48 comments on “2012-2013 Winter Forecast September 14th Update.

  1. The greenland block will be strong next tuesday. cause high temps for my area which is northwest indiana will be in the 50’s! and stay that way for at least 2 or more weeks. I think our summer will come to an end next tuesday. and i think much of the eastcoast north to south will be real cool as well.
  2. how much snow do u think im going to get this winter where i live and i live in jeffersoncounty wv sinse u did another update and do u think ill be getting any snow on my bithday which is december the 16th? is the winter going to be like 2009-2010?
  3. Yes I do think there could be a possibility of you getting snow on your birthday. I think this winter will be between a 02-03 and 09-10 winter.
  4. Hey Ahmad what a winter battle zone means is that temperatures will fluctuate during storms so those areas usually sees a mixed bag of precipitation anything from snow to sleet to freezing rain.
  5. Hello Matthew I love what I see on the winter forecast maps! I live in the central/east central Missouri area as a whole, what do you think my weather is going to be like? Do you think there will be chances for thundersnow?
  6. Matthew, this pattern I have been talking about where we are now starting to get a more negative NAO and a Hudson Bay Gyre in place, that is going to produce many shortwave troughs of low pressure that will try and reinforce the cold airmass that will be put in place by this first low pressure system. In fact, the GFS is really seeing this pattern, and has the first freeze occurring before September ends over the NC mountains. I think that may be a bit overdone, but conditions are certainly shaping up in favor of some of your predictions.
  7. In regards to the PNA, it should go positive, because given that the el nino will be central pacific based, and the warmer water will focus lower pressures over the tropics, a subsequent rise in pressures should occur over the Northeast pacific near North America. Plus, that will be enhanced by the cool waters sitting just of the pacific coast, and this is one of the signatures of a cold PDO to have a band of cooler than normal water of the pacific coast even in el nino.
  8. Look there are concerns and about this winter and my gut is telling me 94/95 winter or 06/07 type of El Niño winter. They were not the snow lovers winter and in fact warm as well. In late October you can check my Winter Forecast out at the American Weather Forum, under the Mid-Atlantic section. Let’s just say ” EVERYONE NEEDS TO HOLD THEIR HORSES ON THINKING OF A COLD & SNOWY WINTER IN THE EAST, WHERE CERTAIN ONI & SST VALUES SCREAM A 94/95 or 06/07 WINTER”!!!!!!!! Their identical to me!!! I would worry or I just hope I am wrong. I am only in my major in Atmospheric Science.
  9. Brad, I understand your concerns but it will be very hard to get a warm winter given that the el nino is central pacific based, like it was in 2009-10, and in the late 1970s. They are far from identical when you actually look at what we have going on here. First of all, we have been in a cold PDO since 2008, those el ninos were in a warm PDO. The SST values do not “scream a 94/95 or 06-07 winter” Those el ninos were east based and in a warm PDO, this one is centrally based and is in a cold PDO, it’s like comparing apples to oranges. Some comparable winters that had el ninos in a cold PDO are 2009-10, 1976-77, 1977-78, 1979-80, 1957-58. These winters were very cold and snowy for the eastern US, because when you have a cold PDO, the warmer waters over the tropical pacific get focused away from South America, and that helps to establish lowering pressures over that region, and allows a break in between the warm AMO of the atlantic and the warm waters of the tropical pacific, this allows an areafor pressures to rise in between. As anyone who is very familiar with the weather, the rises in pressures during the winter time is associated with cold, sinking air. During a warm PDO, the warmer waters of the tropical pacific are focused near South America, and when you have this happen, no discrete pressure rises can occur, so the air pressures remain relatively low, and when you have below normal pressures in the winter, that is associated with rising, warm air. Even 06-07 was not a complete disaster, February was very snowy and very cold over the eastern US.
  10. There’s a big difference between 09-10 el nino and this years “el nino.” While yes it is central based it’s minuscule compared to 09’s winter, and some models even forecast it to go back to neutral. The other difference is 09 was more west based whereas this year is central east based.
  11. Eric, I apprciate your write back. I still have a hangover on my forecast last year. I am being conservative this year and our average of Well Above average snow for the Mid-Atlantic is every 7 years . I know the -PDO IS in and times might change. I am optimistic and will stay conservative till late October. Thanks again Eric for your input!!
  12. @Left, it is not going back to neutral, and even if it did, we would be in a Modiki el nino regardless, which would not really make too much of a difference because the general pattern is still the same. Even with warm ENSO neutral, the warmer than normal waters of the tropical pacific would still be lowering the pressures there and with a warm AMO, this still creates a substantial pressure rise over the North American Continent, and this is the opposite of what occurred last year, where pressures remained low. The lower pressures were associated with rising warm, air, but with higher air pressures, expect the opposite of that (cold, dense air) which is much more favorable for a cold and snowy winter.
  13. Eric,

    All of the data from ’76-’77 and ’09-’10 does NOT show a cold PDO for those winters. Look at thr University of Washington monthly PDO values. 4/7 long range models have a neutral ENSO forecasted this winter. Let alone the fact that we are not in a true El Nino as we stand. SOI is under -8 at -4.1 and 3.9 for the 90/30 day values respectively. The “even if we do, we’d be in a Modiki anyway” is a false statement. A Modiki El Nino is just that…an El Nino. It is not synonymous with neutral. The “general pattern” IS different between a neutral and positive Nino…especially a moderate nino like ’09-’10 was.

  14. uh matthew what do you think the weather will be for cherokee,nc for mid-late october because my grade is going on a field trip there october,19th and i dont want the trip to be cancelled because of snow or cold weather.
  15. @Joe, we were in a cold PDO until about 1979 that’s when the PDO flipped to warm, and the winters of the late 1970s were associated with a cold PDO. The reason the PDO may appear to be warm during that time was because the el nino was able to change the PDO to it’s warm cycle, although it was still a cold PDO, this is exactly what we I think we are going to see with this upcoming winter. Yes, I realize my statement about it “is a Modiki anyway” is false, but you don’t seem to understand the general pattern is similar. When you have warm water over the tropical pacific, whether that be ENSO neutral or el nino, it will still focus the lower pressures over that region of the pacific and with the Atlantic being warm, this leads to a rise in pressures over North America, and rising pressures in the winter associated with cold sinking air, which is the opposite of what occurred last year. If you put 2 and 2 together you would see that since last year was relatively warm for the US in the winter under a la nina and with lower than normal pressures over the US, and you see the opposite occurring now over the tropical pacific and over North America, you would be inclined to think this winter will be a cold and snowy. Joe Bastardi would disagree with you on your statement that we were in a warm PDO in 1976, and also remember that even though we are in neutral now does not mean el nino won’t come on. When you look at the la ninas and el ninos since 1950 you would see that they strengthen as winter approaches. I suggest you watch this from Joe Bastardi a few years ago talking about this upcoming winter, in the video he mentions the resulting winters of the double la nina then el nino pattern at the end of the COLD PDO 1976-77, 1977-78, and 1978-79. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zkKURzmPwso
  16. The weather should be fine, then I don’t snowy weather will get in the way that soon, lol. It could be cool, maybe cold but nothing bad enough to cancel your trip.
  17. Eric,

    Who’s the one not understanding the pattern? The one who goes against clear data that shows in Mid’76 we switched to a warm PDO and blindly follows Bastardi who claimed on 03MAR12 that areas of IA/IL/MO was suppose to be -2 in temps? You can quote Bastardi all you want, but it won’t get you far. I would suggest you look at Bastardi on 04FEB11 where he states the 2nd year La Nina was going to be colder than the first…aka…2011-2012.


  18. Yes, I realized he said that 2011-12 would be cold, but even he admitted at the time that the winter was fairly tricky to forecast, given how there were not too many analogs, and given how the year before was What does his forecast last year have to do with this year? Instead of trying to bash Joe Bastardi, do you even realize how many other forecasters were predicting a cold, snowy winter? (including this weather site, although I was not part of the Weather Advance Storm team until recently) The only weather forecaster I know of that came close to being right was Levi Cowan who now runs Tropical Tidbites.com, and his expertise is in the tropics, not winter weather. As a meteorologist, you take these experiences and learn from them, and then when a new problem arises, you take what you learned apply it to what is in front of you. Now, when you look at the tropical pacific and the pressure patterns over North America they are the exact opposite of last year, and since the ENSO index is the main immediate, short-term driver of global climate, when you see the ENSO index completely flipping from last year, you have to wonder if conditions are exactly opposite, then shouldn’t we expect opposite results? We switched in mid 1976? Not quite, according to http://www.appinsys.com/globalwarming/PDO.htm which says the PDO didn’t flip until 1977, but the PDO itself was still warming, and the effects of the cold PDO were still prevalent over the Pacific, and the warm PDO did not reach it’s peak until the mid-late 1990s. The PDO did not really begin to warm substantially until about 1979 according to http://www.appinsys.com/globalwarming/PDO_files/image002.jpg, which is exactly what I have been saying. This was at the end of the cold cycle, and followed after multiple years of a deep la nina, which is very similar to what we have going on in front of us, not to mention we had a major volcanic eruption over iceland in 2010, which is analogous to what occurred in Novarupta in 1912.
  19. @Nick
    Denver will probably be see above normal snowfall and near normal temperatures, because Denver will be stuck in between the warmth west of the rockies under predominant ridging and the cold and stormy pattern. with large troughing over the east, so any slight change or deviation in the pattern could mean the difference between above normal or below normal temperatures. Denver will probably see a lot of snow late in the winter and towards the beginning of winter, as they usually do. Interestingly though, Denver saw 4 major snowstorms in October of 2009-10, and received their first snow on October 9th and they had a snowfall as late as May 13th. Winter may not be too far around the corner for you!
    Denver usually gets above average snowfall in el nino years, and even warm ENSO neutral years, but there are exceptions to this like 1983-84 and 1973-74. Denver usually receives about 57,5 inches of snow per year. Years that Denver had above normal snowfall:
    2009-10 (60.6 in.) el nino; 2006-07 (72.6 in.) el nino; 2002-03 (61.8 in.) el nino; 2000-01 (58.3 in.) la nina; 1997-98 (72.1 in.) el nino; 1994-95 (58.4 in.) el nino 1993-94 (69.1 in.) warm neutral; 1992-93 (60.4 in) warm neutral, 1991-92 (79.0 in) el nino; 1990-91 (57.7 in) warm neutral; 1989-90 (64.5 in) warm neutral; 1987-88 (62.3) el nino; 1986-87 (71.3 in) el nino 1985-86 (63.1 in) cool neutral; 1983-84 (80.9 in.) la nina 1982-83 (81.6 in) el nino; 1979-80 (85.5 in.) warm neutral 1978-79 (73.2 in.) cool neutral; 1973-74 (91.5 in.) la nina; 1972-73 (94.9 in.) el nino; 1971-72 (74.4 in.) la nina; 1969-70 (65.8 in.) el nino; 1967-68 (58.8 in.) cool neutral 1961-62 (72.5 in.) cool neutral; 1960-61 (80.6 in.) warm neutral; 1959-60 (80.0 in.) cool neutral; 1958-59 (99.3 in.) el nino; 1956-57 (78.3 in.) la nina; 1952-53 (68.2 in.) warm neutral; 1951-52 (84.9 in.) el nino; 1950-51 (74.8 in.) la nina.
    Of the above average snowfall years in Denver since 1950 13 were el nino (41.9 %), 7 were warm neutral (22.6%), 5 were cool neutral (16.9%), and 6 were la nina (19.4%). When you combine the el nino and warm neutral years, they account for 64.5% of all above average snowfall years since 1950, which means snowy years in Denver tend to favor el nino years and warm ENSO neutral years. This winter we are expected to be in a el nino or to stay warm neutral state of the ENSO, which is why I think Denver will probably see above normal snowfall this winter.
  20. @Eric!
    Awesome thank you for the information! Hope we get hammered this year 🙂
    I was happy to wake up with snow falling at the base of the ski resorts today like loveland and arapahoe basin!
    Thank you again 🙂
  21. You are welcome Nick. Yeah, that’s interesting to see snow up in the ski resorts and I noticed on radar snow showing up over the Rocky Mountains. Winter is not too far around the corner for you, and I think it is a pretty safe bet that you’ll probably get some snow before Halloween. I am leaning towards above normal snowfall for you, I’m personally thinking 55-70 inches for Denver this year, considering that 57.5 inches is average. If you haven’t seen much snow by February don’t be discouraged, because Denver’s snowiest month is usually March or April.
  22. when do u think u would know how much snow jeffersoncounty wv is going to get this winter and do u think will be getting any big snowstorms like we got back in february 2010?
  23. Eric,
    My concerns for our winter 2012-2013 are only getting worse. Our El Niño is weakening and we have cooler then normal waters 150m-200m below our El Niño. If these Cooler waters rise we could lose our El Niño . In fact our El Niño is weakening now and I believe this is our big factor in why??? We could be heading into a Neutral winter from the looks of things now and that would dramatically change our forecast. What do you think Eric? Also do you think we are losing our El Niño?????
  24. I see that as well, I also noticed that the SOI is slowly coming back from being negative and is headed towards 0 for the present moment. SOI is usually a good indicator of how strong or weak and el nino or la nina is, however, I think the MJO is playing a significant part in this. One thing I’ve taken note of is that over the last several weeks, actually since about mid-August the upward pulse of the MJO has been hanging around the Indian Ocean and the Western Pacific. The upward pulse of the MJO helps to induce more thunderstorm activity over the tropics and the enhanced thunderstorm activity releases latent heat into the atmosphere and lowers the pressures over the area of the tropics it is at. Now the SOI is a measure of the pressure difference between Tahiti and Darwin, Australia, and when it is positive, the air pressure at Tahiti is higher than at Darwin, and when it is negative it is vis versa. Now, with the upward MJO pulse generally sitting closer to Darwin, Australia since Mid-August, what that has essentially done is it has favored a positive SOI there, because with an upward MJO pulse in place that favors lower pressures closer to Darwin, Australia, and when pressures are lower towards Darwin as opposed to Tahiti that favors a positive SOI. A positive SOI is associated with la nina conditions, or cooling waters over the eastern pacific not an el nino. With the SOI becoming less negative, that is not favoring warm waters over the eastern Pacific, which is exactly what is occurring, however, the less negative SOI doesn’t as greatly affect the waters over the central pacific and towards the International date line, which remain above normal, and in some cases those waters are warming. Combine this with the fact that is you look at ENSO events since 1950, the el ninos and la ninas really don’t strengthen until later in the fall, anyway, and are prone to large fluctuations in the spring, summer, and the early fall. This why I’m not too concerned for the moment that the el nino is weakening, however, if the el nino continues to behave in this way for another month or so, then I’ll be more open to the possibility of a warm ENSO neutral for the winter.
    As far as dramatically changing the forecast, I would have to disagree to a certain extent on that. Yes, a switch to warm neutral would alter the winter forecast, but the overall pattern playing out over the northern hemisphere remains similar even with warm ENSO neutral. When you have an el nino over the pacific, especially if it is central or west based you have to consider the reasons why the el nino produces a cold winter, at least for the southern and eastern US. An el nino in a cold PDO with the warmer waters over the central pacific, and with the Atlantic ocean warmer than normal, what happens is that pressures lower over both of those oceans, and in between the pacific and the atlantic oceans is the North American continent, and when you have two areas of separate low pressure, in this case being the oceans, you have an area in between that must receive higher pressures, and that area that sees this is North America. In the winter, the above normal pressures are associated with cold air because colder air sinks and forces the pressures to rise. Even with warm ENSO neutral conditions, the waters over the central pacific will be above normal, and you will still see the same effects as far as overall pressure patterns go, with the lower than normal pressures still being focused over that area of the global tropics. (although the drops in pressure aren’t as dramatic as they are in el ninos.) Unless we go into cool neutral territory, (which is very, very unlikely to happen) I don’t see this winter being a bad one like this year, given that even if we see warm neutral conditions the overall pressure pattern would support a good winter over the US, but if we get an el nino to form, the winter will likely be even better. Also of note is how the AO and NAO are going to shape up this winter. One very strong indicator of how the NAO will be in the winter is the water temperatures that are just south of, and around Greenland in the month of October. A trend that was noted during the 2009-10 & 2010-11 winters was that when the water was warmer than normal in October, the NAO and AO were negative for the upcoming winter, and last year when the waters were cooler off Greenland, we witnessed how positive the NAO and AO were. The reason this is the case is similar to what I was talking about over the tropical pacific regarding el nino and warm ENSO neutral. When you have warmer than normal waters near Greenland, what happens is the pressures are lowered over the water, and this helps to focus more predominant areas of higher pressures over Greenland, and higher than normal pressures over Greenland are what helps to drive a negative NAO. The opposite occurs when the waters are cooler than normal, and now instead of focusing lower pressures over the water, the pressures are higher simply due to the water being colder than normal, and this induces more rising air over Greenland, thus lowering the pressures overall, and lower pressures over Greenland are what helps to drive a positive NAO. This year I’m happy to say that the waters are VERY warm off of and just south of Greenland, and since this is the case, I’m leaning towards us experiencing strongly negative AO and NAO pulses this winter, which is a good reason not to be nearly as concerned about the state of the el nino, because even if we go into warm neutral, we’ll still have the warmer than normal waters over the tropical pacific supporting lowering pressures there and creating higher pressures over North America, plus, we’ll probably also have strong support from the NAO. In general, even if el nino dissipates into warm ENSO neutral, conditions overall support a colder and snowier winter than normal over the US, however, if we do see el nino conditions over the central tropical pacific this winter, then the conditions may be in place for a very cold and snowy winter, as opposed to just some cold and snow that we would see with warm ENSO neutral.
  25. Matthew, I agree, and a lot of it has to with the upward pulse of the MJO staying over the western Pacific and the Indian Ocean since mid-August, which favors more lower pressures over Darwin, thus a more positive SOI, and it would appear that the el nino may be weakening. However, just watch what happens over the next several weeks as the MJO moves towards the central and eastern Pacific, and I expect the SOI to drop more negative as result of the lower pressures getting focused towards Tahiti, and when combined with the fact that el ninos strengthen as we get deeper into fall, expect the el nino to strengthen as well, but warm neutral is also a good possibility at this point. Even if we go into warm neutral, I don’t expect the winter to somehow to be warmer than normal because we don’t have el nino, the NAO and AO appear to be favoring their negative phases for this winter, which would help to induce more cold and snow this winter for areas east of the rockies.
  26. Hello Matthew I like your 2012/2013 winter outlook! I live in central Missouri and i’d like to know what our weather will be like? Do you think there could be thundersnow depending on the intensity of any winter storms moving through the area?
  27. hay matthew when do u think u will know how much snow im going to get where i live i live in jeffersoncounty wv and when do u think will be getting our first snowfall?

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