Rare 50 year Arctic Blast Sets Sights On Southern California.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Near Historic Arctic Storm

SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA – December 8, 2008 (OWSweather.com) Rare 50 year Arctic Blast Sets Sights On Southern California.

With a week away, and a sure sign of things to come, OWSweather.com is making preparations on the server to handle the traffic from this next event. UJEAS is in line with the majority if not all the other models in keeping a near historical arctic air mass into the Southern California region.

With a warm November, Southern California is finally ready for cold storms to make their way in. Resort level snow will be likely next week, and in pretty hefty amounts if things stay on track. OWSweather.com Meteorologist Kevin Martin predicts a 50 year event. While Martin is usually conservative on these events, the pattern highly favors it. “We are in a pre-1950 type pattern, “said Martin. “We know we are due for a winter storm sometime this year. The type we may be dealing with will be ranked up there with the known years before 1950, which set record low daytime temperatures into the forecast region. With this, may come low elevation snow.”

Forecaster Cameron Venable is seeing very cold temperatures in the Los Angeles areas as well. Torrance is not usually known for winter weather, thus making this an interesting event for Venable to track.

“Temperatures in Siberia, Russia will be -81 degrees this week, “said Martin. “With those type of temperatures the arctic air mass has to spill somewhere. Our answer of the exact track will become more clear this week. All residents in the mountain communities should prepare this week for very cold, winter weather, with snow.”

Indications are a second, colder storm could hit near the 18th-22nd time-frame. The details on that will have to be sorted out.

OWSweather.com staff More information: www.OWSweather.com (h/t to PearlandAggie)

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84 thoughts on “Rare 50 year Arctic Blast Sets Sights On Southern California.

  1. Anthony,
    I love your blog and read it daily! But I will tell you that Kevin Martins UJEAS compuuter model is a joke and a fraud. This has been pointed out by many, on some well repsected weather forums.
    Not saying it will not be cold, but Kevin Martin always out pimping his UJEAS weather model, that turned to be nothing more than a illustraion he created.

  2. The control of the Earth’s climate is a political decision subject only to the consensus, and settled, science of politicians.
    President-Elect Obama Will Meet with Al Gore to Discuss Climate Change
    Obama, Gore to Meet in Chicago
    Monday, December 08, 2008
    Washington – President-elect Barack Obama and Vice President-elect Joe Biden planned to meet privately with former Vice President Al Gore in Chicago Tuesday, Obama’s transition office said.
    In a statement, Obama spokesman Nick Shapiro said the three men would “discuss energy and climate change and how policies in this area can stimulate the economy and create jobs.”
    http://www.cnsnews.com/public/content/article.aspx?RsrcID=40493

  3. If there is low elevation snow and cold in California, the cause will be obvious: “climate change”. Because of human GHG emissions, the climate is crazy, normal weather patterns have been broken and yadda yadda yadda…
    There is always an argument to support the climate change hysteria.

  4. Natural variences of course.To the global warming crowd keep changing the rules on how you get temps and we will keep watching it get colder and snowier .You may wan’t to put another log on the fire since winter hasn’t officially started yet Dec 9th to be exact but who’s counting.It may be A cold and snowy winter.

  5. Ha! I was just commenting to my wife that the squirrels in our back yard (here in Sacramento) have been more active than I’ve ever seen them, and are much fatter–as if they were preparing for an exceptionally hard winter. Lucky for them, they’ve got nearly limitless calories available from the avocado, orange and hackberry tree–and can plunder neighbor’s yards if need be.

  6. The Snow effect is OUTSTANDING! Laughed hard enough to elicit questions as to what I am looking at on the internet from colleagues. Bravo.
    Oh, and good luck CA with the coming Blizzard season!

  7. I saw this yesterday and took a look at GFS output via http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/ . If the forecast verifies, New Hampshire will be warmer than Los Angeles for day or two before the cold really moves in. It won’t move out anytime soon, either. GFS only goes out to the 18th, and things are well in place. Ah, the GFS upper level maps go out to the 25th.
    Enjoy!
    Oh – note that OWSweather.com focuses on Orange County. You folks in the Bay Area will be shivering even more. Maybe even snow, if you’re lucky. (I imagine driving in the Bay Area during a snow storm is not a favorite activity.)
    Hmm, 1000-500 mb “thicknesses” suggest temps will be cold enough for snow in the Bay area from the 14th-17th and again from the 19th – Christmas. The latter round might reach San Diego, though at that timeframe the forecast is more fantasy than anything I’d make plans for.

  8. OK… I want to be the first to say that this is only “anecdotal”, in fact the whole Earth could be chin deep in snow and it STILL would not disprove AGW. (sarc)

  9. One part of New Hampshire that will remain colder than Southern CA is Mt, Washington, New Hampshire:

    High winds damaged MWO’s microwave link on Monday.
    Big Wind, Record Cold
    by Brian Clark, MWO Meteorlogist/Shift Leader – December 8, 2008
    The summit staff knew that the early hours of Monday, December 8 were going to be windy and cold, but exactly how windy and cold it got surprised us all. I was startled from my slumber at 5:33 a.m. by roar of the peak wind gust for the day of 122.4 mph (corrected for temperature and pressure at the time of the gust), the highest gust we have seen so far this winter.
    Roughly an hour before that, temperatures bottomed out at 25.2 degrees below zero, breaking the daily record low for December 8 previously 24 below zero set in 2002. I headed out for my first observation just before 6 a.m. and greeted by winds still gusting well over 100 mph and temperatures around 20 below making for very cold and dangerous wind chills of around 65 to 75 below zero. In those conditions, even with a face mask and googles on and no skin exposed, walking around the deck and staying outside long enough to complete the observation is nothing short of a brutal physically demanding task. All this and by the calendar, it isn’t even officially winter yet!
    Stay tuned– there is the potential for winds to exceed 100 mph once again Tuesday night and Wednesday!

    http://mountwashington.org/

  10. The sun stays blank and with the PDO in negative phase, we’re in for a cold winter. Can the son of Dalton Minimum be far behind? The Gods help us if it’s another Maunder Minimum instead. May be Schwarzenegger, Gore and Obama should huddle together to stay warm… LOL

  11. Stop beating about the bush, gentlemen, do get to the point! In light of the changing climate, should we British colonise Norway or Morocco?

  12. Hmmmm — a snowstorm in Leonardo DiCaprio’s back yard. I doubt that even that would be enough to drive the actor off message.

  13. Sorry Richard; but a colder bunch of turkeys than those three stiffs would be hard to locate right now.
    George
    If it takes a Maunder event to shake this pestilence from the earth, then I am willing to sacrifice.

  14. A future to horrible to contemplate.
    Too late? Why scientists say we should expect the worst:
    http://www.guardian.co.uk/environment/2008/dec/09/poznan-copenhagen-global-warming-targets-climate-change
    As ministers and officials gather in Poznan one year ahead of the Copenhagen summit on global warming, the second part of a major series looks at the crucial issue of targets
    At a high-level academic conference on global warming at Exeter University this summer, climate scientist Kevin Anderson stood before his expert audience and contemplated a strange feeling. He wanted to be wrong. Many of those in the room who knew what he was about to say felt the same. His conclusions had already caused a stir in scientific and political circles. Even committed green campaigners said the implications left them terrified.
    Despite the political rhetoric, the scientific warnings, the media headlines and the corporate promises, he would say, carbon emissions were soaring way out of control – far above even the bleak scenarios considered by last year’s report from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and the Stern review. The battle against dangerous climate change had been lost, and the world needed to prepare for things to get very, very bad.
    The cream of the UK climate science community sat in stunned silence as Anderson pointed out that carbon emissions since 2000 have risen much faster than anyone thought possible, driven mainly by the coal-fuelled economic boom in the developing world. So much extra pollution is being pumped out, he said, that most of the climate targets debated by politicians and campaigners are fanciful at best, and “dangerously misguided” at worst.
    Earlier this year, Jim Hansen, senior climate scientist with Nasa, published a paper that said the world’s carbon targets needed to be urgently revised because of the risk of feedbacks in the climate system. He used reconstructions of the Earth’s past climate to show that a target of 350ppm, significantly below where we are today, is needed to “preserve a planet similar to that on which civilisation developed and to which life on Earth is adapted”. Hansen has suggested a joint review by Britain’s Royal Society and the US National Academy of Sciences of all research findings since the IPCC report.
    Rajendra Pachauri, who chairs the IPCC, argues that suggestions the IPCC report is out of date is “not a valid position at all”.
    He said: “What the IPCC produces is not based on two years of literature, but 30 or 40 years of literature. We’re not dealing with short-term weather changes, we’re talking about major changes in our climate system. I refuse to accept that a few papers are in any way going to influence the long-term projections the IPCC has come up with.”

  15. Snow in Southern California is always exciting, particularly if you can watch from a distance.
    Colorado is a much worse place for a weather forcast. Every day in the past two weeks has been colder than predicted. (except for one or two that were warmer 🙂 And lots of snow, except when predicted. “Average” is what the temperature won’t be.
    So, December is running along just as it usually does, although a little more local warming would reduce my heating bill… Even a bit of UHI would help.

  16. I have been following Kevin’s work for a long time now. His UJEAS model is VERY impressive and its been a success. I love his work and I have no doubt that this guy will be more world famous as he continues to impress the world with his genius weather brain. Anyone caught calling him a fraud is nothing more than a jealous hater much like girls hating on Miley Cyrus. Kevin’s good people and I for one know this will be good. Ric, I want to point out that snow will be hitting SoCal regions too and he focuses not just on Orange County but any huge event he will focus in on. I have a feeling since this is his discovery that he will take full advantage to insure people know what to expect as these systems roll on in.

  17. California is the state whose ‘leadership’ has done more to pursue silly AGW policies than any other. Instead of focusing on managing the immense amount of trouble its irresponsible budget policies have caused, they are instead wasting time and resources pursuing energy fantasies.
    The irony of the first state in the nation to be wrecked by AGW hysteria now freezing to death is more delicious than I can imagine.

  18. JN, PearlandAngie,
    It has to be deg F. If it were Deg C the equivalent temp in deg F would be -113, seeing as Siberia’s all time low is “only” -86 I don’t believe it is deg C. If my memory serves me correctly (which it may not be) when Siberia got that record Alaska was soon to follow. The extreme high pressure which accompanied it forced all aviation to fly by Visual Flight Rules only, because their altimeters weren’t designed to handle such high pressure.

  19. Don’t panic, this is just more evidence of global warming. Recent reductions in CO2 levels in the Southern CA area supports the theory and the over cooling is caused by low mixing of other gases within this region. High ice freezing rates in the Arctic has caused a ripple effect of cold air to be sucked into this area.
    So, it’s not really cold at all, it’s caused by CO2. The arctic air which normally cools and freezes the ice up North has moved into a more Southern area. All of this is man caused and man needs to pain for these changes. So, expect record levels of warming inside the Arctic circle and further reduction of ice levels and starving polor bears.
    Sounds as good as anything else I read.

  20. Algore has expressed great concern for Polar Bears and other wildlife in the Arctic due his belief that the Arctic ice at the North Pole is disappearing. In a glaring display of insensitivity and neglect, the high priest of AGW has never once expressed concern for the domicile of Santa Claus, Santa’s family, his helpers nor the toy factory. How callous.

  21. Re: Ric Werme
    I would love to see a white Christmas in Santa Cruz! Hope it pans out.
    “Oh – note that OWSweather.com focuses on Orange County. You folks in the Bay Area will be shivering even more. Maybe even snow, if you’re lucky. (I imagine driving in the Bay Area during a snow storm is not a favorite activity.)
    Hmm, 1000-500 mb “thicknesses” suggest temps will be cold enough for snow in the Bay area from the 14th-17th and again from the 19th – Christmas. The latter round might reach San Diego, though at that timeframe the forecast is more fantasy than anything I’d make plans for.”

  22. Bill (11:05:30) :

    OWSweather.com appears to be a k00k [sic] who believes in the absurd “chemtrails” conspiracy theory.
    A better link might be the
    California Severe Weather Alerts page at weather.com

    Did you read his Chemtrail stuff? I nearly posted the main links on that
    other thread.
    http://www.owsweather.com/pr120408a.html
    http://www.owsweather.com/contrailreport1.html
    http://www.owsweather.com/contrailreport2.html
    http://www.owsweather.com/contrailreport3.html
    http://www.owsweather.com/contrailreport4.html
    http://www.owsweather.com/contrailreport5.html
    He says the nasty chemicals are simply airplane combustion products.
    The latter 5 links have photos and drawing debunking most of the
    claims and the “Yeah, but how about what I saw yesterday” comments.
    One thing I saw during my first visit to Vail CO was a plane cruising
    through a gorgeous azure sky. It crossed the sun a little before I
    noticed it and I was surprised by a dark streak _ahead_ of the plane.
    I quickly figured out that it was just the shadow of the contrail and
    the reduced illumination of the air made it look dark. Martin has
    some photos showing a similar effect, but not perfectly lined up like
    I saw.
    Your link to weather.com suffers from being a list of currently posted
    alerts. Those are only posted a few days ahead, we’re looking at something
    that only the models have a decent hand on. It will be a few more
    days before the freeze warnings start showing up.

  23. So, Martins debunks chemtrails, but says people are getting sick from the combustion products of planes, when they precipitate out. The only noxious element I know of would be nitrogen oxide, which would contribute to acid rain. But enough to make people sick? What are they doing, drinking the rain? I don’t get it.
    This in no way discredits any of his other work, though.

  24. ClimateFanBoy (14:45:43) :
    I would love to see a white Christmas in Santa Cruz! Hope it pans out.

    Does SC even get snow at all? I spent a couple Xmases there in my youth (40 or so years ago) and don’t even remember it being very cold. My sister lives there currently, and my Grandmother lives in Capitola

  25. Sorry, but I just can’t get me knickers in a twist thinking about southern cali’s playing in snow. Besides, I have pipes to wrap and heaters to set up. When it gets this cold, even my clean-outs in the laundry room freeze up.

  26. Pamela Gray (18:27:31) :
    “Sorry, but I just can’t get me knickers in a twist thinking about southern cali’s playing in snow. Besides, I have pipes to wrap and heaters to set up. When it gets this cold, even my clean-outs in the laundry room freeze up.”
    If the long range forecast can be believed (fat chance) you’re going to have sub-zero temps for a couple days before Christmas. Monster Arctic high pressure system, http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/namer/gfs/12/images/gfs_ten_336m.gif is the ground level fantasy for the morning of the 23rd. You’re inside the -30C contour, that’s -22F. Does that happen? That’s 120F colder than when I was there!
    N.B. that’s from a 336 hour forecast, reality will be quite different and likely closer to average temps.

  27. I went off to look see what I could find in the last 50 years of California freezes. I couldn’t find as much as I’d like, but I did come up with these quotes:
    Frost damage emerges across Northern California
    Updated April 25 [2008, I think]
    With temperatures continuing to hover near freezing, Lake County growers are still concerned about crop damage and they’re hesitant to say the worst is over. Early morning temperatures in Lake County today remained at freezing levels, reported Lake County Farm Bureau Manager Chuck March.
    Several crops, including grapes, pears and walnuts, have all been damaged by the severe cold snap, and March said, “The frost season is running into May and our farmers worry there’s still more cold weather ahead. These unseasonably cold temperatures have gone on for weeks. The conditions may have damaged some crops, but not others. It’s hard to tell right now.”
    ————————————————–
    California Freeze, January 2007. Widespread agricultural freeze for nearly two weeks in January, overnight temperatures over a good portion of California dipped into the 20’s, destroying numerous agricultural crops; with citrus, berry, and vegetable crops most affected. $1.4 billion estimated in damage/costs; 1 death reported (Lott et al., 2007).
    ————————————————–
    California’s big freeze brings snow to LA and Malibu (Roundup)
    US News
    Jan 18, 2007, 16:05 GMT
    Los Angeles – California’s big freeze – which has already frozen the citrus crop in a billion dollar squeeze – has now supplied the rare vision of snow in Los Angeles and Malibu.
    The normally balmy cities were sprinkled with a dusting of snow overnight to Thursday – a flurry that also closed the Interstate 5, which is the state’s busiest north-south route. [A flurry closes I 5? What do you drive on, racing skids? 🙂]
    ————————————————–
    Following a December 22-27, 1998, severe cold weather event in the lower San Joaquin River Valley in central California, the authors surveyed citrus growers to determine the relationship between locational, contextual, and perceptual factors and their intentions to modify their land use. Of the approximately 1,200 citrus growing operations in Fresno, Kern, and Tulare counties, 182 responded to our mailed questionnaire. Though damage was extensive – over $700 million – it was not as severe as that caused by a 1990 freeze that hit this region. We examine the relationship of the locational, contextual, and perceptual factors to the extent and distribution of damage and to the motivation of growers to act to reduce or prevent damage. We can conclude a number of interesting relationships that might be worthy of future research.
    ————————————————–
    Big freeze of 1990: A mass of frigid air from Canada and Alaska swept over California on Dec. 20, 1990, beginning a freeze that lasted nearly two weeks. Statewide, it caused $780 million in agricultural damage. In the Bay Area, the extended period of below-freezing nights caused extensive damage to ornamental plants and trees. Water pipes froze, then burst when they thawed. In San Jose, the temperature dropped to its second-coldest reading on record — a chilly 19 degrees on three separate occasions. And thermometer readings dipped below freezing on 32 days that winter.
    ————————————————–
    [San Bruno (Bay area) 1962:]
    Since 1927, the National Weather Service (formerly the U.S. Weather Bureau) has maintained a weather station at the nearby San Francisco International Airport (formerly Mills Field). According to the official records, January is the coldest month with an average high of 55.9°F (13.3°C) and an average low of 42.9°F (6.1°C). Frost occurs occasionally during the winter months; snowfall is quite rare, but 1.5 inches (3.8 cm) fell on January 21, 1962 (with as much as four inches (10 cm) reported in Crestmoor). Measurable snowfalls also occurred on December 11, 1932 and February 5, 1976. In recent years, traces of snow have been reported on December 27, 1988; January 8, 1989; and February 24, 1996.
    [I might have been in San Jose for the 1996 event. I had to pick up someone at the airport, and was looking for slush mixed in with the rain on my car’s windshield. I didn’t see any, but someone at the airport did.]

  28. Minus WHAT : O!?!?!?!?
    Holy COW!!!! Some of our ranchers have the occasional calf born in late November. This kind of cold can kill livestock if it stays around a few days. It has been -12 lots. And the winter before last it was -17 to -18 for three days. I don’t ever remember anytime it was -20 or colder but my grandparents remembered those days.

  29. It is freezing rain in Austin, TX right now at 9:15PM. Doppler shows rain but it is freezing pebbles. Maybe turning to snow early morning. Won’t stick, but still fun!

  30. While I think the weather for the west coast of California will get colder over the coming weekend into next week, I don’t think it will be any thing close to historic. I have seen much colder weather during this time of year over the west coast over the last 10 years (does any remember December 2006)?
    Looking forward, a trough will begin to develop over the west coast by Friday and then deepen over the weekend. Several shortwaves will drop into this through bringing colder and showery weather to much of California and Nevada. At this time it does not appear that excessive cold will affect California at this time (especially Southern California). Snow levels may reach down to around 4000 feet in the LA area and near 2000-3000 feet in the San Francisco Bay area, this is not unprecidented/unusual for this time of year.
    Forecast PNA models suggest a switch to a neagive PNA pattern over the next couple of weeks. Forecast models (GFS/ECMWF) suggest that the flow may flatten some next week with significant precipitaiton favoring northern and central California. Timing, depth and details differ some with the western trough. If any cold weather makes it down to the LA area, I don’t see it lasting more than a few days. Since there is forecast model uncertainty, conditions can certainly change but I don’t see it being a significant cold event by any stetch at this time. If anything, I think the ridge will retrograde to near 150W over the coming week allowing more North Pacific oriented storms to affect the west coast with the potential for significant precipitation over the northern half of California (heavy Sierra snow possible).

  31. Temperatures in Austin at 10:22 p.m. this Tuesday evening, December 9, do feel cold, and we did have sleet earlier in the evening. That said, the mercury hasn’t fallen below 32 degrees Fahrenheit anywhere in the Austin area.
    The sleet was pretty loud on the windows for a while there and did accumulate some on the ground before melting.
    Given that we hit 81 degrees at the airport this afternoon, tonight’s sleet certainly got my attention! They say, “You might live in Texas if … you’ve used the air conditioner and the heater on the same day.”
    Bingo!
    The fun part about the cold forecast in California, Oregon, and Washington, is that not one of us knows what will happen.
    Something tells me that it will be just cold enough to make Ah-nold just a little uncomfuhtible.
    By the way, for those keeping track at home, it’s not winter yet.

  32. From terry46 (08:59:35) :
    .You may wan’t to put another log on the fire since winter hasn’t officially started yet Dec 9th to be exact but who’s counting.It may be A cold and snowy winter.
    -end quote
    Sorry, can’t. The Bay Area Air Quality District (i.e. Air Police) have announced that it is now a crime to burn wood on days that they do not approve… So yes, I expect it to be a very cold winter… (Note: No Smiley. No joke.)

  33. From Ric Werme (09:02:20) :
    Hmm, 1000-500 mb “thicknesses” suggest temps will be cold enough for snow in the Bay area from the 14th-17th and again from the 19th – Christmas.
    Anyone know if AlGore is scheduled for the Bay Area then? …

  34. Anthony,
    Love the snowflake effect!
    I thought this might be enjoyed by you and your readers.
    (to the tune “Let it Snow”)
    Oh the weather outside is frightful.
    But to the “skeptics” it’s so delightful.
    Temps have dropped down low.
    Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!
    Al Gore promised Global Warming.
    But instead it’s been cold and storming.
    Solar activity has dropped way low.
    Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!
    Since sunspots have dropped out of sight.
    A Global Cooling trend has started to form.
    Proves the “skeptics” are proven right,
    That CO2 does not cause Earth to warm.
    The Solar Cycle is still slowly dying,
    To Global Warming we are “good-bying”.
    So as long as sunspots stay at zero,
    Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it snow!

  35. Harold Ambler (20:31:17) :
    > By the way, for those keeping track at home, it’s not winter yet.
    Depends on the definition. Meteorologically and climatologically, the northern hemisphere winter covers the months December, January, and February. The astronomical definition based on the solstices and equinoxes don’t really couple to weather very well.
    Months don’t fit all that well either, winter in New Hampshire could well be defined from mid November to the end of March. At least, I don’t stop counting snowfall in March!

  36. I looked at the jet stream models and I think, depending on how fast the jet stream decides to run, that California is going to get hit with heavy cold rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow mix. The stream starts in the Arctic, takes a curve out into the Pacific, and then returns on shore over California. That’s why the rest of us will be so damned cold. The empty space above this ribbon will be filled with North Pole cold temperatures direct from Santa’s house. If the jet stream takes too long curving over the Pacific, it will warm up closer to the 50 F temps of the ocean environment. If it moves just long enough to pick up ocean moisture, snow will happen on shore. Palm trees will be white. Ho ho ho.

  37. Hey! Now, someone’s thermometer has to be broken. Didn’t we just see that Siberia was having a large enough heat wave to bring the whole planets average temp up? Obviously this guy has his thermometer upside down or something, and California will be having an AGW heat wave soon. Pay no attention to that Hansen guy behind the curtain, he just reports the temps, he does not make them up… and up and up. heh

  38. Ontario Weather Service is a fraud. There is no one with any legitimate meteorological training running that site. There’s no arctic blast for California this upcoming weekend. The source region for the colder air is the Northeast Pacific, not Siberia. That’s not an arctic blast. It will be noticeably colder with precipitation by early next week, not the record breaking arctic blast advertised by OWS. Instead, just a typical cold winter storm in December.

  39. Jeff Alberts (17:06:27) :
    Does SC even get snow at all? I spent a couple Xmases there in my youth (40 or so years ago) and don’t even remember it being very cold. My sister lives there currently, and my Grandmother lives in Capitola
    No, maybe in the SC mountains a couple times a year. It does get cold enough to freeze and kill sensitive plants every winter.But that’s only clear nights. It never snows because cloud cover will always warm it up and keep it from freezing. 2 years ago we had freezing rain/hail that stayed frozen on the ground for over 24 hours. It looked like snow. 3 years ago we had a 2 week cold spell where a glacier started growing at the bottom of my driveway. It gre quite fast and actually trapped the pizza guy when he was trying to leave. Very exiting.
    Anyway, it probably won’t snow next week, but I can alway hope!

  40. Re: “let it snow let it snow” Portland Or is expecting snow this weekend from the same system but it will not be recorded. Since the weather service got their automated equipment in `98 the records show no snow, even though we have gotten a couple of good storms. The reason? Since Portland doesn’t get snow very often NOAA decided that a device to measure the snow was a waste of money. The old way of measuring with a ruler is not ‘official’ so officially we don’t have snow, therefore we don’t need a snow detector. Don’t you love the government?

  41. The snow effect is brilliant, on target, and charming. But it is deadly to systems
    without spare processor power. It runs just fine on newer multi-processor systems,
    but is a killer on older single processor systems. By itself snow saturates the
    1Ghz G4 on my old Mac.
    Can we schedule a code review to reduce the computational overhead?

  42. Anecdote alert:
    We just got nailed with a foot of snow in Wisconsin, and it’s been persistently cold for the entire month of December. Last year, if you recall, we set all sorts of records for snow in a state where it is quite a feat to break a record.
    As of yesterday, we have already received twice as much snow as we did at this time last year. As I am seeing the cooler ENSO readings and the negative PDO, I am bracing for more to come.
    I won’t say I enjoy it… I finally bought a roof rake yesterday and spent three hours between shoveling and clearing off my roof – and I get a guy to plow out my driveway, so he does most of it.
    More of this, and I’m likely to get into shape. That simply can’t happen. I’ve worked to hard to get out of shape.

  43. Is this guy Martin some kind of fraud? If so using his info certainly does not help with this sites credibility.

  44. OWSmonitor (08:48:21) :
    Ontario Weather Service is a fraud. There is no one with any legitimate meteorological training running that site. There’s no arctic blast for California this upcoming weekend. The source region for the colder air is the Northeast Pacific, not Siberia. That’s not an arctic blast. It will be noticeably colder with precipitation by early next week, not the record breaking arctic blast advertised by OWS. Instead, just a typical cold winter storm in December.
    Reply:
    While I don’t want to call anyone a fraud, I do have to say that this web site should not be issuing watches and warnings in my opinion due to public safety, but that is the internet these days. You will open yourself to legal issues potentially. In the internet age, you need to determine what is scientifically sound and what is not. Having said that, the National Weather Service and other federal agencies forecasting in meteorology for the warning areas should be the official weather source since they practice the riggor of meteorology in my experience. Professionals in the various respected universities are also a good source of meteorological information.
    I can certainly appreciate the enthusiasm of these folks running this web site, but I want to emphasise that formal education is key in meteorology. I am a hobbyist meteorologist myself. Even some TV weathermen don’t have the suggested experience so I urge people to take weather information with skeptacism and not as gospil when viewing unofficial web sites.

  45. Randall (06:03:37) :

    How much snow acculation do I have on the bottom of my screen. Does anyone have a forcast for that?

    The program allows upto 60 snowflakes, err, snowspots per page. So, “High of 60.”
    Frank Perdicaro (15:28:03) :

    The snow effect is brilliant, on target, and charming. But it is deadly to systems without spare processor power. It runs just fine on newer multi-processor systems, but is a killer on older single processor systems. By itself snow saturates the 1Ghz G4 on my old Mac.

    I can disable Javascript with a single click in firefox (possibly with the aid of some random addon). That breaks a few other things, far too many web sites depend on Javascript, so I keep reenabling Javascript too.
    I haven’t looked at the code in enough detail to know if it will be in an infinite loop for any page. I keep active pages (about 6-8) in separate tabs, so it leads to a lot of processing demand.

  46. Note in from a buddy in Houston: “Watching snow out my window.
    Ain’t snowin’ downunder; but we got some mighty storms rolling across the country; and you can drink that stuff.
    I love a sunburnt country,
    a land of sweeping plains,
    of ragged mountain ranges,
    of droughts and flooding rains…

  47. What is this Ontario Weather Service? I haven’t gotten my info from that source. I get it here: http://squall.sfsu.edu/crws/jetstream.html
    The jet stream model projection has changed a bit since yesterday with the jet stream combining both cold Arctic air with upper Pacific Ocean air midweek, combining to come down and over California. By Wednesday of next week, I will be freezing my ass off in NE Oregon, and California should be getting cold rain, sleet, freezing rain, or snow mix based on latitude and altitude. If I had a vineyard in northern California, I would be spreading some kind of ground cover to hold in heat. If this stays long enough, the ground could freeze and kill roots. It will be a given that some (many?) vineyards in Oregon will go to their grave. Won’t even talk about Washington and Idaho vineyards. If you planted the root ball deep enough you might survive. If you planted root balls at the normal depth, you could be in trouble. Vineyards in Tibbet plant their vines much like you would plant asparagus, but MUCH deeper. They also don’t trellis, instead working the main branch into almost tree trunk size and then letting the head do what it wants. When fruiting, it looks like a gnarly small tree. With such a big main trunk and deep roots, these vines produce less but much hardier fruit. And that’s why they don’t freeze-kill in that cold climate. Lots of ceremonial wine to go around.
    So for all you California types, get used to wool swimwear. It just ain’t the same as a little yellow pocka dot bikini made out of soft cotton and spandex.

  48. OWSmonitor (08:48:21) :

    Ontario Weather Service is a fraud. There is no one with any legitimate meteorological training running that site. There’s no arctic blast for California this upcoming weekend. The source region for the colder air is the Northeast Pacific, not Siberia. That’s not an arctic blast. It will be noticeably colder with precipitation by early next week, not the record breaking arctic blast advertised by OWS. Instead, just a typical cold winter storm in December.

    I’m happy to confess I don’t have much experience with reading long-range GFS forecasts and even less interpreting them for California (or eastern Oregon). However, here in the northeast, we watch the 1000mb-500mb thickness closely, as that’s the layer that produces most of our snow. Thicknesses below 5400 are generally cold enough for snow to reach the ground, and that’s what I’ve focused on.
    With onshore winds, I could see enough warm air coming off the Pacific to melt the snow before it reaches the ground. That’s the the most obvious (to me) flaw in my interpretation, but I wouldn’t be surprised someone with more experience could point out several others. In addition, of course, to actually looking at GFS output for Fantasyland timeframes.
    The GFS output for just over a week from today at http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/namer/gfs/12/images/gfs_slp_180m.gif shows 5340 thickness at San Diego and 5280 at LA. And light precip. The chance of snow before that is pretty iffy. Is that just a typical cold winter storm there?
    http://www.nco.ncep.noaa.gov/pmb/nwprod/analysis/namer/gfs/12/images/gfs_ten_180m.gif is suggesting ground temps in the 40s, which is tough for snow to make it through.
    Pamela Gray will be very glad to hear that the GFS has backed way off from the subzero temps just before Christmas, but that was far enough out to be more entertainment than forecast.

  49. I live in Southeast Texas. Two months after Hurricane Ike devastated our region, we’re getting a snow storm with 1/2 inch of accumulation and still going. We’re at 29.5 deg N about a half mile from Galveston Bay!

  50. NWS Sacramento and Eureka CA are now saying freezing temps could start on Saturday and last until Tuesday at least with snow levels < 500 feet ASL.
    Since forecasts have seemed to run +2 C above actual this fall, I’ll bet it will be colder than that.

  51. This weather pattern in the jet stream is now projected to dump a foot of snow or more at pass level and nearly as much on the valley floor in NE Oregon this weekend. I drive over two passes on my way to and from the ranch: the Blues and then up again through a finger of the Wallowa Whitman/Eaglecap Wilderness Area. Then next week the the jet stream moves south, temp drops like a stone in Oregon and California gets a taste of snow. I have to get some more heat lamps going under the house and space heaters going in bathrooms/laundry rooms to keep that big house from freezing up or else I would hunker down in Pendleton and ride it out till Xmas break. I also have cows on the property that need water. We may have to hose it out to them with a heat coil in the tank if the creek freezes up.
    Are we having fun yet with this global warming?

  52. Paul Shanahan (11:20:26) :
    Richard Black is the most poorly informed environment correspondent I know of at the BBC. He’s worse than Harrabin, if that’s possible! Bishop Hill wrote this.
    http://bishophill.squarespace.com/blog/2008/9/30/the-amazing-disappearing-roger-harrabin.html
    As for this comment!
    “Being able to introduce efficient wood stoves is not rocket science.”
    Ewah Eleri, Int’l Centre for Energy, Environment and Development.
    Oh yes, it is rocket science!
    http://www.cato-projects.org/ArLivre/RocketStove1.htm
    Regards,
    Perry

  53. @Ric Werme
    Here in Western Oregon/Washington the due to the influence of the ocean the 1000mb-500mb thicknesses value that is an indicator for snow is 520. It may be even lower for southern CA

  54. Kevin was right, again. Arctic blast is coming down the Western Coast.
    You don’t need a degree in meteorology to know “science” Kevin has a gift for patterns and numbers. He is a savant. His story intrigues many in Southern California. We all love him!

  55. Forgot to add. He has a wind advisory up for our mountains. Kern. NOAA has nothing up yet and I’ll wait.
    Kevin is usually hours if not days before NOAA.
    Very excellent website OWSweather is and glad he is getting the much deserved publicity. Some is bad. Some is good. Any publicity is good.

  56. Apparently, the last time sunspot-less days were so high in two consecutive years (1911-1913), the Great Lakes ALL froze over.
    There’s a serious bout of cold in Canada right now.
    Any bets laid on skating from Chicago to Lake Huron in 2009?

  57. A bit off topic, but the snow is easy to fix.
    The primary problem is tight loops calling rnd()
    and Math.Random(). Instead of repeatedly
    making up random numbers, pre-calculate
    an array of many, say 10,000, and walk through
    the array.
    For extra pseudo-randomness, have an array
    of steps, where each member is relative-prime
    to the size of the array. For example, 10000
    is 2*5*2*5*2*5*2*5. Use steps 7, 13 and 23
    in sequence mod 10000.
    This table-driven approach will remove about
    80% of the execution time.
    A similar approach can be used for the floating
    point random numbers.

  58. Pamela said:
    So for all you California types, get used to wool swimwear. It just ain’t the same as a little yellow pocka dot bikini made out of soft cotton and spandex.

    Really! Wool in the hot tub? What a crazy idea. Swimsuits in the tub is just silly anyway. Hmm… maybe only a little crazier than me in a bikini (yellow spotted or otherwise…) But it is cold enough to need a nice robe for to-ing and fro-ing and we will need to be doing Irish Coffee rather than Scotch/rocks… Sacrifices MUST be made!
    Does anyone know where that ’70s fondue set went?…
    It is on the cool side of seasonably cold right now, but there is something pensive about it. A sense of impending SOMETHING. Probably the cold with very low but non-zero wind speeds. And standing in the sun doesn’t feel very warm. The squirrels are going nuts with packing in the chow too, and the cat has a very fluffy winter coat on. Hoping for a while Christmas…

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