COULD WINTER STRUT ITS STUFF THIS YEAR...
Way back at the end of July I made a post that I thought the worst of summer was behind us. With half of August in the tank, I think it's safe to say that forecast was on the mark. Just look at the August temperature departures. The entire Midwest and much of the eastern 2/3rds of the nation have been well below normal. While it can still get warm the chances for significant heat waves are now dropping by the day.
Looking ahead, I like the CFSv2 climate models idea of pleasantly cool weather prevailing the remainder of August and into September. Here's the September temperature outlook.
We are now getting to the point where I can begin to formulate ideas on the upcoming winter. You may recall a couple weeks ago I pointed out the lack of any strong El Nino or La Nina plays in favor of a more typical Midwestern winter than we've seen the past 3 years.
I've also been seeing signs of blocking this winter where it can lead to some healthy cold in the central U.S. Here's the EURO 500mb forecast anomalies for Nov-January. Of note is the massive high pressure in NW Canada and a powerful Aleutian low that's fueling it. There's also western ridging implying a mean trough or storm track that would extend from the southern Plains to the eastern Lakes or Ohio Valley. Add in the tendency for a positive PNA and a negative AO and we have what I perceive to be real threats for cold and snow.
For several months the CFSv2 climate model has been blow torching the Midwest with well above normal winter temperatures (I showed that in a post). Today the CFSv2 saw the light that I see...at least for now. Here's what it showed for winter temperatures today. That is a much different look.
Here's the breakdown of monthly temperature departures starting with November going through March. If the CFSv2 is right winter hits early and hard in December. The model shows a break in February before it all ends with a cold March.
If the cold comes as some recent models indicate, there will be snow, perhaps above normal in some parts of the Midwest. Yea, I know its early but MANY of you keep asking my opinion. I'm not getting precise, just broad brushing the fact that there are reasons to believe this could be a decent winter. Roll weather...TS