The lights are up, the Christmas tunes have taken over the radio... and usually there's a ton of cold. Winter started early this year and we had a white Halloween and we're going to have a mild Christmas. Temperatures were well below normal as we ended October and started November. That's when we picked up about a third of our seasonal snowfall.
Here's a look at the snowfall so far this season:
And, in contrast, the snowfall we've had over the last 30 days...
Most of us have had just around an inch to four inches of snow in the Upper Midwest over the last month. That has to do with temperatures running above normal and a really calm pattern.
It's quite the contrast from about two months ago. My fellow meteorologist Brandon Marshall alerted me to the fact that both Halloween and Thanksgiving (both in low 30s) will be colder than Christmas... something that doesn't happen too often.
Let's talk about this mild pattern... first off, in the upper levels of the atmosphere the jet stream (storm track) is displaced WELL to the north for this time of year.
A big ridge has moved in overhead and, with the jet stream to the north, warm air has been able to build in. Because that storm track is so far to the north there are no systems coming in to disrupt the warm up.
The past week has been pretty dry and the next six days or so will also be dry...
During the peak of this warm up temperatures will be running 15 to 25 degrees above normal. Here's a look at the high temperatures Sunday:
The pattern starts to break down some as we head through Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, meaning temperatures will start to cool down some. Temperatures will still be above normal, though.
And then Christmas Day:
Terry's been talking about that cool down that will arrive in the days thereafter. We'll talk more about that in my next post. RK
IT'S NOT TOO LATE! YOU CAN STILL GIVE WEATHER SCHOOL FOR CHRISTMAS. IT'S SO SPECIAL, THE REINDEER GAVE IT TO SANTA THIS YEAR...
Christmas is almost here. Are you still looking for something special for that hard to buy for person? Maybe you just want to treat yourself for being on the nice list! Well, here's an idea that can "give" any weather enthusiast a lifetime of pleasure. It's called WEATHER SCHOOL. What a person experiences and learns here will open up the world of forecasting for years of enjoyment to come. As a little bonus, we will personalize an email to that special someone from TSwails himself along with a certificate to open or unwrap (below). Consider giving the gift of weather. Better hurry, only 4 desks still open. You can get all the details below. Merry Christmas!
TSwails.com is offering a very special and unique opportunity to learn first-hand the ins and outs of weather forecasting with one of the best meteorologists in the Midwest along with his team of expert meteorologists.
That’s right… You want to forecast right along with Terry Swails, well now you can. He’s teaching weather with TSwails newest program called WEATHER SCHOOL. The opening bell rings this January and you can be a member of the very first graduating class. The one-day forecasting seminar for weather enthusiasts will be held at his home in January. It’s not your typical run-of-the-mill school. There will be no tests, but Terry, Rebecca, and Nick will cram your head with so much knowledge, it’ll be spinning like a tornado before the day is over.
You want to know the essential online sites to use for models, radar, and the basic weather tools? DONE! You want to understand the structure of models and the role they play? DONE! You want to be able to construct forecasts from the ground up? DONE!
WEATHER SCHOOL will be presented in a seminar-type format where you'll have the ability to ask questions and dig deep. You’ll get the scoop on data acquisition, model analysis, severe weather, and actual forecasting from the big dog himself, T. Swails. With 43 years of experience and an uncanny ability to break the science down, you’ll open the door to forecasting like never before.
Along with the head master T. Swails himself, meteorologists Rebecca Kopelman and Nick Stewart of KGAN TV will be there to lend their knowledge and experience to the discussion. It will be fun, informative, and factual! This is the day for you to see, feel, and experience what it’s like to be in the hot seat of a meteorologist.
The seminar will be held January 25th and will last from noon until 5:00pm. We have limited seating and the cost is $99 dollars per person. A catered lunch will be provided. Again..not a lot of seats so reservations with a pre-payment are required. Sorry, no refunds. If there’s enough interest, a second session will be added in early February. To register or get additional information send an email to email@example.com
GIVE THE GIFT OF WEATHER. This might be the perfect gift for that hard to buy for person this Christmas. Along with a WEATHER SCHOOL admittance voucher, TSwails will send a special holiday greeting to your weather enthusiast if you give the gift of weather with the TSwails touch!
WEATHER SCHOOL AGENDA:
WELCOME AND INTRODUCTION
Purpose: To help weather enthusiasts understand the basics of forecasting and apply the knowledge and techniques learned to construct personal forecasts.
Session 1: DATA ACQUISITION
The essential on-line sites for models, observations, satellite and radar images, and general weather data.
Session 2: ANALYSIS:
Determining your objective goals. Short term, intermediate, or long-term. Understanding the process of analysis and its relationship to forecasting.
Model options and choices. What to use and when!
The GFS, EURO, NAM 3k, NAM 12K, Canadian, HRRR, MJO, ensembles, teleconnections, etc.
Locating, learning, and knowing what’s essential to make a reliable forecast.
The art and science of model interpretation: Using and understanding model output. Its called guidance for a reason!
Learn how to analyze key parameters such as:
Surface and upper air data
Vorticity and energy
Wind and pressure
Session 3: MAKING A FORECAST FROM MODEL GUIDANCE
A simulation of the basic process using model output.
BREAK: A 25-30 minute recess to enjoy a catered lunch…
Session 4: SEVERE WEATHER:
Thunderstorms, tornadoes, derechoes, and squall lines.
Soundings. What are they and why should I care?
Instability (CAPE) vs (CIN) Critical interaction involving moisture, heating, and forcing.
Uncovering the ingredients of a severe weather set-up.
TVS signatures. What to look for on radar.
Role of SPC vs NWS, and your local TV station regarding the warning process.
Simulated model driven forecast of a severe weather event/tornado outbreak
Session 5: WINTER STORMS:
The key ingredients required for significant winter storm:
How to forecast the rain snow line.
How to forecast snow totals from QPF
Determining totals from snow ratios.
What to look for at the surface and at upper levels (500 and 850mb)
Model bias and determining the storm track
Simulated model driven forecast of a significant Midwest winter storm
QUESTION AND ANSWER SESSION
An open period for attendees to ask questions regarding relevant topics or issues discussed during the day.
Some final words of inspiration from the events headliners
Once again, to reserve a spot or ask questions send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org See you when the bell rings! Roll weather...T. Swails
CONSIDER THE VALUE PLEASE...TSwails.com continues to be a leader in catching and forecasting the trends of our extreme weather pattern the past few weeks. It takes a great deal of commitment, passion, and knowledge to stay on top of the swings. Now that I'm no longer in television, this is my job and that's the reason I'm asking for a voluntary subscription fee of $12 dollars a year, one dollar a month to keep TSwails going. Together we can create one of the best, most unique, and reliable weather sites in the Midwest. Your contribution of 3 cents a day, allows me to stay free of the corporate world and pour my energy into doing what I do best, forecasting the weather! We hope you see the value and hard work that goes into the site everyday. Your support in any way is sincerely appreciated. Thanks and roll weather. To donate click on the secure green box below.