A snow day literally and figuratively falls from the sky, unbidden, and seems like a thing of wonder. -- Susan Orlean

Saturday, November 28, 2015

Godzilla El Nino and Berkshire County

With its typical flair for the hyperbolic, weather forecasters around the country have worked themselves into a tizzy because of the strong El Nino pattern that is currently affecting the continental US (among other places).

And a tizzy-inducing weather pattern needs a big, destructive name. In the recent past we've had the Storm of the Century, Superstorm Sandy, the Polar Vortex, countless Snowmaggeddons, and now...Godzilla El Nino. Weather-hypers couldn't just leave it be and call it a regular regular El Nino. It simply has to be a giant, radioactive, Japanese T-Rex of an El Nino (with a ready-made a theme song).

For the Northeast, he's not as scary as he looks.
The experts are comparing this winter's El Nino to the El Nino of 1997-98, which was also very strong. If we do a little historical sleuthing and look at the snow totals for Albany and Boston that year, we only have bad news to report. Albany hit 52.3 inches (slightly below average) for the season, while Boston had a meager 25.6 inches. These 97-98 outcomes would be consistent with the current prevailing thinking that we're in for a warmer-than-average winter with higher-than-normal precipitation. The forecast also upholds the idea that inland, which tends to stay cooler, would receive more snow than the coast, which would see higher temperatures and more rain-only events.

As for real snow (instead of just talk about the potential for snow), we're still in a negative pattern. The temps will feel more wintry this week, but we're only looking at the mid-40s for midday high temperatures. Evenings will get into the high 20s. As for precipitation, we could see rain Tuesday night into Wednesday but not very much. We're looking at the beginning of the week of December 7th as the potential first measurable snowfall for the month.

Keep your fingers crossed that the weather pattern will turn and we'll see colder weather for the Northeast.








Saturday, November 14, 2015

End of November Forecast

With the sighting of a few flurries today in and around the GSD Home Office, we thought it was high time to check in again with our faithful flake followers and provide insight about when we might see our first legitimate snow storm.

As you've no doubt observed, it's been a very warm November, which doesn't bode well for a snowy winter. We also have a strong el Nino in play for this winter, which should translate to above average temperatures as well as more precipitation than normal. Unfortunately, we see no reason to revise the forecast we made this summer for only a handful of big snow storms in 2015-16 with many storms shifting from snow to mixed precip to all rain.

The 3-month forecast for temperatures. Brown/orange means higher temps December, January, and February.
As for the rest of this month, we're still looking at plenty of days with high temps in the 50s and low 60s. There are a few signs out there that we will see genuinely winter conditions at the end of the month (Thanksgiving weekend). We will have some rain later next week, and also Thanksgiving Day could be wet, which is less than ideal.

Don't get too down in the dumps, snow lovers. It will snow eventually--we live in New England after all. We might get a freak large storm before the New Year (fingers crossed!), but it looks like this year that the bulk of our snow will fall in February.