Tomorrow is Punxsutawney Phil's big day! At 7:25 am ET, he will come out of his burrow to a crowd of fans where a man in a top hat and gloves will hold him up to see if his shadow is visible. If he sees it, then that means six more weeks of winter, if not then spring will come early. Or so the saying goes.Topics: Frontier | GIS |
Parts of France and Switzerland are currently under water after heavy rains caused the Seine, Rhine, and Rhone rivers to rise. The lower floor of the Louvre is at risk of flooding and parks, roads, schools, and hospitals have been closed. Lyon, the second largest city in France, is also underwater. Over in Switzerland, rains stranded cavers, who had expected only snow, in the Hoelloch cavern and the Alps are experiencing thawing in some locations leading to additional issues.Topics: Frontier | Flood |
The winter of 2017-2018 is now half over, and so far has been dominated by large temperature extremes. The first three weeks of meteorological winter averaged well above normal across a large portion of the country, but extreme cold has dominated since then. The return to warmth is expected for the next two weeks, but current expectations are that colder weather will then return again during February.Topics: Frontier |
The year has started out very cold for the central and eastern US with many spots in the teens and single digits. As the first week of 2018 comes to an end, a winter storm is beginning to batter the East Coast. Snow, ice, and mixed wintry precipitation will be causing travel problems and colder than normal temperatures will lead to additional issues.Topics: WeatherOps | RadarScope | Snow | Frontier |
For the past few years, there has been a lot of talk in the news about El Niño. Now, it's time for the opposite pattern to appear: La Niña. The change it causes to Sea Surface Temperatures (SST) will influence our winter weather.Topics: Cross Enterprise | Frontier |
The QBO, or Quasi-Biennial Oscillation, is an oscillation in the wind direction in the stratosphere within about 15 degrees of the equator. Over a roughly two-year period, winds tend to oscillate between westward and eastward, with the switch between west and east winds starting high in the stratosphere and then shifting lower in altitude with time. The QBO is the result of waves propagating vertically in the atmosphere that then interact with the mean flow to slowly change wind speeds and direction. These changes influence the overall global circulation patterns, which in turn influence winter weather patterns across North America. The following plot shows the regular cycle in the QBO. Interestingly, the QBO has been positive for the last two winters, a highly unusual event. Since last winter, the QBO has turned sharply negative though, and that negative trend should continue into the upcoming winter.
With the pattern turning cold enough at the end of October to produce widespread frosts and freezes, it is an excellent time to look at when the average first freeze occurs across the country. Once frost begins to show up, the first snowfall will soon follow.