A Quick Evening Post: Plus A Winter Thought or Two

October 29, 2013

Real quiet weather out there this evening.    Temperatures are running a bit cooler than 9pm last night,


although last night we were dealing with the last of the breezy northeast wind.  Assuming little or no cloud cover makes it here before sunrise (likely), temps will be just about the same as last night.  Here are a few of the morning lows:


Interesting to note that downtown Portland didn’t have a frost (not expected there anyway), but Aurora only reported a lowest hourly of 34 (ignore the 36).  It’s possible it was lower, but still a little warmer than I would have expected down there.

Just for fun this evening, I spent 30 minutes comparing current fall conditions with some previous fall weather and the ensuing winter.  Should be interesting to see what you all think.

We’re going to end up with less than 1.50″ rainfall for October here in Portland, less than half of normal. So…

I looked up all the Octobers since 1950 with less than 2″ of rain

2008, 2006, 2002, 1993, 1991, 1989, 1988, 1987, 1986, 1983, 1980, 1978, 1976, 1972, 1964, 1958, 1952

Then just those in the group that followed a wetter than average September

1986, 1978, 1976, 1972

And those (of the initial “dry Octobers” group) that were ENSO-neutral through the following winter

1993, 1989, 1980, 1978, 1952

The only year that featured a wet September, followed by a dry October, that was an ENSO-neutral winter, was 1978.

If you look at just the autumns that are wet in September, followed by a dry October, regardless of ENSO conditions, what happened the following winter?  There are only 4 of those as you see above.  2 had no snow in Portland (1976 & 1986).  One had a historic arctic blast in December and 6.5″ snow (1972), and one had several blasts of cold arctic air and 8.4″ for a seasonal total (and a crazy ice storm in January!).  That was 1978 again.


WHAT DOES THIS MEAN?  I don’t know, but it filled an entire blog posting didn’t it?

I think the possibilities are WIDE OPEN for this coming winter.  We could have some good action or it might be a shutout.  The general consensus at the OMSI meeting Saturday was that we’ll see some action this winter.  Pete Parsons went crazy forecasting the worst January in years (in a good snowy/cold way).

Chief Meteorologist Mark Nelsen