Models Still All Over the Place for Christmas Storm

#ModelMayhem #Snow #Rain #ChristmasEve #FlipFlop #OhioValley

Models are still trying to figure out what to do with the storm for Christmas Eve.  People jump on the wagon, then jump off the wagon, only to want to get back on when it is pretty likely that the storm will do what they want it to do.  The problem?  Nature does not care what he, she, you, or I want; it will do what it wants on its own.  With the amount of energy around and the players on the field, the solution is no clearer today than it was yesterday or the day before.

Case in point, the GFS for today at 12Z.  Most know that anything is possible when it comes to the pure unknown of weather and the atmosphere.  Things sometimes pop right out of the blue and catch us all off guard.  Other times, an eleventh hour switch occurs and the low takes a different track.  So what am I talking about with the 12Z GFS.  I do not agree with having 2 separate storms develop and intensify rapidly in succession in approximately one day’s time.

Here are a myriad of images:

Monday 7 AM:


Low pressure organizing in the Gulf.

Monday 7 PM:


Low 1 meanders off the coast of Wilmington, North Carolina with another low innocently hanging back around Wichita Falls, Texas.

Tuesday 7 AM:


Low 1 is now 250 miles east of Cape Hatteras, North Carolina and the second low is strengthening around Paducah, Kentucky.

Tuesday 7 PM:


The first low is now wandering out in the open waters of the Atlantic Ocean, while the second low is deepening impressively near Toledo, Ohio.

To me this scenario is quite unlikely.  A known GFS error is to bundle too much energy in the first system and leave less energy for the second low to work with.  While the second low does get its act together, I believe this output is a feedback error and causing the second low to not handle the characteristics correctly.  I believe this bias is taking over.  One point I do want to make, I do think the GFS is catching on because it allows the second low to have a Gulf connection.  At times, the GFS simply takes all its eggs and puts it into the first storm and completely chokes the second one but I wonder if this two low idea will actually split the difference and come back to the deeper, stronger low that some have been talking about.  Right here is why the exact track and intensity of the storm and the amount of precipitation it will bring cannot be answered at this time.  It is still 5 to 6 days out and things will continue to change.


Christmas Eve Storm, Yes….What Will it Do?

#Panic #ChristmasEve #Storm #OhioValley #StopStressing #Listen #Read #Prepare



As has been discussed for the last couple of weeks, after December 20th the pattern turns cold and stormy.  Yes, some will be snow but the issue at hand is that exact amounts, type of precipitation, track of the low, and all the other chaotic principles in the atmosphere are yet to be decided.

Models are a huge help in the weather world, but as I so often state, DO NOT PAY ATTENTION TO MODELS AT FACE VALUE rather let’s look at the whole body of work and see what can be deciphered from them.  Pandemonium, panic, stress, and other adjectives to describe emotion are running rampant right now, but it is too early to do that.  On this site and page, I get word out of what could be happening and what I think will happen along with stating the issues.

When it comes to the Christmas Eve Storm, I have said it looks to be impressive.  It could be significant, but exact temperatures, precipitation, timing is not possible.  It really benefits everyone, to read what people write and what words people say.  Weather spreads like the “Telephone Game” we played as a kid.  It starts out as “water” and it ends up as “Porterhouse Steak, Bake Potato, Salad, Rolls, Green Beans, and a perfectly aged wine”.  What is the issue?  People do not read or listen clearly and run rampant.  Here at Ohio Valley Forecasting Center that is not the aim.  The agenda is to state what is going on, do some extrapolation, but always be honest and clear and use very important words.  It does not work very well, but all a person can do is write or say and it is up to the listener to take our information and state it clearly the way it is presented.

Christmas Eve and Christmas Day Could Be Big Trouble

#ChristmasEve #ChristmasDay #Storm  #Snow #Wind #MixedBag #Travel #OhioValley


While Christmas is 9 days away, it is never too early to start focusing in on what the weather could entail during this time frame.  I have been stating over the last week that a storm right around Christmas could be significant for this region.  It is too early to know if it will be snow, ice, rain, and/or wind but strong support continues to come in of a sizable storm for this region Christmas Eve and possibly into Christmas Day.

Here is the 500 mb pattern for the European Christmas Eve:



A sub 990 millibar surface low over southern Kentucky could give credence to a windy, snowy, icy, and rainy event for the region.  The key at this time is not pay attention to the position of the low and the temperatures/precipitation; rather, the fact that it shows a pretty decent storm marching through the area for Christmas Eve.

The GFS Ensemble for Christmas Eve:


General placement agreement between these two global models.  When I see something like this, my confidence grows that a pretty decent storm will be coming through the area on Christmas Eve.  What will be left to decipher is exact strength, placement, and temperatures as we draw closer to the date.  The sole reason is to once again just put out a “siren” so to speak so that no one is caught off guard if this develops the way I can see it happening.

The Canadian for Christmas Eve:


Lastly, the Canadian lines up in general agreement of what can be coming through the Ohio Valley as Christmas Eve and Day arrives.  As always, stay tuned for further updates as specifics can become better defined.


Storms Upon Storms Upon Storms While the Freeze Begins

#Snow #Parade #Cold #IceBox #Bitter #Eastern #UnitedStates


(Getting ahead of myself, December 14th is still Sunday.  Monday is December 15th)

The level of excitement is beginning to pick up in earnest as the well advertised turn to colder and stormier end to December is approaching.  It appears that more and more are bowing down and jumping back on the bandwagon that winter was not fading away and that snowstorms will happen.  While it is too far out to predict exact tracks and exact amounts of precipitation, the pattern does call for storms to parade west to east across the country, with each storm turning things colder.  What will the ultimate outcome be?  That is what we will find out, but it sure looks interesting and exciting as we close out 2014.

Again, too early to know exact tracks and placements along with conditions, but it will definitely get things interesting over the next 2 weeks of the 2014 calendar year.

Mid Levels Pave Way for Storms and Cold

#MidLevels #Trough #Eastern #UnitedStates #Cold #Stormy

Yesterday I mentioned how I enjoy looking at mid and upper levels of the atmosphere.  Looking at the 500 mb level (18,000 feet above the ground or AGL) often signal what is coming down the road in terms of the sensible weather we see at the surface.  This might be a little technical to the standard weather person, but for an enthusiast or meteorologist, this level really helps key on what type of weather we can expect.

I have been preaching the last few weeks that the warmth for December was going to be overplayed.  How did I know that these 50s and 60s were not going to dominate and we would be more zonal and “mild”, rather than blow torch warm?  By looking at the middle and upper levels of the atmosphere.  Remember the talk about 50s for this weekend, maybe even a 60?  I cautioned that while we might get a bit above normal, which is upper 30s to lower 40s, I doubt we see anything much above 50 degrees.  Monday looks to be the only day that some places might touch 50 degrees or the lower 50s  before this massive BLOW TORCH begins to fade.  (Yes, I am being sarcastic).

Anyway, today I am showing a few more images of how things will evolve over the next 2 weeks to close out 2014.  Yesterday, I talked about how there is support from the GFS Ensemble members leading to trough in the east and ridge in the west.  Let’s take a look at the evolution from now, December 13th through December 27th.

Image 1 is for Sunday, December 14th.


As you can see, there is the ridge int he central and eastern United States and troughing in the West.  Not much luck for cold and snow in our area; however, look in California and the immediate West Coast.  Notice that some subtle ridging is trying to develop out there.  This is a clue.  Secondly, take a look at Alberta and Saskatchewan in Canada.  At the very top, you can see see a little depression.  This is were the eventual cold air will come down and into the central and eastern United States.

Image 2 is for Thursday, December 18th.


If you recall, December 11th through 20th was going to be the yo-yo pattern.  A lot of movement as the pattern tries to go back to the semi-permanent features we have seen over the last year.  Trough int he East, Ridge in the West.  Seeing this image, notice that the Eastern ridge has flattened significantly, as has the trough in the West.  Once again, take a look off the West Coast and into the Pacific Northwest, ridging is becoming more pronounced.  Another item to look at, the oranges and reds in Canada.  Heights are higher than normal up there, which often leads to troughing and cold underneath.  This will be aimed into our region in the coming days.

Image 3 is for Tuesday, December 23rd.


It is becoming evident at this point that ridging wants to dominate off the Pacific Coast and into the western parts of the United States.  At the same time, notice the developing long, deep trough coming down from Alberta into the Midwest and Ohio Valley.  Cold air is poised to drain down.  Here is the teaser, notice the deeper blue in Texas and Mexico?  This is where the subtropical jet will get involved and help fuel potential storms for the eastern United States.  Hence the talk of “White Christmas” probabilities being a bit higher than normal.

Image 4 is Thursday, December 25th.


Christmas morning features strong ridging along the West Coast and a deep, trough in the central and eastern United States.  Once again, focus on Alberta and Saskatchewan and follow the flow all the way into the Ohio Valley and Tennessee Valley.  This is where our temperatures are coming from, and that air originates in Siberia, comes up and over the Pole, and down into Canada.

Image 5 is for Sunday, December 28th.


As we end the 2014 calendar and begin to turn our eyes to 2015, it is obvious that the reversal of the pattern occurs.  From ridge Central and East to a decent, trough.  The same reversal for the West.  What started out as a trough and semi-zonal is now a dominating ridge.  This is the reason that talk of December being “SNOWLESS” and/or “COLDLESS” was overblown, and often times clues can be made by looking at upper levels of the atmosphere, much like the 500 mb level.

Get ready for snow and cold!

Pattern Evolving To End the Year

#Snow #Cold #MoreSnow #Colder #Bitter #NewYear

Just a caption of the GFS from 12Z today. No specifics and things will change and adjust, but the idea of the pattern becoming colder and more active looks good. The GFS ensembles have been painting this picture along with the Euro Weekly output. The ante might rise significantly over the next 10 days of having a “White Christmas”. We will see.

First image: December 20th. This might be the “battle line” storm. Rain, sleet, and snow dissecting the Ohio Valley. The pattern starts to become noticeably colder, so the first storm might be the “mixed bag”.


Second Image: December 23rd. This system stays south, but I believe that is too suppressed. Still not cold enough for a suppression storm, should ride north and lead to the best threat of a moderate or bigger winter storm.


Third Image: December 27th. The BIG CRASH has made it into the central and eastern United States. This is where we could miss the storms to the south because of the suppressed look. More northern branch, quick moving clipper systems possible.


Things will not line up exactly like this, but the pounding point of becoming gradually cooler then to significantly colder with a couple “potential winter storms” will traverse the region Dec 20-26th. Then the increasing likelihood of ICE BOX weather and northern branch systems to add high ratio powder snow as we progress to the New Year.



The “Mild” Surge Before Winter Returns in Earnest

#Mild #Rain #Storm #Cold #WinterReturn #OhioValley



Anxious times are probably setting in for many that do not pay attention to the weather.  Snow has been absent for the most part, and no real cold air has been around.  Worse, there will be another surge of mild for the next few days through Tuesday, so we might as well just give up on winter and go home.  Right? That is what I have heard some say and expect them to be shaken as the last 10 days of the month come calling to remind us that Winter will have a say so, after all.

Before that, though, we have to get through a period of high pressure and some milder temperatures.  All the talk was for highs getting into the middle 50s to maybe even flirting with 60, but that aspect has faded, as I knew it would.  I did feel that maybe “ONE” day could crack the 50 degree mark and that might even be in jeopardy.  A case of people getting carried away, too fast, before realizing that this pattern was anticipated.  In all honesty, 3 days will be a bit above normal, unlike the 5 or 6 days of way above normal temperatures once thought.  The first 10 days of the month were a bit above normal, but nothing out of the ordinary.  Next, the big storm (Nor’easter) that would get the pattern to shift around and start to get the pattern moving in the right direction, then after the 16th watch the rest of the month trend colder and become snowier.  This sets up the last 10 days of the month for wintry fun and the potential for a “White Christmas”.  Nothing is guaranteed, but I will be watching to see what transpires.  Honestly, the pattern dictates a storm around the 21st and there could be another storm on its heels around the 23rd-25th.

Until then, expect tranquil weather and fair conditions through Monday.


Tonight- Mostly Clear and Cool.  Lows 20-25.  West winds at 5 to 10 mph.

Friday- Mostly Sunny.  Highs 36-41. West winds at 5 to 10 mph.

Friday Night- Mostly Clear.  Lows 23-28. West winds around 5 mph.

Saturday- Partly Cloudy.  Highs 37-42.  West winds at 5 to 10 mph.

Saturday Night- Partly Cloudy. Lows 30-35.  West Winds at 5 to 10 mph.

Sunday- Partly Sunny. Highs 42-47.

Sunday Night- Mostly Cloudy. Lows 33-38.

Monday- Mostly Cloudy.  A Chance of Showers Late.  Highs 42-49.  Chance of Rain 30%

Monday Night- Mostly Cloudy with a Chance of Showers.  Lows 34-39. Chance of Rain 40%

Tuesday- Mostly Cloudy with Scattered Showers.  Highs 38-46. Chance of Rain 50%

Tuesday Night- Mostly Cloudy with Scattered Rain and Snow Showers.  Lows 31-37.  Chance of Precipitation 40%

Wednesday- Mostly Cloudy with Passing Snow Showers.  Highs 34-39.  Chance of Precipitation 30%

Wednesday Night- Mostly Cloudy.  Lows 26-31.

Thursday- Mostly Cloudy.  Highs 31-37.

Thursday Night- Mostly Cloudy,  Lows 23-29.

December Idea Update for the Region

#December #OhioValley #Mild #BackandForth #Cold #Bitter



Several times over the last 3 weeks I have discussed what is likely to happen in December for the region.  I started out by asking people to remember the December 7th to 10th time frame the week before Thanksgiving.  The reason, this would be the time to look at the pattern and see if I was foolish in denying and rejecting the idea that most of December would be warm, or as many like to call it, “blow torch”.

My initial ideas for December were as followed:

December 1st-10th Relatively Mild, December 11th-20th Back and Forth, December 21st through 31st the Crash.  This is in stark contrast of many ideas that the entire month of December was hog wild warm.  Many saw rampant reports of how warm it was going to be.  The issue here, every model, even the often clueless GFS, backs down on the temperatures as the time frame nears.  We were supposed to be in the 50s over the last weekend.  Where did we end up?  We were supposed to be in the 40s and 50s this week.  Outside of the brief warmth of Monday, this week will average below normal.  How is that for this major warmth on the 6-10 day outlook from last week for this time period.  Big issue is that main stream media floods the ideas in people’s heads and what has been said numerous times gets pushed to the back burner and forgotten.

One key point, I have been in full acceptance during this December 11th-20th time frame that a warm shot will come in advance of the storm that really changes everything back to the dominant cold and stormy side.  Some ideas are that this has been a very quiet pattern, but I am not sure why that idea has surfaced.  In the last 30 days, most areas have had anywhere from 14-18 days of some precipitation thanks to 8 storm systems.  Many of those days were windy, also.  A sign that the patterns are fighting to gain control.

Weather needs to be OBJECTIVELY viewed, not SUBJECTIVELY viewed.  Weather is an INFINITE science, not FINITE.  Humankind is biased, weather is not that way.  What is someone’s definite of quiet, is someone’s definition of active.  The same can be said for warmth, cold, a lot of snow, not a lot of snow, so on and so forth.  Please try to view it as objectively as possible.  Anyway, I hope that clears up some of the issues and as always thanks for the support and trust to provide you with the weather for this region.

Rain Tomorrow, Cool Weekend

#Rain #Friday #Saturday #Weekend #Cool #OhioValley


Friday Surface Map:


Low pressure along a meandering stationary front across the southern Plains into the Southeast will become a warm front and lift northward on Friday.  With it, rain and increasing southerly winds will overtake the region from southwest to northeast.   Precipitation, at the onset, will likely be a mix of sleet, freezing rain, and snow before becoming all rain.  Use caution when out early Friday morning; however, by mid to late morning everything should switch to rain.  As the associated low tracks up into the central and southern Ohio Valley, a period of heavy rainfall could occur.  Rainfall totals between 0.75 to possibly 2 inches of rain can be expected by midday Saturday.  Rain will taper off from west to east as the start of the weekend progresses.

Rainfall Amounts Through 7 PM Saturday:


A handful of days ago, remember how highs were anticipated to be in the 50s?  Well, that has went by the wayside.  Even I was too warm for the first week of December, as temperatures have trended downward.  The same can be said for the first half of next week.  The advertised WARM BEGINNING of December has been put on ice, despite many screaming how warm it was going to be.

With that being said, a warm surge for a few days will be coming in advance of  Super Typhoon Hagupit’s influence on the pattern for the Lower 48 and mixes things up.   The message still being beaten into the ground here is that this prolonged warm period of weather for this area has been greatly blown out of proportion and the second half of the month will further deliver the message that most that take the GFS model at the medium to long range  and run to the bank will be wanting a serious refund on their terrible investment.


Tonight- Scattered Mixed Precipitation Mainly North, Drizzle and Light Showers South.  Lows in the Upper 20s to Middle 30s.  East Winds Around 5 mph.  Chance of Precipitation 40%

Friday- Rain Developing, Mixed Precipitation Northern Areas before becoming All Rain.  Highs in the Lower 40s to Around 50.  East winds becoming South at 5 to 10 mph.  Chance of Rain 90%

Friday Night- Rain.  Rain could be Heavy at times.  Nearly Steady Temperatures in the Lower to Upper 40s.  South and Southeast Winds at 5 to 10 mph.  Chance of Rain 90%

Saturday- Rain.  Rain Tapering Off West to East As the Morning into the Afternoon Progresses.  Steady Temperatures in the Lower to Upper 40s, then Falling in the Late Afternoon.  Chance of Rain 90%

Saturday Night- Mostly Cloudy.  Early Drizzle Far Eastern Sections.  Lows in the Upper 20s to Middle 30s.  Winds Becoming North at 10 to 15 mph.

Sunday- Partly Cloudy.  Highs in the Upper 30s to Middle 40s.

Sunday Night- Partly Cloudy.  Lows in the Upper 20s to Middle 30s.

Monday- Mostly Cloudy.  A Chance of Showers Late.  Highs in the Upper 30s to Middle 40s.  Chance of Rain 30%

Monday Night- Mostly Cloudy with a Chance of Rain and Snow Showers.  Lows from Around 30 to the Middle 30s.  Chance of Precipitation 50%

Tuesday- Mostly Cloudy with a Chance of Snow Showers, mainly East.  Highs in the Middle 30s to around 40.  Chance of Precipitation 40%

Tuesday Night- Partly to Mostly Cloudy with Stray Flurries Possible, Mainly East.  Lows in the Middle 20s to Around 30.

Wednesday- Partly Cloudy.  Highs in the Middle 30s to Around 40.

Wednesday Night- Mostly Clear.  Lows in the Middle 20s to Around 30.

Thursday- Partly Cloudy.  Highs from Around 40 to the Middle 40s.

Thursday Night- Partly Cloudy.  Lows in the Upper 20s to Middle 30s.

Stay Dry!

American Model Scoring the Coup or Complete Oblivion

#GFS #European #Typhoon #Warm #Cold #BattleRoyale


The American Global model, the GFS, continues to suggest that no cold air is coming, at least in the next two weeks.  This has all kinds of WRONG written all over it.  I have 3 images that argue against its operational output.  If the GFS would somehow be right, then a major coup will occur; however, this is shaping up just like the November prediction.  The GFS was stubborn in its warmth only to bow down and cower to the cold that came on strong.  It appears the same thing is occurring yet, AGAIN.  Foreign models are seeing changes and the push back to winter, while the GFS stays out to lunch and refuses to see what is occurring downstream.

The first two images are the CPC forecast for Temperatures in the 6-10 day and the 8-14 day period:



As clearly seen, NOAA paints an above normal picture for two-thirds to three-fourths of the country.  So let’s throw a fork in winter for December.  DANG!  Right?   Not so fast…….

Typhoon Hagupit is out in the western Pacific and the GFS model shows strong re-curvature around the intensifying Pacific heat ridge.  It approaches the Philippines, bends northward, then re-curves back into the Northern Pacific and will get involved in the Polar Westerlies and become a strong Aleutian low.  When the own model disagrees with itself, we have problems.

Typhoon Hagupit’s predicted path:


Adding likely insult to injury is the strong Stratospheric Warming event that is coming out of Siberia, over the Pole, and into Arctic Canada and slipping down into the Yukon and Northwest Territory.  This phenomenon will force cold air into the Lower 48, especially east of the Rocky Mountains.

Strong Stratospheric Warming Map Link:

Last, but certainly not least, the European paints a snowy equation by Day 10, December 13th.  Snow pretty much accompanies most of the eastern Ohio Valley up into New England and even parts of the Mid Atlantic and Southern New England.  Do not worry about the snowfall and accumulation depicted, but it shows how the European is at very different odds than the GFS’s portrayal of the pattern.


While the outcome is yet to be decided, it is painfully obvious that the American GFS will either score a major coup, or go down in flames, once again.  Which side of the equation do you believe?

Interested next 10 days ahead!