Fall -- Winter Forecast


And you think we have problems?  Well,  I need a new furnace, would you believe. Let that be an incentive for you.  NOW is a good time to check your furnace. Does it need a tune-up? There are pre-season specials, so take advantage of them.

Already there have been frost warnings in the outlying areas, here, and yes, SNOW in Calgary and South Dakota.  Maybe you have been  thinking about the coming winter already. After  last winter (which was the coldest and snowiest in over 30 years) how could  you not? And it's not like we had  a long hot summer to make one really  eager for the brisk fall days and favorite sweaters.

Yes, the first cool days are here. These temps will be gone by the weekend, but for now the jean jacket  adds a stylish touch.  For a moment, layering is fun again.


So, now the weekend forecast is  for a return to the 80's. What about the long-range forecast? What's in store for Fall and Winter?

What does the Old Farmer's Almanac say?  Perhaps you remember the Almanac forecast for last year. Here's my post about it.  Yes, they predicted lots of snow and very cold. Pretty accurate, considering they could be using the Magic  8 Ball, and  they won't disclose what's in that black box...

And this winter?  More cold and snow, shivering and shoveling, according to the Old Farmer's Almanac.  Almost like last year all over again.

Well, not quite, according to Eric Holthaus  on his blog for Slate.  He maintains (and I agree)  that such long-range forecasting is impossible, and the best  one can do is study the developing patterns. He's looking at the warm pool of water in the Pacific  to affect the weather  this winter.

According to him, the pattern we saw last winter has prevailed all summer. There's even a name for this--the Ridiculously Resilient Ridge.

 The source of the RRR can be traced to a continent-sized blob of abnormally warm water just off the Pacific Coast. Since the ocean and atmosphere work in tandem to produce our daily weather, that means effects are being felt thousands of miles downstream.

Weather and climate scientists have released new research over the last few months showing a counterintuitive connection between persistent and extreme winter weather patterns and global warming. The melting Arctic has a lot to do with it, but scientists are still debating the details.

He says that the weather models from the Climate Prediction Center are showing a probability of a slightly warmer than average winter for the midwest and northeast. But a deep-freeze in January and February is always possible. When is anyone's guess.

So what does this mean for us, here and now?  You can't go wrong with sweaters and hoodies.  But don't get out the snowpants just yet.

Oh, and now is the time to check the furnace....

And why not review these subzero style and safety tips?



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  • This reenforces what I thought and then Skilling said, that the jet stream pattern this week is the same as last winter. And people (at least talk show hosts) in LA are screaming about temperatures in the 100s again.

    What was it, last Wednesday, when it rained and got real humid, so I put on the A/C, but at 5 p.m. the clouds came in and I had to put on the heat?

    If we don't get the promised El Nino this winter, I am going to freak.

  • In reply to jack:

    Hold on to your hat, Jack. Chances of an epic El Nino diminishing, but still 70-80 % chance of El Nino development. Here's a clip from the Weather Network.

  • In reply to Weather Girl:

    After watching the 12:30 weather, maybe there is cause to freak.

    After repeating that the Pacific is still set up to repeat the cold pattern of last winter through now, Skilling said that there are reports of fish from Baja being seen in the Gulf of Alaska, and fear that the spawning salmon won't find food.

    He did leave out one step that was noted on a Nova, i.e., the bears then start starving and all hell breaks loose.

    BTW, there's something wrong with your link.

  • In reply to jack:

    Thanks, Jack--I fixed the link.

    Yes, there's imbalance in the Arctic, and it's changing very fast. Black ice in Greenland, too.

  • In reply to Weather Girl:

    Now that the link works, it doesn't seem like what they were saying was any different than what Skilling was saying (especially at 1:17).

    Apparently, El Nino has different effects. I was thinking of the 1982 one when it was in the 60s in December. But since they are saying (at 2:35) that 1977-78 was also El Nino, that was the worst winter in my memory, at least with regard to snowfall, although it took the 1978-79 winter to shut down the CTA (and get Jane Byrne elected).

  • Yikes! I just got my a/c checked in July! Thanks for reminding me to call and make an appointment!

  • Thanks for reading, Kathy!

  • The blob! The RRR! Well, at least we get variety! Thanks for making it fun to learn about!

  • Thanks for reading. It's going to get interesting...

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