Monday, December 3, 2012

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The Proverbial Calm...Is Over

7:40 PM PST 12/3/12 (Special Western U.S. Report by Affiliate Forecaster Ben Randall) 

Readers in the Pacific Northwest who have frequented our zones in the Tri-Cities & Mid-Columbia area of southeast Washington, or Seattle & The Sound, recall that last week we welcomed Forecaster Tanner from of southwest Washington. This week we are expanding directly to the Pacific coast, welcoming Forecaster Ben Randall from Tillamook, Oregon. Ben has prepared this overview of the Pacific coast storm situation that will affect much of the U.S. in the next weather pattern. Ben reports:
  • HIGH WINDS: First concern with the next coastal system is the potential for high winds along the coast especially as usual along the exposed beaches and headlands. It appears likely Oregon will see 60-65 mph winds along the beaches and headlands though can't rule out a 70 mph wind gust as the front comes onshore. For this reason, High Wind Warnings are in effect from 12 AM to 12 Noon Tuesday for the South WA , North and Central OR Coasts near beaches and headlands . 
  • FLOODING: The next concern is potential for flooding on some of the area rivers. This all depends on where the heaviest rain falls. As of right now current models suggest the farther south the system will move, the greater chance flooding may occur from heavy rain. The NWS has issued a Flood Watch for all of NW Oregon, but not in SW Washington at this time. 
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Western States         

Winter Stormcast Pacific Northwest
WeatherOn* (SW Washington)

Seattle & The Sound
Tri-Cities & Mid-Columbia  (SE Washington)

Sunday, December 2, 2012

What About Winter?
An overview of our season forecast the Winter Stormcast Team 

Current US / Canadian snowcover. 

as of DEC 2, 2012

12:15 PM EST 12/2/12 Our earlier statements from November 2, 2012: 
"We expect November temperatures to end how they started: Below normal heading into December. This shift back to cold by Thanksgiving should be accompanied by a period of potentially high impact winter weather in the Eastern U.S. by mid December, followed by a warmup into January for those same areas." 
"The cancellation of an expected El Nino this season in the central Equatorial Pacific should lead to significantly above-normal temperatures in January 2013 for the eastern two-thirds of the U.S. In short, if you are going to plan a ski trip east of the Mississippi, schedule it for the next 30 days. 
If your company or organization wants to avoid any surprises this season, we invite you to consider our winter weather intelligence services."

WINTER 2012-2013 as of December 1, 2012

  • Storms As a result of the influence Hurricane Sandy and the Nov 7-8 Winter Storm had on upper level atmospheric interactions in the Northern Hemisphere, we expect one or more large scale, high impact winter weather events in the Eastern U.S. and Mid-Atlantic between November 25 and December 20.
  • Temps A period of much-below normal temperatures from late November to early January, similar to the Dec 1989 cold wave, followed by a significant warm period in the East for January 2013, ending with a brief return to cold, stormy weather by mid-February.*
  • Snow  Near- to below-normal snowfall east and south of I-81, above normal snowfall for the Great Lakes, Midwest, Ohio Valley and New England.
  • Ice  One or more significant storms in the eastern U.S. in Dec 2012 & Feb 2013.
  • Rain A wetter winter than in 2011-12 for much of the eastern U.S., and more arid for the western U.S.

The recent atmospheric influence of Hurricane Sandy suggests a continuation of  50-60 day "Long Range Cycle" which has been hypothesized by others as the driver for the 2-years running frequency of high impact events across North America. The significant build-up of snow cover in Canada this early in the season also increases probability of one major inland-to-coastal event in the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast similar to the January 26, 2011 "snow monsoon" storm. 

For storm-weary residents, companies and municipalities alike on the U.S. East coast, we believe there will be a 10-day period of calm to allow for regrouping and planning for winter from November 8 to 18. However, following that time, we urge you to consider preparing for a period that for some, may deliver 80% of your winter weather in a 2-3 week time frame. 

*Temperature projections derived from our interpretation of NOAA monthly forecasts for Dec-Jan-Feb by the Climate Forecast System 2. 

Review our earlier "Featured Articles" which led up to this official statement.