder to help the snow starved folk.

ravensbbr said...

Joe Bastardi is usually pretty much right on..what's he been saying, Mike?

kristia35 said...

I am wishing for a HECS during the next 10 days. I'm being careful what I wish for. Put a lot of thought into it :)

CerpherJoe said...

"Be careful for what you wish."

Methinks there's a teacher or two around :-)

I wonder what January says about February historically/statistically?

Unknown said...

BBR----overall his winter outlook has been dead on except for the south and midatlantic (us of course). He said snow fall would exceed 100% of norm in those areas because of the cold. That has not panned out so far for us but he sees the blocking coming around and the chance at least for a wild 6 or so weeks. Without the blocking there the stupid southeast ridge off the coast has killed us. He says the cold hangs out for a good while into spring and the precip train will continue. Hoping they come together over us a few times before Baseball starts. BBR---GO TO weatherbell.com Joe posts a weekly free video with cool graphs and in depth weather talk. I check it out every week. The guy is just awesome in his analysis and understanding of how the global weather pattern works hand in hand to create our weather here in the east. Truely doing what he was created to do.

ravensbbr said...

Well, the NAO did dip and is sliding downwards or at least trending neutral. Hopefully that'll provide some blocking.

I didn't get to see his winter analysis before you mentioned it, but Bastardi is a good guy, I especially appreciate how he is unapologetically anti-AGW. Common sense dude, tells it like it is.

Unknown said...

BBR----On the weatherbell.com website there is a video player on the right side middle----right under where it says weather bell models. It says this as the heading.

Joe Bastardi's Earth Quaking, Knee Shaking, Monster Making, Heart Breaking, Non Faking, Weather Aching, One and Only (and that's no baloney), Saturday Summary (1/31)

click on the video and enjoy.

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

EXTENDED FORECAST DISCUSSION
NWS WEATHER PREDICTION CENTER COLLEGE PARK MD
959 AM EST TUE FEB 03 2015

VALID 12Z FRI FEB 06 2015 - 12Z TUE FEB 10 2015


...MODEL AND ENSEMBLE EVALUATION...
THE MODES AND ENSEMBLES SHOW A BIT OF A RETROGRESSION IN THE
PATTERN WITH THE
UPPER TROUGH MOVING ACROSS THE GULF OF AK TO OVER AND SOUTH OF THE
ALEUTIANS. THIS TROUGH MERGES WITH A HIGH AMPLITUDE PERSISTENT
TROUGH NORTHWEST OF HI. COMBINED THERE WOULD USUALLY BE AN
AMPLIFICATION OF THE DOWNSTREAM RIDGE...WHICH IS EXPECTED OVER THE
EASTERN PACIFIC TO THE WEST COAST EARLY TO THE MIDDLE OF NEXT WEEK.

THE 06Z GFS AND 00Z ECMWF ARE IN GOOD AGREEMENT ON A CLOSED LOW IN
THE NORTHEAST PACIFIC 12Z SUN MOVING NORTHEAST AND GRADUALLY
WEAKENING AS IT APPROACHES THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST 12Z MON. THE MEAN
TROUGH CONTINUES INLAND AND TAKES ON A MORE POSITIVE TILT 12Z TUE
IN THE GREAT BASIN TO THE SOUTHWEST.

IN THE EAST...THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE IS THE EVOLUTION OF THE
AMPLIFYING TROUGH DAYS 6-7...AS THERE ARE SIGNIFICANT TIMING
DIFFERENCES WITH THE GFS/CANADIAN OPERATIONAL AND ENSEMBLE MEMBERS
FASTER IN MOVING THE TROUGH OFF THE EAST COAST THAN THE 00Z ECMWF
AND 00Z ECMWF ENSEMBLE MEAN. THE UPSTREAM TELECONNECTIONS ALL SHOW
A BROAD EASTERN US TROUGH.

THERE IS SUFFICIENT UNCERTAINTY TO TAKE AN INTERMEDIATE APPROACH
AND WAIT UNTIL BETTER CLUSTERING DEVELOPS. CONSEQUENTLY THE 500
MB HEIGHT FORECASTS AND SEA LEVEL PRESSURES/FRONTS USED A BLEND OF
40% ECMWF ENSEMBLE MEAN/40% 00Z NAEFS MEAN AND 20 % 00Z ECMWF.
THE 06Z GFS WAS FASTER THAN THE MAJORITY CLUSTER WITH THE LOW IN
THE OH VALLEY 12Z SUN TO OFF THE MID ATLANTIC COAST MON 09 FEB.

IN THE NORTHERN PLAINS TO THE MIDWEST...THE 06Z GFS WAS AN OUTLIER
SHOWING LOW PRESSURE ORIGINATING ALONG THE STATIONARY FRONT NEAR
THE MT BORDER WITH CANADA 12Z SUN MOVING QUICKLY EAST SOUTHEAST
DOWN THE FRONT TO NEAR THE IA/IL BORDER 12Z MON.

...SENSIBLE WEATHER IMPACTS...

IN THE WEST...THE 00Z ECMWF AND 06Z GFS SHOW A LARGE AREA OF
MODERATE TO LOCALLY HEAVY RAIN FRI AND SAT FROM CENTRAL AND
NORTHERN CA UP TO WESTERN WA/OR...WITH A SECONDARY MAXIMUM IN THE
NORTHERN ROCKIES...WITH HIGHER ELEVATION SNOWS. WITH RECENT DRY
CONDITIONS...MUCH OF THESE RAINS IN CA WILL BE WELCOME. CONTINUING
POCKETS OF MOISTURE AND 700 MB VERTICAL VELOCITY MAXIMA PERSISTS
OVER THE PACIFIC NORTHWEST AND NORTHERN ROCKIES SUN AND MON WITH A
BREAK POSSIBLE TUE AS THE EAST PACIFIC 700 MB RIDGE BUILDS
ONSHORE. TEMPERATURES RUN SEVERAL DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL DAYS 3-7
THROUGHOUT THE WEST.

IN THE EAST...WITH THE INITIAL WAVE MOVING OFF THE EAST COAST DAY
3...SNOW IS LIKELY FOR EASTERN NEW ENGLAND BEFORE THE STORM
DEPARTS BEYOND THE CANADIAN MARITIMES. WITH THE AMPLIFYING TROUGH
AND SFC FRONTAL WAVE...SNOW IS EXPECTED ACROSS THE NORTHERN PLAINS
TO UPPER MS VALLEY SAT TO THE GREAT LAKES SUN AND THEN THE CENTRAL
APPALACHIANS TO MID ATLANTIC LATE SUN TO MON. BEYOND THAT THE
POTENTIAL IS THERE FOR MON-TUE SNOW FOR THE MID ATLANTIC TO NEW
ENGLAND.
TEMPERATURES ARE PERSISTENTLY BELOW NORMAL DAYS 3-7 IN NEW
YORK/NEW ENGLAND AND DOWN IN FLORIDA.

IN THE CENTRAL US...DAY 3/4 HIGH TEMPERATURE ANOMALIES SHOW 20-25
DEGREES F ABOVE NORMAL FROM THE HIGH PLAINS OF WY AND CO SOUTH TO
THE TX PANHANDLE.
THESE RELAX TO 15-20 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL DAY 5/6. ON DAY 7 THE
ANOMALIES ARE STILL 10-15 DEGREES ABOVE NORMAL OVER A LARGE SWATH
OF THE CENTRAL TO SOUTHERN PLAINS.

PETERSEN

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

MAJOR EAST COAST STORM SUNDAY TO MONDAY? TIME WILL TELL!

ravensbbr said...

Must...not...get...hopes...up...at...the...same...time...must...stock...fridge...like...crazy...

#mooptimisticforecastmodasheddreams

:-P

kristia35 said...

I can't bring myself to get excited yet. When Andy starts talking about Kevlar and Manwich then I'm all in---full weenie mode.

Morpheus said...

Thanks Andy - It is great to have some fluffy white stuff on the horizon to look forward to, even if it is just a sparkle of a trough in a back woodsman's eye at the moment. NAO where is that woman you like so much, how is she feeling about next Sunday?Monday?

Morpheus said...

Negative or Positive...

kristia35 said...

I'd even settle for neutral at this point

genser95 said...

It's an interesting situation coming up starting Sunday. When you get an arctic front pushing like that it can really be good for snow in the Mid-Atlantic. But who knows where the front will set up?

Unknown said...

BBR---- Just seen recent GFS loop for Monday into Tuesday. WOOHOO! AWESOME SAUCE BABY!

Unknown said...

Coolwx.com

Precip type loop

Shows a storm digging in and stalling some what in the area. Intriguing.

Unknown said...

Weather Underground downgraded Sunday's snow to less than one inch......we are so out of luck this winter.... :(

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

Edwin,

That forecast "might be right". It also might be a little short by 20-30 inches. We have a very dynamic and volatile set-up. There is the potential for an extreme event. Best potential in years. Will it be realized? Time will tell!

kristia35 said...

Weather Underground's jumping the gun as usual.

BioPat said...

I tried to post last evening but to no avail, so I'll give it a shot this morning.
Historically we have reached the point in winter where Baltimore and its surrounding areas seem to get their most significant snowfall. Just in the past 10 years alone we can look at several major storms that found favor with this time period. Although, "the trend is your friend" the setup for next week beginning late Sunday could be the trend breaker. For those of us considered "powderhounds" this will be a welcome change from the piddly storms we have been seeing. Hopefully this pattern will hold and bring us something to talk about for winter, 2015 - stay tuned still a lot of time between now and Sunday.

Unknown said...

I am going dark. After seeing the computer model runs last night be so terrific,this morning it is completely different. Talk to you all over the weekend within 24 hrs of any event. The science is not worth the hype. I'm just tired of getting my hopes dashed. I will...Keep calm and back away from the computer.....

Destiny Cruise said...

LOL at the "piddly" snow we've gotten. So true. However, I'm to the point, I won't believe the hype, until I actually see 4 or more inches fall. This season's snows have been a major disappointment!

kristia35 said...

We're still 5 days out. If the models changed up @ 48hrs, I'd be concerned. For a few more days it's just noise.

ravensbbr said...

Mike, I don't blame you, it's been a tough winter to get stoked about.

Andy, thanks for the reality check for us, you help keep us sane. :)

It really is a reminder that we are not in control of what the weather will be.

Hope for the best, prepare for the worst.

2 weeks until pitchers and catchers report to Sarasota! :-D

Rebecca said...

With all the pregnant women I know, there will be a major event in the next 6 weeks. At least 1 of us will have a storm related delivery story. Not giving up on winter yet!

SAHM of 4 and all the friends

Unknown said...

Now models have moved it to Monday....first this morning it had 5-8 inches and now 1-3 inches with rain on Sunday. Part of me really misses Connecticut right now, LOL

kyleZ said...

We will either get dry slotted or have a 34 degree rain on Sunday it's just how this winter has been going we need almost perfect ingredients for snow it seems.

Westsidehideaway said...

Well. I'll wait till Saturday to even look at the forecast. No need to fuss over anything until a few hours before precip is supposed to start happening. In the meantime I'll just plan for nothing to happen.

notsofreestate said...

Nothing about any snow Thursday night into Friday?

Unknown said...

I fail to see how a week ahead these models predict snopocalypses like it's a joke. The last 2 Sundays and the next one have been predicted to have epic blizzards and as we get closer then their predictions turn into <1 in. Why do they (especially Weather Underground), love to jump the gun so much. It's heartbreaking. It reminds me of that stretch from 2011-2013 where there was no snow at all....at least no significant snow.

Butch Dynomite said...

but sometimes it goes the other way too!

Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

It's fair to say that the explosive set-up being advertised by most models in some form or another has pushed north out of our latitude again. This is becoming a New England style winter where we stay dry except for nuisance events at rush hour. We are back to wait and see. It's still prime time for snow at our latitude so let's see what the second half of February will bring.

kristia35 said...

I wonder how many debates regarding atmospheric memory will spawn from the winter of 2015

Flame said...

Given that models appear to fail in a consistent manner by swinging north this winter, so perhaps we need to watch out when the model indicates the track toward the Carolinas. Maybe? Juse a few more weeks to go before March...

kyleZ said...

We need that NAO to go negative looks like it may dip slightly negative around the 14th or 15th hopefully we can get something out of it.

ravensbbr said...

"Now is the winter of our discontent..."

-Shakespeare, Richard III Act 1, Scene 1

You said it, Billy...suck...

ravensbbr said...

Andy, it's March 15 that's our sun angle death to snowflake stickage date, correct?

Mama and Caesar always did warn about the Ides of March...