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After an early season foray into wintry territory, the good news is that the worst is behind us and a warming trend is in the works. It's well deserved too as many of you saw snow and temperatures that were more typical of December as October went out like a lion.

Here you can see the snow reports from Halloween day. The NE half of my area observed flakes while the SE stayed snow free.

This larger perspective shows significant snow piled up over much of Minnesota and Wisconsin, even clipping the NE tip of Illinois.

Here in Dubuque we picked up 1/10th of an inch of snow that dusted the ground. That is only the 5th time since 1873 (150 years) measurable snow has fallen on Halloween day. I very much appreciated the fact I was here and able to enjoy it!

For the season so far, this is how much snow has already accumulated around the nation.

That's a very respectable start to the snow season, even better than last year which was good. Compare this year above to 2022-23 below.

The depth of the cold has been near record levels the past 3 days. In fact, Burlington slipped to 20 for a low Wednesday morning breaking the previous record of 21 set in 2014.

Cedar Rapids, Ottumwa, and Kirksville were all in the teens for lows. The growing season has ended for another year here in the Midwest.


While it will be a gradual process, the storm track is undergoing a realignment that will bring us a far more seasonal brand of weather for the weekend. Here you can see the 500mb jet stream pattern by Sunday. We've transitioned into a westerly (or zonal flow) aloft which cuts off the direct connection to the cold polar air of recent days.

5 day temperature anomalies November 2-7th look like this. You can see the stratified look of the thermal profile with Pacific air streaming across the central U.S. The recent surge of polar air has retreated to the north.

Temperatures will begin to moderate Thursday and by Friday 50s will have returned to the region. 60s could reach the far south Saturday and flirt with the rest of the area Sunday and Monday. The NBM (National model blend) shows the warm-up in high temperatures into the weekend.

Precipitation issues remain in the forecast late Saturday and Saturday night. With the advent of the westerly flow aloft, moisture is likely to be limited and in general the forecast looks dry through Friday night. The EURO shows a few spotty light showers Saturday with most of the day dry. The GFS with its storm track further south, juiced by a strong short wave, brings moderate rains in late Saturday and Saturday night. I'm still not sold on that due to the zonal flow and the potential limitations that places on available moisture. I'm leaning heavily towards the drier EURO. Confidence remains low on how this resolves itself. You can see the stark difference in solutions by way of the rainfall amounts indicated by the GFS and EURO late Saturday and Saturday night.



With the EPO (eastern Pacific Oscillation) and AO (Arctic Oscillation) remaining in positive phases long range, that should keep any significant cold out of the forecast for the next 10-14 days. In other words, fairly seasonal to perhaps above normal temperatures are on the table the first 2 weeks of November.

Here's the EURO EPO, note how we are coming out of the large negatives that have led to cold. That means the amplified western ridge is likely to be flattened.

THE AO is largely neutral to positive going forward. That indicates no Arctic intrusions.

I do have doubts about how long that mild pattern lasts come mid-November. The MJO is shown by both the EURO and GFS looping into phases 7 and 8 around November 10th.

Phase analogs for 7 and 8 correlate to cold and wet conditions during the month of November.

If we can keep those MJO phases centered in the western hemisphere December-February that could make for an interesting winter ahead. Time will tell. Roll weather...TS



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