Tuesday, October 16, 2012

2012 Winter Forecasts

Please keep your eyes and ears open for the 2012 winter forecasts. We'll be collecting them and presenting them in a future blog entry.

To date, here's what we've heard of for winter forecasts:
Dave Dahl's forecast (61 inches of snow)
Live Weather Blogs (44.3 inches of snow, near average temperatures)
Paul Douglas forecast on Oct. 23:
I've mentioned it a few times on the weather blog. I suspect our dry bias will hang on into at least the first half of winter, thru December. A weak El Nino may steer the most significant storms well south and east of Minnesota, but my gut (a "wish-cast"?) is that we'll see more plentiful snows after the first of the year. I refuse to believe that we could see two 20" winters, back to back. The odds of this happening are slim. If I had to throw out an inch figure (dangerous) it would be in the 40-45" range, so more than last winter, but still almost half the snow that fell during 2010-2011, when a strongly negative NAO (North American Oscillation) blocking pattern kept a fresh supply of sloppy, southern storms pushing north across the Plains. My gut is telling me this winter will be closer to last winter than the 86" winter of 2011-2011, but I still suspect we'll see more snow (and more cold) than last winter. Stay tuned...

Here are last year's less-than-spot-on winter forecasts.

27 comments:

  1. Crazy. Absolutely crazy to attempt seasonal snowfall totals at this juncture of the game. However, I believe it is safe to say that our winter will be warmer than average.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Personally, until there's more of a record of seasonal, longer term predictions having a modicum of success, I'm not sure it's safe to forecast anything!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Good point. Last year's predictions were enormous bombs.

      Huttner is talking about the GFS showing snow on Halloween weekend. When's the last time the GFS was right about anything?

      Right now, GFS predicts 41F for midday on Friday 26th October. ECMWF is predicting 68F for the same day.

      Delete
  3. Well, I believe the drought will continue, so there won't be that much moisture available at our latitudes.
    Secondly, the moisture-rich storms coming from the SW, in an environment that will generally be above average, will push warm air so that most of it will fall as freezing rain or rain/ snow mix.
    We'll get the usual ridicolous half-inch clippers one every 10 days or so.
    To cut it short, I predict around 32-35 inches.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. So, you are saying a winter that is identical to last year.

      Delete
  4. I think it will be average to slightly below temps. Snow fall will be around 53 inches.

    ReplyDelete
  5. It will be dark with occasional snow. I believe there is a chance we will see temperatures. Write that down!

    ReplyDelete
  6. I do not know about that. The ECMWF cuts off before it shows its snow predictions out of the storm. Also, considering how every time has been miss, miss, miss, miss, misss so far, I think we will most likley see nothing. However, the models have to get it at some point, Right?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Replying to comment from disco80...

      Delete
  7. That's quite the whopper of a system around the Oct. 25th timeframe. Depending on exactly how it evolves (if it even evolves), it could be a very typical fall type storm with a snowstorm in the cold sector and severe weather in the warm. Interesting that the GFS and Euro both show this deep low forming but of course their exact path and timing are way up in the air. It's 8 days out, but another thing to track. If the 12z GFS ended up being right, North Dakota would be looking at a major blizzard.

    ReplyDelete
  8. Here is accuweather's snowfall prediction. Somthing similar to that of the 2009-2010 season.

    http://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/winter-forecast-snow-northeast-nyc/80787

    ReplyDelete
  9. Just for the fun of it, I decided to throw my forecast predictions out there. Since I live in the western WI area, I figured I would go off of that. This is extreme "poor mans" forecasting, and am going off the the ENSO pattern that is happening now, that is forecast, and that is similar to years past. At this point in time, I see the winter of 2006-2007 as one that is very similar in that. That winter saw a pretty quiet Dec and Jan, with Feb and March being active. Overall, our area saw pretty close to 50 inches of snow and that amount seems legit again. While March was active the snow seemed to melt pretty rapidly too so overall our best snowpack was seen in Feb. I think close to 50 inches of snow seems legit yet again. As far as temps go, we started off Nov fairly chilly before seeing it warm up a bit through the rest of the month. The final days of Nov, however the temp dropped off for a short timeframe. Dec was also warm, with very few daytime highs below the freezing mark. The true chill didn't really arive until early Feb but that was also short lived. So temp wise, I think overall we may end up above average, with brief cold snaps throughout the winter. Again, I'm only basing this off of the ENSO because it's really the only information that is available for that far out. The other oscillations are up in the air and could easily shift things the other direction. This is my untrained, very poor mans winter forecast. I could care less if I'm wrong or right, but I thought I would just give it a whirl. Why not, right?

    ReplyDelete
  10. Here is the NWS winter prediction:

    http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2012/20121018_winteroutlook.html

    ReplyDelete
  11. Its pretty safe to say our 16 month stretch of above normal temps will come to an end,even with the next 4 days being above average,temps cool to below average by Thursday the 25th and stay WELL below for the reminder of the month,early November looks down right cold as well,our first inch of snow in the metro won't come as late as last year,which was 11/19....I said in a earlier post it will be sometime during the first 10 days of November,I'm still sticking with that.....in fact with this cold air coming by the 25th I wouldn't be all too surprised to have some measurable snow before October ends.........some outlets are hinting at snow around the Halloween timeframe..........1991 revisited anyone?

    ReplyDelete
  12. Plymouth Weather LoverOctober 21, 2012 at 11:23 PM

    Do not tease me Big Daddy! Bring it!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. @PWL,could possibly be a tease,at the time of my post.....weather.com,accuweather,and wunderground all had snow wording around Halloween,since all have backed off except Wunderground,we'll see what happens,it will definitely get colder around here starting Thursday to the tune of 10-15 degrees below normal,so the 16 month above average temps will end,as for snow we wait and see...............

      Delete
  13. Bill,read in Paul Douglas's blog tonight that he is predicting 40-45 inches of snow this winter,not much thru Decemeber,but he says most of our snow will come after the new year.Also he says a wet slushy snow is possible on the backside of Thursdays system as close as St.Cloud,fyi.

    ReplyDelete
  14. Thanks for that heads up Big Daddy!

    ReplyDelete
  15. No problem Bill........That rain we got today was a welcome sight,some forecasters have rain going to snow even in the metro tommorrow,nothing significant but it will be nice to see,IF it happens.Also what is everyones thought about the possibel"perfect storm 2" out east,i have heard some dire statements about this storm(read Paul Huttner's blog from this afternoon,to see what I mean)a storm of historic proportions is what one forecaster said,I got family on the east coast,so I for one hope it doesnt occur or at least at the magnitude of some of the models.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hmmm, Nice timing big daddy, I think the ECMWF is the correct solution with Sandy. AS a hurricane moves north it will generally feel the effects of a approaching trough over the eastern US and be kicked out to sea. However for Sandy to remain a true tropical system as it move north (ie: without warm fronts and cold fronts) is very rare at this time of year. AS a matter of fact if I'm reading the ECMWF right, as Sandy approaches the NE US coast, it becomes a non tropical system with a cold front and a warm front, thus allowing it to come on shore under the upper trough. Just my amateur eyes, don't take that verbatim.

      Delete
  16. Winter Forecast. Duane I like your analog year of 06-07, I also like 52-53, and 60-61. All three years had a weak El Nino with a -PDO and a + AMO. Summer of 52 was very similar in regards to this year as to where the core of the heat set up, but it really wasn't a drought year. Summer of 60 was unremarkable in regards to the heat and drought. 2006 was not as good with the core of the heat, but was rather good with the drought area's, May through August. 2006 was also good for easing the drought conditions over IA,IL and WI, much similar to what we have seen this year.

    All three analog years showed around 45" of snow for MSP. However what was different with those three years was that the Sea Surface Temps just off the Western coast of the US were below normal for Sept to Oct, as opposed to this year which are above normal.

    This brings me to the NE USA coast and the area between Hudson Bay and Greenland. While the 3 analog years I used were showing Sea Surface Temps above normal in that area for Sept-Oct, they were not nearly as warm as they are today. That was leading me to think that geographically we were going to see a strong west based NAO (further west than normal, say between the Hudson Bay area and the west coast of Greenland.) That would allow the storm tracks to cut up between the MN/Dakota borders and say Detroit. So I was leaning to above normal snowfall, especially between Nov 1st and the end of Dec.

    Now all of the sudden Sandy shows her ugly face, (or sexy on your point of view). If she should happen to come on shore as the ECMWF shows, that will cool the waters of the NE USA coast and I believe force any west based NAO to it's more normal position over the southern tip of Greenland.

    So in a nutshell, my real winter forecast will wait until I see what happens with Sandy....GRRRRRRR

    ReplyDelete
  17. I have to be honest,feeling a little uncomfortable,somewhat nervous about this hybird storm "Sandy",see I have family living in coastal NJ and coastal LI and reading all the weather blogs about this being life-threatening,historic proportions,perfect storm has me uneasy,especially when I have a stubborn family that thinks nothing could happen to them,they didnt even know anything about this storm till I mentioned it to them yesterday....I just pray the track takes it away from the NYC area,but at the moment it doesnt look good...any thoughts on what this storm is going to do or where its going to hit from anyone?

    ReplyDelete
  18. Legit cause for concern in regards to that storm. It may still be a few days before the track narrows in even more, but at this point anywhere between New York and the Washington DC area is the target for where it will come ashore. Sandy will be a large storm, with her effects being felt well away from the center. While the NHC shows the storm losing its tropical characteristics, the pressures actually continue to fall. In fact, the latest GFS brings the pressure to the same level that is equivalent to a Cat 3 hurricane. Areas along the east coast are launching weather balloons for each model run, and hurricane hunters have been making several flights so hopefully the models will really start narrowing in on a final solution. I posted this on another page as well, but the "weather geek" side of me kind of wants to see this happen, due to the total rareness and uniqueness of the system and how it will all play out. It is such a strange situation. However the "everyday guy" side of me worries about the impact it will have on people and their lives, families, and property. We can't stop it, but those out there can prepare and leave if need be.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Here's the latest model data from the GFS and Euro, and their thoughts on Sandy. GEM (not shown) is closer to the GFS solution, but a bit further south.

    http://i105.photobucket.com/albums/m203/duanewolter/Sandy.jpg

    ReplyDelete
  20. Side note...this is the 2 year anniversary of the big windstorm that moved through MN. The storm that is supposed to hit the northeast is currently forecast to have a much lower area of pressure, so winds should be even more intense. NWS has this write up in regards to that big storm.

    http://www.climate.umn.edu/doc/journal/low_pressure_101026.htm

    ReplyDelete
  21. I just set up a new thread for comments on Sandy: http://www.minnesotaforecaster.com/2012/10/tracking-sandy-from-afar.html

    ReplyDelete
  22. @Bill.........Paul Huttner put out his winter outlook on his MPR blog "Updraft" last evening.....his prediction is 40-50 inches,and said if you need to pin him dow to a number he's going with 42.5.........just an fyi.

    ReplyDelete