CLOSE BUT NO CIGAR....
The weather week started out quiet and cold around the Midwest as the area was situated under subsidence behind a massive storm impacting the eastern third of the nation. The impressive system looked like this Monday evening as the center headed towards western New York state with wind, rain, and snow. Close but no cigar as the saying goes.
The big green ball of color below is the energy (or vorticity) associated with the system at the 500mb jet stream level. In my world that's the sign of a storm that means business. Here in Portland, Maine, I'm on the warm side of the system where rain and winds are lashing the region. Blue Hill observatory a couple hours away near Boston has measured a gust of 81 mph.
This is the surface depiction and you can see the northerly winds that have been dumping cold air into the Midwest since Sunday. Snow was falling just to the east in Indiana and Ohio. Models have been pointing to that scenario for about a week and overall have done a good job of pinpointing the pattern and the storms evolution
Behind this system the next disturbance digs southward through the Plains and lower Mississippi Valley Wednesday through Thursday. That should be just far enough away to keep any rain or snow from reaching my area. After it drifts east the central U.S. remains in a dry northwest flow through the weekend. Precipitation chances look very low for at least a week (maybe 10 days) which takes us out to December 7th-10th. Here's what the GFS and EURO have for total precipitation the next 7 days.
The GFS has the same idea.
So essentially, the next 7 days (perhaps 10) are looking dry and seasonally cool. I'm anticipating highs that will generally be in the range of 35-42 degrees.
After December 7th that leaves us with 17 days to get some snow down for Christmas. I must say the pattern does not look especially promising but a lot can happen to change that in the next 10 days. I think we will have a couple opportunities but it's impossible to see storm tracks at this distance and that will be a key factor in whatever does or does not fall. Cold air and its availability is another big consideration. I will post the EURO and GFS snowfall ensemble forecasts which get out to about December 15th. Remember ensembles are an average of lots of different solutions, some of which have more snow and others less due to to varying solutions with regards to tracks and intensity. Here you go.
The EURO ensembles (51 member solutions) ending the morning of December 15th.
The GFS ensembles (21 member solutions) ending noon December 16th.
The GFS EXTENDED snowfall forecast does pile up some nice snow but its a 35 day forecast and not something I would lean on. I like the trend but that's about all its good for. Another thing to note is that this goes out through January 2nd so even if it verified some of the snow could fall after Christmas. Just saying.
I guess for now I will leave the world of speculation and say with good authority that the next 7-10 days will not be very exciting from a weather standpoint from what I'm seeing. Hurry up and wait.
25 DAYS TIL CHRISTMAS. GIVE AN ELF A BREAK...
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