What? Winter is Over?
While I know it's been a frustrating winter for everyone, myself included, it doesn't mean this non-cooperative winter is over just yet. As a matter of fact, there are signs that the warmth may be short lived and the cold will return into mid March. Now I know at this point, this may or may not be something that you want to hear, and I understand, many people think that if we're not going to have snow, let's move on to spring.
It is very common in strong Nino's for the end of winter to be colder than the beginning, and I've discussed this aspect before. They are called "back loaded" winters and it was part of the forecast that most of the meteorologist made for this winter season.
So lets take a look at what the models see and where that might lead us.
Again, this has been discussed many times in the past, and if you go to any of the major teleconnection pages I have at DaculaWeather.com (like this one for the AO) you can learn more about these oscillations in the atmosphere that help to determine weather patterns, and there is alink on each page that will take you to a different oscillation.
In the winter time in Georgia, we need all the help we can get to have winter weather, and we need certain patterns to help us get this weather. Ideally February and March (for that matter, all of winter) we want to see:
Now... as you know, you hardly ever get the stars lined up just right, and it is no different in this case. Each index can be at a different strength level and placement, so you could have an infinite number of combinations of these indices to factor into a forecast.
These images are from a website called MadUSWeather.com, and show the outcome at the surface for temperatures based on the index values (negative or positive etc) values you see above.
Models in General
The ensembles are suggesting a return to colder weather beginning around the 21st or so, and by the end of the month, the Euro control is digging a deep trough in the southwest and trying to close off a low. A big ridge is to the west anchored over the corner of Alaska and Canada. Bastardi was talking about the Euro weeklies this morning and how they are also coming around to a short lived warm up and then back into winter.
Week 2 is much colder than what it looked like last Thursday (for what is now Week 3) or Monday. Week 3 is colder too. The moral is that I think our idea that the warmup after the major winter event next week will be short lived is spot on. We will roll well into March before this colder than normal pattern can break.
Where this all leads is to be determined, but the signs that winter is over are just not there, and in fact, it's just the opposite. I don't mean to drag it out any longer than necessary, but it's not really my call to make, Mother Nature has her own ideas.