January 21

Coldest Days of Winter Not as Cold – Mild Pacific Signal Dominates

ECMWF Snowfall NAM Model Snowfall Potential by Sunday Dueling Models. The 00z Thursday runs of ECMWF (top) and 12 km NAM (below) show plowable amounts of snow Saturday into Sunday morning, possibly 3-6” of fluff. Pacific Breezes. We will continue to see cheap shots of cold air, but the dominant signal is steering winds howling from the west, allowing relatively mild air to penetrate unusually far inland, a trend that should spill over into early February. Bay Area office of the National Weather Service Fire Season Just Won’t Quit. Record warmth, high winds and lingering drought are fanning...

snowy mountain side
January 20

With Snow Temperature & Timing As Important as “How Many Inches”. Western Fires and Drought Linger

Paul Douglas Storm Impact? Check Timing and Temperature ”I beseech you Paul, how many inches!” That never gets old, by the way. My favorite meteorology college professor was right. Americans are preoccupied with inches, demanding a level of specificity and precision the science can’t provide. So we give a range of inches (if I say 2-4 inches you’ll probably remember 4) and a much-borrowed snowfall rating scale: nuisance-plowable-crippling. Yesterday was a rude reminder that when temperatures are cold enough, inches don’t matter. A snowy coating of fluff turned roads into skating rinks. Inches are a factor, but so are temperatures...

January 19

Colder, But Hardly Polar – 2020 Tornado and Lightning Numbers Down, But Not Fatalities

“Parhelia”Todd Nelson Probably Not a Polar Winter This Year A couple months ago I went out on a tenuous limb and predicted “half a winter” for Minnesota and the Upper Midwest. Studying the maps and models I stand by my (reckless) outlook. In spite of a La Nina cool phase in the Pacific (which often produces colder winters here) unusually strong jet stream winds are blowing more from Seattle than the Yukon. Bitter air is trapped to our north; small burps of chilly air reaching the U.S. When in doubt, follow the trends. According to NOAA January is the 6th...

snow coming over chair lift
January 18

Parade of Colder Fronts Coming – 2020 Just Behind 2016 for Warmest Year on Record

NOAA The Forecast Calls For Uncertainty ”Being at ease with not knowing is crucial for answers to come to you wrote Eckhart Tolle. We have all been living with uncertainty for nearly a year now, waiting for vaccines and our better angels to return. Predicting weather is the rough equivalent of peeling an infinite onion of uncertainty. We can track what’s happening (now) and weather models, rough approximations of how the atmosphere should behave, are good and getting better. But every storm is different, every wet swirl a unique puzzle to be deciphered. 3 KM NAM Snowfall PredictionNOAA and

January 18

Building 2D and 3D Applications with ArcGIS API for JavaScript and AerisWeather Map Tiles

For developers creating enterprise-grade applications that sit on the cutting edge of geospatial technology, the ArcGIS API for JavaScript offers enhanced functionality over many other mapping solutions. With support for 3D visualization alongside standard 2D mapping features, the ArcGIS API is a versatile and capable tool for advanced mapping techniques. Now you can add the power of AerisWeather map tiles to the ArcGIS API-based application of your choice! In this blog, we’ll walk through how to create a 2D map as well as an interactive globe. Setting Up Establishing basic styles and setting up your document is consistent between each...

January 13

Sliding Into a Snowier, Colder Pattern – Using Models to Track Wildfire Smoke

Weather-Related Mental Health Break It is such a relief talking about the weather these days. Even “bad weather” is a welcome break from pandemics and civil unrest. We are extras in a bad Tom Clancy thriller, one that almost makes me long for the good ‘ol days of 2020. Not really. My late mom was a glass-half- full woman. During of our most difficult times growing up she would say “No storm lasts forever. A rainbow always reappears.” Good news can’t arrive soon enough. 18Z Tuesday ECMWF Snowfall ECMWF Snowier Than NOAA Models. NOAA’s various NAM models are hinting...

January 12

Do You Live In One of America’s Riskiest Counties? Record 22 Billion-Dollar Disasters in 2020 Across USA

Header Photo Credit: Paul Douglas A Thaw, Then Accumulating Snow Late Week Minnesota sees its fair share of gasp-worthy weather, but don’t let anyone living in Miami, L.A. or Lincoln give you a hard time. According to FEMA’s National Risk Index, overall threats are greater across the central Plains (tornadoes), coastal areas (hurricanes), and some counties on the west coast, prone to both fire and quakes. Since 1991, January has been the snowiest month of the year for the Twin Cities and southern Minnesota. Across roughly the northern half of the state December is the snowiest month, according to climate analyst...

January 8

Coldest Air of Winter East of Rockies in 2 Weeks? NOAA Making Winter Travel Safer

Header Image: Long ShadowsPaul Douglas Fog, A Thaw – Then Flirting With Zero ”Paul, why does the weather forecast keep changing?” The right question to be asking. Meteorologists refine forecasts over time, reacting to new data and the latest weather models. The closer you get to a weather event the more accurate the forecast should be. At least in theory. Weather is a metaphor for science: peeling away at an infinite onion. We zig and zag toward relative truth. The process is self-correcting and never perfect. But forecasts are far more reliable than they were even a generation ago. Case...

January 7

Subzero Air Two Weeks Away – Polar Vortex Splitting – Amazing Earth

Image courtesy of Paul Douglas Subzero Air Roughly Two Weeks Away Snowbirds are missing all the fun! While cold weather refugees in Arizona and Florida pick sand out from between their toes, Minnesotans are playing in powder, enjoying 20s and 30s and light winds, with nary a storm in sight. As a rule our coldest days tend to be sunny, and having blue sky overhead is a coping skill for many of us. Character-building attributes may be put to the test in 2 weeks, when the first blistering shot of arctic air reaches Minnesota. The last 7-10 days of January...

snowy and cold outdoors
January 6

Splitting Polar Vortex Has Subzero Implications Northern USA

The American model projection showing the polar vortex shifting southward and elongating across the northeast Atlantic and Northern Europe, extending toward Asia on Jan. The Polar Vortex is Splitting in Two, Which May Lead to Weeks of Wild Winter Weather. Especially on the East Coast and New England, I might add. Capital Weather Gang has a good explainer: “A dramatic spike in temperatures is occurring at high altitudes above the North Pole, where the air is thin and typically frigid. Known as a sudden stratospheric warming event, experts say it’s likely to have potentially significant repercussions for winter weather...