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BLOCKING HIGH SET TO RETURN

CURVE BALL STORM MOVES OUT
 
-Just a few quick thoughts on our latest Storm. Perhaps the fact that the GFS wouldn't agree with the GEM and Euro, right up until the 11th hour, was our sign that the forecast models never really had a good handle on this system. 
-The setup wasn't typical either. All of the snow was falling along an elongated trough, which ended up being much narrower than forecast models were projecting. The trough also ended up moving further North than was originally thought, those 2 factors ended things early for St. John's yesterday, after only 5 cm of Snow. Still, Clarenville, Terra Nova & Bonavista did get their expected Snow through the day on Thursday.
-However as I mentioned on the Live Blog last night, forecast models were holding our trough together nicely overnight and bringing it back across the Avalon overnight and into Friday morning. They certainly nailed that. Still waiting for official totals, but about 17 cm fell in St. John's last night and through this morning. A little redemption for us forecasters and the models!
-Final thought. No doubt, the forecast models did a poor job with this system. However the last 'busted forecast' I can think of was our 'White Ninja' storm late last January. We've had 14 Storms or systems move through since the big East Nfld Blizzard back on January 10th... and the forecast models have done a pretty solid job with 13 of them. 90+% isn't half bad, especially when you're on rock in the middle of the Atlantic!
 
HIGH PRESSURE MOVES IN
 
High pressure is taking over and turning things quiet over the next few days. Northerly winds, cool temperatures and a few flurries will be on the menu for the Northeast Coast through the day on Saturday, however we'll see lots of Sunshine for the rest of the Province. Sunday looks like a great day for the entire Province. Sunshine in the mix for everyone, temps just below zero across the Island and temps a few degrees above seasonal in Labrador. Here's the GEM Regional projection for the next 36 hours.


RETURN OF THE BLOCKING HIGH- PART 337
 
It's baaaaaaack. As I mentioned in last weeks post, forecast models had been hinting at the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) turning into a negative phase. That switch to negative is now well under way and will continue right through next week.
NAO Feb 22.PNG
A negative NAO indicates higher than normal pressure in the North Atlantic and quite often a blocking pattern sets up. That pattern can often lead to long periods of an unfavorable onshore flow for the Atlantic Coastline of NL. That blocking pattern will be on the menu for mid-late next week as an area High pressure sets up over Greenland. A storm which will be moving South of the Island on Monday, will want to cross the Atlantic as usual, but will be blocked from doing so. Instead, the system will sit and spin to the Southeast of Newfoundland and will wrap precip back into NL late Wednesday or Thursday. That good ol' East/Northeast coastal onshore flow will set up and could hold right through next weekend. Have a look at the long range European model, to see our blocking High in action.


JANUARY WARMTH
 
As I mentioned in my December-January recap, January temperatures were slightly above average in NL. However across the planet, January was the 9th warmest January since record keeping began back in 1880, according to NOAA. Land temperatures were the 13th warmest on record, while ocean temps were 8th warmest. 

GHCN-Jan2013_lrg.jpgImage Courtesy of NOAA Climate.gov 

The craziest stat is our on going trend. January was the 335th consecutive month with warmer than normal global temperatures, based on the 20th century average. The last time we had a below average month? February 1985. For more check out this Global Temperature Update.
 
Ryan

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