WEIGHING IN ON THE WINTER...
So far its been kind of a weird winter around the central Midwest. It's been relatively mild and overall I thought that would be the case, especially the first half. These are the temperature departures over the past 45 days. Not much cold anywhere.
Snow though has been generous considering the relative warmth. Most of my area but the far south has racked up 12-24" totals which is above to well above normal up to this point.
Here's the snow depths reported Thursday morning.
A larger perspective shows my area with about as much as any other part of the Midwest.
Here's the national snow cover showing 31 percent of the nation with an inch or more. That's pretty meager a week into January, especially up north where La Nina winters are typically big snow producers. Still plenty of time to catch up.
Heading into the heart of winter it is still my belief that we are going to transition to what could be a significantly colder pattern in 9-10 days. While all models are pointing at that trend the GFS has been the clear leader in showing some bitter cold air out around January 19th-20th. Look at the change in temperature departures that it depicts over southern Canada and the NC United States. (This is yesterday on the left versus January 20th on the right). Way above to way below!
This is the 500mb flow on the GFS that would change the source region of our air to the Arctic and deliver the cold.
These are projected GFS temperature departures the morning of January 21st. They are 25-32 below normal which in late January is never a good thing.
The lows the morning of the 21st are sub-zero in all of my area according to the GFS.
Wind chills are down around 25-30 below zero. Ugh!
Just to make it clear, the EURO and Canadian are not as frigid showing less amplitude to the trough. That leads to a solution with a more tolerable brand of cold so I would say confidence is low to moderate with regard to the intensity of the cooldown after day 10.
Snowfall (and storminess) the next week looks to be next to nothing. After that the odds start to go up in the 10-15 day period. While none of the ensembles of the major models shows anything major, that is subject to change as the storm tracks gets better defined going forward. Here's what the ensembles of the GFS, EURO, and Canadian GEM show over the next 15 days.
The Canadian GEM
With that I will sign off wishing you all a fine Friday. The first week of 2021 is coming to a close and while the weather was boring not much else was. What a world we live in. Roll weather....TS