El Nino?

September 15, 2006

El Nino is back apparently…here is the NOAA special advisory:

http://www.noaanews.noaa.gov/stories2006/s2699.htm

So what does it mean for this winter in the Northwest?  Each El Nino produces different weather here, but in general we tend to be warmer and drier than normal.  That’s due to the storm track often shifting to the north over the western part of our continent.  Or it will split at times, sending some systems into California.  An enhanced subtropical jet tends to move north too, impacting California with heavy rains.   

Here’s a good link that our state climatologist has for El Nino’s effects on the NW:

http://www.ocs.orst.edu/reports/elnino1.html

As for this weekend, tough call with an annoying little system coming in now tomorrow night and Sunday.  Looks like the GFS was a bit too dry a couple days ago, but the ETA was too wet.  Maybe next week’s forecasting will be a bit simpler.

Now discuss amongst yourselves…Mark