Quick Start to Winter 20102011- What's Next | NECN
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Meteorologists' Observations on the Weather

Quick Start to Winter 20102011- What's Next



      Last Sunday I wrote about a trough digging in the Northeast forThursday/Friday October 14/15, that trough resulted in the 982 mbNor'easter we just experienced. My last words a week ago were "no goodsurf or deep snow", on the way. How wrong was I. It is rather unusualto get such a powerful storm from mostly northern branch energy, andnone of the models showed the surface storm until the Morning runs oflast Sunday. But I did not buy it. My eyes had been on October 22,23..The GFS was showing a trough digging in the east with energy form thenorthern and southern stream phasing for a powerful surface storm onaround (this) next Friday. Canada has been filling with cold for thelast few weeks. This morning we had that most expansive sub freezingstart in North America since last winter. This cold would ensure thatthe possibility for our first snow could be forecast this week. Butobviously the first snow is in the books. (this, October 15-18 is alsothe anniversary of the first snow of 2009, remember the Patriot 59,Titans 0, in the snow last year, 5" feel at Wachusett). So what aboutthe second snow of the season, or first for areas below 2000' feetelevation, can we do it again this Thursday/Friday?
      A split flow has developed over North America. An upper low overCalifornia is feeding Tropical Pacific Energy into the southern U.S.where a light flow aloft means any of that energy is days away fromreaching the east coast. In fact the upper low is not dislodging rightaway, the low will feed energy into the southern stream a little at atime, then the kit and caboodle lifts out later in the week. The kitand caboodle being the first big weather maker from coast to coast inweeks, that would likely run west of us with a warm up after ten daysfrom now. Before that though we may see another cold Nor'Easter in 5days.
      Our recent Nor'easter is now in Canada and getting stronger again.That ensures a fast flow from Canada to New England. The first is aclipper type system Tuesday, that will likely just miss us to thesouth, almost exactly like last Tuesday, perhaps with another T.Stormoutbreak over Pennsylvania. Then, also just like last week, a strongershort wave dives into the Great Lakes Wednesday, at the same time someof that CA energy is passing Mississippi. If the two short waves,northern and southern, phase together, we get another major wintrystorm by Friday.
      Other fun notes, Tommy Horrocks is hinting that Killington will startmaking snow this week. And we are still experiencing a weather patternsimilar to the big hurricane years of 1995, and 2005. Remember the 40"of snow Wildcat opened with on Halloween 2005. And from my surfjournal, I see this summer and fall match up well with 1995. July 1995had the most recent widespread 100 outbreak here in New England, untilthis year. The snows on Mt.Washington so far are lining up on the samedays as 1995. That year we transitioned from El Nino to La Nina, justlike this year (though we were in warm PDO). The record for snowiestwinter in southern New England in 1995/1996.. just saying .. :)
      One more item.. Just spoke to Russell Frazier at the Transmitter onMt.Mansfield. He told me how they measure snow up there. We all knowabout the snow stake on the south side of the Nose, but that is forsnow depth measurement. Up the hill, next to the brand new building, onthe south side of the nose, is the NWS grade Precipitation Bucket. Thebucket has a baffle to collect snow. The snow begin at 6:20 am FridayOctober 15, 2010, by 9 am 20" snow drifts had formed around thebuilding. The snow fell until midday Saturday. By 4 pm Friday, 7" piledin the bucket, then another 18" by Saturday, each setting a dailyrecord. The snow melted down to 4.9" of H2O, the second close to 5"storm in three weeks. The snow stake has 12" left on the north side ofthe Nose.