Tuesday, December 30, 2014


It has been brought to my attention that I said that Memphis was going to get a heavy snow storm by New Years Day back in November.  I was wrong. They are getting a cold ass rain at 34 -36degrees. I would have never thought the SE ridge of high pressure would be so powerful and dominant this time of year which has led many local weather forecasters to back off on their snow predictions for December and had has contributed to a mild December up to this week. A SE ridge of High pressure is another "winterized" term for a Bermuda High that you hear about during the summer months that sits off the coast of Georgia and Fla and directs where the storms are going to hit- it like a blocking formation in football.

Well this year , on top of the quirky jet stream patterns, we had a SE ridge set up which allowing storms to be steered up through the Ohio Valley (lake cutters) or be suppressed to Fla. This has also blocked arctic air from sitting over us to allow snow storms to occur as well. So all we get are cold light rains and cloudy days.

This week the SE ridge is starting to break down just a little bit which has allowed some arctic air to get back in our area. The problem is that their are now just weak storms that are even being directed away from us. Sundays and Mondays storm turned out to be just light rain showers and flurries as the storm broke up  or what you may hear from weather gurus as being (suppressed). This Saturdays storm is still up in the air but if the current pattern still holds, the storm will be weak. We may get a couple of inches of snow if we are real lucky  but it will turn to sleet and just rain on Sunday. We call this in weather lingo a "front end thumper" as the snow comes first before the rain.

The outlook over the next couple of weeks does look more promising as the current parade of "lake cutters" may lead to a coastal storm. I will define the type of coastal storms in my next blog. As I said in my last blog, the cold was going to come in slow and it has and it will not leave anytime soon. Now we just need a good storm for the snow weenies like myself

Memphis weather - cold rain with a quick warmup and then back to normal- chance of t-storms on Sunday and Monday

Milwaukee- cold and with very little snow chances

I just want to say that if the middle of the country does get any good snow storms in the upcoming weeks- a drought potential exists for the corn belt. It has been many years since I have seen little snow in SE Wisconsin area at this time. The ground has no snow cover at this time.

Friday, December 26, 2014


The weather today in the models are indicating weather patterns that we have not seen in many years. This comes about when there is a struggle for the upper air patterns to get out of this funky cloudy pattern that we have been in for weeks. The good thing is that we see more sunshine. The bad thing is that upcoming weather is very hard to predict when it comes to how much snow and rain we get until the cold locks in for January.

Like I said in yesterdays post,  the setup storm arrives Sunday night into Monday morning with a gamut of precip types. Starts off as rain but turns to sleet and snow. Driving may become hazardous depending on the snowfall rates Monday morning  but I am not too worried at this time. This is the first arctic front this year- so the temps will stay just above freezing for highs, teens for lows- something we are not used to after this storm goes by

The dog crapper of a storm later in the wek---- on January 3-4 ----with snowfall amounts that could be really significant. This needs to be watched carefully because unlike all the other winter storms that we have so far, the air and ground will cold enough for snow to stick on the roads as soon as it starts to fall.

Milwaukee weather - cold and just a little bit of snow toward New Years day Highs in the 20's lows in the single digits

Memphis - a surprise for you snow ---maybe on  New Years Day- going to get cold with highs in the middle to upper 30's after the frontal passage

Thursday, December 25, 2014


Enjoy the sunshine today- nice present from Santa. Too bad he did not give us some white stuff but this will do.

A winter storm is still on the horizon for around New Years day. But I want to say one thing about this winter so far- too many variables are being thrown at each possible winter event to make it go away. Its like playing wack a mole to get a winter storm around here. Currently, less than 30% of the nation is covered in snow. This will change after the first of the year but it it will be a slow change. 

Two winter storms are on the horizon in the upcoming week. The first is what a I call a setup storm. It brings some wintry mix to our area and departs pretty quick. Its like your neighbors dog taking a crap on your yard.  The second storm is what I call the slam dunk, where we a receive significant snowfall a couple of days later --- like all the rest of the dogs in the neighborhood taking a crap in your yard.  This scenario has been pictured in several weather models but the timing and strength of each storm keeps wondering back and forth. Giving a specific time would not be right given the aforementioned models changing everyday. One minute the storm is there- the next run of the models it is gone. This is very typical when the weather patterns are going through an abrupt change. Once the snow has fallen - usually a couple of inches, then the new pattern sets up and is easier to predict. For now, I will be happy with some sunshine.

The only constant in these models thus far is that the cold will come back -- slowly but surely.  I will keep you up to date.

Monday, December 22, 2014


Well, the blah weather wins out this month. The brief sunshine on Sunday afternoon came right before sunset- the sun will not be seen until Christmas morning. The sleet and freezing rain was luckliy confined to the Poconos tonight. We lucked out again. Whats next? Christmas Eve- rain and more rain- around 1.5" of rain coming down hard at times and it will be noticeably warmer and will seem  balmy with the southerly winds Wednesday afternoon and evening. Then as I said in the last post, the bottom drops out temps fall all day on Christmas to back in the thirties. Not enough moisture to stick around with the 40-50 mph wind gusts so only flurries are expected.  You are officially warned now to watch your Christmas decorations outside- they will blow away and you will hear all about it on Friday.

A winter storm is still on the horizon for around New Years day. But I want to say one thing about this winter so far- too many variables are being thrown at each possible winter event to make it go away. Its like playing wack a mole to get a winter storm around here. Currently, less than 30% of the nation is covered in snow. This will change after the first of the year but it it will be a slow change. I will keep you up to date

Wisconsin weather - maybe a white Christmas with a dusting to an inch but snow is in real short supply from Madison to Chicago for this time of the year. It will be normally cold- highs in the 30's

Memphis- rain and more rain and cool.Highs initially in the 50's going to the 40's

Friday, December 19, 2014


Well, as I thought, the weather data was untrustworthy as the Pacific Oceans as the storms came on the US mainland. These storms have been screwing with the normal  upper air patterns which have resulted in "Seattle Days" for us with the inversion layer setting in. The 21st storm has disappeared as the "dirty high( cloudy skies)" suppressed the storm too far to the south in this split flow jet stream  pattern. This inversion layer  will disappear after Christmas. Until then many things will have happened to finally change our weather pattern to a a more wintry pattern.

It is not in the NOAA forecast but I am concerned for a period of of freezing rain/ sleet Monday night into Tuesday. Again, the data is not trustworthy but a situation where a pocket of freezing air is trapped along the Appalachian Mts called "cold air damming" or CAD may result. Tuesday morning may not be a fun time to drive.

The Christmas day storm event will be the actual game changer not the 21st storm event as I originally thought.  Four days later  but I was close. The rain on Christmas Eve will turn to snow on a blustery Christmas Day with temps falling all day. The ground should be white with anywhere from a dusting to an inch or two of snow. Christmas Day will feel like winter. After this storm, the gloves are "on" and more winter storms and cold are here, especially around New Years Day. A significant snowstorm is appearing on the models. More will come later

Have fun shopping in our  cloudy days.

Wednesday, December 17, 2014


The model runs the last few days have indicated less white and more liquid for Sunday and for Christmas Eve. A white Christmas is looking less likely every day as the more accurate data sampling is injected into the weather models. This liquid forecast is due to a split flow of the jet stream with the southern jet stream winning out and pushing any coastal lows out to sea and bringing us warmer temps. The pattern is changing after the next storm though and better chances of a storm forming before the end of the year is coming.

Remember the blizzard of Jan 96?  We had a similar weather pattern back as we have now so please watch for a big storm to form right after Christmas when we finally get some of the arctic air back into our area. No more of the threading of the needle storms that we have seen the past month.

Specifically what do  I see over the Christmas Holidays? 1-3 inches of snow on Sunday melting by Christmas Eve but  even the data sampling is not trustworthy at this time. I will keep informed but as the the Pacific storms get on land, the models tend to shy away from heavy snow in our area right now. Any changes and I will keep you informed.

Milwaukee- slop coming your way similar to us

Memphis -  cold and rainy even up to Christmas Eve



Friday, December 12, 2014


The back-end  snow storm the last two days kept people guessing on how much are we going to get.  In LMT, we received about 3.5 inches on my deck. The big winner was Ashland, PA - just north of Pottsville with 12.5 in. Elevation again was a key in the storm. Visibility was also a problem. My predictions were pretty close to spot on for this last storm being an elevation snow type and being after a significant rain event. The rain was not as heavy as I thought it would be with only an inch being in the ole rain gauge. NJ was the winner with three inches in some areas.

Whats next-  more blah and boring weather until the 20th- my birthday. Rain and snow showers with above avg temps. After the 20th though, the weather game changes. A possible significant coastal storm on the 21st with really cold temps in its aftermath and with winter conditions really settling in just before Christmas. Looks stormy and unsettled with this pattern change. With a pattern change of what we in the weather business call a -AO pattern and El Nino storms ( now called the Pineapple express by the media - coming from the Hawaii area) the game change is on.

For my friends in Milwaukee - cold and blah like us- nothing out of the ordinary for the upcoming week

For my friends in Memphis - unseasonably mild on Monday and Tuesday with a chance of severe weather and tornadoes. Dave Brown the weather clown may even come on the air for this event. Reminds of the  West Memphis tornado event on December 14, 1987. Conditions will be similar with temps near 65 degrees so keep an eye to the sky. See the description below because I lived through this event.


This really could have been the deadliest tornado event in the world if it had been only a1/4 mile further south,   missing the Southland Greyhound Dog Races with seven thousand people in the stands on their last night of the races

Monday, December 8, 2014


A quick summary of my concerns of the Mt Bardabunga volcano:

Insubstantial changes have been in the volcanic eruption in Holuhraun over the last few weeks. Tomorrow, will be 100 days from its outbreak. Seismic activity in Bardarbunga continues to be strong. The strongest earthquake since noon  was magnitude M5,1 last Friday at 21:05. About 20 earthquakes between M4,0-5,0 were detected since Friday and 10 earthquakes between magnitude M3,0-4,0. In total about 300 earthquakes were detected in Bardarbunga since noon on Friday. Little seismic activity was detected in the dyke and around the eruption site in Holuhraun since Friday.

GPS measurements show no changes. The subsidence towards Bardarbunga continues with similar rate as has been continuing. Telecommunications with the GPS station in Bardarbunga caldera have not been established yet. Due to bad weather forecast it is unlikely that scientists will be able to travel to Bardarbunga in the next few days. A connection will be established with the GPS station as soon as possible.

The volcanic eruption has now been going on for over three months, the lava flow is still great in Holuhraun and the rate of the subsidence of the Bardarbunga caldera is still significant. Three scenarios are considered most likely:

1. The eruption in Holuhraun continues until the subsidence of the Bardarbunga caldera stops. The eruption can still go on for many months.

2.The volcanic fissure may lengthen southwards under Dyngjujokull, resulting in a jokulhlaup( glacier meltdown causing severe flash flooding) and an ash-producing eruption. It is also possible that eruptive fissures could develop in another location under the glacier. If such an eruption would be prolonged it could eventually produce a lava flow.

3. Volcanic eruption in the Bardarbunga caldera. Such an eruption would melt large quantities of ice, leading to a major jokulhlaup, accompanied by ash fall.

The media has basically not given a dam about this eruption which IMHO is the worst natural disaster to strike the northern Hemisphere in the past 200 + years. The unseen gas of SO2 will start to affect the climate in another six months and YOU WILL SEE AND FEEL  THE CLIMATIC AFFECTS LOCALLY.  Another eruption of the caldera will finally bring the media into the situation but by then it is too late.

Sunday, December 7, 2014


The above charts indicates how the models are changing from one run to the next for snow for us. The first one idicates 1-3 in of snow which ran this morning. The second chart ran this afternoon and indicates almost eight inches of snow with flooding rains. It was colder and wetter. What I really wanted to demonstrate in these charts is that the rain turns back to wet heavy snow flakes on Wednesday afternoon into the evening as the cold air is driven into the storm. Like I said in my previous blog, this storm must be watched carefully and is the type of storm that can surprise all weatherman with copious amounts of snow after the rain.


Well, somewhat consistency is now showing up in the latest models. It appears to start off as snow Monday night - late  and quickly changeover to sleet , freezing rain and just plain rain on  Tuesday by noon. Then it rains its ass off  until Wednesday when it changes back over to snow- heavy wet snow possible with big dollar size flakes as the cold air is pulled into the storm- dynamic and evaporational cooling again.

Scenarios presented in this storm are:

1. Flooding by Wednesday at noon on the Little Lehigh- out its banks, Spring Creek Rd  maybe under water.
2. Winds gusty  with heavy rain at times- not a good day for anything on Tuesday through Wednesday morning
3. This will be a slow moving storm
4. Coastal flooding and flooding rains inland will be the big topic of this storm as the winds drive the ocean water inland  during high tides
5. If you want snow- go up. This will again be an elevation snow event like the last storm. Heavy wet snow may cause power outages in the Poconos again
6. Lastly, depending on when the low moves northeast of our area will determine when the rain will change over to those dollar size snow flakes again. The main problem is that low off the coast could stall over Long Island and keep the snow machine going even for us all day and into Wednesday evening. Tough call right now. We conceivably could be under a winter storm warning for Wednesday. This is called wrap around snow and with a stalled low near Long Island this scenario can play out.

For my Milwaukee friends- cold but getting warmer with mixing precip on Monday turning to plain rain. Mild for this time of the year

Memphis friends- mild with little rain- -hitting near 60 for the week

Friday, December 5, 2014


On November 29th, I posted we would would have a few weeks of blah weather. The weather has indeed been blah and more blah- cold rains and only a couple of sunny but cold days. The blah weather is a fixin to make way for more of a snowy weather pattern. The heavy cold rains are going to smack us good tonight and tomorrow with the Little Lehigh finally getting bank-full or even spilling out its banks and ponding on the road with close to two inches or more of rain knocking at our door.

What lies after that is a weatherman's nightmare though- unpredictable precip types for another possible coastal storm on Tuesday. It could be raining in Skippack and whiteout conditions in Macungie, with the demarcation line somewhere in between for the snow. Too early to tell at this time but please be aware as the weather models are waffling back and forth and no consistency exists at this time. The only consistency that does exist is that this time if does snow- it will likely stick to the roads a lot quicker than the last storm as we had no 70 degree temps in the last few weeks.

Keep an eye on the weather forecasts as we could be in another winter storm watch by Sunday evening and a warning by early Monday afternoon.