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Pattern December - Deal or No Deal? (11 Viewers)

whatalife

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#4
The first week looks to have some potential. I feel like this specific threat should go into the December thread instead of the Winter or November threads. Let's see where it goes.
I think E13 might of skewed the mean there and hopefully fun times are ahead.


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Rain Cold

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#8
So Greg Fishel released his winter forecast yesterday. It was a letdown, though it should not have been. Essentially focused only on the strength of the upcoming El Nino to make his forecast. Acknowledged that he thought the NOAA forecast was ok and if he was forced to take a stance, given the absence of any real compelling signal either way, he would go slightly cooler in the east and go for a range of 5-8" of snowfall for RDU. I think 7"ish is our average. This kind of a presentation is essentially worthless and a waste of time to even prepare.
 
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#10
So Greg Fishel released his winter forecast yesterday. It was a letdown, though it should not have been. Essentially focused only on the strength of the upcoming El Nino to make his forecast. Acknowledged that he thought the NOAA forecast was ok and if he was forced to take a stance, given the absence of any real compelling signal either way, he would go slightly cooler in the east and go for a range of 5-8" of snowfall for RDU. I think 7"ish is our average. This kind of a presentation is essentially worthless and a waste of time to even prepare.
Did you expect anything different? I think he is always going to go with the average no matter what. Then when we have a legit threat, he and the rest at WRAL will start low and change as the storm unfolds. They always play it super conservative, and it is annoying sometimes. Meanwhile, every other met, like DT, Huffman, and WxSouth, are calling for above average snow here.

Maybe Webber should take over for WRAL when Fish retires.
 
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Rain Cold

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#12
Did you expect anything different? I think he is always going to go with the average no matter what. Then when we have a legit threat, he and the rest at WRAL will start low and change as the storm unfolds. They always play it super conservative, and it is annoying sometimes.

Maybe Webber should take over for WRAL when Fish retires.
Nope, I knew he would toe the middle of the road. I hoped he would have at least talked about several of the variables that are liable to impact the pattern this winter. His sole area of focus was the strength of El Nino. Nothing about the type of El Nino, the propensity for blocking, antecedent autumnal conditions, the stratosphere, or solar implications, not to mention the vast scope of non-US seasonal models showing a virtual unanimous signal for a colder east. I understand not having the time to go into great detail on these things. I do. But the job of a forecaster is not to look at model output or other forecasts and simply repackage and restate and relay that. Instead, it is to research, assimilate data, and using your years of experience, produce a forecast that is worth something more than what I can pull up on Tropical Tidbits.
 

packfan98

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#16
I'd seriously love to cash in on a big dog in early December because El Nino winter climatology would favor a lot more where that came from later in the winter (even against long-term climatology)
It would be very exiting for most of us to hit our averages before Christmas and play with house money the rest of the winter with loads of potential for Jan/Feb. Not too dissimilar to last winter for those who got the big storm in December.
 
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#17
Nope, I knew he would toe the middle of the road. I hoped he would have at least talked about several of the variables that are liable to impact the pattern this winter. His sole area of focus was the strength of El Nino. Nothing about the type of El Nino, the propensity for blocking, antecedent autumnal conditions, the stratosphere, or solar implications, not to mention the vast scope of non-US seasonal models showing a virtual unanimous signal for a colder east. I understand not having the time to go into great detail on these things. I do. But the job of a forecaster is not to look at model output or other forecasts and simply repackage and restate and relay that. Instead, it is to research, assimilate data, and using your years of experience, produce a forecast that is worth something more than what I can pull up on Tropical Tidbits.
Unless you've constructed a very long-term climatology over a much larger than just RDU or the Triangle proper, you're definitely not going to see a significant ENSO footprint on seasonal snowfall at least with much confidence because internal variability is way too large and gets even larger when you're looking at only one point. I'm hoping that the 125-year climatology I'm working on for NC will get us closer to the answer but there's a good chance it doesn't and there either aren't even enough samples even w/ a record of that length or perhaps the basic state climate has changed so much that the older analogs aren't as relevant (some adjustments could be made to make them relevant again however). The other option would be to use a bootstrap analysis w/ a climate model to simulate thousands of time what seasonal snowfall would look like in the SE US, however we'd run into issues wrt determining whether the climate accurately hindcasts past & present snowfall variability and will have a sufficient resolution to capture local, mesoscale snowfall variability that most of us on the forum actually care about.
 
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#18
Did you expect anything different? I think he is always going to go with the average no matter what. Then when we have a legit threat, he and the rest at WRAL will start low and change as the storm unfolds. They always play it super conservative, and it is annoying sometimes. Meanwhile, every other met, like DT, Huffman, and WxSouth, are calling for above average snow here.

Maybe Webber should take over for WRAL when Fish retires.
You're absolutely right. They do that in every winter weather situation no matter what other factors or forecasts may show. No doubt Webber is fit for the job, my worry would be WRAL would dull down the insight Webber provides and it would just be status quo. I would rather have him here unrestricted.
 
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#19
I like the signs I am seeing for this December (and the winter as a whole). This year is probably going to be nothing like the last El Niño December, 2015, which barely even resembled a winter month. I watched WRAL's O-Fishel winter forecast last night and it appeared as if the strongest El Niños (1997-98 and 2015-16) both resulted in fairly mild and below average snowfall winters. 2 winters is a small sample size but it is interesting that Super Niños do not seem to feature the same cooler than normal winters that weaker Niños do.

I would say 2002 might be a good analog for this December. 2002-03 was a similar weak-moderate Niño that was more central based. 2002 had the big ice storm in early December, and I wouldn't be surprised that if we do get a winter threat early it would be more of a sleet/ice threat than a snow threat.
 
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#21
Oh you NCs guys have done it now. I'm calling it, 11/28 big dog hits MS,AL and Ga and you guys get skunked all of December.
It seems like climatology favors snowfall in the Deep South earlier in the winter than central/eastern NC. This wasn't just last year - If I remember correctly the Deep South saw December snowfalls three years in a row from 2008-10 when 2008 and 2009 were duds here.
 
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#22
I'd feel really good about early December in the Mid Atlantic and NE. However in the SE I'm still wondering if we're going to be cold enough. The highs coming across the north are not strong and the modeled temp departures are modest. It doesn't scream to me winter storm in the south yet. Realistically I'm keeping expectations low. But here's to hoping...

I agree too that the deep south may have a better chance as the cold filters in easier there than east of the mountains.
 
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#27
If there's any lingering doubt about us being in an El Nino this winter, the upcoming strong Westerly Wind Burst in the Equatorial Pacific and global +AAM w/ lots of excess westerly momentum in the subtropics (indicative of a strong subtropical jet) will erase it.

NqnpRJE4.jpg

glaam.sig1-21.90day (1).gif
 
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#29
If we're going to focus on the day 8-10 period when there's a subtle hint of a threat potentially emerging if a few other puzzle pieces fall into place, December 2000 has a case to be made being one of the stronger early winter analogs that produced something in the Carolinas.

compday.152.15.113.8.323.10.10.28.gif
ecmwf-ens_z500aMean_nhem_4.png

December 4 2000 NC Snowmap.gif
 
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#30

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