Slower Weather Ahead

Looking at models for the weekend and all of next week…I see a slowing down of our weather pattern, and a continuation of mild temperatures.  Looks like in the big picture the Western US ridge is going to attempt a comeback over the next 7-10 days.  Not enough to shut down the precip again, but enough to keep approaching weather systems quite weak after Sunday.   So you arctic air lovers will have to wait quite awhile.  We I feel more energetic next week we can discuss that in more detail (RE: Ashley’s comment in the previous post…I got exhausted just reading it my friend)

Speaking of Sunday…the deep low pressure looks impressive but:  1.  It moves very slowly along the coast, 2.  It is weakening as it approaches,  3.  It veers well north into Vancouver.  So I don’t expect strong inland winds with this one, just another round of rain.

Enjoy the New Year…Here’s to a good windstorm (65+ mph at PDX but nobody gets hurt), a big blast of arctic air in late January that gives us a high of 18 at PDX.  And a good 10" snowfall at 22 degrees.  See, I don’t ask for too much right?

11 Responses to Slower Weather Ahead

  1. Boring Larry says:

    Another “Arctic Freak” jumps in with a couple of observations….
    like the rest of you, i enjoy all these weather information packed discussions of cycles and trends, and want to add what i call my “gut feeling” about all the bullets we’ve dodged lately…another couple of degrees colder, another 10 MPH in wind speeds, another critical inch of rain, a bit longer of almost drought like dryness…anyway, something to tell the grandkids about is bound to happen..or so says my “gut feeling”!
    And…anyone remember how Bob Lynott use to talk about the combination of cold air flowing thru the Fraser River canyon, in conjunction with a low setting up off of Vancouver Island to give us just that perfect cold air over water trajectory to set up a good snow storm? (The storms that gave us all the snow before the ’64 flood come to mind.)…..

  2. Randall says:

    Mark:
    I am an Arctic freak too. We should start a club.
    I have a question: With the coldest airmasses that arive into our area from the Polar regions, is there usually an extremely cold airmass over Alaska that is a prelude to our coldest of arctic outbreaks or is that my imgination?
    In the past, I have rarely seen us get a VERY cold Arctic outbreak if the temps in Alaska are not extremely cold. It seems as if we can get some moderate outbreaks when the coldest air is in upper Central Canada. During this last bout with cold temps, the ridge was pumping southerlies into Alsaka which downslope would tend to push the coldest of air into the Central US, correct? I remember the February 1989 Arctic Outbreak (or was that 1988?). There were temps in Alaska of -60 to -75. I think I even saw one station in Alaska that reported -80. Another one we had in the early 1990’s had the same fridged temps in Alaska. With the storm of January 2004, the temps in Alaska were not abnormally cold either (maybe -20’s, a few – 30’s).
    Also, what jet stream pattern gives us the coldest air? I have noticed that when the ridge is positively tilted and it noses into Western Canada, it does not get truly cold around here(When I say truly cold I mean a high in the low to mid teens and lows in the single digits). It seems the coldest air around here is when the high pressure system noses into Western Alaska and the actual trough is carved out and we are JUST on the extreme Western end of it with hardly any over the water trajctory, and the depth of the trough well to our south into southern Oregon, Northern California.
    I would be eager to hear your response Mark.
    Thank You and Happy New Year to you and your family!
    Randall

  3. Tyler says:

    On the north side of the river, although the actual wind speeds didn’t verify a warning, there were several trees down. I heard several accounts of downed trees, and saw some myself.
    Winds only gusted to 37 mph at my house but we are protected from the south wind.
    Tyler

  4. Derek says:

    Anybody see the NWS botch another forecast today? I am so sick of that!!!! This winter they have put up at least 4 high wind watches or warnings, 2 or 3 winter storm watches or warnings, etc, etc. And how many of these have happened, not many. In fact our little 2 inch snow/wind a few weeks ago was the only one they have gotten right. I thought a warning meant it was going to happen, but now to me it means its not going to happen. I mean it is just rediculous how bad they are! Mark I am so glad your around to forecast this stuff because I cannot believe how terrible they are. Today when I checked the computer I see HIGH WIND WARNING, yata yata. Then I go check the satellite and I was almost sure it wouldn’t happen. How can it be that a 16 year old kid can know this but they can’t. So for anybody who has read this far, don’t let them decieve you like I have been way to many times!! And just to fit in with the topic a little, the longer the cold stays bottled up in Canada the colder it will be when it comes down. We still have hope!!

  5. Andrew says:

    Mark, for a minute this morning i thought your wind wish was about to come true. I woke up to some pretty gusty winds and saw a wind warning for 60 mph in portland. To bad it got cancelled though, just goes to show you that anything can happen with our weather here in the NW. Anyone remember, i think it was last october. We were forcasted to be in the mid 40’s one day and out of the blue a batch of cold air came rushing out of the north and by mid morning we had snow in the metro area with a good inch or two in the hills. Anything can happen here, thats why i find this area so interesting.

  6. Justin says:

    For arctic freaks only…
    This is in responce to Mark,s Q&A and the coments made by ashly. Finally someone who wants to know what’s going on with our winters and climate change. I’m a portland native and an amater collecter of climate change, El nina/ La nina and PDO reserch and its affects on local winter weather patterns. first off: Michael wrote on PDO. For the rest of us, PDO means Pacific Decadal Oscillator. I’m gessing not evryone Knows what that is. It works Kinda like an El nino only on a long range bases; and it takes place in the north pacific insted of the tropics. 25 to 30 years of slightly warmer and 25 to 30 years of slightly cooler then normal. Based on records now established back to 1890, we have been in a warmer cycle sence the late 70′ and should be in the transition to a cooler 20 to 30 years now.However the changes are small and all within near normal; possably better snowpack in the mountains, and a slightly beeter shot for frequency of cold in PDX.
    The PDO cycle has only a slight effect on the weather in the pacific nw.
    Mark, if you are still reding this, I think your the king! I can’t wait to see how you answer this difficult subject. This Blog just became more interesting. The vary words global warming seem taboo when it comes to local media meteorologists. All i’ve ever heard is stuff like, the effects of climate change are not understood or it is part ‘maby’ of a normal cycle, etc. It’s so controversial you can’t get an answer.
    As for Ashley and others, i’ll give you my opinions based on the reserch I have read. I do not claim any of this to be fact. There are sevreral factors that could be Xing us out of arctic air Masses.
    #1. frequent El nino’s. El nino and La nina have cycles as well. Sientists are only begining to understand these and what effect climate change will have on the over all cycle. El nino creates that pesky blocking ridge that gave us such a dry winter last year.
    #2. law of average. cold air still comes south. While we, in the NW have been mild (with some exeptions), the NE has been colder than normal for the last sevral winters. we had a series of warm winters in the 40’s that mere those of recent. Than boom! The coldest year on record in 49′-50′
    ‘Arctic Freeks’ we can always put our faith in the law of average.
    #3. global warming is probably a factor. while temp haven’t gone up much at 45 dig. north, in the arctic they have gone up as much as 9 degrees in the last thirty years. Not as much temp diffrence between the the temp at the equator and the arctic could be a factor considering, we aren’t in the best place to get arctic air.
    As for the Models, I think the weather itself is just hard to predict in this area. mark’s right. 15 day forecast? Garbage!
    For all of us Arctic Freaks, Here’s to hope.

  7. Michael says:

    I think there are many reasons it has been so warm in recent winters (with the obvious exception of ’03-’04).
    First of all, the PDO has mostly been positive. Though there have been exceptions (I believe 2000-2001 had a negative PDO), a negative PDO would definately increase our cold air chances.
    Next, ENSO has been in an El Nino state much of time during the past winters. A La Nina would help to give us more chances at cold, more than likely.
    Also, given a large enough sample, there’s bound to be a long period of abnormally warm winters every once in awhile. It’s possible we’re just in an unlucky (in terms of wanting Arctic air) time period, which will hopefully end sooner rather than later.
    And finally, global warming could in fact be playing some part in it. Even just a few degrees is all it really takes, because as we all know, in Portland, many, if not most, snow events are borderline.

  8. Kirk says:

    Here’s to a great 2006 and all your stormy wishes Mark. Then bring on a warm sunny summer!

  9. Tyler says:

    I know this doesn’t have direct consequence on our weather, but there is a theory about why Europe is getting more snow. Because of global warming (whether it be human-caused or natural or both) is causing the arctic ice to melt. This in turn moves southward…and is currently displacing the warm waters from the gulf stream that normally flow all the way to the coast of the UK. And as we know, the ocean is a very big influence on our weather and often keeps us from getting snow right down to the valley floor. Either way, I’m still hoping for an arctic push too. January 1996 we had one late month, my temperatures dropped into the low teens at the end of the month, and to my all-time low of 7 on February 2nd of 1996.
    Tyler

  10. Andrew says:

    I would not mind a nice push of artic air in late january, although rare, it would be fun to see. Also, i am curious about some of the same stuff that Ashley talked about. Many forcasters jump right out there and blame global warming, but i am not so sure that is what has been causing our problems here in the west, at least not fully. I would be interested as well to hear what you have to say about the last 6 years of Oregon winters.
    Also in other news, anyone watching what is going on in Europe. They just got hit by another MASSIVE snow event. Would be fun to get something like that, as long as no one was hurt of course.

  11. Sarah N. says:

    I’m loving those wishes (last paragraph) Mark!

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