Monday, December 1, 2014

Winter Begins -- A Look Toward A White Christmas?

Meteorological winter officially begins today, but after a bone chilling November the harsh reality of yet another winter is back and now fresh in our minds.  The average temperature in Toledo through November was 35.1° a solid -6.3° BELOW AVERAGE!

Well, does this mean a white Christmas ahead and another cold month?  Not so fast.  Too early to tell about a specific date (December 25th) as one storm could be the difference maker, but overall a major pattern shift is underway.

My December Prediction:  Much WARMER than Average -- Near Normal Precipitation

This is supported by a noticeable shift to a more "zonal" west to east flow in the upper levels of the atmosphere around 30,000 ft.  This flow from the Pacific coast, NOT interior Canada favors a much warmer scenario. 

Jet Stream -- This weekend (December 7th)
Longer range CFSv2 Climate models showed a major shift across North America toward a warmer December.  Pictured below is the temperature anomaly for consecutive daily model runs for the month of December.  A major trend toward a very warm December is clear. 

CFSv2 Climate Model for December
The answer to the white Christmas is still elusive, but it is clear that overall, December may very well be a warmer than normal month. 

~Meteorologist Chris Vickers