Frigid Weather Is Here for the Long HaulJanuary 20th, 2014 at 12:16 pm by Don Paul under 4 Warn Weather
The overall pattern of an exceptionally strong western ridge/eastern trough will be with us right through the end of the month. Within this unusually anomalous pattern will come a train of such frequent Canadian short waves (which have their origins far to the west & northwest of Canada) that the timing of thermal ebbs and flows will be quite difficult until we get closer to each event. As expected, there is disagreement between the deterministic/operational models in timing & amplitude of each wave. As of this midday Monday posting, there is decent agreement on the Thursday system we wrote about last week, and a more vigorous system passing to our north on Saturday-Sunday. Both the GFS and ECMWF show strong winds with the latter system, both in advance out of the SW and in its wake. These winds will assure some more blowing snow and miserable wind chill, even as temperatures may briefly moderate on Saturday ahead of the next polar front. Even with lighter winds much of the time during the work week, Wind Chill may occasionally reach Advisory criteria, albeit marginally, due to the Bitter Cold temperatures.
In the longer term, nothing has changed since last week. The PNA will relax around Feb 1, and moderation will develop with more Pacific influence. Heights in the ensemble means don’t suggest a warm pattern by any means…just warmER than the bitter cold pattern we’ll be enduring. As that western ridge flattens, the episodes of cross polar flow will cease, at least for awhile. What can’t possibly be seen in this time range is what ups and downs will develop in early February due to embedded short waves.
In the meantime, one of the greatest fears among operational mets, especially those of us in the public eye, is of a snowstorm hitting the NYC area for the Super Bowl. There is no way to even guess at that today, of course. But if it happened, it will be a case of the silly and worthless Farmers Almanac making a wild a__ guess and getting lucky (who among us has never done that?), thus insuring a victory for scientific illiteracy. Oh, the agony!