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EXTRA "COLD" TURKEY THIS YEAR...

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THE FLAKES WERE FLYING...

Our first snow of the season is under our belts. As expected, flakes were flying all over the area Friday thanks to a cold unstable air mass rotating directly overhead. Little if any accumulation was noted unless you were up around HWY 20 where a few locations were whitened by 1/2 inch totals. Below you can see the random pattern of the radar returns brought on by the cellular nature of the snow showers Friday afternoon.

By late Saturday night subsidence was already spreading across the the region ending the snow showers and setting the stage for a cold but dry Saturday. Clouds may break for a time for some pockets of sunshine. However, clouds should quickly fill back in making for a mostly cloudy day. It will be brisk too with NW winds 12-24 mph keeping wind chills in the 20s and low 30s through evening.


SPARED BY A CLIPPER...

For the last few days models have struggled with the evolution of a fast moving clipper. Even at the time of this posting some models are trying to bring accumulating snow to NE parts of my area later Saturday night. However, with the track of the surface low into the Se Minnesota or the NE corner of Iowa I think the warm advection will warm thermal profiles for mainly rain showers, and there may not be many of those. There is a chance that there could be a brief period of snow or mix in the far north but even there amounts are light and the transition to liquid precipitation should be fast enough for little if any accumulation. I again side with the EURO solution which has been consistent and more to my liking. This system won't be problem for my area. Here's what the latest models are indicating for potential snow totals Saturday night starting with the preferred solution of the EURO.


The EURO

The GFS

The 3k NAM

The 12K NAM

The national model blend

Behind the clipper some reinforcing cool air enters the region to close out the weekend on Sunday. Hopefully we'll get a mixture of sun and clouds during the day but sunshine or not, it will be cold with highs mid 30s north to near 40 far south.


LET'S TALK TURKEY, COLD TURKEY...

Recent runs of the EURO are beginning to show a trend that could bring significant cold into the pattern just in time for Thanksgiving. If you notice in the animation below, the ensemble control kicks a vortex of bitter cold air out of the North Pole and drives it southward into Canada by November 24th.

A significant ridge is shown setting up just off the Pacific NW coast and those positives at 500mb are attempting to link northward into Alaska. That is the recipe necessary for transporting bitterly cold air into the center of the nation. Here's another look at the 500mb jet structure showing the large scale ridging over western North America and toughing over the central and eastern U.S.

When I say bitterly cold, I'm talking lows the morning of November 26th in the range of 10 to 20 below in North Dakota and NW Minnesota with sub-zero readings covering much of northern Iowa. That's impressive for November.

At 850mb (roughly 1 mile above the surface) readings of -35C are indicated in central Canada which equates to 30 below in Fahrenheit. That is seeding southern Canada for what could be another Arctic push in early December.

The EURO indicates temperatures 20-30 degrees below normal Thanksgiving day. That's big time cold!

Between now and the end of Thanksgiving the EURO control shows this for snowfall so not only could it be cold, it could be white for Turkey day.

Now that I have set this all up, the question becomes how likely is this and what can go wrong? Well, first of all this is 10 days down the road so there is always the chance the model is just wrong and it flips in coming runs. It happens and it's a risk on my part to even put this on the table. On the other hand, this reflects the analogs for the coming period and the teleconnections of a negative AO and WPO support it. I've been anticipating this (and have been on the record for it since the beginning of October). Therefore, what the EURO is depicting seems reasonable and I think some healthy early season cold awaits us. The biggest question to me is the magnitude of the chill. Is it just 5-10 degrees below normal when it arrives or more like 15-30 below which is flat out cold. These are questions that need to be answered and time is the only way we'll know the truth.


Needless to say, the weekend ahead is far from perfect but not far from what's possible for mid November. Like it or not, this is a precursor of what the next 4 months are all about. That's where I will leave it for now. Thanks for your time and if you appreciate the site please consider a donation by clicking the link below. The future of TSwails is in your kind and caring hands. Roll weather...TS


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