Warmer Pattern Incoming...No Need to Worry!!!

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I must say, I am VERY happy with where this Winter season is going. Granted, we are only in "meteorological Winter" which runs from Dec 1 to Feb 29th but you smell what I'm cooking. We laid the foundation for where we are going well over a month ago. I've been talking about how the Climate models aren't "getting it", many many times. They have an inherent warm bias and it's quite obvious. We had a very chilly Fall season as a whole, and clearly, a very wet one as well. The models missed the mark for October and November. They will miss the mark for the rest of the season, I believe, as well. 

Let's take a look at where temperatures are now (December 1-11) vs the same time period last year. 



The complete opposite. I fully believe that we will see our temperatures continue to do the opposite of what they did last year. That means colder than average for the entirety of the Winter season. Now, there IS a warm-up coming. There have been some blow torch Decembers in the past, I just don't think this will end up being one of them. It will take A LOT of heat for an extended period of time to wipe away the cold seen so far. I talked about how December would be a "wash" and I think that will hold water. We will likely end things right around normal. 

Why is the warmth coming and how did we know it would come? A lot of my Winter forecast has to do with what's going on thousands and thousands of miles away from where we live, in the Indian Ocean. Whaaa? Yeah, I know... it sounds crazy, but our weather is DIRECTLY related to what happens out there, granted 10-15 days down the line. We focus on the development of Thunderstorms in the Indian Ocean because they have everything to do with what phase of the Madden-Julian Oscillation (MJO) we head into. The MJO is one of the keys we look at to determine what temperatures in the US will be like. Let's take a look at the funky looking chart, shall we? 

Look at all those crazy lines. The phases we are concerned with are 8, 1 and 2. When the MJO swings into those phases there is usually high pressure over Australia and a LACK of Thunderstorm activity in that part of the word. That promotes COLD in the east. When we go into 3 and 4 especially, there are lots of storms firing off which sends heat into the atmosphere which in turn changes the pattern up a bit. 10-15 days down the road, we see the impact of that. And what do you know? Look at what's going on in the Indian ocean right now... and it start about a week ago:

See all that convection? Lots of energy, lots of heat. Now, look at where our temperatures across the nation go within the next few days... 

Yup... pretty fantastic, right? There's a direct correlation. Now, I believe we will see above normal temps for the better half of two weeks, ON AND OFF. I'm not seeing anything TOO extreme, but the 50s will likely have a bit more exposure. 

Now, I AM confident that we will get cold again, and probably in a big way. Why? The very same thunderstorms now firing off which will bring warmth to our region will down the load help lead to a sudden stratospheric warming event over the poles. That is helped along by High pressure setting up dominance near Australia as well. When that happens the spigot of cold opens up from Canada and flows into our region.

Snow lovers? We are in a good spot. Here's a look at snowfall for east to date... Most of South Jersey has already seen 2-6". That's 5" recorded so far for Egg Harbor Twp. (ACY). The seasonal average is 16", we are well on our way to get to average but I think it will be MUCH above average come March. We missed out on a big storm to our south by under 10 miles over the weekend, but don't worry, there is A LOT of time for things to come together. I believe January and February will be key, especially with coastal storms. 

Essentially I'm here to tell you to not be discouraged by some milder days here and there. We are heading in the right direction as thoughts so far have verified. I'm confident about the rest of the season based on what's going on right now. My forecasts aren't based off any one model, because I find model hugging silly. I look at past trends and what's going on our there TODAY to try and figure out where we go in the future. Sit back, relax and let Mom Nature do her thing.

Oh... before I forget. I know A LOT of you are asking about a White Christmas... well, we are likely warm up til the 23rd-ish with a period of colder temps coming in for Christmas. There IS a storm signal around. That means there is a chance of snow around the big holiday this year. Snow on the ground? I'll peg that chance at 35%.