The teleconnections continue to point towards ridging along the West Coast as we goes towards mid-month, but the MJO may be partly to blame for what is going to be the exact opposite this weekend into next week. We are going to see the jet juiced a little and it will visit us coming underneath a very cold low pressure working its way down the coast.
The process is already underway as the Central Pacific ridge is out around 150w and a cold low pressure is spinning in the Northeast Pacific. Southerly flow ahead of the low working its way down the coast over the next few days will pump us warmer temps with highs in the 60’s through Friday. The winds will really pick up Saturday as the low is off the CA coast and the temps will be starting to cool.
Models have the main precip band pushing in early Sunday morning with snow levels dropping below lake level. Highs will only be in the 30’s with snow most of the day on Sunday. The main thing that will keep snow from accumulating very much at lake level is the fact that it’s falling during the day with a very high sun angle behind the clouds this time of year.
As you go higher the snow will begin to accumulate. Above 8000 ft. the temps will stay below freezing and we should see 3-6 inches of snow with 6-9 inches along the crest. Below that the snow will accumulate several inches on snow and less on warmer surfaces. If it starts early enough and we can get some heavier bands Sunday morning we could see snow accumulate on the roads at lake level.
There is another even stronger cold low pressure that is going to spin into the Northeast Pacific and more moisture will ride the jetstream underneath into the Pacific NW Tuesday and Wednesday. We should see some more snow and below average temps with this system. This storm has the potential to bring up to a foot of snow along the crest. We could be pushed into a top ten winter this week!
When the MJO moves into phases 7-8 then 1, as you can see it’s doing on the chart on the sidebar, it tends to affect our weather. It can juice the jetstream as well as cause the ridge to retrograde Westward into the Central Pacific opening the storm door. The key to this is convection and changes in the wind directions it causes in the tropical Pacific.
This winter the Ocean was so cold that it suppressed the convection caused by the MJO in January and we saw nothing. La Nina is very weak now and an enhanced MJO in the Western Pacific can have a much bigger affect on the weather pattern.
The ridge will begin building off the CA coast next week and once the Tues-Wed storm pushes through we could warm up quite fast. By the end of next week it could be up into the 60’s and 70’s at lake level. As the MJO dies the other teleconnections should be able to take back the pattern and pump a ridge in the West. Just to our North though the storms will continue to push into the Pacific NW and Western Canada.
The map below shows what this summer should have in store for us looking at some of the analog years coming off a la nina and similar patterns. Notice CA is above average for temps June-August. This is why I have been saying hot summer.
But…look at the map of the Pacfic Ocean temperatures compared to average. It is still much colder than average along the equator and in the Eastern Pacific. The colder than average summers the past few years I would attribute to the cold water off the coast. This is at odds with the analog forecast. We’ll have to see how this pans out this summer. We could still have a hot summer but along the coast I would expect another summer of fog and cooler temps as long as this cold water sticks around. Stay tuned….BA
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