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Wednesday, September 30

TROPICAL TROUBLE?

We've certainly seen our fair share of rain over the past 24 hours thanks to a slow moving front and a deepening area of low pressure moving in from the southwest but there could be plenty more ahead by the weekend.

Joaquin has now strengthened into a hurricane and is expected to become a strong category 2 or even a major hurricane over the next few days as atmospheric conditions become increasingly favorable. Then the million dollar question: Where does it track this weekend and early next week?

Models have been all over the place when it comes to the forecast track and there is a ton of uncertainty in our weekend forecast for western New York. If the storm tracks northwest and into the New England coast, we could see an extended period of heavy rain and gusty winds as far west as western New York. Models this morning however, show the storm taking a sharp turn to the west and moving into the southern Mid-Atlantic late this weekend and early next week.

Here's what the latest GFS is showing:



Notice the center of the storm moves onshore along the North Carolina/Virginia border, significantly further south than just 24 hours ago. With a very strong ridge sitting just east of Nova Scotia, it appears more likely that this southern solution will verify.

Still plenty of time for things to change between now and the weekend so keep checking back with us!

Meteorologist Matt Jones 

32 comments:

  1. And then the Euro says "no" to everyone except the Bahamas. But it has very little support. If someone had a gun held to my head and demanded me to guess a landfall location right this instant, I'd guess somewhere in the southern DelMarVa.

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  2. 5pm cone update:

    http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/storm_graphics/AT11/refresh/AL1115W5_NL+gif/205433W5_NL_sm.gif

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  3. "There is an increased disagreement between the GFS, UKMET, Canadian, and NAVGEM models versus the ECMWF since the last advisory. The ECMWF has continued its forecast of showing a northeastward motion after 72 hours, taking Joaquin just west of Bermuda and out to sea. The other models have all shifted their forecasts to the left and now call for landfall in the Carolinas and the mid-Atlantic states, followed by merger with the baroclinic trough. Given the shift in the non-ECMWF models, a major westward adjustment has been made to the forecast track at 96 and 120 hours, bringing the center of Joaquin near or over portions of the mid-Atlantic states. Due to the use of the ECMWF in the consensus models, the new track lies near the various consensus models. However, it lies well to the east of the GFS and the other similar models. The NOAA G-IV jet is currently flying a synoptic surveillance mission, which, along with special rawinsonde launches, hopefully will reduce the spread of the guidance."

    http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCDAT1+shtml/302055.shtml

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  4. Recon flight has found a central pressure of 954 mb and strongest wind of 105 mph

    http://www.nhc.noaa.gov/text/refresh/MIATCPAT1+shtml/302357.shtml

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  5. I feel like the less active the hurricane season, the higher chance of a more upper latitude storm to make landfall. Definitely an interesting scenario, but depending on if/where it stalls out, this could cause some big time flooding. I know its fun to watch, but I really hope the Euro verifies so that areas avoid catastrophic flooding...

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  6. Chris now in PenfieldSeptember 30, 2015 at 9:22 PM

    So many factors involved in this evolution of this storm track. EXCELLENT write-up on it:

    http://www.wunderground.com/blog/JeffMasters/comment.html?entrynum=3131

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  7. I have Adult Swim on the TV right now in the background. Right now they're showing an episode of The Cleveland Show where a hurricane lands a direct hit on the Brown family's town. They live in Virginia. Could this be a part of the prophecy foretold in the meteorological scrolls? Probably not, but it's fun to imagine.

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  8. 11pm update: Joaquin is now a Category 3 with top wind of 115 mph and minimum pressure of 951 mb.

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  9. Bastardi is going to be saying "told you so" for the next 15 years.

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  10. Oh my god the Euro is about to pull the biggest model coup in history. More globals and ensemble members are shifting its way and it hasn't budged for several consecutive runs, and I think we all know what that means 99 percent of the time. It's embarrassing enough when your nation's global models once again get spanked by the Euro in big moments, but when the ones made SPECIFICALLY TO PREDICT HURRICANES also get trounced at predicting a HURRICANE...man, that's just full-tilt humiliation. Like, Brady putting up 466 yds and 3 TDs against your vaunted defense in your home stadium sort of humiliation. The state government of Virginia should feel like total fools for issuing a State of Emergency yesterday when everything was still so murky, but of course they'll simply attribute their decision to "bad information" or something similar, thereby shifting the blame over to you-know-who. I see headlines today trying to drum up hype by comparing Joaquin to Sandy, which is nothing short of completely irresponsible since things have clearly changed since last night. Then there's good old DT, who's been dry humping the Euro to death all week long and whose confirmation bias driven ego will surely inflate over the next few days. And on top of that I had a really bad nightmare last night and it woke me up super early and I couldn't get back to sleep afterwards so I've been really grumpy all day.

    At least the weekend looks a bit better now.

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    Replies
    1. Didn't the Euro get the track of Sandy correct days before anyone else also?

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    2. I think the Euro was about a day ahead of everything else if I recall correctly. Then we had a general non-GFS consensus for several days. This time it was a case of the Euro just flat out schooling all of the other guidance.

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  11. Is Saturday going to be a bad day full of rain. I know it is going to be chilly but we were having an outdoor birthday party about 5:00?

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  12. Very little change in the leaves so far. I thought we would have some color, but nothing yet.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. September was a summer month this year. Probably delayed the changes. I've been seeing some patchy color lately where I am.

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  13. http://www.nytimes.com/2015/10/03/upshot/hurricane-joaquin-forecast-european-model-leads-pack-again.html?_r=0

    TL;DR: Garbage in, garbage out.

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  14. Chris now in PenfieldOctober 5, 2015 at 6:24 AM

    Knowing this Congress, they probably wanted to cut funding to the NOAA in order to put extra money in to the GFS… :-/

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  15. Very strange that there is barely any color change in the leaves around here. Next week is mid month which is usually peak I think.

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    Replies
    1. Delayed a few weeks because of a warm September.. happens

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  16. The newest NMME update is in, and a general consensus appears to be taking shape. We aren't quite there yet as there is still some disagreement, but we're much closer than we were a few months ago. The monthly breakdown of the model mean through March, as it pertains to WNY, looks like this:

    NOV: above average temperatures, slightly above average precipitation
    DEC: above average temperatures, above average precipitation
    JAN: slightly above average temperatures, near average precipitation
    FEB: slightly above average temperatures, slightly below average precipitation
    MAR: slightly above average temperatures, near average precipitation

    Spread naturally increases farther out in time, so as a consequence uncertainty does as well. The mean for January is probably being skewed warm by the CFS and NCAR advertising a megatorch across the northern CONUS. I'm not sure about the NCAR's biases but I know the CFS can struggle with placing the north Pacific vortex too far east, so I'm willing to bet that it's happening again here given the increasing tendency towards a less warm depiction amongst the other models. It could also be happening with December and February, but perhaps to a lesser extent (in December's case since a more eastward vortex is climatologically favored in strong El Ninos). I won't draw the same conclusion for March yet since disagreement increases markedly for that month. The NASA model continues to be the coldest, although by a much lesser margin than before. There's probably a bias at play there too but it's not skewing the mean nearly as much as the two warmest models. The above average precip anomaly along the Eastern seaboard is still present in most models for December, January and March, with a bit more of an even split in February. Overall spread increases markedly in February and March. Still, what we have is a continuation (and in my opinion strengthening) of the ongoing possibility of an active coastal storm track for a large part of the winter.

    TL;DR: still no winter cancel according to models

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    Replies
    1. Link to the monthly NMME and its members:

      http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/NMME/monanom.shtml

      And just for kicks, the trimonthly as well:

      http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/NMME/seasanom.shtml

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  17. Channel 10 and 13 have temps only in the 40's by next weekend but channel 8 has them in the low 60's. ?????????????????????????????????????

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    Replies
    1. Bet on 40s next weekend, maybe low 50s. We might tickle the freezing mark at night too.

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  18. Replies
    1. Don't know about first frost, but I think some areas will get their first flakes.

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  19. Chris now in PenfieldOctober 12, 2015 at 11:09 AM

    I just completed my first run of the CNIP model. It suggests that this winter will be inconsistent; cold spells where the temps did below average for a few days, then level off into normal range, then increase to above average for a few days. I am guessing this is because, at times, the PNA will dominate and other times, the El Nino will dominate. This will also result in a wetter than average winter, but snow will not pile up dramatically like it has the past two years. There will be lake effect with the changes in the wind direction as warmer and cooler air oscillate about, plus a well-charged storm track with some big snowstorms.

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  20. There's no question in my mind that the Pacific side of things ultimately depends upon what El Nino does. If its primary forcing places a huge trough in the NE Pacific through all of DJF then we're pretty much toast. Shut the blinds and dedicate the winter to bingeing on movies because the warm pool in that scenario wouldn't stand a chance, and the entire continent would be completely scoured of any truly cold air. As it stands I believe that will only be the case for the early parts of winter, and from observing opinions on various forums I've seen that I'm not alone in that thought. In that scenario the El Nino would initially force a trough in the EPO region, but then pull the trough westward over time and allow more persistent ridging to form a more negative EPO. This actually tends to be the standard progression of things during El Nino, which is a major contributor to such winters being backloaded more often than not. Further supporting that idea is the fact that we still have a basin wide event, which is still expected to remain the case though the winter and may even come along with the warmest water pushing further west with time. The super Nino of 1997 pushed a lot of extremely warm water up against South America, so the primary forcing remained east and kept the N.Pac trough near the North American west coast. So we never saw the standard retrogression and thus we torched all the way through March. I've said all of this at least a few times before, but for once I have something truly new to add...snow cover expansion in Siberia this month has been running above average and that looks to continue for the forseeable future. On top of that, I read a claim by Steven DiMartino that the current cold water anomaly in the Davis Strait portends a largely negative NAO for the winter. I was previously holding off on leaning any direction with the AO/NAO couplet, but for now I've decided to lean somewhat towards negative for both indices. True that the Siberian snow cover index failed us last winter, but that may have been due to a large spike in solar activity during late fall that threw a major wrench into things. I don't expect it to fail quite as spectacularly this time, especially since it seems to have support from other places. And if we do get long periods of negative NAO coupled with what will almost certainly be a raging subtropical jet, and considering that most of our biggest storms have occurred with an Atlantic block in place...well now you know why I've been intrigued about the upcoming winter since July. The possibility of such a high stakes game tickles me a lot more that the steady reliable stream of nickels and dimes that has characterized most of our recent winters. And I really hope we cash in, because La Nina is still favored to develop during the middle of 2016, which would favor a return to nickels and dimes right off the bat.

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    Replies
    1. Wow this turned into an excessively long post. So here's a summary for those who don't have literally all day: something something Pacific trough, something something retrogression, blah blah backloaded winter yadda yadda North Atlantic blocking something something big storms or bust.

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  21. ***THIS COULD BE OUR WINTER***************


    THIS SCENARIO OF THE RIDGE IN THE WEST EASILY BREAKING DOWN AND A
    STRONG PACIFIC FLOW DISPLACING THE DEEP DOWNSTREAM TROUGH IS ONE
    THAT WE HAVE NOT SEEN FOR A COUPLE YEARS. IT IS CONSISTENT THOUGH
    WITH A STRONG MERIDIONAL PACIFIC JET FOUND DURING TIMES OF MODERATE
    TO STRONG EL NINOS. MAYBE THIS IS A HINT OF THE OVERALL PATTERN TO
    COME THIS COMING WINTER WHEN ANY TRUE COLD AIR COULD STRUGGLE TO
    HAVE ANY STAYING POWER. STAY TUNED.

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    Replies
    1. Depends on what they mean by "true cold air." If they're referring to long stretches of highs in the teens and low 20s then yes, we'll probably struggle to have that. If they're talking about nothing but an end-to-end torch then there are several reasons to bet against that.

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