With this el nino impacting my ski time, I have really begun to study the weather and the science (?) of forecasting. While I wouldn't even pretend to be able to tell you what the weather tomorrow will be, it is interesting that the forecasters seem to be coming to a concenus that the typical el nino reversal will take place this year, meaning a very cold finish to winter. While there are disagreements to the extent of this reversal (one of my favorites being that the next 30 days will be one of the five coldest for that period
) most seem to agree that this will happen to some extent.
Here is Accuweather's summary: February Outlook
For the sake of the financial health of the ski resorts (me spending time on the mountain has NOTHING to do with it) I hope they're right.
I sure hope that the Accuweather forecast is correct. However, DC area weather records show that 15 mild Jans were followed by a mild Feb. on 11 occasions. So, it would be somewhat unusual if we were to have a cold Feb. I think that Western PA and the higher elevations of MD and WV are likely to be quite cold until the 3rd week in Feb. But, after that, warm temps will probably come into play. At any rate, most ski areas will have a solid base down by then.
You probably have access to better data than I have, but the forecasters that I am looking at are basing their predictions on things like this mornings 12z GFS run whose analogs are 19700111, 19600130, 19780201, 19860118 and 19770118 - some of the coldest, snowiest (is that a word?) days on record for the mid west / east coast. Of course the entire eastern half of the country wasn't affected on all those days, it depended where you were.
I guess we will see.
All I know is it is snowing in Richmond, VA! Look out Feb it is going to be great!!!!
I'll have to admit that I'm getting somewhat concerned about the strength of this cold spell. Although it's seasonal (here in PA) with lake effect snow squalls, it got up to 54 deg today in Fredericksburg, VA. I know that Fredericksburg is located in a rather warm spot, but a high of 54 (2 or 3 deg higher than the forecasted high) is hardly encouraging, especially when the mid-Atlantic is supposedly under a cold spell. Also, the 10 day forecast for Fredericksburg doesn't look particularly cold and I'd be willing to bet that, like today, many of the forecasted highs will be exceeded by a deg or two. It's now an all-too-familiar pattern, the cold Canadian air seems to weaken dramatically once it crosses into the South and lingers a few days. The bottom line is: the VA ski areas will probably do OK, but they might be limited to night-time only snowmaking. And, should we have an early Spring (as NOAA is forecasting), all bets are off.
MM, please just for once ENJOY the cold. It is now 43 in Fredericksburg and they are expecting 1-3 inches of snow sunday night and the forecast looks very chilly for you NWS
. Even the snowtime resorts have been able to make snow round the clock for a few days now and there is no real end in sight to this cold.
I'm definately going to enjoy the cold! Will be skiing 7-Boinks everyday next week!! It should be quite good. But, I'll have to admit that the NWS 7-day forecast for DC/BWI doesn't look exactly frigid. I would call it seasonal, which is OK...so long as the temps don't go much above the forecasted highs.
I work at the post office in Fredericksburg. It sure didn't feel like 54 degrees today while I walking and delivering the mail. I must have a been the wrong part of town.