Sou’easter! 11/30/20

Hello! I hope everyone was able to enjoy their Thanksgiving holiday & long weekend! The weather on Thanksgiving was kind of what you might expect around here, perhaps a bit too warm for some folks across southern New England.

While warm air punched up to the Mass Pike, with highs in the low 60’s, temperatures were a lot colder just north of the pike into southern New Hampshire, with high temperatures only reaching the low 40’s.

It was also a rainy day, with many areas seeing a half inch to one inch of rainfall. Way up in Maine this precipitation fell as snow, leading to a White Thanksgiving in that part of New England.

As the rain ended, temperatures cooled back towards the dew point temperature. This led to pea soup fog across much of the region Thanksgiving night.

Friday featured a lot of clouds with highs in the mid 50’s. Similar weather was seen on Saturday, with slightly cooler temperatures. Sunday was the sunniest out of the bunch, with highs in the lower 50’s. Light winds made it a very pleasant day to wrap up the holiday weekend with a light hike, or a walk in the neighborhood.

Well, today is November 30th…we have arrived at the end of climatological autumn! Today also marks the official end of the 2020 hurricane season. What a doozy this was, with a record breaking 30 named storms in the Atlantic this year, in which 12 turned into hurricanes, six of which became major hurricanes. In other words, we had nearly two seasons in one this year!

Overall, November turned out very much like I had anticipated. The early stretch of Indian Summer had temperatures nearly 7 degrees above the seasonal average.

Beginning around the 12th, the strong ridge of high pressure broke down, leading to large fluctuations in temperatures, which included several days of much colder than normal weather.

These colder periods certainly chopped into the warm departure from earlier in the month. However, in the end, November 2020 will go into the record books at about 3 degrees warmer than normal.

After a dry start, it has turned much wetter the second half of the month across the Boston region. In fact, the deluge coming this afternoon will push November 2020 to above average precipitation for the month, which is a rarity this year.

Novemeber continues the upward trends in temperatures around here. So far, in 2020, there has only been one month which featured below average temperatures, which would be April!

Looking at the long range data for December, I see no reason to think it will turn out any different from the preceding months. While there will be some chilly periods, I am expecting December to average warmer than normal in Boston this year. This would make it 8 out of the last 10 Decembers to feature warmer than normal temperatures for this month.

Boston averages around 8″ of snow in December. Oddly, I believe there is a good chance at seeing some wintry precipitation this month, with possibly seeing around average to maybe a bit above snowfall for a change.

I posted my winter forecast last week, and explained how I believe this is going to end up being yet another warm winter for much of southern New England.

Sometimes after I write a seasonal forecast, I second guess myself on some of my predictions. This time, I never really got those thoughts, meaning my confidence level is higher than average.

As always, there will be some surprises! Right now, I’m going with between 30 and 40″ of snow in the Boston area. If anything, I would lean towards the low end of this number.

As I mentioned, it’s going to be a winter which features a lot of rapid changes, and has a little bit of everything, to please most folks. If you like snow, head north for the most, but southern areas will get some too…at least more than last year the way I see it right now.

If you like warmth, you will get to enjoy spring at times during the middle of winter! But don’t get used to it, La Niña will change her fickle mind, and abruptly change the pattern back to cold!

I will update everyone on these rapidly changing weather patterns as we progress through December. Just in case there are any unforeseen changes, I will have one final update on my winter forecast around when the winter solstice arrives on the 21st of December. You never know!

Just what exactly is a sou’easter?? Sounds funny, pronounced “sow” easter. We have all heard of the type of storm New Englanders are accustomed to called a nor’easter. This is a storm which develops south of New England along the east coast, and tracks northeast, passing south and east of Cape Cod. With its counterclockwise circulation, this brings strong northeast winds along the New England coast, as well as heavy rain or heavy snows.

A sou’easter is a storm that takes an inland track, passing west of Boston. With the circulation being counterclockwise, this places Boston in the warm sector of the storm, with strong southeasterly winds, hence the abbreviated version of southeast is “sou” just as we abbreviate northeast winds as “nor.”

Sometimes, these storms can become just as intense as our nor’easters. With the storm tracking through he Ohio Valley, then up the St. Lawrence Valley, Boston is squarely on the warm side of this storm. Later on, I’m expecting temperatures to spike up into the low 60’s in Boston!

At the same time, near blizzard conditions will be occurring in northern Ohio with close to a foot of heavy wet snow falling. In their case, the storm will be tracking south of them, with cold northeast winds, Had this storm tracked 400 miles further east, we would be looking at a early season snowstorm around here.

As has been the case the past two winters, I am expecting many more storms to take a similar track this winter, bringing lots of snow turning to rain storms in Boston this winter.

Nevertheless, the storm arriving later today and into this evening is going to be a formidable late autumn storm for sure! Along with torrential downpours mixed with thunder, many folks along the I 95 corridor points east can expect strong damaging southeast wind gusts of between 40 and 50 mph in the Boston area, but 50 to 60 mph southeast of the city, especially along the coast and down on the Cape.

These winds will be strong enough to result in some tree branches breaking, and maybe even some uprooted trees. This will undoubtedly lead to some power outages across eastern Massachusetts, and especially southeastern, Ma. Cape Cod, and northeast of Boston in Cape Ann region.

Now for your early season ski report. Sadly, this storm is not taking a favorable track for New England ski resorts. Any snow that they were able to make over the holiday weekend, is going to be wiped out with heavy rains and warm temperatures. After the storm passes, colder weather will begin to move back into the region, with upslope snow accumulations in the favored Green Mountains of Vermont, and resumed snowmaking.

After a couple seasons featuring early cold with plentiful snows, patience will be needed this winter, until a wintry pattern slowly settles in.

Now for your weekly outdoor activity and early winter forecast. I am rating this week to be a 6 out of 10.

Expect increasingly stormy conditions arriving in the Boston area this afternoon. Periods of heavy rain along with torrential downpours will move into the Boston area this afternoon.

In addition, strong to damaging southeast wind gusts of between 40 and 60 mph will rapidly ramp up later this afternoon, focusing between 4 and 10 pm this evening.

As the storm tracks west of Boston, a warm front will push through the region, resulting in temperatures spiking into the low 60’s this evening! Wow!

As we enter the warm sector of the storm, it’s possible we could see a few severe thunderstorms here at the end of November. If one of these storms passes over your hose, there could be even stronger wind gusts, vivid lightning and loud thunder.

The storm should begin to slowly diminish late tonight, as winds shift to the southwest. It will remain warm, with lows only dropping to near 60 along the coast, but 40’s and 50’s across the interior.

Tuesday will start warm and breezy, with early morning highs in the 60’s. Welcome to meteorological winter! There may be some scattered showers during the first part of the day. If the sun does come out, it will be brief, with a lot of fast moving passing clouds.

As the day wears on, cooler air from the west will begin to flow into New England. Temperatures will be falling through the 50’s and eventually upper 40’s by evening.

Tuesday night will feature cooler, but certainly not cold for December 1st, with lows in the 30’s and 40’s.

Wednesday will feature a more wintry feel to it. Heavy snow squalls will be the rule up in Vermont. Down here, it will be blustery and chilly, with highs mainly in the 40’s. There could be a few passing flurries during the day, but nothing serious is anticipated at this time.

Expect more tranquil weather conditions for both Thursday and Friday, with mainly dry conditions and lighter winds. It will be on the mild side with highs close to 50 degrees.

For the first time in a long time, we have some question marks for the weather for this upcoming weekend. Another storm system will be tracking across the southern tier of the country. Earlier indications showed this storm turning the corner and tracking up the coast as a formidable nor’easter. Latest data now shows this storm sailing harmlessly out to sea.

I do not trust this solution at all! It’s possible later computer guidance pulls this storm closer to New England. If this does happen, it may be just cold enough across the interior of New England, especially across ski country for a nice snowstorm!

Temperatures are still marginal along the coast for all snow, but I can’t rule out some snow mix if the storm does indeed track closer. I will be closely monitoring this storm this week, and will be sure to update everyone if conditions warrant.

More wintery action could be on tap the following week, but we’ll look into that in more depth in next week.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s post, I will be monitoring the prospects of a White Christmas this year. I will also have a weather history segment. In addition, I will hopefully have better news with my new ski and snowboarding forecast. In the meantime, whichever storm we get, you will now know what to name it!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Winter 2020-21: A Little Bit of This…And A Little Bit of That! 11/23/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Much how I believe this winter is going to be, it was a split decision weatherwise! Saturday was a lovely day, with high temperatures in the low 60’s.

A sharp cold front slipped through without much fanfare Saturday night, and Sunday turned out significantly colder, with high temperatures only reaching the mid 40’s.

Adding to the chill was a stiff east wind blowing off the chilly Atlantic Ocean, along with slate grey skies. If there was a text book definition for what the weather is like in November here in New England, yesterday was the day!

Today was the next level of typical November weather…heavy rain! Did you know that November is typically Boston’s wettest month? It’s also the cloudiest month on average.

Certainly November has proven to be a Jekyll & Hyde type of month this year. Remember the stretch of Indian Summer we enjoyed from the the 5th to the 12th? This has been punctuated by pretty chilly temperatures at the beginning of the month, then a brief cold snap last week, which had temperatures plummeting into the teens at night!

As forecasted, November has featured wild temperature swings. Since the end of Indian Summer, November has behaved how a typical November normally behaves. Lots of temperature swings, and now we can add heavy rain to that list. My forecast called for a warmer than normal November, and it indeed appears as if it’s going to end up that way.

Now, is it going to be +7 degrees above normal where we were during Indian Summer? No…with the cooler trends, we have been able to chop that down to +3 degrees.

Watch for temperatures to be a little above average and a little below for the remainder of the month. This should secure temperatures to remain around +3 degrees above average for the month of november this year.

If it feels as if I focus a lot on temperatures for November…you’re correct! I carefully monitor temperature and precipitation trends during November, to help me come up with my winter forecast! As I always said, I look at the past to help me predict the future!

So the time has arrived for the my winter 2020-21 forecast for New England! I’m always fascinated with the interest in this forecast. Hundreds of amateur weather people like myself, amateur meteorologists, professional meteorologists, NOAA and of course the Farmers’ Almanac all take a crack in trying to forecast an entire season of weather.

Clearly folks are interested in these forecasts many reasons. City & municipal departments want to know how much snow to expect for budget purposes for snow removal. Oil companies want to know how cold it’s going to get to gauge how much money their going to make. Ski resort owners want to know how much snow they can expect on their mountain to entice skiers to spend time at their resort. Many use these forecasts to try and determine what the bottom line will be.

For me, I enjoy studying New England weather just for that. I truly love talking about the weather, specifically winter weather! I love giving a winter forecast because of the anticipation of what surprises Mother Nature will throw at us.

When I was a kid, winter was more exciting. With today’s technology so advanced, it removes half the excitement, because computer models are that good now!

So what do the computer models say for winter 2020-21? Computer models have been consistently showing a warm to very warm winter on the way for much of New England this year. This would make it 3 warm winters in a row, and something like 15 out of the last 20!

That’s what the computer models say. Of course, this is subject to human interpretation! What do I think? Overall, when you average the three month period of December, January & February consisting of winter, I too believe we are in store for another mild winter. But…the devil is in the details, as they say!

For this winter, we are firmly in the grip of La Niña (cold ocean temperatures in the southern pacific Ocean). When this happens, it’s typically colder in the Pacific northwest & Alaska, and warm across the southeast part of the U.S. In these winters, New England is caught somewhere in the middle.

Out of 10 La Niña winters, 4 will feature near normal cold & snow, 2 will feature below average snow and mild weather, 2 will feature well below average snow, and excessively warm temperatures, and one will have above average snow and below average temperatures.

Then there’s that holy grail La Niña winter. The one out of 10 La Nina’s when we get blasted with excessive snowfall and bitter cold temperatures. This type of La Niña winter occurred back in 2010-11, then way back in the 1995-96 winter. In these winters Boston received 81″ and 107.6″ respectively. Wow! Just for the record, I am not anticipating this type of winter this year here in Boston.

There are many other factors I study besides La Niña and El Niño. These are large scale drivers for the patterns across North America. As I mentioned earlier, I carefully follow temperature and precipitation trends here in Boston during November.

The higher we are above average at the end of November (departure from normal) the less snow we typically see. Yes, there’s always the one anomaly year that stands out, but that could be classified as once in a lifetitime event.

My research tells me years with near normal temperatures in November produce the biggest snow years here in Boston. By near normal I mean Plus 1 or minus one departures at months end. Years that stray further away in either direction do not see as much snowfall.

Novembers which feature absolute blow torch temperatures, plus 6 degrees or higher, such as November 2001, 2011 and 2015 featured well below average snow the following winter.

These Novembers also featured below average precipitation. Too dry of a November can begin a trend which typically continues into the winter months.

So how are we fairing this November? Overall it will end up on the mild side. However, not by that much. I’m projecting November to finish around 3 degrees above average. This is also heavily weighted during the incredible Indian Summer stretch between November 5th through the 12th. If you took out that week, the month would finish pretty close to normal.

Nevertheless, it will finish above average, and in my opinion, chop into the possible snow we would of had the potential of seeing in Boston this winter. Precipitation has been good. Not too much, but not a drought either.

Along with trends in November, I also study past analog years that are similar to this one. So far, the years 1984-85, 1998-99, 2003-04, 2007-08, 2008-09, 2010-11, 2011-12, 2016-17, and 2017-18 are my top analog years. Out of these years, 3 were dud winters, less than 20″ of snow, 3 were near normal, and 3 were above normal!

My top analog years are 2003-04, 2010-11 and 2011-12. The first winter, 2003-04 featured a big storm in early December, then bitterly cold weather for January with slightly below average snow. The second winter, 2010-11 was a real beast, with 81″ of snow, including a couple of blizzards. The following winter, 2011-12 was the exact opposite, with record low snowfall and record warm temperatures.

Among other important factors I study besides ocean temperatures is the Polar Vortex. This is a strong belt of winds in the upper atmosphere generally located across the North Pole. A strong Polar vortex, like we had last year contributed to a very warm winter.

A weaker vortex, one that expands like taffy and splits into small lobes, is conducive to bringing periods of severe winter weather to the lower 48. Dr. Judah Cohen is the expert on the Polar Vortex. He says right now it’s very strong, but there is a chance it could weaken later in the winter, which could bring a period of severe winter to the northeast.

Other natural signs I closely follow is frost patterns, geese flying south, squirrel activity and acorn production to name a few.

I also noted the record pre Halloween snowfall in Boston this year. For reasons unknown, accumulating snow in October is a typically a sign of below normal snowfall & mild weather the preceding winter.

Pulling this all together, what are my thoughts for this upcoming winter? As you can see, it’s a chaotic mess in my opinion! There really isn’t any one signal that stands out. Making a seasonal winter forecast is still merely a educated guess, despite the advancement in technology.

For this reason, I’m expecting a very changeable winter on the way, with no one pattern locking in for too long! With that being said, there is a chance of not only week to week variability, but patterns may change abruptly from month to month, meaning cold stretches followed by warm periods. One of La Nina’s trademarks is wide variability, and I see no shortage of that this year!

While computer models are depicting near record warm weather with very little snowfall this winter, it may not be so cut and dry as that! They actually are showing near record low snowfall for Boston this winter!

While I do not fully buy into this prediction, I do have to give it some consideration. This is where I come in and interpret everything I have been studying.

Boston’s normal snowfall recorded at Logan airport is 44″, with closer to 50″ in surrounding neighborhoods. For this winter, I’m forecasting more than last year, when we received just 17″ of snow, but less than average in the city. I would be quite surprised if we surpassed 44″ this winter. Anything is possible, but from everything I can see, it’s looking unlikely.

Right now, let’s go for between 30 and 40″ in Boston. Areas south of Boston but north of the Cape should see between 20 and 30″ this winter. Locations north of Boston should see between 40 and 50″ of snow.

Not a blockbuster winter, but there will be a period or two of harsh winter weather, especially coming up in December, early January, then again in March.

There also are indications of possibly one good snowstorm this winter. There is a strong signal this could occur in December this year! I’m really liking that 2003-04 analog. I think it’s a good compromise for all the extreme winters we talked about.

In typical La Niña fashion, I’m expecting swoons of warm stretches this winter, which should outway the colder periods, therefore leading to another winter featuring above average temperatures.

Along with Boston, I’m expecting somewhat below average snowfall across most of coastal New England this winter. This means 40 to 50″ of snow in the seacoast region of new Hampshire, building up to 50 to 60″ in Portland, Maine region. Areas north of there will get there share of snow, as they most always do most years.

Interior northern New England has the best shot at seeing near normal snowfall this winter with near normal temperatures. If the storm track sets up right, there is a chance for even snowier conditions across the ski resorts and northern Maine. At this point, I see a solid winter coming up for many ski resorts in northern New England.

For my friends on the Cape, expect a variable winter much like Boston is in store for. With the Cape surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean, expect even less snowfall here. However, do not be surprised if we see one or two nor’easters with strong winds and wintry precipitation. Right now, I’m going for between 10 and 20″ of snow this winter.

As I have done in previous years, I will update this forecast one final time when the winter solstice arrives on December 21st, just in case things change!

Now for your weekly outdoor autumn activity forecast. I will rate this week a 6 out of 10.

Well, the heavy rains of this morning have passed. Some areas, including myself actually heard thunder! Expect clearing skies late today before the sun goes down.

It will begin to turn colder tonight, with temperatures dropping into the 20’s and 30’s.

Watch for mainly sunny but colder weather on Tuesday. Temperatures will struggle to break the freezing point for many. A day similar to last Wednesday if you recall.

Clear and cold weather will be on tap for tomorrow night, with lows in the teens and 20’s.

Wednesday should feature increasing clouds. After a cold start, temperatures will moderate up into the mid to upper 40’s by days end.

A storm system will be approaching New England later Wednesday night, with rain developing from west to east.

At this point, expect a rainy Thanksgiving Day for many across New England. I’m not expecting downpours or anything, but damp weather will be the theme throughout the day. It won’t be terribly cold, as temperatures will actually be milder than average for the day, with highs mainly in the 50’s.

Rain should end from west to east Thursday night, with clearing skies arriving shortly thereafter. Lows will be in the 30’s and 40’s.

Watch for pleasant weather for Friday, with mainly sunny skies and temperatures mainly in the 40’s and 50’s.

At this point, it’s looking like a 50/50 weekend is on tap. Saturday looks like another nice late November day, with sunny skies and highs in the low 50’s.

Another storm may arrive on Sunday, bringing with it more rain and cooler temperatures, with highs in the upper 40’s.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog I will be reviewing the weather of November, and have my preview for December. I will also begin my ski & winter activity forecast, as well as elaborate a bit on my winter forecast. In the meantime, a little bit of this is better than a lot that when it comes to winter weather!

I hope everyone enjoyed my winter forecast! Feel free to comment or ask questions!

Wishing everyone a safe & Happy Thanksgiving!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

More November Changes…11/16/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Overall, it was back to seasonable weather around here. Saturday was chilly, with highs only in the 40’s. After a very frosty Saturday night, Sunday turned milder in the afternoon, with increasing clouds. A fast moving front brought a period of strong winds and torrential rain Sunday night, along with another surge of cool weather today.

For now, Indian Summer is over! The change began last Thursday, when temperatures finally began to cool off, with periods of light rain. Folks on Cape Cod got soaked with up to a couple inches of rain falling.

Another wave of low pressure brought a cold rain on Friday, with most areas not getting out of the 40’s. It turned cold enough later Friday that some ares up in northern New England actually flipped to a period of wet snow. This is nothing unusual for this time of the year, however.

This is certainly more typical November weather that has settled in. The weather we experienced from the 5th to the 12th, while it was amazing, was not typical for November.

There were many warm records that were broken during this stretch that dated back nearly 100 years. Though it reached into the 70’s for six straight days across much of the Boston area, there was only one record broken at Boston’s Logan airport.

This doesn’t surprise me. For the most part, the weather is tempered at the airport, which is surrounded by the Atlantic Ocean. Winter observations are typically less extreme here, as is summer.

Nonetheless, the extended period of Indian Summer was prolific, in Boston and surrounding suburbs. It now appears that we have settled into a more seasonable pattern for the rest of the month.

What does this mean? Well, rather than featuring themperatures that remain too warm or too cold, we will be experiencing rapid fluctuations in temperatures of both warm & cold for the remainder of the month.

With these fluctuations, there will also be the potential of some storminess heading onto Thanksgiving week and beyond into next weekend. So far, these systems look more wet than white. The one exception could be over the deep interior and higher elevations of New England.

Yesterday, I was quite alarmed looking at the long range computer models which showed three successive nor’easters battering New England with one of them bringing a heavy snowstorm to the area on Thanksgiving Day!

Today’s models have backed off this extreme solution. However, it does bear watching just in case they flip back to that idea. Unlikely, but you never know in this rapidly changing pattern!

With all that being said, it’s looking very likely that November is going to finish as yet another much warmer than normal month here in Boston…our 10th out of 11 month this year. The one colder than normal month, you ask? April!

This continues the trends of this preposterous warm cycle, which began in the spring of 2015. Since then, Boston has experienced warmer than normal weather 80% of the time!

So how can I be so sure that November will end up warmer than normal here on the 16th? Well, the departures from the warm stretch of weather last week were so outrageous, some 20 to 30 degrees above average, that it would need it to be just as cold in the negative side, just to bring us close to average. At this point, I’m projecting Boston to finish 3 to 5 degrees above average for November.

What does this mean for our upcoming winter? Actually, there is a strong correlation to November temperatures and how much snow Boston receives the following winter. The closer temperatures are to neutral (average), the snowier the winter. With this being a La Niña winter, and November so much above average, I’m not anticipating a blockbuster winter this year.

However, this does not mean we can’t get clobbered by a singular major event. We can still have a below normal year in terms of snowfall, but still experience one or two good nor’easters. It’s less rare than when we have snowy winters, but it has happened.

In recent memory, there was a huge snowstorm back in 2003, December 5th through the 7th where many communities received between 2 and 3 ft of snow. This happened to be the biggest storm of the year, when Boston ended up with below average snowfall that season.

There was another big nor’easter back in February of 2007, in a otherwise very mild snowless winter. There have been many other examples. The general idea here is that just because we don’t receive 90″ of snow, doesn’t mean we can’t get a good snowstorm or two.

Keeping this in mind, we are in very dark times if you’re a snow lover (that’s me) here in the Boston area! Overall, the patterns and teleconnections are just not conducive for snowy weather here along the coast this winter, and for the past couple winters for that matter!

Adding salt to the wound, nearly all computer models (51 members) are depicting a nearly snowless winter in southeastern New England, with blow torch temperatures (very warm). Yuck!

Can New England weather Gods pull out a miracle for winter lovers? I say it’s about similar to the Patriots comeback in Super Bowl LI in 2017, when they were down 28 to 3 late in the 3rd quarter and came back to overtake the Falcons and win the game in overtime! Wow, doesn’t look good for me.

The big question I have making my winter forecast this year is whether it’s going to be a blow torch winter as they say, or trying to interpret the models as too extreme, leading to winter that has its moments for snow lovers and winter enthusiasts? As always, I will do my best in determining these factors. Check back with me a week from today, as I will be posting my 2020-21 winter outlook!

Now for your weekly outdoor activity autumn forecast. I will rate this week a 7 out of 10.

Expect rapid changes this week. Overall, its looking like mainly temperature swings, with very little precipitation.

Watch for mainly sunny for the rest of this afternoon. It will be brisk, with high temperatures in the lower 50’s.

Tonight will feature dry weather, with lows in the 30’s and 40’s.

Tuesday will be a transition day. There will be a cold front charging through the region. Not much precipitation, although don’t be shocked if you see some scattered rain and snow showers, especially across vermont and the Berkshires. High temperatures will mainly be in the 40’s.

It will turn sharply colder tomorrow night, with clearing skies, and temperatures fallling into 20’s regionwide, except some teens across the deep interior.

Wednesday will be the coldest day of the week, with high temperatures barely making it above freezing in the Boston area. This means it may remain below freezing across the interior, and upper 30’s down on the Cape. A cold wind blowing over the warm ocean may produce some scattered snow showers on parts of the Cape. No accumulations are anticipated.

Expect clear and very cold weather Wednesday night, with lows falling into the teens and lower 20’s.

Thursday will still be cold, though with less wind it will feel less harsh especially during the afternoon. High temperatures will rebound to the lower 40’s.

Expect even milder weather on Friday, with high temperatures making a run towards 60 degrees.

Right now, dry weather looks to continue through this weekend. Temperatures will settle back to seasonable levels once again, which means low 50’s. Overall, a fairly boring weather pattern this week.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog, I will be posting my winter forecast for the 2020-21 season! I will also have your all important Thanksgiving week forecast. I know many will be staying home this year, but some will be traveling for small gatherings. In the meantime, keep your scorecard handy to keep track of all the changes!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Lingering Warmth…Then Changes! 11/9/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Could this of been the best November weekend weatherwise in recent memory? My answer would be a resounding, yes!

The mild weather began last Thursday with temperatures warming well up into the 60’s. Temperatures continued to warm into the 70’s for Friday, Saturday, and Sunday! What a weekend to spend outdoors camping, hiking, taking a walk in the park, or even spending time at the beach!

It almost seems like a dream we had 3 to 6″ of snow the day before Halloween, with record low temperatures in the 20’s both the night before and on Halloween night itself.

Am I surprised with what’s happening? I am to a certain extent. In earlier posts, I mentioned that there was potential for a storm around Halloween, and that snow could be involved. I was very surprised how much snow fell in Boston, and how Logan airport shattered its October snowfall record.

I also mentioned that November was looking like a warm month in Boston, when looking at the long range computer models back in October. This too was not a surprise to me. However, I am again very surprised with the intensity of the warm weather.

I was speaking with my sister Valerie this morning, and we were chatting about the unusual warm weather. I mentioned to her that if there was any true definition of what Indian Summer is, this is it! Text book material!

Indian Summer is a stretch of warm, sunny days with light winds, typically in November, after the first freeze. Yup, we’ve got it covered! This is real Indian Summer!

Just how warm has it been? Boston is going to break a record this week with the number of 70 degree days in November. By tomorrow, we will have had our 4th day of 70 degree + days. In addition, we may tie or break a record today of 74 degrees set way back in 1938!

Again, it’s not unusual to have warm weather in November. It has happened in the past, for sure. Just in the past two decades I can list 5 or 6 very warm Novembers. For example, November 2001 was very warm. Other warm Novembers included 2003, 2005, 2006, 2009, 2011, 2015. Out of these Novembers, 2001, 2011, and 2015 were near record warm. Will we be adding 2020 to this list?

The exceptionally warm weather looks like it will continue through this Wednesday. Thereafter, I do see some changes coming for the rest of November. After such a beautiful stretch of weather, the pattern here in November can go one of three ways.

First, we could continue with this weather, and experience the warmest November ever on record. Second, we could flip to cold patterns, and balance off the warm departures.

Third, the huge ridge of high pressure (mild & dry) begins to break down, and we experience more typical November weather featuring changeable weather of cold blustery days, mixed with mild pleasant days.

Such a pattern would lead to more seasonable weather the rest of November, but because of the very warm stretch of weather, the month will finish above average overall. Not record warm, but warmer than normal nonetheless.

With the contrast in temperatures, the second half of November looks to be more active too, with several chances of rain and possibly even some snow across the interior of New England.

Right now, I am confident with the third solution. A more seasonable second half to November is on the way, with mild and cooler days. As mentioned above, there will also be increased storminess, with blustery days ahead.

With weather patterns being the way they have been, how could one even begin to forecast what the winter will have in store? This is a very good question!

As I have mentioned, we are in a La Niña this upcoming winter (cold water in the Pacific Ocean off South America). I’m not going to get into too many details, as I will leave that for my winter forecast, but this is going to be the main driver this winter across North America.

La Niña winters here in Boston are quite variable. They can range from cold & snowy, to warm & dry, and sometimes, a mixture of the two. From what I can see right now, it looks like we may be heading towards a winter featuring no locked in pattern. Meaning I’m leaning towards the third solution, a mixture of cold & snowy, and warm and dry…somewhat what the last two weeks have been like!

I will have much more information about my winter forecast just two weeks from today!

Before I get to my forecast, I did want to circle back for one more fall foliage report for the season! What a strange foliage season it has been, indeed!

It had looked like the foliage season was running way ahead of schedule this year for Boston. As it turns out, peak foliage is only now moving through the city. This is two weeks behind schedule!

Foliage season got off to a lightning fast start. Summer drought and early frosts got the leaves changing quickly up in northern New England. These factors accelerated the changing process, with peak conditions arriving even before the official start of autumn!

Even down here across interior southern New England, foliage was very early and brilliant. Splashes of color was even showing up here in the Boston area.

Then temperatures dramatically increased with high levels of humidity towards the end of September, along with copious amounts of rainfall. While peak had already come and gone up north, the warm moist weather halted the foliage from changing in Boston and along the coast.

Warm weather continued for the first three weeks of October. The patterns abruptly changed the last week of October, leading to a very unusual pre Halloween cold snap and record setting snowfall for October, which seemingly put the final nail in the fall foliage season for Boston.

However, temperatures rebounded here in November. After the deep freeze, the warmer temperatures has actually helped bring a very late season second peak through Boston which is occurring right now!

While not all trees are brilliant, I did notice some nice colors on our oak and red maples in recent days! Enjoy the final burst of color here along the coastal plain, as the winds of November will be arriving shortly, blowing all the leaves off the trees.

Now for your weekly outdoorautumn activity forecast. I will rate this week an 8 out of 10.

Sorry for the late post! Monday has now passed, but if I were to rate the weather of today I would of given it a perfect 10! Wow, perfect Indian Summer weather, with many communities reading the mid to upper 70’s!

Expect mainly clear and mild weather overnight, with lows mainly in the 40’s. There may be some patchy fog developing late at night or very early tomorrow morning.

If you missed today, no worries…Indian Summer weather will continue for your Tuesday! Watch for mainly sunny weather, light winds, with highs reaching the low to mid 70’s regionwide!

No weather worries for your Tuesday night, Low temperatures will mainly be in the 40’s.

It will still be on the warm side on Wednesday with highs near 70 once again. The difference is there will be increasing clouds during the day. A weak storm will be tracking up the coast from Florida, with rain developing late in the day and continuing at night.

Rain may linger especially across southeastern areas early Thursday. After the rain stops, it will remain on the cloudy side for the rest of the day, and it will be turning noticeably cooler, with highs in the lower 50’s.

Friday should feature mainly sunny and cool weather, with highs in the mid 50’s.

Fair & cool weather will continue on Saturday, but it will be feeling very much like November, with highs in the lower 50’s.

Another storm system will be approaching Sunday. This will bring increasing cloudiness with rain developing during the day. It will be cool and raw, with highs only near 50.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog, I will be tweaking my winter forecast, and will be sharing more of my thoughts with you. I will also have a sneak peek into our Thanksgiving week forecast! In the meantime, enjoy the lingering warm weather…we are now on borrowed time!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Indian Summer…Redux! 11/2/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! It was a wild end to October, with Boston seeing their biggest October snowfall on record, and also their second coldest Halloween, one which will not be soon forgotten! Halloween can bring some extreme weather, and this year was no exception!

The storm itself should not of been a surprise. I discussed the possibilty of a storm at the end of October a couple weeks ago. The surprise came the day of the storm, when cold air came charging into the storm sooner and stronger than expected.

Rain quickly flipped to snow early Friday morning, and temperatures continued to plummet as the storm intensified. Snow fell heavily across the Boston area, even to the shores!

At the same time, extremely cold air for this time of year arrived just as the heaviest moisture was also arriving. It was an unprecedented scenario! Snow rapidly began to accumulate on all surfaces, leading to treacherous road conditions, and scattered power outages.

Snow plastered everything, including all our trees, which still had full foliage. The scene on Halloween morning was surreal! Temperatures dropped into the teens and 20’s after the storm departed, leading to an icy Winter Wonderland across the region!

Some thought this storm was the remnants of Hurricane Zeta. Not necessarily. The heavy rain that fell on Thursday was actually the leftover moisture from Zeta.

As that storm passed out to sea, another storm developed along the coast. This storm turned more into a winter type storm. As it developed, and tracked up the coast, cold air from Canada began to plunge into southern New England changing the rain to snow.

When all was said in done, Boston’s Logan airport recorded their largest October snowfall on record of 4.3″ shattering the old record of 1.1″ set back in 2005. Before that, Boston had only recorded trace amounts of snow in October for nearly 150 years of record keeping.

Of course, that’s not the whole story. The observation site for Boston is located right on the ocean. This distorts snowfall reports for the surrounding areas. As you travel inland from Logan, the weather dramatically changes.

Places further away from the oceans influence are colder. Elevation also plays a role in snowfall amounts…especially with events early and late in the season.

There have been many accumulating snow events in October over the years. Just nine years ago we had a freak blizzard where interior Massachusetts received 20 to 30″ of wet snow just before Halloween! This paralyzed the region, with many homes losing power for up to two weeks!

We also had snow in October back in 2009, and 2005. There was also a memorable October snowstorm way back on October 10th, 1977. This was also a major storm for interior locations, with very little snow noted at Logan observation site.

With all that being said, the 5.5″ of snow I measured where I reside in the West Roxbury part of Boston was the largest October snowstorm that I can ever recall! Many locations measured between 4 and 7″ across the Boston area, depending upon elevation.

Many friends are asking whether the record October snowfall is an indication of a severe winter ahead? This is a very good question, and one that is subject to interpretation.

Just looking at statistics alone, accumulating snow in October in Boston, more times than not leads to a warmer than normal winter, with below average snow.

As I mentioned last week, a local Boston meteorologist did some research regarding this subject. From 1935, Boston has seen snow with slight accumulations in October 22 times.

Half of the following winters featured below, or much below average snowfall. The other 9 featured near normal snow, one had above average, and there was only one with well above average snow! So if you are not a fan of snowy winters, the odds look to be in your favor!

However, there’s always the anomaly, or something that is different, unusual. Could this October early season snowstorm be the anomaly for us here in Boston? It is 2020 after all!

This is a difficult question to answer at this point. It’s still a little bit too early for me to know for sure. I’m still gathering data for my official winter forecast, which will be posted on November 23rd.

Before that, I still like to discuss some of my early thoughts for the upcoming winter. I must say, October snow is one of my negative signs I incorporate into my forecast, when looking at snowy winters.

I don’t mind October snows in the hills and mountains, but it typically means a non winter ahead when it occurs along the coast, despite the statistics giving it a 50/50 chance of at least a normal winter.

Could this year be different? It’s possible. Look, Friday was an amazing weather day. Boston received it’s first freeze, first frost and first snow all in the same day!

Normally, I like to see the first freeze before the first snow, to expect anything normal the following winter. The fact that this was a real winter storm, with very cold air involved, gives me some hope that we may at least see close to average snow this winter. At the very least more snow than last winter.

In many other October snow cases, snow was falling with temperatures above freezing. Meaning it was a sloppy storm, with snow melting as it fell. In our recent storm, temperatures dropped into the 20’s, leading to very efficient accumulations.

These are unprecedented territories we are in right now with our climate. I have seen more extreme weather patterns over the last 10 years here in Boston, than I have ever seen in my entire life. Due to a warmer climate, unusually warm ocean temperatures and lack of arctic sea ice, our climate here in Boston has become more unpredictable.

Teleconnections that we used to use 15 or 20 years ago are not as reliable as they once were.

I like to study November temperature departures in Boston to help me determine what kind of winter we’re in store for. In many ways, this pattern looks very similar to 2011. As mentioned above, a pre Halloween storm blasted interior Massachusetts with record snowfall. Many were wondering if an epic winter was on the way.

November came in cold that year too. However, after a few days, a huge bubble of warm air migrated towards New England, and parked itself over our region for the remainder of the month, and the winter for that matter, leading to one of the warmest Novembers on record! The winter that you followed suite, with unusually warm weather.

fast forward to this year. A late October snowstorm, a cold first few days of November are now here. As was the case in 2011, there is another bubble of very warm weather heading towards New England.

After tomorrow, to the delight of many readers, we will be entering a nearly two week stretch of sunny skies, light winds and warm temperatures. If there is any true definition of Indian Summer, this is it!

If you recall, true Indian Summer is a period of sunny, mild weather with light winds, after the first freeze. Because Boston dropped into the 20’s, we can now declare this to be true Indian Summer! As a bonus, many of the leaves will be falling from the trees, making it an even more authentic Indian Summer.

The big question is what happens after? Will the Indian Summer continue for the rest of the month ala 2011 and 2015? We are going to be running close to 6 degrees above average after this warm siege. I’m expecting many days, possibly up to two weeks of temperatures in the 60’s and even low 70’s!

If we don’t get any Greenland blocking later in the month, temperatures will continue to run way above normal. These type of warm departures for November, will no doubt destroy any chance of a snowy winter this year, and the October snow curse will indeed have validation.

However, if the pattern changes, and it turns colder the second half of November, things may turn out much differently this winter. Right now, I do see signs of colder temperatures arriving just after mid month. How much will this chop into warm departures by the end of the month will me determine how much snow we see this winter.

Now for your weekly outdoor autumn activity forecast. I will rate this week an 8 out of 10.

Expect windy and cold weather this afternoon. There will be passing clouds, even with some passing snow flurries and squalls. I had a snow shower move through earlier, and my brother in law Michael reported a snow squall in the seacoast region of new Hampshire. It will be cold, with temperatures falling through the 30’s, with a biting wind chill!

Look for mainly clear and cold weather tonight. Clouds will tend to increase late at night, as a clipper type storm approaches from the northwest. Temperatures will fall into the teens and 20’s across the region.

Watch for some brief snow showers early on election day, with some minor accumulations possible in the higher terrain. Otherwise, expect clearing skies & breezy conditions. It will be rather cold for the season, with highs in the mid 30’s across the interior, and low to mid 40’s along the coast.

Tuesday night will feature clear and cold weather. Expect temperatures to fall into the 20’s once again.

It may still be a bit chilly on Wednesday, especially in the morning, but temperatures will begin to moderate by afternoon.

Thereafter, expect indian Summer to overspread our region with much warmer temperatures to arriving on Thursday straight into the upcoming weekend and well into next week. This will be a clean high pressure, with sunny skies and light winds.

Expect highs to warm up into the mid to upper 60’s to even low 70’s for the foreseeable future. Time to shut the furnace off & open the windows! Wow!

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog I will be looking into how long our Indian Summer weather will last for. I will also share more thoughts on our upcoming winter patterns. In the meantime, enjoy the warm stretch of weather, we could be on borrowed time!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Snow on The Pumpkin? 10/26/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Depending on which season you prefer, it was a 50/50 proposition. Saturday was more like late summer, while Sunday felt more like late fall! Both days were rain free, which meant many were able to enjoy outdoor activities.

So far, I would say this has been a very nice fall! Yes, we had a couple very rainy days in October, but we desperately needed the rain! Otherwise, temperatures have been somewhat above average, but not as warm as past several autumns.

Nonetheless, the warm trends continue, which began in earnest way back in July of 2015. Just this year alone, Boston has seen below average temperatures only in April. Every other month this year, has featured above average temperatures.

If you take it up step further, you would find the warm months outweighing the cold months by a large margin. I do not have the exact number in front of me, but I believe it has been somewhere in the number of 45 out of the last 60 months have featured above average temperatures here in Boston.

I do not want to get sidetracked. We can discuss the warm cycle and why it could be happening, in another post. This post, I will be discussing our fall weather patterns, a look towards winter, and the potential for a very early Halloween snowfall.

Yes, you read that correctly! There is the potential for a early season snowstorm later this week, across the interior of New England.

Past couple weeks I mentioned computer models hinting at a potential storm towards the end of October. Two weeks ago computer models were showing this storm, so I mentioned of the potential. Last week they dropped it, but I mentioned that it could come back because the pattern supports it.

Well…today the models have once again picked up on the storm. As has been the case the past several Octobers, there has been intense storms hitting New England right before Halloween. Many of those storms were warm storms, with high winds.

This set up is tricky. This is more like a winter type storm. It reminds me a lot of the freak snowstorm in late October of 2011. Does anybody remember that storm? That storm resulted in trees being knocked down, power outages lasting for two weeks, and Halloween being cancelled.

I am not forecasting 2 ft of snow with this storm. However, the potential does exist for heavy wet snow, power outages, and treacherous travel. Again, this is mostly a concern for interior portions of southern New England, north and west of I495 corridor, especially in higher terrain locations.

With that being said, if the storm does materialize, and takes the projected track, there is also a chance the rain changes to wet snow even inside of I95 including Boston. Depending on how much moisture is left, and time of day, a small slushy accumulation can not be ruled out!

Why snow in October, again?? It seems these October snowfalls have become increasingly common in recent years. This is a complex question to answer. Dr. Judah Cohen tweeted this morning that there could be a link between low arctic sea ice, and early season snow in October.

The theory says cold air up in the arctic prematurely gets dislodged due to a weak Polar Vortex. As the days get shorter this time of year, cold air can flow down into the United States, clashing with leftover summer warmth, resulting in these unusual early winter storms.

If you haven’t caught the recent news, record breaking cold and fierce blizzards have been hitting the upper midwest, including Montana, Minnesota, and Iowa to name a few states.

This past weekend, the blizzard swept into Colorado and Kansas, resulting in 1 to 2 ft of snow, and bitter cold temperatures. This storm was a gift from nature, as the snow helped to douse the Colorado wildfires that were ravaging the state.

If that’s not enough, we have a new tropical storm developing. Tropical storm Zeta, which will likely intensify into Hurricane Zeta and will track into the Gulf of Mexico over the next couple days.

There are several forces coming together for our potential storm on Friday. It appears that the storm from Colorado is going to phase with Hurricane Zeta. These two storms are then going to get absorbed by an approaching cold front as it approaches the east coast.

As the cold air presses into southern New England Thursday night, the storm will be tacking through the Tennessee Valley, then get forced south of New England Friday. This is a classic winter storm track for southern New England. Hard to believe this track has not happened over the past two winters, but it appears it’s going to happen here in October. Incredible.

Now, many may be saying, Pete, is this a preview for the upcoming winter? Are we in for it? Not necessarily! You may also remember me talking about the “October snow curse” last week.

Yes, it’s true. The storm that hit in October of 2011 was the only winter storm of the entire season! One of the warmest and least snowiest winters followed in 2011-12. If that were the only sample, I would just chalk it up to a freak event.

However, there are proven statistics dating back to the 1870’s showing any accumulating snow during October in Boston, has a very high probability of leading to a very warm winter with below average snow the following winter.

For reasons unknown, this theory typically applies only to coastal cities along the I95 corridor from Boston to Washington, D.C. Snowfall in higher terrain, away from the coast does not seem to fall under this criteria.

Perhaps it’s the strengthening La Niña? These early season snowfalls seem to happen when there is incoming La Niña (cold water in the southern Pacific Ocean). As mentioned above, the Halloween snowstorm of 2011 had a very similar La Niña developing. If you recall, that turned out being one of the warmest, least snowiest winters ever recorded.

I also know it’s not a positive sign for snow lovers when there is accumulating snow before you have received a first freeze. Officially, we have not received a freeze in Boston.

At the earliest, we may have one Friday night, essentially after the storm has passed. I suppose if we fall to 32 degrees the same day as the storm, it could qualify as the first freeze, along with the first snowfall?

It’s possible this may be Mother Nature telling us to watch out this year! Winter could be starting early, and to get the shovels ready! Statistics say otherwise, but this is 2020, and strange things have been happening this year so far!

As I mentioned last week, computer models are showing a very warm winter is on the way this year. However, Mother Nature is trying her best to defy what computer models are forecasting.

It’s still a bit early, but I’m closely monitoring these natural signs from Mother Nature. Though it hasn’t panned out for me the past couple years, I will be following the patterns and temperature profiles in November closely.

I still believe November temperatures can dictate what kind of winter is coming. If temperatures warm up too much in November, it may indeed mean a warm winter coming. I will be following these trends very carefully over the next several weeks. My official winter forecast will be posted on November 23rd!

We are now in the last stage of our fall foliage season. Peak foliage is now entering the Boston area, and will be with us over the next two weeks. Expect the brightest colors to be right around Halloween, or even through the first week of November. I still believe the red maples will brighten up quite a bit around our area during this week. Enjoy!

Now for your weekly outdoor autumn activity forecast. I will rate this week a 6 out of 10.

Expect mostly cloudy and cool weather for the rest of today, with highs mainly in the mid 50’s. With a light onshore wind, there could be some patchy areas of drizzle.

I do not see any change in the weather overnight, with a onshore wind expect low clouds, fog and drizzle. It will be mild, with lows in the 40’s and low 50’s.

Slightly drier air may briefly penetrate into New England Tuesday into wednesday. This means some clearing is possible with periods of sunshine. Temperatures will be seasonable, with highs in the 50’s.

Watch for increasing clouds and chilly temperatures, for Thursday. Onshore winds means damp weather could be arriving late in the day, along with rain developing.

As mentioned earlier, a storm from the midwest could merge with the remnants of Hurricane Zeta. This storm is then expected to track towards New England, then suddenly turn east and pass south of New England. If this track remains, watch for heavy rain Thursday night, along with gusty winds.

As the storm passes south of New England, winds will shift to the north, and cold air will begin to plunge into the storm system. Rain should change to heavy wet snow across the interior north & west of I495 & especially high terrain early Friday morning, with 4 to 8″ of heavy wet snow expected at this point. This could be enough to bring down some trees and power lines.

Right now, the worst of the storm may be in southern New England, depending on the track. Snow could also extend into southern Vermont, New Hampshire, and Maine. But the heaviest accumulations may be in the higher elevations west of I495 in Massachusetts.

As the storm pulls east, rain may also change to wet snow outside of Rt 128 with 1 to 3″ of snow possible. If there’s enough moisture, rain may also change to snow inside of Rt 128 in Boston, with a slushy coating to up to 1″ of snow possible in the city, before the storm ends later Friday afternoon.

Regardless of what happens, it looks like Boston will see its first freeze Friday night, with lows in the 20’s across much of the region, and low 30’s even in Boston. There will also be a wind out there, with wind chills even colder.

Halloween itself will feature sunny and chilly weather, with highs only in the 40’s. If there is trick or treating, bundle up like the old days, as temperatures will quickly fall into the 30’s, then 20’s later on at night.

Also watch for the full “Hunter Moon” rising in the east Halloween night. This is the second full moon of the month, also known as the full “Blue Moon.” This is the first full moon on Halloween since 2001. The next full moon on Halloween will be in 2039.

Temperatures will rebound on Sunday, November 1st. Expect mainly sunny skies, with highs warming into the mid to upper 50’s.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog I will review the month of October, and have my official preview for November. I will also share more thoughts for our upcoming winter patterns. In the meantime, if you don’t like snow, pray for snow on the pumpkin!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Touch of Indian Summer…10/19/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! When people think of stunning New England autumn weekends…this was it! After another soaking rain Friday night, skies cleared for a beautiful fall day on Saturday. After some early rain, the weather rapidly cleared, revealing deep blue skies, and temperatures holding in the mid to upper 50’s.

Many were greeted with a touch of frost Sunday morning, as temperatures fell into the low to mid 30’s across much of the area. Some colder spots dropped into the upper 20’s. Frost on the pumpkin, indeed!

Sunday was even a little nicer, with nearly 100% of the possible sunshine, light winds, and temperatures in the upper 50’s. A great day for a hike, or fall foliage drive to the country.

By the way, it was not all rain Friday night and Saturday morning! After the cold front passed east of New England Friday, a low pressure system developed along the front. This low intensified as it passed just off our coast and brought another one to two inches of drought busting rain to the region.

Much like a winter type storm, the storm dragged in just enough cold air in the upper atmosphere resulting in a change to heavy wet snow across many areas of northern New England!

As is typical in fall and spring storms, the higher you are in elevation, the more snow you received! In fact, some ski resorts in New Hampshire and Maine received up to 10″ of snow! Vermont also received higher elevation snowfall.

Even lower elevations received between 1 and 4″ of snow. This made for some spectacular “snowliage” pictures on Saturday, with the newly fallen fresh snow in contrast with the deep red and orange leaves still on some of the trees.

Add the deep blue skies, and you had a classic set up from Mother Nature of winter meeting fall! My dream would be to someday see this spectacle in person, and not just pictures. For now, the pictures were good enough…wow!

My sister Pam asked me if this is too early for snow? In general, this is not uncommon at all to see a first snow in northern New England during October. In many places up there, the first snow typically occurs in this month.

I would say, however, it was a bit early to see some of the pictures looking as if a mid winter nor’easter had just passed through the region. A light snowfall is one thing…breaking out the snow plows and snow blowers in mid October is another!

It would be very rare to see accumulating snow inside of I95 anytime in October. However, there have been exceptions! There have been occasions recorded in past history, and some not too long ago, of early season October snow making it all the way to the coast!

Just nine years ago, a freak early season storm on October 29th, 2011 brought to 2 to 6″ of heavy wet snow along the coast, but up to 2 ft across inland locations! In a bizarre twist of fate, that happened to be the biggest snow of the season for that entire winter.

For reasons unknown, early season snowfall in urban areas along the coast is the kiss of death for those hoping for a snowy winter. In each occasion Boston has received any type of accumulating snow in October, the preceding winter turns out sub par, with less than average snow, and mild temperatures.

In the weather community, we call it, “the October snow curse!” You may say, we just think that this happens. No, the statistics proves this phenomenon is real. If there’s accumulating snow in the urban corridor inside of I95 during the month of October, there’s a 95% chance of below normal snow for the preceding winter.

This rule does not apply for northern New England areas and higher terrain locations. It can snow to its hearts content in October, and it has no bearing on what the winter brings. In fact, in most cases it’s a positive signal for a snowy season for those who would like to see a snowy winter. We shall see!

Before we get to winter, or colder weather, I have a weather treat for many this week! A relaxation in the pattern is going to bring a period of Indian Summer like weather this week! What constitutes true Indian Summer? True Indian Summer typically comes in November, when most of the leaves have fallen from the trees, and after the first freeze of the season.

If you have had a freeze (temperatures falling to 32 degrees), but the leaves are still on the trees, this too would qualify as Indian Summer in my opinion. Most areas of New England west of I95 has received a freeze this fall. Even areas inside of I95 closer to the coast have experienced light frosts, this past Saturday night being an example.

With temperatures near 70 degrees a few days this week, let’s just call this Indian Summer like conditions! In my records, we have seen Indian Summer weather 8 out of the last 10 years. Is it an endless summer like we have seen past several falls? No, not that quite warm.

Temperatures have been running above normal for both September and now October, but not as warm as past few autumns. Nonetheless, the warm regime we have been in for the better part of 5 years now…continues.

Does this warm regime continue through this winter? According to NOAA who released their winter outlook this past Thursday, odds favor another above normal, warm winter for the entire east coast, including all of New England.

Judging by recent trends, I would have to agree with this early assessment. Nearly 20 out of the last 24 months have featured above average temperatures here in New England.

At this point, I do not see any reason to disagree with this forecast. We have been stuck in a perpetual cycle of warmer than normal temperatures, and I’m expecting this to continue this winter.

With all that being said, the devil is in the details! This does not mean I am canceling winter! However, with the incoming La Niña, I believe NOAA that the three month period of December, January and February that constitutes winter is going to average warmer than normal again this year.

It’s early yet. Last year, a unexpected last second shift in ocean temperatures late in November prevented winter from truly arriving to coastal Massachusetts. I will continue to monitor the patterns, and have a winter outlook update next week. My official winter forecast will be posted on November 23rd.

Last week I spoke of a possible pattern changing intense storm towards the end of October. Computer models have been all over the place, one day showing it, the next day it disappears.

The latest information shows it turning colder around Halloween with a storm developing down the coast. At this point, it shows New England remaining dry, with the storm tracking harmlessly out to sea.

However, it continues to show winter like temperatures around here for Halloween. If the storm decides to track up the coast, it could have the potential to bring an early season winter storm.

This is still nearly two weeks away, so things undoubtedly will change. For those who like snowy winters, you should hope this storm stays out at sea, for reasons stated above.

Fall foliage continues to impress this season, and will be arriving to the Boston area just about on time this year. Folks were reporting beautiful foliage just north and west of the city, even southwest of Boston this past weekend.

You do not have to drive far from Boston to run into peak foliage. Just a half hour drive in any direction will take you to a collage of colors!

Leftover foliage made for some picturesque photos contrasting against the snow this past weekend up in northern New England. However, for the most part, foliage has passed peak in these locations.

Watch for peak colors to begin entering locations inside I95 over the next two weeks. Foliage will begin to brighten up significantly in the the city of Boston heading into the last week of October.

Now for your weekly outdoor autumn activity forecast. I will rate this week an 7 out of 10. No heavy rainstorms this week.

Watch for mainly sunny weather for the rest of your Monday. It will be seasonable, with highs near 60 along the coast, but mid 60’s inland.

Tonight will feature generally fair weather, with low temperatures in the 40’s and 50’s. Watch for areas of patchy fog.

Expect a mixture of sun and clouds for both tomorrow and Wednesday. Mornings could begin with some low clouds and fog in the more humid airmass. There is also a chance for a few sprinkles or very light showers here and there, but no washout is anticipated. It will be warmer, with high temperatures near 70 degrees, and lows mainly in the 50’s.

Thursday may be the warmest day of the week, with more sunshine and a southwest breeze. I can see high temperatures reaching between 70 and 75 degrees! Wow…enjoy!

Friday should be nice too, but a wind shift to the east means temperatures will ease back to the 60’s, still with mainly sunny skies.

A cold front will be approaching New England this weekend. There may be more clouds on Saturday with the chance of some light rain showers. I would not cancel any outdoor plans at this point. Sunday looks decidedly cooler, with highs only in the 50’s, with a chilly wind.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog, I will be sharing more of my thoughts on our upcoming winter. I will also have a new fall foliage update. In the meantime, whatever your idea is of Indian Summer, we’ll take it!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Rainy…For A Change! 10/12/20

Hello! I hope everyone is enjoying their holiday weekend! So far it’s been a classic New England fall weekend. Saturday was downright warm, with temperatures near 80! Not exactly apple picking weather!

A subtle cold front slipped through the region Saturday night, sending temperatures back to seasonable levels yesterday. A chilly wind off the ocean is making it feel more like November today!

For the most part, the rain is going to hold off for the rest of your holiday. Strong high pressure north of New England is fighting off the storm heading up the coast.

For most of this past summer & so far into this fall, precipitation has basically been evaporating as it approached the Boston area. So much so, that we are now facing rainfall deficits of between 10 and 15 inches across much of eastern Massachusetts.

Hurricane Delta, which slammed into Louisiana this past weekend, is going to change all of that. No, we are not in for a hurricane. However, the moisture from this storm will be gathering across the mid Atlantic region today, consolidating into an area of low pressure.

This low pressure will then track north along a cold front straight up into New England as somewhat of a early season nor’easter, bringing much of New England a good soaking rainfall tomorrow!

How much rain? The Boston area should see around 1 inch of rain. If you live north of Boston, into southern New Hampshire and southern Maine, at least 2″ of much needed rain looks quite likely!

This is all great news! However, keep in mind we would need 10 or 15 of these storms just to catch up to normal levels for the year. Could this storm be a change to wetter weather patterns heading into November?

As I mentioned last week, we had 10″ of rain just in November a couple years ago! I wouldn’t count on that to happen again anytime soon.

However, looking over the latest weather charts this morning, it does indeed appear that this rainstorm tomorrow, could be the beginning of our wetter winter patterns.

Late this week, another surge of moisture will link up with an approaching cold front, bringing another slug of rain later Friday into Saturday morning.

Thereafter, some computer models are hinting of a possible late season hurricane crossing Florida, then barreling up the east coast transforming into a hybrid hurricane nor’easter type of storm.

This is looking a couple weeks down the road, and is not an official forecast, but the upcoming pattern does support this scenario. Definitely something to monitor closely over the the next week.

Something like this would not surprise me. Back in 2012 we had a similar scenerio unfold with a storm named Sandy. Sandy was a severe storm, starting out as hurricane and tracking north up along the east coast form the Bahamas, only to hit a strong block in the north Atlantic. This forced the storm to stall and then track westward, slamming into New Jersey as a hybrid / hurricane nor’easter storm, resulting in catastrophic damage.

I have mentioned it before, we are entering what I believe, a period of extreme weather patterns. It has been a good two years of tranquil weather patterns here in New England, with very few storms to speak of, and much warmer than normal temperatures.

This has seemed to be the case around here for the past decade or so. Very calm patterns, suddenly shifting to stormy weather, with volatile changes.

Am I calling for a cold & stormy winter? Not just yet. My official winter forecast will not be published until November 23rd. If you recall, last winter had all the makings of a cold & stormy winter. A last second shift in ocean temperatures drastically altered the forecast,resulting in one of the warmest winters on record here in Boston. Yikes!

I will be the first to admit I did not have the understanding in atmospheric conditions to pick up on this until it was too late. When you see it in hindsight, you come to realize just how elusive Mother Nature came be sometimes!

Nonetheless, I do enjoy expressing my preliminary thoughts as to what we might expect this winter across our region.

Right now, most computer models are forecasting yet another winter here in Boston this year! This may be music to most peoples ears, but remember, these are the same computer models that forecasted historic cold and snow for New England at the same time last year! In fact, they have had nearly the identical forecast for two years in a row, only to have the exact opposite results as the outcome.

This winter, we have a new regime, new weather patterns, which I think is going to shake up the stagnent patterns we’ve been in the past two years. A full blown La Niña has developed in the southern Pacific Ocean (cold ocean temperatures). So far, NOAA has classified it as a moderate La Niña. The stronger the La Niña becomes, the higher the chances of a colder, snowier solution for the Boston area.

Last week, I mentioned that la Niña winters are highly variable in Boston. Out of 10 La Nina’s winters, one or two feature well above normal temperatures with well below normal snowfall, three or four feature above normal temperatures, and below normal snowfall.

On the flip side, three or four La Nina’s can bring close to normal temperatures and snowfall to Boston, while one or two can deliver very cold and snowy winters to Boston. You can see it’s basically a 50/50 proposition.

For folks who live north of Mass. Pike especially across much of Vermont, New Hampshire, and most especially Maine, La Nina’s are a more stable teleconnection, typically bringing copious amounts of snowfall, sometimes excessive amounts, especially across interior locations.

We will just have to wait and see how ocean temperatures and other teleconnections evelove over the coming weeks. One promising sign for winter enthusiasts is high pressure building across Greenland and northern Canada early in the season.

This could easily flip by November, but for now, it’s helping bring cold air masses down into the United States, and keeping our temperatures from blow torching this fall.

Could the storm I’m speaking about the last week of October be the storm that changes the benign weather patterns? It could! Sandy did just that back in 2012, so I will be closely monitoring this potential over the course of the next week or so.

Did anyone have the chance to take a fall foliage ride this past weekend? From reports that I have seen, they say that peak colors have past through the Green and White Mountain region of Vermont and New Hampshire. Judging by what I witnessed last weekend, this would not surprise me. I believe we just caught the final stage of peak color!

However, you don’t have to travel too far north and west of Boston today to run into close peak fall foliage conditions! Another frost last week has once again brightened up the colors across Rt 2 corridor, Rt 140 through central Mass. and even southwest of boston towards the northern Connecticut. Though there are some very colorful spots in the city Boston and along the coast, peak foliage is still about one to two weeks away from truly arriving in the city.

A very light frost early Friday morning in my location of West Roxbury will help move foliage along in the next week or two. This frost was about 2 weeks ahead of schedule according to my records,

Fall foliage season lasts longer in coastal New England and in urban areas such as Boston. This is due to the warmer ocean temperatures modifying the climate, keeping these areas warmer than inland locations. While peak only lasts a few days, bright colored trees can slowly change through the whole month of October even into the first week of november in some cases.

This is in stark contrast across the interior of New England, and especially in higher elevations, where the changes are quicker, and more dramatic. This is mainly due to colder temperatures, shutting down the trees nutritional intake.

Regardless, our foliage season is a fine balance of dodging autumn windstorms, heavy rains, and either too warm or too cold temperatures. All of which will play a role in our foliage over the next few weeks…so try to enjoy it while we have it!

Now for your weekly outdoor autumn activity forecast. I will rate this week a 6 out of 10.

Expect cloudy weather for the rest of your Monday. With a storm slowly moving up the coast, interacting with the high presssure to our north, expect a gusty east wind to freshen this afternoon. In addition, the air may moisten enough for some areas of drizzle or light showers along the coast later this afternoon. It will be chilly, with highs mainly in the upper 50’s.

Watch for increasing moisture overnight, with rain slowly moving up from south to north across the region, not reaching Boston in ernest until the wee hours of the morning.

Look for generally a rainy Tuesday for many! A slow moving storm will bring waves of rain across the region, some of which will fall heavily at times, along with gusty east winds and possibly some thunder in some spots. As I mentioned above, expect around one inch of rain in Boston, with up to 2 or even 3″ north and west of Boston. Very welcome rains, indeed!

Showers may linger into Tuesday evening, then slowly diminish overnight. Temperatures will hold in the 50’s.

Watch for drier and warmer weather for both Wednesday and Thursday, with mainly sunny weather, and highs in the lower 70’s. Not too shabby for mid October!

Friday will start off with some sun and warm temperatures, with temperatures soaring to the low 70’s again. A cold front will be approaching the area later in the day. Therefore, expect increasing clouds with a chance of showers developing later in the day.

Low pressure may once again develop along the front and enhance the rainfall across the region overnight Friday and into the first part of Saturday. We may see some late afternoon clearing, but don’t expect a similar day as this past Saturday.

As this storm moves north of our latitude, it will sweep a cooler and drier airmass into New England on Sunday, with mainly dry conditions and temperatures in the 50’s and lower 60’s.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog, I will have more thoughts of our upcoming winter, as well as a new fall foliage report. I will also have a update on the potential storm for later this month. In the meantime, enjoy the rain, a month from now this could be snow!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Mostly Mild Days, Cool Nights…10/5/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! After a warm late September spell, the first weekend of October brought seasonable weather back to New England. Saturday was sunny and cool, with highs mainly in the 60’s.

A fall chill was felt for many Saturday night, but nothing too unusual for this time of the year. Sunday featured more sunny weather for southern New England, along with some clouds and light showers in northern New England. Temperatures were seasonable, with highs mainly in the mid 60’s region wide.

Overall, early autumn has featured warmer than normal temperatures. Of more concern is the lack of rain across much of New England. Two hot spots of note is southern Maine and the seacoast region of New Hampshire, and also southern New England from the Boston area points south to the Cape.

In the latest drought monitor, these areas have been upgraded to extreme drought conditions! Yikes, this is not good! These areas are now running between 10 and 20″ deficit of precipitation this year! Most other areas of New England are classified with moderate drought conditions. These are the worst drought conditions since the awful drought of 2016.

If this does not sound like a long time ago, it’s not! After three years of solid rain since the 2016 drought, we are now seemingly back to where we started from!

Gauging droughts can be a tricky proposition! The 2016 drought was severe. My weather friend Remy and me traced the origins all the way back to 2006! Yes, there were wet periods, but overall precipitation departures were below average, peaking in 2016.

After several years of well below average precipitation, many areas were carrying over deficits of between 2 and 3 ft! This was a result of multiple years of receiving below the seasonal average of precipitation. Believe me, it’s a science in itself tracing drought!

Thanks to another Twitter weather friend Nishan Bilazarian for closely monitoring watershed levels in area rivers, brooks and streams. This is tireless work that does not receive enough credit in the weather community!

The proof is in the pictures he posts. Water levels are severely depleted to the point where aquatic life is at risk of dying off, if they haven’t already begun to do so.

After 3 surplus years, it had appeared we finally defeated the drought. However, I believe we only caught up to previous deficits. Nonetheless, I am confident that we indeed replenished water supplies from the previous drought. Therefore, I believe we can classify this as a new separate drought.

You may say, Pete, what’s the big deal? It was a dry summer, we’ll make it up this winter. Well, not necessarily. There’s certainly no gaurantee of above normal precipitation this winter. In fact, with an incoming La Niña, odds favor below average precipitation along the east coast.

If we do not receive above average precipitation this winter, the drought could be much worse as summer 2021 approaches.

As bad as this all sounds, remember, things can turn around in a hurry! Two years ago, Boston received nearly 10″ of rain in November alone! We then went on to a much wetter winter with plenty of rain. That pretty much wiped out the multi year drought of 2016.

If we play the analog game, (years that have similar weather patterns), the year 1995 comes to mind, also a La Niña year. So far, this year appears the most similar as to this year. During summer of 1995, we experienced a similar drought. We also had a similar hurricane season, with well above average number of named storms, which also went into the Greek alphabet.

Fall was extremely warm & dry…culminating with temperatures in the mid 80’s during mid October. This all came to a crashing end towards the end of October, when a major atmospheric pattern shift suddenly ushered in much colder weather. Shortly thereafter, nor’easters began in November, bringing with them copious amounts of rain. As the weather turned colder, these storms began falling more as snow!

Winter storms continued to pound the region through the 1995-96 winter, and did not let up until April 10th. When all was said in done, Boston finished with 107.6″ of snow that winter, and was the snowiest winter ever recorded until the epic 2014-15 winter nearly buried us alive!

You may also ask, I thought you just told me La nina’s (cold water in the southern Pacific Ocean) are warm & dry in Boston? Well, there are actually different types of La Nina’s. Not all are the same!

Out of 10 La Niña winters, Boston typically sees one or two way below average seasonal snow, three or four below average, two or three closer to average, and one or two above average. So if you like snowy and cold winters, the odds are against us!

So is a similar winter as 1995-96 in store for New England this year? At this moment, this does not look to be the case. Latest seasonal computer models were released today, and continue to show another very warm and dry winter is likely to happen this year.

In addition, analogs do not work as well as they used to, if at all. A warmer climate has made looking at years from the past to compare to a future forecast useless.

This is very discouraging news for folks who enjoy to see some good snowstorms. This would make it the third straight winter with below average snowfall, and four out of the last six. Ugh!

It’s still a bit early. Last year, computer models did not latch onto the warm winter ideas until late October! Before then, they were indicating a very cold & snowy winter ahead! So things can still change!

After the past two years, I’m very skeptical about seasonal forecasts. At best, it’s an educated guess. There are still so many variables that can result in a variety of different outcomes. Over the coming weeks, I will be sharing my thoughts on what I think will transpire for us this winter!

Before we get there, I did want to share with you a wonderful fall foliage trip I took this past weekend with my sister Pam & brother in law Michael. It’s not often that I can give a first hand report on the status of our fall foliage season.

As I have said before, the status of fall foliage is a delicate balance of temperature, precipitation, wind among other things. This year, an unusual combination of severe drought conditions throughout the summer, followed by a cold snap in mid September, brought on an intense burst of brilliant reds, oranges, and yellows just as the autumnal equinox arrived.

Unfortunately, another unusual event quickly followed this burst of vivid colors in the form of an intense squall line, which brought 50 to 60 mile per hour winds, and a few hours of heavy wind driven rain. What a disaster!!! This 3 hour storm essentially stripped off nearly all the fiery reds off the trees!

Adding to this was a week of warmer than normal temperatures at the end of September, which may have acted to somewhat mute the colors. Experts have also been stating that droughts change trees sooner, with brighter colors, but they don’t last too long. So you have to be at the right place at the right time!

Nevertheless, the colors were breathtaking! Though somewhat past peak, I would rate the color a solid 8 out of 10! If we had caught the reds, it would of easily been a 10 out of 10. The trip began from the New Hampshire seacoast, up through Rt 16 along the N.H. Maine border, eventually bringing us into Fryeburg, Maine and Evans Notch. If you are ever in that area, it’s worth the trip! New England at its best!

We then made it back to Rt 16 traveling south along the Mt Washington Auto Road, leading us back into North Conway, N.H. All along colors were amazing. Though blown off the hills, there were still many fiery red leaves to be seen in protected lower elevation areas.

Now for the good news. If you can not make it up north, the fall foliage extravaganza is heading south to our neighborhood, sooner rather than later!

In fact, as foliage approaches the coastal plain, it typically slows down, lasting the whole month of October, even into early November! If temperatures remain seasonal, we should see similar fiery red maples explode in our region over the next couple weeks. I will monitor this closely, and have many updates throughout October.

Now for your weekly autumn outdoor activity forecast. I will rate this week a 9 out of 10!

Expect generally mild & dry weather for the balance of the week, straight through the upcoming weekend.

Watch for sunny and mild weather for the rest of this afternoon, with highs in the mid to upper 60’s.

Look for mainly clear & cooler weather this evening. Later, as the air temperatures matches the dew point, thick fog may develop in many locations.

Tuesday may start off with low clouds, drizzle and fog, but the sun should eventually burn this off, resulting in a milder afternoon, with partial sun.

Similar weather can be expected for Wednesday morning, but a gusty wind in the afternoon could boost temperatures up into the lower 70’s.

A strong cold front may trigger a few scattered showers later Wednesday followed by cooler and drier weather overnight.

Expect sunny and cooler weather on Thursday and Friday, with highs only in the lower 60’s. A gusty wind will make it feel like October, for sure.

Watch for frosty conditions for locations outside of Rt 128 both Thursday and Friday nights, with lows in the lower 30’s. No frost is anticipated in the city and along the coast at this point, but it will still be chilly nonetheless!

Anticipate a spectacular fall weekend on the way. After a chilly start, a rapid recovery will occur on Saturday, with highs bouncing back to the mid 70’s for both Saturday and Sunday. An onshore wind may cool temperatures back down into the 60’s for Columbus Day itself. A slight touch of Indian Summer, indeed! Enjoy!

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog, I will be discussing the latest thinking of our winter patterns. I will also have a new fall foliage report. In the meantime, enjoy the mild days of October, the chilling winds of winter are not far behind!

Thanks for reading!

Pete

Happy Birthday to my sister, Val!! (October 10th)

Colors of September…9/28/20

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Overall, it felt more like summer than the first weekend of fall. Saturday was a gem, with deep blue skies, light winds, and temperatures near 80! Sunday featured some sun, but also more clouds. It was muggy, with highs once again in the 70’s. It was a great weekend to take a walk on the beach, a hike in the mountains, or a fall foliage trip! Nothing beats autumn in New England!

Speaking of fall foliage…wow! Reports and pictures coming through on Twitter is showing intense fall colors, and peak foliage arriving some 2 weeks earlier than normal!

Many friends and family have been commenting & asking me if it seems early for the trees to be changing color, so quickly. The answer to this, is yes!

No doubt, there has been a disconnect with fall foliage across northern New England and coastal New England. Foliage has been very good up north the past couple years. Temperatures were just cool enough, and they received just the right amount of rain for colors to turn, with good color.

Foliage along the coastal plain has been an adventure to say the least. The combination of black tar leaf disease, unseasonably warm temperatures, humid nights, and also very warm ocean temperatures have kept trees green around here through Halloween. I recall three years ago, coastal locations did not have a foliage season at all. Leaves went from green to brown, then fell off the trees.

This year is different. There is no black tar leaf disease. This means leaves are healthier. You may ask Pete, what about the drought?

Yes, the drought has played a huge roll. In some cases drought is not a good sign for bright foliage. In this case, the key was the frosty nights we received a couple weeks ago, especially up north, where temperatures dropped into the 20’s at night.

But even down here in southern New England, there were several frosty nights outside of Rt 128. The combination of dry weather and early frosts shut off the sugars and nutrients to the trees, setting the trees off in a blaze of color!

This resulted in trees literally changing colors seemingly overnight! Peak fall colors have arrived in much of northern New England, including Vermont, interior New Hampshire and Maine.

Even down here in southern New England, there are pockets of peak colors in various locations, depending upon where you are. If not peak, there are many trees exploding with vivid reds, oranges and yellows even in our local neighborhood! I was driving around the Dedham area last Saturday, and there were many trees showing stunning color!

Now, the recent warm weather will slow this process down. Expected rains this week will also give trees a late season boost in nutrition to temporarily slow down the changing colors.

I do not think this will ruin a vivid foliage season for us in southern New England. Cooler days and chilly nights will be arriving this weekend. This should resume the changing process. If it remains cool in October, we could be in for one of the brightest autumn’s in years.

If the cold & dry weather were to continue, the Boston area would experience peak foliage by Columbus Day weekend. This would of been the earliest the city would see peak fall color in some 35 years!

Even with the recent warm weather, I’m expecting peak foliage to arrive in Boston the third week in October this year. Typically, peak foliage comes through the city of Boston the week of Halloween. This may still change, so I will monitor the progression over the next few weeks.

Late fall foliage is a good example of climate change in coastal Massachusetts , including Boston, with warmer temperatures keeping leaves greener deeper into fall.

Up in northern New England, peak foliage has arrived, and the color is stunning. If you are planning on a fall foliage trip, this weekend would be a good weekend to go! The beauty of fall foliage, is that if you can’t make it up north, just wait, and it will arrive in our own backyards in the coming weeks!

Now that fall is officially here, I wanted to give a quick preview as to what kind of fall we can expect around here.

Overall, I believe this is going to once again be a warm fall. Despite a real chilly period in mid September, this month will once again end up being another warmer than normal month. This is heavily weighted with the abnormally warm temperatures we have been experiencing over the last week or so. Unlike past several falls, there will be some intrusions of chilly weather, punctuated with mild spells.

While the first half of October looks to be on the chilly side, a warmer second half should boost it above normal, once again. I’m not expecting any blow torch, but maybe one to two degrees above normal. Increased tropical activity & close proximity of jet stream energy, should result in wetter patterns that we experienced during the summer, with above average precipitation.

November is looking like the warmest month out of the three! A big ridge of high pressure (warm & dry) looks to rebuild along the east coast. This could lead to several spells of Indian Summer. So do not put away those shorts just yet! With the warm November expected, this will lead to an overall above average fall this year.

After a wetter October, drier than normal patterns could once again return to New England in November, which will likely continue our drought conditions as we head into winter. November is typically one of our wettest months of the year, but currently I do not see a wet November this year.

This could still change, especially as we head towards the second half of November. I will monitor and keep everyone updated.

I am running a little short on time today, so I will go right into the weekly forecast.

I will rate this week a 6 out of 10. Expect a moist southerly flow to develop this afternoon, with splashes of sun, along with dark low clouds. With the atmosphere becoming increasingly moist, there will be some scattered showers around the region, especially across the Cape. It will be warm & muggy, with highs mainly in the 70’s.

Watch for muggy and damp weather overnight, with areas of fog and drizzle. I can’t rule out a few showers as well.

The heavy rain I’m expecting will come in two waves. I’m not expecting heavy rain in Boston tomorrow, as the first thrust will likely track across western New England, west of Worcester, where many areas could see soaking rains with 1 to 2″ of rain, falling during the late afternoon and night. All while this is happening, there could be some showers at any time across eastern Massachusetts.

Wednesday looks to be the wettest day. A second wave of low pressure will be tracking up the coast, bringing with it heavy rain, strong winds, and humid weather. The initial thrust will once again be tracking west of Boston. However, as we approach evening, the heavy rain should finally reach Boston, which should continue into Thursday morning. I am expecting 1″ eastern areas, 2″ western areas of rains by the time the cold front moves offshore Thursday. Not exactly a drought buster, but we’ll take what we can get!

Friday will be cooler. Another follow up system may bring some light rain showers Friday night.

Thereafter, watch for much cooler and drier weather to arrive this weekend. It will be mainly sunny both days, with highs in the lower to mid 60’s, and lows mainly in the 30’s and 40’s throughout the region.

Well, that’s about it for now! In next week’s blog, I will be have my review of September, and my official preview of October. I will also have a new fall foliage & drought update. If time permits, I may begin to share some of my thoughts for the upcoming winter. In the meantime, enjoy the color of September…what is red now, will be white in the not so distant future!

Thanks for reading!

***Happy Birthday to my niece, Olivia!***(October 2nd)

***Happy birthday to my nephew, Nicholas!***(September 25th)

next entries »
Log in