Strong storm across NorCal today; SoCal remains mostly dry

Filed in Uncategorized by on November 15, 2017 4,976 Comments

Intense burst of rain, wind likely across NorCal later today

A modest atmospheric river will be enhanced by a small surface low near North Coast. (NCEP via Scripps)

This will be a quick update (deadlines beckon). But the short, sharp burst of precipitation expected across NorCal later today is worth a brief discussion. This precipitation event was foreseen a week or more in advance by long-range weather models, but it’s only in the past 36 hours or so that it became clear that this would likely become a respectable storm for many of the urban areas near the I-80 corridor (including the Bay Area, Sacramento region, and even Lake Tahoe).

Why have expectations for this event been revised upward so sharply? A modest atmospheric river is currently aimed at the state, which will (slowly) sweep down the coast later tonight. But in general, an atmospheric river alone isn’t enough to produce heavy precipitation and strong wind outside of very specific mountain areas subject to dramatic “orographic enhancement.” For a significant storm in California’s lowlands, there needs to be some sort of “forcing mechanism” to generate upward vertical motion in the atmosphere and squeeze out all that water vapor present in even the most robust of atmospheric rivers. Until a couple of days or so ago, no such mechanism appeared to be in place–it looked like there would be a lot of water vapor transport but not much precipitation at the lower elevations. What changed? Now, a small surface low is expected to spin up later today west of the North Coast, bringing a burst of dynamic enhancement of the water vapor plume associated with this atmospheric river as it moves southward.

The Bay Area could experience pretty intense rainfall rates associated with cold front tonight. (NCEP via tropicaltidbits.com)

This storm, while not enormous, could nonetheless end up being fairly impressive for a narrow corridor near the Bay Area. Rainfall totals may be somewhat uniformly distributed across the region; while 1-3 inches is not too impressive in the coastal hills, that’s actually quite a lot in the urban areas and inland valleys. Moreover, most of this rainfall will fall over the course of just 3-6 hours–meaning that precipitation intensity could be quite high for a time later this evening. With strong vertical motion near the cold front, I would not even be surprised to see some reports of lightning associated with the heavy rain tonight across NorCal. Winds may also become strong and gusty in the typical spots, and while this is unlikely to become a major windstorm, the first wind event of the season typically brings down a disproportionate number of tree limbs and power lines. (Sierra snow levels will be relatively high, though some snow will be possible toward the end of the event at or below pass level).

 

Significant risk of flash flooding/debris flows in wildfire burn areas

While a storm of the magnitude expected to blow through tonight typically would cause only minor urban/small stream flooding issues, the recent wildfire burn scars in Northern California (especially the North Bay Fire region, including the Tubbs Fire near Santa Rosa) are extremely susceptible to sudden water runoff, ash-laden debris flows, and subsequent flash flooding. The rainfall rates with tonight’s system will be quite high for at least a brief period, and there have not yet been any heavy rainfall events in this region since the devastating October fires. Thus, for this event in particular (and to some extent for the rest of winter), folks in these regions should be prepared for more sudden and extensive flood issues than would typically be experienced during similar storm events.

 

Mixed signals for second system next week

A strong & persistent blocking ridge will continue over the North Pacific near Alaska. (NCEP via tropicaltidbits.com)

The models have been bouncing back and forth regarding the potential for a second system next week, which would likely take the form of a relatively weak but very warm atmospheric river with a subtropical tap. The instability in recent forecasts stems from the presence (and persistence) of a very high amplitude blocking ridge over the North Pacific over the past 30-40 days, and most forecasts suggest this will persist in some form for at least another 2-3 weeks. As previously discussed, downstream impacts over California can range from ridging (warm and dry) to deep troughing (cold and wet). At the moment, the “warm and dry ridging” still appears to be the more likely outcome (especially across SoCal), though that could change. For what it’s worth, both the GFS and ECMWF ensembles currently show a very warm and dry Thanksgiving across all of California next week.

Current indications are for a very warm and dry Thanksgiving across all of California. (NCEP via tropicaltidbits.com)

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  • SoCalWXwatcher

    When more snow is falling in Hawaii than in Big Bear or Running Springs…

    https://twitter.com/WeatherNation/status/935622052014301185

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

    Another shitastic run in the 00z. Maybe it will show an ARKstorm the next run.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Would you get your hopes up if it did?

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        I would get excited but would know we would need a trend of runs leading up to the timeframe of the NAM to seriously get your hopes up

    • matthew

      No shit! The majority of the West dry through almost the middle of December. Not good at all.

      • Freddy66

        No rain til January….book it. Have a problem take it up with cactus.

        • matthew

          I have been saying that the rain would start in earnest in February but I was not expecting a shutout until then.

          • Freddy66

            That ridge is ugly….and the trough on the east coast is equally nasty

          • Dan the Weatherman

            Shades of 1962-63 for Socal?

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        I’m guessing change is no more than 100 hours behind 16 days on the GFS

        • matthew

          We know that anything past 7 days is questionable but I did not expect this weekends storm to disappear this close to the event.

          • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

            Maybe another Miracle March like 2016

          • jstrahl

            Storms have disappeared 24 hours before the event.

    • Freddy66

      That cutoff low for LA just evaporated

    • Unbiased Observer

      Or maybe an even bigger, stronger, and hotter ridge will.

      • Freddy66

        Don’t think that ridge can get any stronger looking at the heights

        • Unbiased Observer

          You’d be surprised…..

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        Maybe a W coast ridge that tops out over the N pole, and an E Coast trough that drops the 522dm line down to Havana.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      00z EC looks just like the GFS.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        Yep wonder if the models will change again

  • Palos Verdes Snowstorm
    • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

      Really makes you remember the drought years

      • Palos Verdes Snowstorm

        This is worse than drought years

      • Suzan

        Now thinking? I don’t think you think much at all before your meltdowns.

        • annette johnson

          Be nice now.

          • Suzan

            Woman to woman, there are some soft men here. Down here in Lebec they wouldn’t last long at all.

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          I may be overreacting, but a meltdown would be more like the doomsday ones on here like “no rain till January”

    • thlnk3r

      Hmmmm not enough hype words in this doomsday post. You need to key it in correctly:

      “Multi model ensemble agreement brings impressive record-breaking dry conditions to major cities in the West Coast.”

    • Nathan

      That run was fug.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      The GFS has been behaving more like an Etch-a-Sketch that gets shaken up before every run. Very little consistency. 12z had a huge W Coast trough at the end of the run, 18z had a cold low pressure system in the SoCal bight next monday, and 00z keeps it all North of Eureka and ends the run with a dipole over the CONUS that looks like it was teleported from 2013 or 2014.

      • Freddy66

        The Euro has been equally bad as well.

        • SoCalWXwatcher

          Sometimes worse than the GFS, but it has an advantage in that they only run it out to 240hrs, so it has less opportunities for failure.

      • Dan the Weatherman

        I believe with the crazy model behavior as of late that we have no idea what is going to happen later this month or even next week for that matter! We just might as well ask the magic 8 ball at this point.

      • jstrahl

        And of course we know that 2013 or 2014 can’t happen again. Oops, do we really?

    • honzik

      It’s hard to believe that it’s a map for December.

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

    I would not like to see a repeat of having one great rainy year and then go back into crippling drought.

    • Freddy66

      And then a deluge again next year. One can only imagine if the failed El Nino was truly a failure instead of an extended hangover and last year’s rain didn’t happen

    • thlnk3r

      Do any of you actually review the current teleconnections? This is a totally different year versus last ¯_(?)_/¯

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        I’m not saying this will happen I’m saying I wouldn’t appreciate it, but I feel Late December will come back in booming fashion. You can’t help, but think as a Californian of the past droughts

      • Freddy66

        No we just complain that it’s not raining and wait for the next run of the GFS

      • Nathan

        I can’t believe you would suggest such a thing. I subscribe to the New England Journal of Teleconnections, the Teleconnection Times, the Teleconnection Portfolio, and Nature: Teleconnections.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      At least for LA, runs of below average years are easily punctuated by a wet year and then back to below average. Statistically, I wouldn’t be surprised at all if this year is well below average

  • Suzan

    Bunch of babies come down to Lebec I’ll show you what true horror is.

  • Unbiased Observer

    While we dread the latest, seemingly never ending dry spell….I’ve been pondering a question:

    In regards to atmospheric heights/thicknesses (of which I have a basic understanding)….do the models take into account the earth’s warming? In other words at a given location and date, does a height of say 540DM equate to the same temperature now as it did 20 years ago?

    • AntiochWx

      The answer I think is no. A 540DM height today will not give you the same temperature it did back then. I remember a time where it used to take a 3STD ridge to produce record temperatures, now a 2STD ridge seems to come close to breaking record temperatures. It’s just like when a 1 STD trough rolls through, and yet our temperatures barely get below average.

      • Unbiased Observer

        I suspected as much, hoping Daniel weighs in as well.

        • jstrahl

          But i would think a dynamic model would account for that, since such models start with the barest of frames, little more than the laws of physics and essential such as the Navier Stokes equation re fluid behavior. New atmosphere conditions would come into any calculations.

          • AntiochWx

            You know what, I think you are correct. I honestly don’t know what I was thinking. Afterall geopotential heights are the measurement of the average column of air pressure and is a function of the temperature of the air. I guess then with an increase of temperatures with AGW, one would expect higher heights. I feel so dumb now, forgive me.

          • jstrahl

            ???? We;re all bozos on this bus. 🙂 And ever more so as we’re all getting stressed about the Godzilla Ridge.

          • AntiochWx

            Just feel bad about that gaffe, that is meteo 101. Made me feel like Gary Johnson’s Aleppo.

    • Don’t Dynamic Models take this into effect?

      • AntiochWx

        They do, I was severely wrong and feel quite embarrassed.

  • RandomTreeInSB

    Taking a break from this blog since I can feel it slowly decending into chaos and hysteria (whether justified or not). I’ll be back when something exciting happens. Whenever that is.

    • Freddy66

      See you in January ?

      • RandomTreeInSB

        Hopefully sooner…lol.
        I’d probably still check in occasionally, I’m kinda glued to this place.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      The tenor of the conversation on the North Korean EMP Attack blog is probably more jovial.

      • RandomTreeInSB

        Well, for many of us, every dry spell is the beginning of a long drought these days…

      • inclinejj

        China and or Russia or both don’t want us to make a surgical strike to take Tin can Rocket man out. Him and orange Julius will continue to trade insults.

        A couple things. South Korea and Japan both have the best anti middle defense system on earth. We have the same sort. We have a tremendous amount of sea and land based firepower to turn him into ash in minutes.

        Don’t be surprised if we send him over a few early Christmas presents as an attention getter.

    • Palos Verdes Snowstorm

      See u in 2050

      • Freddy66

        Half of us will be dead by then

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          Or on Mars

          • jstrahl

            Where drizzle passes for mega storm.

        • SoCalWXwatcher

          Self-inflicted or natural causes?

          • Freddy66

            Lol…take your pick

        • Palos Verdes Snowstorm

          Probably caused by GFS that gives everyone a heart attack

  • SacWx

    Going along with the “you can blame ___” posts, you might as well throw my name in there. Of course the first season I buy a season pass for a Tahoe resort winter starts like this. The silver lining is that the pass comes with a ton of partner resort benefits so I am instead taking numerous trips in search of snow.

    At least it’s still early.

    • Unbiased Observer

      Yeah I bought a Mammoth season pass last spring for the first time. Only problem is the partner resorts are June, Bear, and Snow. I’ll be chasing rocks.

      • Yolo Hoe

        Very reasonable discussion by mammoth weather guy Ted schlaepfer — it’s still too early to flake out

    • Yolo Hoe

      Dude, way early to bail; hang in there

  • Phil(ontario)

    So my area’s “weather” summary since October 1
    YTD precip: 0.05″
    Last YTD precip: 2.05″
    Normal YTD precip: 1.64″
    21 days highs in the 90s 4 days lows in the 40s.
    0 days with fog
    1 very weak Santa Anna Event.
    The silver lining in this is that to date SoCal is less than 2 inches below normal. If the projected ridge lasts until December 15. Socal would be only 3 inches below normal. Point is if there was a time to have a weeks long death ridge now would be the time. If we can get average rainfall from December 15 to the rest of the year, Socal would get about 12 inches of rain which is a respectable season.

    • Dan the Weatherman

      This just might be a year in which the rainy season really gets going in January and continues off and on through early to mid April. It has been a long time since we have had decent rainfall here in Socal during the March / April period, since so many of our recent seasons have been front-loaded. From the way things have gone so far, this season certainly doesn’t look front-loaded, as it has hardly rained here in Socal since October 1. I am still thinking 1995-96 could be a possible analog for this winter.

      • jstrahl

        ;95-6 certainly a great example of back loading. But even it (at least in the Bay Area) got going by mid December.

  • Unbiased Observer
    • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

      You live in a desert so a couple good storms would meet your average rainfall, there’s 5 months for that to happen.

      • jstrahl

        I live in the Bay Area. I am increasingly doubtful we’ll even match average. May test record low. And IMO, Dweebs sound quite pessimistic enough.

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          Sarcasm?

          • jstrahl

            Not in the least. I think we may fail to get 10 inches in Berkeley.

      • weathergeek100

        ‘A couple good storms’ can’t just bring SoCal to average. First of all, strong storms are rare down there. More common are moderately strong cold fronts that will bring an average of half inch of rain or so, so you can’t really depend on large storms. Yes, they do get about 1 to 2 strong storms a year that might each provide an inch of rain. Still, that’s not enough. If you want to get the annual 12”, you need more than that. SoCal should get a strong storm or two along with about say 10 moderate sized storms plus another 10 small storms that will produce 0.25 or so. So do the math there. They’re already very far behind and it’s going to be tough to catch up now. Also, it’s not a desert, it’s a semi-arid climate.

  • Dan the Weatherman

    Not only has November been much drier than average here in Socal (I did pick up a whopping 0.02″ yesterday morning), there also haven’t been any Santa Ana events here in Orange this month, either, except for a bit of a breeze this morning and possibly one other time. I don’t think think it is a good sign when we don’t get either event, and it is showing that there is absolutely no oomph in the jet stream this far south.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      I feel like the little wind events we did have were a bit more localized and not widespread events like we are used to also. Where are the classic inside sliders? Ever since I can remember, Santa Anas were just a normal part of fall / winter just about every year. During the RRR years there were very few Santa Ana events also; I hope this is not a harrowing sign.

  • BerryessaSage

    Man! That’s a monstrous ridge towards the end of the 12z! The entire West Coast of north America is blocked from Alaska down to Baja. Hopefully the jet can undercut this ridge and open up the storm door directly at California!!!
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/de5b69c1e0349d8a5e14bc67601ad389e760f34ffbf0736e8cd39921ff1c9e16.jpg

  • Fairweathercactus

    A poem I found that I think relates to the season so far.

    Fading Hope
    I don’t know what I’m doing
    Don’t know if it’s right or wrong
    But still I keep on trying
    And now it seems I don’t belong
    I’ll keep on fighting and hope for the best
    Maybe in the end I’ll get some rest
    When I’m dead and too far gone
    Take my heart, it’s lived too long
    And I dont want to let it show
    That I’m lost and losing hope
    Give me a reason not to go
    Take it all, you’ve got my soul
    Break my heart just to pay the tole
    Trip and fall right down this hole
    When all I want is to make you smile
    Make you happy, stay a while
    I’m tirred of feeling lost inside
    I wish that I could fade with time
    And dissapear but your still here
    Why can’t you just make things clear
    And tell me now just how you feel
    Answer me, is this real?

    Written by
    Clayton Pick

  • inclinejj

    As much as we all don’t line it, even in the rainiest years, 2 week dry spells ate completely normal. Me personally like, storms every 3 days

    • With the exception of last year, I believe our drought will continue. This is just my opinion.

      • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

        I think last year spoiled us at the least!

    • weathergeek100

      Up north, yes this is normal. Down south, this is not normal. They have had nearly zero precip since March of last year. They’re not entering a dry period, they’re just continuing it.

    • jstrahl

      It’s been more like 2-3 week dry spells interspaced with 2-3 DAYS of wet weather, and this is in the Bay Area, not the desert. We’ve had like 4 wet episodes so far, only one (in mid month) amounted to much.

      • Pfirman

        I have been pulling tomato plants and noticed the dirt is completely dry around the roots. The plants look great and are still producing fruit but I am not a fan of green tomato dishes.

  • tomocean

    Too much non-fact based hysteria around here lately. I’m out for awhile.

  • Arnold Weather Fanatic

    Ended up with 2.27″ from the rain and snow. Snow gone.

  • celo

    Incredible stagnation of the weather pattern across the US. After a month/month and a half, usually the pattern shifts. This pattern has basically held all fall. Crazy.

  • celo

    I have not turned on my heater here in Santa Barbara one time. Will I have to at all this fall?

  • CHeden

    I wanna see ‘dat! I wanna see ‘dat! I wanna see ‘dat!!!!!!!!!
    Here’s a marvelous timelapse composite photo of Calbuco volcano (Chile) in full fury by award winning photographer Francisco Negroni. Since we’re all bored to tears, I suggest to take a few moments and cruise through his site for a lot other great pics. I know a lot of us are into nature photography, and Negroni is a true master. His “eye” in particular is outstanding.
    https://francisconegroni.photoshelter.com/gallery-image/Volcanoes-of-Chile/G00005m_dw9N9j9A/I0000ej7TThAXh1g

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/170f807863c46d859460ec71dbd1e8510da7d36b9cf99132cda09fbfdccf26e9.jpg

  • Charlie B

    I was looking at the AFD from the NWS office in Marquette, Michigan. Marquette is located on the UP of Michigan on the south shore of Lake Superior. It is one of the snowiest cities in the US due to very efficient lake effect snows. Anyway, today’s AFD discusses the building west coast ridge centered over British Columbia that will become quite stable once it established itself. This will result in a set up for “persistent” moderate to heavy lake effect snow.
    Maybe we all need to take a step back and realize that a big west coast ridge results in a big east coast ‘fridge and be thankful that we live in a beautiful state where we can enjoy the outdoors in nice December weather and not in some dismal east coast industrial city that resembles the remains of Dresden following WW2?
    (Marquette has a little ski area just outside town. The conditions there will likely be great. Too bad the vertical is 400’.)

    • Idaho Native

      I’d rather have sunny and 65 than -10 for a week. Though, I’d rather have intense rain and thunder than 65. Oh well.

      • matthew

        I’d rather have a bottle in front of me than a frontal lobotomy.

        • Pfirman

          Too late.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Im making the best of it. Looks like pleasant camping and outdoor weather in the deserts also which I love to do all winter. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e5101999897a0412d6909c70db841f2229363e7a2c2dd767351503ddd7a942ef.jpg

    • PRCountyNative

      Nice days at the beach, morning offshore winds, DECIDE to put your attention on what’s right, and good. Lack of care for the outdoors is what’s going to kill us. Go outside!

    • Tom & Koyano Gray

      Im a laker myself, and always noted the same coincidence – If California had warm clear weather, we got dumped on, and everytime Calfornia had rain, we got out the skates cause Sandusky Bay was going to be frozen solid, crystal clear and cold.

    • CHeden

      Somewhat counter-intuitively, this may not be all that bad…..
      Notice that the NPac blocking high is in slow decline for the last third of the period. Perhaps setting the stage for an undercut to emerge later on?

      • jstrahl

        Good point. However, the West Coast trough in the beginning doesn’t seem to be translating to a lot of action.

  • Bombillo1

    Well that’s it. Btw Daniel, good LR call for this season. I am afraid we are now back to posting dog photos. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e0a886d92ab68ec0a739b2dd752a2638c99db1e9a04def5de9409c91776897e5.jpg

    • Yolo Hoe

      Also reminiscent of that 13-14 season was the early December storm followed by frigid temperatures followed by 8 dry weeks.

      That said, it’s impossible to say the same relevant dynamics are in place — I’m still on the happy bus (in part for reasons Charlie B notes below) and looking forward to reemergence of amazing visuals from Crash during second half of December — Ragdump could use a break anyway.

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      That dog looks like he wants a good rainstorm to play in!

  • weathergeek100

    Don’t even think about looking at the 6-10 and 8-14 day outlook. I want to give it a middle finger right now.

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      December may be a total bust just like November! [at least in SoCal]

      • weathergeek100

        The pattern looks so stagnated. These patterns take forever to break up. Weeks on-end usually. I wouldn’t be surprised if we get no rain in December in the bay area, too.

        But man oh man, SoCal. I feel for you guys. After a such a dry spring, I can’t imagine how that chaparral survives. They’re used to like one good, solid rain event in-between long dry spells, not zero. Sheesh.

        • Dry Bones

          It is very stagnated. Literally. We are having a lot of days where I work in Long Beach of just dead air, no wind on- or off-shore. I’m talking about looking at a huge US flag on a 300-foot-tall tower crane, just hanging limp. For the last month we’ve been getting this weird haze from all the air pollution in the basin just settling on the coast, and thin high clouds because of the lack of atmospheric circulation.

          • KrisKastForecast

            yeah especially yesterday here in long beach with all the high cirrus it almost looked like there was ash or smoke in the sky

        • Tom & Koyano Gray

          Ive seen enough. Im ever the pessimist, but there’s your winter pattern. SoCal, I think for our best shot is going to be to look south, hopefully something will be able make an end sweep. Truth be told, northern storms are increasingly unreliabe anyway. We’ll get something Christmas, but it wont be much, then a dry January. February and March – too far down the road. If we get over 6 inches this year in San Diego, that ‘ll do.

  • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

    Great story from the SF Chronicle’s Peter Hartlaub on his podcast about the Santa Rosa Fire. He did a few interviews and mentions a hardware store staying open, turns out the store was Orchard Supply Hardware who sent 20 corporate employees from SJ to open the store w/out power and BBQ for those evacuated.
    https://twitter.com/peterhartlaub/status/935757556441640960

  • jstrahl

    Last month i predicted a season total of 15 inches in central Berkeley. Well, i’m changing that to a good-case-scencio outcome. My bad case is under 10 inches, lower than ’75-6.

  • Fairweathercactus

    I predicted 9 inches of rain for Downtown. Kind of bitting my nails looking at that prediction.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Im going with 6. Every day its going to get harder and harder to catch up unless we get some out of the blue wildcard rain event….

  • Fairweathercactus
    • Thirstier Nick (Santa Maria)

      RRRidiculous. Our next storm could be in 2018, at this rate.

  • Shane Ritter

    Keep an eye on the PNA forecast. As long as it’s forecast to go strong positive, the models will show a ridge. If that changes, then the models should to.

  • happ [Los Angeles]

    There’s discussion on these analogues as possible correlation to current rain year.

    Downtown LA rain totals:
    1962-63: 8.38
    1981-82: 10.71
    1989-90: 7.35
    1995-96: 12.46

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Its hard to put faith in these since none of these years had a warm of arctic as we do now…

      • weathergeek100

        Very very true.

      • Chris

        Very true! I think we are at a point where we are in unfamiliar territory.
        IMO, we are under “new rules” so to speak.

      • He’s not asking anyone to put faith anywhere

    • weathergeek100

      So these were years where fall was bone-dry like now? I mean BONE dry- 0.00 (not say, 0.50 which would be considered say, normal dryer than avg)

        • Wolfpack

          21 out of the last 30 years were below normal. Looks like the seasonal norms need to be revised.

          • I think 2040 is when new climatology will be done. Last was 1981-2010 and it’s about every thirty years. There’s a shorter period now of 2007-2016. What will happen as you know the many dry years between 2010 and ~ 2040 will look like normal years if this keeps up. Toss in a handful of +30″ and it will somewhat even out. What I’d do if that were the case is look at median vs average. Median would then be much lower than average. I hope I made sense. It’s a good point.

          • KrisKastForecast

            its done every decade,so the next will be 1991-2021.

          • Good to know..Thanks for setting me straight

          • matthew

            Didn’t Daniel post something similar a few months ago? That we were trending towards mainly dry years punctuated by some *really* wet ones scattered in such that if you looked at a 10 year average it didn’t look so bad. The fact that you get most of the water in 3 of those 10 years is the problem.

            I know I read something like this somewhere…thought it was here.

        • Unbiased Observer

          The range is quite something from just over 37 inches to just over 3 inches two years later.

          • 2004-5 was very remarkable for SoCal. I remember the storms that would travel over water all the way down before hitting the coast. It was a decent year for Central CA coast as well.

    • That’s interesting. I looked at DJF rainfall totals for those years and March separately. As well as geo height anomalies and SSTA for DJF. It’s worthy a discussion as to possible causality of all four years and why the 4 are similar and differences rather than pot shot comments.

  • SoCalWXwatcher

    Wow. I guess our mild weather isn’t bad when taken in context with this. At what temperature does Stolichnaya freeze solid?

    https://twitter.com/weatherchannel/status/935852112692441089

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      There are places on Mars that get warmer daytime temperatures than that. :-O

    • Stock up on Everclear I suppose.

  • Bob G (Gustine)

    The models are something. The ridge extends so far north the storms just park themselves out in the pacific with nowhere to go

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Yep. Check out the animated chart I just posted.

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        I saw that. Yikes. Hopefully the ridge collapses underneath

  • SoCalWXwatcher

    Now that’s what I call a blocking pattern. That there is double-barreled ridging from Baja all the way into the Arctic Circle.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/342f678100253b40e0bac48033c9c324c8885f0e9c23c6ed834a42135316c197.gif

    • Pretty soon we’ll have water weenie posts from folks other than SoCal.
      That’s a VERY stable pattern BTW.

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        We built the Wall along the West Coast to keep those pesky Pacific storms out.

    • Unbiased Observer

      Looks like Europe is in the freezer too. Sucks to be us.

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        Europe, Siberia, and Eastern US. I should have bought Heating Oil futures.

    • Arctic Circle looking a little warm.

      • Thirstier Nick (Santa Maria)

        It must be the methane.

    • Thirstier Nick (Santa Maria)

      AKA: The weather pattern from Hell. I see days of 80s from December 10-20. WTF?

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        The warmest I’ve seen on the 12z model guidance is about 80° in the LA Metro area on December 15.

    • Pfirman

      Isn’t this saying the same thing?

      https://twitter.com/MJVentrice

  • Be me looking for imagery to depict current state of affairs. “Ooo that’s a good one, the models are definitely tumbling. Wait a minute. Enhance. Enhance. Enhance. That’s Chair 6’s terrain park at Kirkwood!”
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/9076ea1442c4ddecfeff3ea0c5cddff9c568d42e79c1a384cb586a6e885f679b.gif

    • PRCountyNative

      Good reminder: Do not do jumps!

  • Thirstier Nick (Santa Maria)

    Man, the first half of December is looking doom and gloom. The second half of December better make up for it. I’d rather want cloudy days if I can’t get rain. I’m sick of the sun glare in my living room.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      The caveat is that we are talking about long range and the final frames of model runs which have really struggled this year. Of course Murphy’s Law would dictate that the ugliest runs verify, but we should still take some of this with a grain of salt.

      A Ridge-A-Saurus is not what any of us wanted for Christmas. Some of you must have bene very naughty this year.

      • Can’t wait for a discussion here about Murphy’s law and weather. ROFLOL

        • SoCalWXwatcher

          Maybe the new FV3 Model will incorporate some Murphy’s Law Algorithms.

      • Thirstier Nick (Santa Maria)

        I like the term Ridge-a-saurus. I wish this mega-ridge would park itself to DC instead. I don’t know why it likes to be on the West side of the Rockies so much.

      • honzik

        If it’s a Ridge-A-Saurus, does that mean it’s a Rex block?

    • Maybe having these ridges meridonal vs zonal will help a little. But it looks very Ridgeasaurus like RRR

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        Hoping we dont get stuck in this large ridge in the west versus trough in the east pattern. Someone posted about a trough near Hawaii that helps that patten also

    • thlnk3r

      West Coast dryness spells: “Clear and Present Danger”. Weather pattern change may bring catastrophes ahead.

    • weathergeek100

      “Man, the first half of December is looking doom and gloom. The second half of December better make up for it”

      That’s what we said about November, too.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        November was a good month

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          Only for a small part of California

          • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

            The Bay Area North maybe excluding the CV to the east, that’s not a small part

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            The map I saw showed the Bay Area over normal and a few spots of Northern CA. The Central Valley is below normal. Where it matters most of all is in the Sierra. IDK exactly where they are but the way BA’s worded his post this morning it sounds like they are behind normal.

  • RunningSprings6250

    So the Pacific is effectively BLOCKED and backed up for at least the first 10 days of December….someone is going to get HOSED when the top blows off….

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      Hopefully the ridge’s weakest link is over ca and troughs get through

    • AlTahoe

      Yep the snap back effect could be pretty awesome in late Dec early January. This ridge has looks of the one in Dec 1989. The 1989-1990 has been popping up alot as well.

      • jstrahl

        January ’90 was not all that awesome, really a normal month which seemed wet after the previous month’s total shutout. And almost all of it came during the King Holiday weekend.

    • jstrahl

      Maybe, maybe not.

  • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

    What is interesting about these blocking patterns is how the reverse is not ever true. Yes, we had a lot of troughs last year, but also had dry periods. Yet, when it goes dry, it seems to go completely dry. Yes, the walker cell is expanding, but the upcoming block is not from HP to our south, but to our north, so I would think the larger walker cell would help in this instance.

    I know we keep talking about a “Warm arctic” is to blame, but it was just as warm last year and was a very wet year. Not saying its not the cause of more droughts in CA, but still feel like the experts and models are missing one key ingredient somehow.

    • Thirstier Nick (Santa Maria)

      How many wet seasons have we had over the last 18 or so years? Very few. It’s clear how much our climate is changing and the effects could linger for decades to come. Might as well think about water recycling/desal instead of praying for rain. Mother Nature hates us for overpopulating the desert.

      • matthew

        I will trade you one high-speed rail project for a few good desal plants.

        • shampeon

          How about both? Transportation infrastructure is just as important for the long-term economy.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            Naw. Desal yes, HSR no

          • BRP (Ventura)

            But but but…I want to take a 175mph train from Bako to Sac Town! boondoggle is an understatement.

          • shampeon

            The ultimate endpoints are the population centers. It’s just easier to build in the CV for the first phase. Just like I-5, the backbone of the NorCal/SoCal transportation corridor.

          • BRP (Ventura)

            You must not be a native Californian? If you understand the economy of CA, you’d know that the central valley is not the once proud center of economic vitality as it once was. Check out Victor David Hanson on YouTube for some lectures he gives on the have’s and the have not’s in our burgeoning State.

          • shampeon

            Well, you’d be wrong. I’ve lived in both the north and south my entire life. I didn’t say the CV is the center of CA’s economy, but I-5 connects two of the largest economic centers in one of the largest economies in the world.

            And I think the CV is going to be important to our economy in the coming century. The LA basin and the Bay Area’s population has been spilling over into it, for one.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            Not sure I agree since the CV’s economy is all about agriculture and the current CA govt does not consider them important when assigning water rights. Maybe this is better for the environment overall, but places like Modesto or Bakersfield will not be tech hubs, ever.

          • shampeon

            Well over 70% of all water allocation in CA is for agriculture.

          • Farmer47

            I’m not sure where you got that number, god knows you can find just about any number you want depending where you look, but that’s not accurate.
            A more important thing to consider is the fact that for decades we have let rain water run into the ocean at the same time watch our population grow dramatically! And I don’t mean just in California. Do you realize that the farmers in California grow 75% of the produce for the entire United States from late fall to spring. It boggles my mind when I think about how uninformed the general public is about the food they eat. As long as they go to the store and are able to buy what they need they think all is well. Water is only one of MANY issues that are driving farming out of California. The sad reality is that it will be to late when people finally realize there is a problem. When farming is finally run out of ca
            And your only option to buy a head of lettuce that’s grown in Mexico, you’ll ask “what happen”
            With someone else in control of your food your screwd! They can charge whatever they want and if they don’t have it guess what……… you don’t get it.
            Sorry for the rant but the future doesn’t look good if we don’t start looking at things soon

          • shampeon

            You’re right, it wasn’t quite accurate. Ag accounts for 80% of the water allocated for business or residential use, not over 70%. In a typical year 51% of all the water in CA is “environmental”, and of that amount, a vast majority of it falls and drains in the North Coast, unconnected to the rest of the state water projects. E.g. it isn’t capturable.

            You could reduce the amount of “environmental” water, which would then allow saltwater intrusion into the pumps in the delta to supply the canals to the San Joaquin and beyond to LA.

            https://californiawaterblog.com/2011/05/05/water%E2%80%94who-uses-how-much/

            Ag is important to our state and national economy. But our farms also need to adapt. Drought is probably going to be more common, and smart water usage is now the norm for residents. Our farms need to be equally smart.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            Farms have come along way. There are many examples of this. There is still more to go but many of our crops are grown on drip tape now. Large tomato fields have drip tape buried inside the dirt. Many large growers now have their orchard systems on GPS type systems that are tied to moisture sensors that report moisture levels at the various locations in their fields so they water based on need. Farmers in federal water districts received zero surface water allocation for several years. It isn’t like they weren’t forced to adapt

          • Farmer47

            If you really knew anything about the ag business you would know we have been implementing water conservation technologies for a while now. This isn’t the first drought we’ve had to deal with. Is there still room for improvement, you bet. And also remember that we actually “pay” for the water we use, weather above ground or from our wells. That cost has skyrocketed!! Trust me when I say there isn’t any room for waisting it. And I’m very well aware of saltwater intrusion. We have aquifers that have been drawn down to the point the ground has sunken in some cases over 2 ft. Once they collapse they can’t be recharged. This wouldn’t happen if we could collect the billions of ac ft of water that runs out to the pacific.
            Just think about this for a minute and then I’ll be done. If we are what most would consider in a severe drought , other than last year, how can we in good conscious, keep building new housing developments with all the water consumption needed to service them plus the miles and miles of useless landscaping for purely aesthetic purposes. Oh, and guess what? The people that occupy those houses are probably going to want to eat at some point. Yes there is a very small percentage of recycled water being implemented for landscaping but not enough to even be considered.

          • shampeon

            Like I said (and is spelled out in the link above), almost every drop of the water that goes to the ocean from the areas where we CAN collect them are either allocated to human use (80% ag, 20% residential and industrial), or are there to keep saltwater intrusion from occurring in the Delta. The idea that we’re letting billions of acre feet of water just flush out the Pacific is not accurate for the Sacramento/San Joaquin watersheds. The amount of water from those systems allocated strictly for environmental reasons is vanishingly low.

            This thread was about investing in infrastructure. If you think a train is expensive, try implementing a State Water Project-style capture program and distribution system for the river systems along the North Coast.

            You mentioned subsidence from aquifer depletion. If we had a more modern flood-management and discharge infrastructure, we would be working across all our interests (ag, environmental, residential, economic) to try to restore our aquifers during flood years, in the CV and in urban areas, so we could use groundwater during droughts. Groundwater doesn’t evaporate, and can store many more acre feet than a large dam.

          • PRCountyNative

            Paving over farmland for housing is a perfect metaphor for our occupancy of the planet as a whole. We are simultaneously reducing the carrying capacity of our planet/life support system while increasing the rate at which we draw down resources.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            CA govt isn’t assigning water rights. The worst thing we could do is convert all this ag to urban. The environment will be ten times worse in the valley

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            It is a struggle here in the valley. And becoming bedroom communities for the Bay Area is not helping us

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            Unless someone lives within a mile of the high speed rail station, how does one get their? If everyone drives, I don’t think its an improvement. And if you say people will use mass transit to get to the station, I would ask how many people do so today when going to the airport. I bet its a small minority. My point is that I don’t believe we will lower the number of driver that much, but might lower the number of flyers between Northern and Southern CA.

          • shampeon

            I take the BART every week from my home in the east bay to San Francisco. A ton of people take it to and from SFO, judging by the luggage they have with them.

            Many people in my neighborhood commute to SF via BART, because it is almost always faster than driving. Most of them park in the BART parking lot, which fills up every morning.

            If BART didn’t exist, all those commuters would likely drive. While it’s true that they also drive to park at BART, it’s the difference between driving 50 miles a day round trip and 5.

            A high speed rail link between SF and San Jose would have massive ridership, as would one between SF and Sacramento. A lot of people commute to and from the Bay Area along the I-80 corridor.

            Many of these same arguments were made about the LA subway. Nobody will ride it, it is too expensive, it just promotes more sprawl. They’ve not been born out, though. The LA subway and light rail stations now connect the Inland Empire to the coastal cities and Orange County.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            Agreed if you live in the East Bay. But I live in South San Jose, not exactly out in the country, and yet it is 1.5 miles to the nearest bus stop. Then I get to transfer twice before I even get to downtown San Jose to catch the train or to Fremont to catch Bart. Based on discussions from my colleges, most of us in the South Bay are not able to take mass transit without it doubling our commute. If things were so easy, I don’t think the Googles and Facebooks of the world would pay to have there SF employees shuttled down to the peninsula.

            I just Google mapped from where I work (near Levis stadium) to my home and its expecting a 30 minute to drive (15 miles) and two hours to use transit. That is a problem that high speed rail will not solve, but a build out of mass transit within cities would.

          • shampeon

            Yeah, I guess I don’t see it as one or the other. They should have connected the South Bay to the rest of BART a long time ago.

            CalTrain connects San Jose & the Peninsula to the city, and I’ve got some friends that use it, but it’s slow. If we had a high speed line with stops in Palo Alto and San Jose, with light rail connections, it would be huge for the entire region.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            Agreed. I am not against high speed rail in general as its a great thing in other countries. It is just way overpriced here in the US. Not sure why as its not like our workers have exorbitant wages.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            I am not aware of a high speed rail link between SF and San Jose and at least from what I’ve heard there is a lot of stiff opposition to something like that on the Peninsula. The HSR will be a huge liability on California taxpayers for years to come. I have my doubts it will ever make it. If this wasn’t Jerry Brown’s pet project who will stop at nothing to save it, it would have already died for a lack of funding

          • Sean

            Which isn’t a bad thing since HSR is more carbon efficient than flying.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            Way over budget. Actual cost will be ten times original cost. Will be overly expensive and require ongoing taxpayer subsidies. No thanks

          • shampeon

            Same thing is true of the Interstate that runs through your city.

            How important is I-5 to you? To CV farms? To businesses in Sacramento, LA, the Bay Area? How many people are living in the CV and commuting to LA/the BA?

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            Not even close. And the HSR does not benefit us. And increasing the commuters is not the answer. It makes things worse

          • shampeon

            Allowing commuters to commute by rail relives congestion on the roads. Exurb commuters are coming whether you want them or not. See Tracy, the I-80 corridor, the far southern San Joaquin, Antelope Valley, Victorville. If you have a better idea than just letting it all snarl on roads, I’m open to hearing it.

            High speed rail works in Europe and Asia. I’ve yet to hear why it wouldn’t work hear other than “reasons.”

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            All we are doing is creating bigger bedroom communities for the Bay Area which results in urban sprawl and worsening our local housing costs which are driven by bay area wages. Our local wages cant compete. If the population is going to increase here, we need jobs created here and housing based on local job market. What we dont need is a rapid increase in bay area commuters

          • shampeon

            I hear you. I fully agree with you on needing to create more local, non-commuting, decent jobs and eliminating urban sprawl. Just green-lighting bedroom community friendly development has been the extent many of these city’s economic planning, and that’s got to change.

          • AntiochWx

            If you truly want to decrease congestion, we should be funding the BART to make it go faster or more cars with direct lines with fewer stops.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            That is a good idea

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            EXACTLY. We should build out mass transit within our larger metropolitan areas before trying to connect them together. I live in San Jose and it will take me 3 hours to get to a high speed rail station in SFO using mass transit. So instead I would drive and cause congestion on our Bay Area roads. Not sure how that helps the overall cause.

          • Nathan

            Can’t tell if you’re being tongue in cheek but it depends on what your definition of “work” and “reasons” are. Will trains run? Sure. But if it is at such an astronomical subsidized cost that it destroys our budget and takes billions away from, eg, higher education, fire prevention, health care, etc, is that “working”? It’s been suggested that ridership might be very low, that it is unlikely to serve major population centers with an efficiency better than planes, and that it will contribute to rather than mitigate sprawl, which ultimately drives more car trips and more pollution.

          • Farmer47

            That rail isn’t for us silly, we’re just going to pay for it. It’s for the next generation. In 20-30 years the “desert” will have been developed far beyond any of us could ever imagine. It’s the most feasible option to grow the population between two of the largest areas in ca. Sure glad I won’t be around to see the chaos!!

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            That will be disasterous

          • PRCountyNative

            You’re right, after all, the next 19 million people will need places.

          • Sean

            All rail requires taxpayer subsidies. So does the road system. Farebox recovery never covers op costs; its more a question of how much subsidy.

          • matthew

            In theory. But it actually needs to be used. That is where I have my doubts.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            But it should not cost 100 billion dollars to go 400 miles when Europe can do it for much much less and still provide a livable wage. I wont even bring up Asia. Where does a person go if they want to support infrastructure projects, but not the terrible waist that accompanies them. Especially in CA.

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          I am with you. I would like to take the billion dollar rail boondoggle and throw it into the pacific ocean

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          The Silicon Valley Leadership Group is pushing this hard. If they want it so bad, those billionaire execs can pay for it

          • shampeon

            I’m all for higher tax rates on those guys to pay for things like infrastructure.

      • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

        Great points. It made me look at the data and somehow, LA has made out better than San Jose this century. LA has been above average for 6 of the 18 years. http://www.laalmanac.com/weather/we13.php

        For San Jose, we have been above average only 2 of those years. Heck, in downtown SJ, last years “Mega Winter” only resulted in an average year.
        http://ggweather.com/monthly/sjc.htm

        • David Howard Gleit

          But don’t forget we also had a flood in San Jose because a nearby reservoir filled up beyond capacity. That “Mega Winter” doesn’t deserve quotes around it – it was HUGE for this state of ours, and the data backs that up, even if precipitation in Santa Clara (where I am) or San Jose was just normal.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            I though it flooded because the creek was full of garbage such as mattresses. So when the resovoir used the alternate spillway, the creek backed up.Plus, I would not say San Jose flooded. A couple of blocks did. Probably effected less than 5000 people.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        All the mostly populated desert places are to your south and east, Santa Maria isn’t a desert

        • RunningSprings6250

          Santa Maria gets less rain than most of the coastal/valley southland, including our resident Mr. Redlands!

          Santa Maria is the WORST spot on the central coast for the weather enthusiast.

          • redlands

            How much is the average rainfall in Santa Maria, Ca —–Redlands, Ca is bout 12-14 inches

    • Most of CA is and has been a donut hole. A big soaker year can offset three years of 50% of average to. LA has accumulated a 40″ rain deficit for the past 10 years. The 1990’s decade is the wettest decade CA has had in 150 years while recently and currently we are in a very dry spell of similar proportions. Current climatology of 1981-2010 includes this 90’s decade as well as 82-83 year and other very wet and very dry years in the 2000’s

      • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

        Great point. Maybe we need to reevaluate what is “average” in various places in CA. Obviously climate change is having an effect, but I do wonder if a dryer year should be assigned to it when maybe our baseline is artificially high due to one wet decade.

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      Brian A’s post at opensnow was interesting today. He showed how snow years ended that started this way. We dont need a repeat if last year. I would be happy just to have a normal year

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      For some reason, the southwestern ridge has been much stronger this year than last. I think overall november could have been a wet month were it not for the SW ridge

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        I don’t think that’s true, but ok

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          It seems like it to me. We had a big ridge parked to the north of us in the gulf during November just like last year . The models were actually showing this but the Southwestern ridge has been the one driving storms away

          • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

            Last year if you may not remember the first part of the wet season also had a sharp North to south cutoff of rainfall just like this year.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            You mean a dry south?

      • That’s what was thought at the end of October when the forecasts came out

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          It seemed like a similar pattern as last year could have developed with that high in the gulf but the Southwestern ridge scuttled that except for parts of CA

    • thlnk3r

      Multi-model agreement warns time is running out! Unprecedented dry weather to last through the extended period with impressive December temperatures. Dry Winter on the horizon could have disastrous effects for the West Coast.

      • This makes no sense other than it very well could be a headline. LOL
        Relentless vanishing winter rains carpet bomb CA into oblivion.

        • thlnk3r

          Precisely! It’s not supposed to make sense…it’s purely for “fear-mongering” purposes.

          • Pfirman

            2Plu must have been skipping past all your posts imploring folks to dress them up.

        • Yanet Garcia (on a beach)

          Please write my weather lines!

          • RunningSprings6250

            This blog needs more yanet.

            And mota.

    • RunningSprings6250

      Cocaine.

    • Pfirman

      Or ten.

  • matthew

    Anyone know what impact Ridgezilla is having on other parts of the planet?

  • Jay W

    Well I hope you all aren’t going to move to Seattle to find rain – with all of the rampant population growth, we’re full now. There may be some room in Sitka, Alaska 🙂
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/3e2ea3b59383a45b4f6a972ff0fdace7c30fa06190635589de027d1a42e1d883.jpg

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      I wonder how much rain is coming to seattle once that monster ridge builds up. I can never move to seattle and have to hear about how great the Seahawks are

  • molbiol

    I was told I need to be more positive so…. this blocking pattern is very early compared to previous years when the RRR emerged. This pattern could very well break just in time for x-mas or new years. I’m still going to refrain from full blown panic for the next three weeks. If x-mas rolls around and the models still look the way they do now…then it’ll be time to worry.

    • FolsomPrisonBlues

      Not to mention we still have January through April for chances at rain. We are still very early in the rainy season.

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        Yikes, If this continues into January I will start to be concerned. March is much less reliable and April is pretty much game over. January and February are our wettest months,

  • John Curtis

    Give it another dry month and the blog will be in full panic mode. John Curtis thrives in chaos.

    • molbiol

      I remember you predicting that Socal was going to be especially cold and wet this year….I think I may have saved a screen shot of that comment

      • John Curtis

        Somebody hacked my account and posted that prediction. General rule of thumb: Predictions by John Curtis cover the spectrum. John Curtis posts the ones that are ultimately accurate and a hacker post the other ones.

        • John Curtis

          Time will tell whether the above prediction was a hack or the real John Curtis.

          • RunningSprings6250

            When you start talking to yourself… you ARE the hack!

            Hack! Hack! Hack!

          • jstrahl

            Just wait till he starts a flame war with himself.

          • Pfirman

            Hairball?

          • I trusted you for an accurate Winter Forecast!!! I just sold my shares in CEI because of you.

    • Hack fraud or fraudulent hacks?!?!

    • scott

      LOL

  • RunningSprings6250

    GFS 18Z Episode IV “A New Hope”

    You see that?!
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/aae4168d47398c3bf441db05514d2a9bc03f526088eea8009e578aa53d1a34c5.jpg
    YOU SEE THAT?!?!?
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/fa36508ac9b0ed5a6fccd3b05b4fd656a4b8496ace87e7c079dfc57c32ec6652.jpg

    Yea, that’s me getting my snow Flake on this weekend baby! #KeepHopeAlive2018

    • Sumster

      It looks like the models want to try to undercut the ridge, but there is not enough oomph (scientific term) in the jet stream . It think I can, I think I can!

      • jstrahl

        I’ll probably be shot for this, but in terms of pattern change,
        “If you don’t see that jet, you must say “nyet.””

    • BRP (Ventura)

      You are one funny SOB! Haven’t laughed at a post on here in a while, thanks for that!

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      That’s right over the San Gorgonio summit. No soup for YOU.

      • RunningSprings6250

        ??

    • Fairweathercactus

      That could be a precip map for mid July and you would have no clue.

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    I’m not sweating on this ridge. It’s going to be nudged up in the PNW giving them a break from an active start to the season. I don’t believe it’ll stick around the whole month either… Here is the ridge from initial build-in to possible breakdown in the long range. The Pacific is awakening nonetheless, just not here. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/936c7ca3dadee530c468a4683fb385c777114ffc0c3414471cd2db867e0f58c7.gif https://twitter.com/zlabe/status/935641442617212928

    • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

      I do find the predictions of 10 inches of rain in the Bay and in SoCal zero quite stupid, Howard in Mammoth says this ridge may be part of a 3 Week cycle. Who knows what’s around the corner!

      • Yes. I think it might be 3 weeks off and one week on with 16days of angst leading up to it.

    • AlTahoe

      A couple of days ago I mentioned that with the Ridge so far up into BC that it would most likely get pushed up even further into the Arctic as the jet cuts into it. The 18z is showing that at the end of the run now.

      • jstrahl

        What jet? The jet has been notable in its absence lately.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Wow, talk about crap model skill beyond 180hrs. It looks like someone took the whole bowl of spaghetti and dumped it all over the N Hemisphere, and that subtropical ridge near Western Mexico can’t decide if it wants to be there or not.

      • Charlie B

        They are called spaghetti charts. I was looking at them earlier today and although confused by nature they do seem to show the strong ridge pretty well.

        • SoCalWXwatcher

          I know, that’s why I mentioned that it looked like someone threw out the bowl after 180hrs. That is quite a model spread during the long range, indicative of very high model uncertainty/lower skill expectation. That’s the point Zack Labe is making with his twitter post.

          • Charlie B

            I like those charts. What I did notice today, however, was that even in the last frame you could dimly make out the ridge. During the terrible days of the RRR the spaghetti’s usually showed the ridge disappearing at the end. It never came to pass, of course. That said, it does make me wonder why we all look at 384h “storms” and get all excited.

          • SoCalWXwatcher

            I guess it’s how we roll here. We get excited by fantasyland storms, and every fantasyland ridge is the next RRR, even though model skill is at its worst that far out.

          • Hell it starts to go downhill as early as 120hrs. Anyone have a way to grab one of these from like say 2008 and able to compare them with today? If it shows an increase in volatility it makes me wonder where the bar used to be.

    • Pfirman

      Didn’t Carlin say…..don’t sweat the petty stuff and don’t pet the sweaty stuff?

  • Here’s a graphic from earth.nullschool and I drew in a Nino3.4 rectangle.
    The link below gives SST and SSTA and departures. It may seem confusing at first when just looking at the anomalies and not the current SST alone. Pretty sure this is an EP based Nina.
    https://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/teleconnections/enso/indicators/sst.php
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/e9d72ff8bc0e9b1b446b5d323be90a98bc9a9ba7cd6339cbc77b012d74fd7a58.png

    • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

      I believe an EP based La Nina’s is yet another check for a drier year?

      • Six of one half a dozen of the other:) SoCal has <100% precip with exception of 2010-11 and 2016-17 in recent memory. What we had last year was a weak Modoki La Nina that was dying on the vine at this time last year. They can have a somewhat similar affect as an EP Nino does. Then again as we know you can't cookie cutter these. Last year the SSTA's were stacked laterally across the Pacific. This year the SST's are all wonky wavy in the NP

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

    It’s quite a sight see the doomsday model CFS show the ridge continuing with little respite until Christmas Day

    • Is it doomsday? *takes a look at fantasyland again*
      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/4267f45ced0c9814259c35e4fe471490b96e55b2a5209c2828cfda2913904a3c.gif
      https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/5f410812d0b9b61a0d927b57ebf7285b27811377ea3f73134282fbc611605812.gif https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/14822a519decc5d6a3effb9aa7dbe89a3ee4861bb0dbe58d27453ea3681e7ee7.gif
      The models are going full Kermit. So is SoCal. I wouldn’t say the dry is set in stone any more than the wet is as the spaghetti shows below. Yes fantasy land but the takeaway is that it wasn’t showing up before, so nothing beyond 240 – ridge included – should be taken seriously with this level of present model inconsistency.

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        Just a little farther West with that December 13-14 cold shot and we’re talking epic cold snap for the W Coast. That is some crazy-frigid polar air.

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          Howard was talking about an artic blast happening!

        • AntiochWx

          Ya and If I would have thrown the holy hand grenade of Antioch in 3 seconds instead of 10, I’d still have my right arm. Close but no cigar.

          • SoCalWXwatcher

            Clever stuff there Antioch. We’re talking about something 300+hours in the future. Of course the GFS has that thing dialed in perfectly, no doubt.

          • AntiochWx

            Just giving you a hard time. No rain makes me snarky.

          • SoCalWXwatcher

            If we can’t have rain, we’ll have to settle for snark. ;-).
            It looks like it’s going to be a long few weeks, although I wouldn’t mind a cold snap even if we can’t manage to get rain.

            It does look like much of the CONUS will get in on the cold, although we’ll be on the fringes of it most likely.

            https://twitter.com/WesWeather/status/936076686189367297

      • Dry Bones

        But if I had to bet on which way the inconsistency will flop each time, I would bet ridge.

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          Which way you believe it flop depends a lot on where you live in CA

          • Dry Bones

            SoCal, I meant

          • Dingdingdingdingding!

      • jstrahl

        Looks better than a total shutout, but a half inch in the Bay Area for half of December is pretty bad.

    • There are some periods when predictability 2-3 weeks out is much higher than usual, and at the moment we unfortunately appear to be entering one of these periods. All global model ensembles are unanimous in showing an intense & prolonged West Coast ridge for 2+ weeks; CFS and ECMWF, which go out even further, both keep it through late December. Wavenumber 5/6 patterns can be extremely hard to dislodge, once initiated…

      • Charlie B

        Stable ridges seem to be predictable, don’t they?

      • molbiol

        Interesting. I always thought that highly amplified patterns were harder for the models to resolve. However, I guess this is one of those patterns that are more stable (self reinforcing positive feedback?). There seems to be an unproven consensus on this board that long range predictions showing a ridge tend to come true more often than predictions showing trough/winter storm.

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          It does seem true that models do much better at predicting heatwaves and ridges weeks out then storms.

          • molbiol

            The very strong ridge that triggered the devastating heatwave across NorCal in late August/Early September showed up on the GFS more than 10 days in advance. The solution seemed so bizarre that I discounted it as fantasy land nonsense- but we all know what happened..

          • Unbiased Observer

            At least in these parts they do. I’m sure people back east would say the opposite.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        Always appreciate your comments as you are an expert in climatology. I’m really pulling for a pattern change around the 20th of December. Right now it doesn’t look there will be any heatwaves just mild December temperatures through this dry period 🙂

      • There seems to be a consolidation of all areas of high pressure in the higher latitudes.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        Maybe this could break the stagnant pattern? https://twitter.com/ryanmaue/status/936089088297488385

  • Unbiased Observer

    Wow on the 00Z the ridge just keeps getting stronger, with the 582 DM line extending well into BC.

    • Yeah. Goodbye western cold blast.

    • Nathan

      564dm up to the arctic circle and then down to Arkansas…

    • redlands

      probably be 95-100 in Redlands,ca for Christmas 2017

      • Unbiased Observer

        Sure hope not….may as well move to Australia in that case.

      • redlands

        am thinking 80-90

    • celo

      Rose parade always gets the east coast ready to jump on a plane and never look back

  • celo

    0.15 so far in Santa Barbara. Very Dry.
    In Santa Barbara we have had some incredibly bone dry falls and have come out above normal for the year.
    1999-2000, 1.5″ through jan 15th and finished with 140% of normal.
    1995-96 0.16 through December 12 and finished with average.
    1990-91 0.31 through Jan 3rd and finished slightly above normal.

    Then…Uh oh
    2015-16 1.22 through Jan 5th then 60% of normal
    2013-14 1.15 through Feb 3rd then 35% of normal
    1975-76 .73 through Feb 3rd and finished with 50% of normal

    By looking at the historical data for the Goleta Fire Station, I’m amazed at how there has been extremely dry falls and how it has recovered in the winter and spring.
    However, not lately. If the last 5 years are any indication we are in trouble. We shall see.
    It’s amazing how the mind feels antsy for rain when there is less sunlight, it becomes cooler and the leaves change. Feelings of winter and the end of the long dry summer and the onset of rain. Then when it doesn’t happen, it feels like it will never come, never rain…which has never happened and won’t.

    • redlands

      whats santa Barbara average rainfall — july 1st start

      • celo

        These are for a September 1st start and the average at this location is about 18.3 inches

        • redlands

          You have the stats for a July 1st start date for santa barbara

          • celo

            My analysis started September 1st

    • Chris

      Keep your “uh oh” comments to yourself!
      I enjoyed your post before the “uh oh” part. ?

  • happ [Los Angeles]

    Well, at least the sunsets are beautiful and the days are warm.

    78/ 53

    Echo Park https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/28c9c2f988b6790a4dee94fb194426dffd5311538acb0daa4a9d56225fbb6548.jpg

    • Bombillo1

      I am sure the American Camels, Saber Tooth Tigers and Wooly Mammoths were all marveling at the warm winters they were beginning to have.

      • Darin

        Ooooh, I need to go back to the La Brea Tar Pits. Haven’t been there in a long time. Just down the street from Echo Park.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Nice pic! That is quite a contrast of blue and pink!

  • Fairweathercactus

    Looks like the only hope we have is if that typhoon helps us out. Most of the time it hurts us.

    One thing to note as well from October – late March I did not have to water my cactus at all. Looks like its going to be an extended watering season. Also I think the late heatwaves cause it not to bloom this fall :(.

  • PRCountyNative

    Here’s some good drought news, though on the subject of CA forests going away with climate change:

    “Wet weather is “a sudden oak death driver”

    From: http://www.pressdemocrat.com/news/7640033-181/sudden-oak-death-rampant-in?artslide=0

    If these numbers are correct, this is really bad.

    • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

      That article is actually astonishing… 3.7% in 2015 to 37% now?

  • Palos Verdes Snowstorm

    While Mammoth will get nothing, Mexico will get 20 in+ powder. Time for skiing trip to Mexico. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/904599fe64ac13f960782c97d648d118da554837c82f3d97727a390d02173d16.png

  • Unbiased Observer

    Ugh I miss the rain…haven’t seen a decent rain since last March.

  • AntiochWx

    Have any cities in the east Bay Area ever gone a whole winter without dropping below 32? If so what years?

    • Unbiased Observer

      No doubt Berkeley and Oakland have at some point.

      • Dan weather maniac (ORINDA)

        Berkeley and Oakland rarely get frost. Same for the whole east bay shoreline along the San Francisco Bay portion. You have to go inland

        • AntiochWx

          I guess when I say east bay I mean orinda and points east. I consider oakland Berkeley central bay even though technically they are east of the bay.

    • I haven’t seen temps below 35 here in a while.

    • inclinejj

      Diablo and Blackhawk tend to run a few degrees colder than downtown Danville. The media seems to focus on the Walnut Creek’s and all the milfs.

      • AntiochWx

        Has WC or Danville had winters they didn’t reach below 32? I’m trying to find long term climate date for places like these, I think Concord has a site with good data.

    • Dan weather maniac (ORINDA)

      So far Orinda has not had an actual proper frost yet, and it gets pretty chilly here in the valley locations.

      With this ridge over the next two weeks as long as the cold air from up north doesn’t come in (as was once forecast) the night lows will probably stay right around 35 into mid DEC.

      Last 2 years first frost was by thanksgiving or so. Not yet this year.

    • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

      My city the last 3 years

      • AntiochWx

        What’s your city?

        • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

          San Carlos

    • My low this year was late February, 27.5 degrees in Brentwood.

      • AntiochWx

        Yeah I think mine was also 27. Last year I think we had 5-10 days below 32, I’d be curious to see which winters Concord has had with no nights below freezing.

  • redlands

    One must remember not all parts of California got killer rain seasons — 2016/17 — didn’t some parts get like the top 3 wettest season — Redlands, ca only got a tad bit above average — its looking to be one of the driest – this 2017/18 rain seasons — July 1st start — Since March 2017 — still under an inch of rain —

    • Dry Bones

      Unless I am greatly mis-remembering, most of SoCal down-coast of SB came in somewhat below average for winter 2016-17. That fact (presuming I am not inventing my own “alternative fact” here) was largely overlooked in all the ballyhooing about the over-performing precipitation in the north half of the state.

  • Anybody have a link for the 16 day ECMWF? I don’t really want to spend $25 a month to access it.

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    Whoa, quite the change of tune in the 00Z Euro… I’ll lean outlier, but this is the more noteworthy model. The real question is will this become a trend & if so, this run would be suggesting a possible undercutting of the ridge as the dipole wobbles around in the Northern Hemisphere along with an extension of the jet due to the split in the Polar Vortex as one lobe slightly positions itself over East Asia & the North Pacific. Oddly enough an active bit of weather or more may be the outcome however, don’t count on it. As I said leaning outlier. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/bf8a0400984d92625e0a4442945610d764a856ff06b20d820518318ab70c82a0.png https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/dcd9d72dfff5a1b4e402595bc599cefa9f47d83e37abc550d1fe8105553ed218.png

    • Probably an Outliner.

    • David Mata
    • inclinejj

      Does this mean the high pressure gets undercut?

      • There’s very little if any undercutting. As 805 said, it’s an outlier of interest only.

        • inclinejj

          I miss the animated jet streams TV weather used to do. They keep cutting weather and sports.

          Pete Giddings and Steve Paulson are the best at taking something complex and breaking it down. Daniel is really good also

          • Charlie B

            I loved those animated jet stream graphics. Maybe they don’t use them now because the size of the ridge would mean that the loop would go so far north that it would disappear from the screen…..

          • CHeden

            Giddings had an army of assistants to make up his broadcasts. In fact, if I recall that he wasn’t even a certified meteorologist.
            Paulson was on his own, and was in a league of his own when it came to talking the weather……not just presenting a fancy graphic like the competition.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            Paulson was my favorite back when he was on channel 36. He really went into detail about the jet stream and HP and LP and explaining how things work in the pacific. I rarely see him these days because I hardly ever travel to the Bay Area anymore but when I have watched him he doesn’t seem to go into that same level of detail as the old TV 36 days probably because the network doesn’t allow him to

          • inclinejj

            He was. I did the Little Peoples fishing program with him and talked to him a lot in Incline. He has a place up the road from us.

            Most of the weather readers with really big lungs aren’t meterologists. Not that many show the AMS seal while they are talking.

          • inclinejj

            I used to like when he would say the NWS says it’s going to do this but I think its going to do this.

    • Chris

      I think the most “successful” undercutting happens when the MJO is in the right position.
      Yes?

  • Fairweathercactus

    If you woke up excited to check the models and had hoped they would change for California. You might as well have your ass go back to bed.

    • Farmer47

      We’re not getting rain here till late jan early feb. I just hope the back end of this season is wetter than normal

      • Dry Bones

        It’s too early to throw in the towel, and several here are saying the models show a possibility for the ridge pattern to break by the end of December. IMHO, that would be a heck of a shift and would need a heck of a change to the prevailing synoptic-scale atmospheric setup right now. As Daniel pointed out yesterday, once these ridging patterns become entrenched, they can be very difficult for the atmosphere to displace.

  • AlTahoe
  • Charlie B

    Barrow, Alaska, which is the farthest point in North America, had daily temperatures at least 20 degrees above average on 50% of the days in November. They actually experienced beach erosion due to high surf (the Arctic Ocean is ice free). Imagine if Phoenix was 20 degrees above average in July. That would equate to highs of 130 or so and lows of 105.

    • Dry Bones

      Yeah, but we’re talking about wintertime highs in Barrow vs summertime highs in Phoenix, which is apples to rutabagas. What we ARE seeing right now is higher-than-expected November temps in Phoenix as well. They are normally 10–20 degrees cooler than us in SoCal once the serious hot season ends there, but they have been roughly the same temps as us this hotumn, with the exception of SoCal beating them during our World Series heatwave.

      Having grown up in Arizona,I can tell you that 130 degree temps would not be pretty, but wouldn’t change people’s lives that much. Their approach to the heat is like Alaskans’ approach to the cold.

      • happ [Los Angeles]

        Good point. Did Phoenix exceed 90F during the recent heat wave before Thanksgiving?

        • Dry Bones

          WEATHER OBSERVED NORMAL DEPART
          VALUE DATE(S) VALUE FROM
          NORMAL
          …………………………………………
          TEMPERATURE (F)
          RECORD
          HIGH 107 10/02/1980
          10/01/1980
          LOW 34 10/30/1971
          HIGHEST 99 10/24 100 -1
          10/16
          10/04
          LOWEST 61 10/27 54 7
          10/22
          AVG. MAXIMUM 93.8 88.5 5.3
          AVG. MINIMUM 67.1 64.8 2.3
          MEAN 80.5 76.7 3.8
          DAYS MAX >= 90 26 14.4 11.6
          DAYS MAX <= 32 0 0.0 0.0
          DAYS MIN <= 32 0 0.0 0.0
          DAYS MIN <= 0 0 0.0 0.0

          • Dry Bones

            That didn’t format right at all, but yes.

      • Charlie B

        Agreed. I point out Barrow because it shows the rapid changes that are indeed underway up there, as anticipated.

  • RunningSprings6250

    Man we are so far from normal these days it is SAD! I was curious about averages ‘down the hill’ and of course the city of San Bernardino will have the most data so here’s a little overview….. This was fun digging into a little bit, and with such crappy boring weather I wouldn’t mind reading about other areas of the state if this sparks someone else to do a little copy paste research for their area. 😀

    City of San Bernardino, CA

    81/51 is the yearly average high/low.

    16.01” average yearly rainfall:

    Jan: 3.15”
    Feb: 4.06”
    March: 2.53”
    April: 1.02”
    May .25”
    June: .07”
    July: .03”
    August: .13”
    Sep: .25”
    Oct: .82”
    Nov: 1.29”
    Dec: 2.41”

    If December goes rainless or doesn’t get close to 3” it will be very hard to reach average! Multiply this by around x3 and that’s about our average up here so we’re heading into the double digit deficits very soon…..YES a couple big storms even as late as March can turn this around, 10”+ rainfall totals for one day isn’t uncommon here at my elevation, in the good ole days anyway….

    Some interesting info I didn’t know:

    San Bernardino is unique among Southern Californian cities because of its wealth of water, which is mostly contained in underground aquifers. A large part of the city is over the Bunker Hill Groundwater Basin, including downtown. This fact accounts for a historically high water table in portions of the city, including at the former Urbita Springs, a lake which no longer exists and is now the site of the Inland Center Mall.

    San Bernardino features a hot-summer Mediterranean climate (Csa in the Koeppen climate classification) with mild winters and hot, dry summers. Relative to other areas in Southern California, winters are colder, with frost and with chilly to cold morning temperatures common.

    Summer is also a lot warmer with the highest recorded summer temperature at 117 °F (47.2 °C) in 1971.[22] Record low of 17F in January 1937. In the winter, snow flurries occur upon occasion. San Bernardino gets an average of 16 inches (406 mm) of rain, hail, or light snow showers each year.

    Record July low temp is 44F, don’t see that anymore!

    • Dan weather maniac (ORINDA)

      Interesting info on the water table.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Wow the mountains really influence the rainfall, not too far away in Riverside the yearly average is 10.33.
      Oct- 0.51
      Nov- 0.83
      Dec- 1.45
      December is a month where our rainfall usually starts ramping up and we start getting some much colder weather. (Dec is supposed to be the coldest month of the year) Its going to be interesting to see what happens this month!

      • RunningSprings6250

        Wow more than I expected!

        This last little system we had was perfect case in point, clear from the ten freeway south while the northern IE was ‘socked’ in with low clouds, showers and drizzle benefiting from both the San gabriels and San Bernardino mnts.

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      Data shows that summer rainfall, though meager compared to other parts of the nation, is actually higher in San Bernardino than many others areas in SoCal. Monsoon activity in the mountains can migrate over San Bernardino.

    • matthew

      According to wikipedia, Truckee gets the following rain / snow during the Fall months.

      Oct : 1.75 / 3.0
      Nov : 3.83 / 17.7
      Dec : 4.34 / 38.3

      I am on the dry side of town and my less-than-meticulous records show :

      Oct : 0.5 / 1.0
      Nov : 4.75 / 2.0

      I am pretty sure that Truckee totals are recorded at the airport so the official totals should be closer to my numbers than to that of Cap’n or Rob over on the west side of town (add 50% to mine and you will be close to Cap’n). So about average on rainfall, with the totals skewed to November, with almost all of the November precip coming in one event. But way behind on snowfall at our elevation. If the storms had come in cold rather than warm we would be about average so far…if you believe wikipedia (and matthew).

  • happ [Los Angeles]
    • Freddy66

      What model is this ?

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        GFS 12Z

      • happ [Los Angeles]

        GFS

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      It is one model run so it is hard to get excited about it. That might be a nice trend if it happened by having the ridge shift north and leave CA clear underneath. One can only hope at this point. Lets get some dynamite and blow up the Hudson Bay low too.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      That would be colder but not much rain. There are some more hints that the Ridge-a-saurus will abate by late December, but you know how it goes with these long range solutions…

      https://twitter.com/BenNollWeather/status/936170391319355392

      • happ [Los Angeles]

        At least colder than average temps will make it feel like winter but cold rain/ low snow levels would be even better

        • FolsomPrisonBlues

          I remember plenty of Decembers like this, where it was dry and cold. During the bad RRR drought years though we had December weather in the 70’s. I think toward end of December we will see a pattern change.

          • happ [Los Angeles]

            Yes, December is the coldest month of the year over much of the Southwest.

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        We need to nuke the Hudson Bay low and give them a nice large ridge to enjoy some nice hot weather in New England and help us out here

        • Charlie B

          Where is Little Rocket Man when you need him? Let’s get him mad at the Canadians.

          • matthew

            If he launches on DC he will probably hit Hudson Bay.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            His rocket has a ridge producing warhead

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            LOL, great idea.

      • sezwhom

        All true except if undercutting of Ridge does sync up with CP airmass in place over CA, things might get interesting (rain-wise) around December 16th or so with mid-latitude systems. These tend to favor Central and SoCal over NorCal though.

        • RunningSprings6250

          Nice.

    • It’s definitely better than a ridge running up and down the west coast. Frosty cars in the morning. Hopefully the ridgeasaurus will keep retrograding west

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        I have a question below. I am waiting for your reply, lol. We had two days of hard frost at home. House was 61 in the morning. Getting chilly

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      I don’t know the exact dynamics but remember well the arctic airmass that penetrated California in late December 1990. Ice covered the pool where I lived.

    • AlTahoe

      This progression actually seems pretty likely. The Ridge keeps bubbling up further north and not staying stationary like the RRR of the drought years. I believe the big snows of January 1982 featured a similar progression where cold air arrived from a back door arctic front. Then the moisture undercut the block and joined up with the already in place cold air over the Sierra.

      • FolsomPrisonBlues

        the fact that we will be having cold weather is encouraging. During the RRR droughts we had December weather in the 70’s I believe.

        • Mid-January 2014 I was walking around comfortably in shorts and a t-shirt in the Sierra about 4,500 feet up when it should have been in the upper 30s/low 40s with snow on the ground. It was depressing. I love the snow.

          • matthew

            I was road biking that winter in Truckee. I am actually thinking of getting out for a ride today – not my normal routine for November.

          • AlTahoe

            I went into the lake with the dog that January on the day it hit 66F. The old record high for the month of January was something like 61F. Got lots of mountain biking in as well.

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        I like your scenario

      • alanstorm

        Jan 2, 1982- historic AR overran extreme cold outbreak, stalled over Santa Cruz. 20″+ in 36 hrs, flood catastrophe

  • mbonsack

    RRR is official; from this morning’s SD AFD:

    “Medium range models are in pretty good agreement with this pattern change, which has some resemblance to some of the persistent ridgy patterns that occurred during the wintertime during the recent drought years.”

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      Not good but my hope is that NorCal will benefit from north Pacific storms

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      LOL, what is SD AFD telling us that we already don’t know. I don’t know if this ridge is the same as the RRR but the overall pattern is which I hope we don’t get stuck on

      • SoCalWXwatcher

        Strong ridges along the Western US aren’t unusual, especially during La Niña years.

        It was persistence that made the RRR the RRR. That sucker moved in and wouldn’t leave. If this ridge keeps popping up for weeks at a time through the rest of the season, then yes it would be a new RRR. I hope not, but that remains to be seen.

        • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

          You’re giving me flashbacks.

        • STJ was virtually nonexistent across the Pacific at mid-latitudes during the RRR winters, too.

        • Nathan

          I think the R we’re seeing now has been RRR for at least six months now. Whether it persists through the winter will remain to be seen, but since late May, I would bet that if one pulled up a 500DM anomaly map, it would center a ridge over Vancouver Island, just like it’s centered now.

          This setup became entrenched in late May and persisted through most of the summer, leading to those horrendous BC/OR/WA wildfires, and when it drifted slightly south, our terrible heatwaves here in CA.

          There were certainly breaks, and it has not been as persistent as, eg, the winters of 2013 and 2014, but the ridge has popped up in that locale without fail after each break, like one of those punchy clowns. The major break this year in early-mid Nov appears to have been kicked off by the MJO and/or WPac typhoon action. That may yet happen again later this year. We’ll see.

          • AlTahoe

            Sept and October had a -3 to -4 deviation in that same location so it would probably look pretty average overall.

          • Nathan

            Maybe, I’d be very interested to see…

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            I think HPs are generally persistent in the Eastern Pacific over the summer months.

          • Nathan

            Right, but not at such a tremendous magnitude. The anomaly should still show up…

          • SoCalWXwatcher

            Exactly. RRR is an anomalously persistent ridge. Summer ridging isn’t anomalous around here.

        • FolsomPrisonBlues

          I don’t think it will. I think the blob being in the GOA was reinforcing the ridge. The SST setup in the GOA is a lot different than it was during the RRR drought years. I think this thing will hang out a few weeks and then move on. Dry, cold Decembers are not unusual for California.

  • sezwhom

    Fantasyland time per GFS out 384 but recent runs now show cold air/trof retrograding westward by middle of December as Pac. NW Highs builds northward. This would not be much of a precip. producer but attention should be turned towards the Pacific. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b0e1789b7a86615bbb1ce76cd4fccaedffefe888d94cd5655dcfc594bc6cacbf.png Key is possible undercutting of Ridge. Hints of it here.

    • jstrahl

      Hints? Perhaps, perhaps wishful thinking.

  • alanstorm
    • jstrahl

      Pineapple Express? Looks more like burnt toast.

      • alanstorm

        Jstrahl- must you always be the proverbial turd in the punchbowl?

        • jstrahl

          More so than cactus? 🙂

          • Nathan

            There is a lightheartedness to cactus’ persona that your posts tend to be lacking.

            Can I just state that most of the time, you’re 100% spot on and not inaccurate in your descriptions of our shitty forecasts.

            But the droning endlessness of the negativity wears thin after a while.

          • AlTahoe

            Except for last year when he predicted one of the driest winters ever for Berkley 🙂

          • jstrahl

            Didn’t predict one of the driest at all, i predicted around 15 inches, i was spectacularly wrong, but successful, i was hoping to be contradicted, though i didn’t expect the extent. 🙂

          • jstrahl

            Negativity? Pot, meet kettle.

          • alanstorm

            & pot, meet head stirrer

          • Nathan

            Clearly you have no idea what that phrase means.

          • jstrahl

            I rarely see you post (aside from some photos, which are generally quite good), except to make a negative comment about prospects.

          • Nathan

            Then I suggest you work on your reading comprehension.

            https://disqus.com/by/disqus_ZjG4sCQJyo/

    • Yolo Hoe

      Glad to hear the driver is off break — time for the Magic Bus to get back on the road.

      That said, I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t enjoying the beautiful days this week — as Cap’n reminds us: love the one you’re with

      • alanstorm

        Thanks, man.
        If the storm door doesn’t open by Christmas Week, the bus is going off a cliff

      • PRCountyNative

        And, take care of outstanding warrants.

  • happ [Los Angeles]

    For large parts of SoCal, the month of December marks the first average max below 70F and that lasts thru Feb. Most areas average below 50F minimums. December is the coldest month of the year across much of the Southwest.
    Brian Brettschneider graph
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/614a430eb8071f298687df383e95c94c896b5753fa53cfb950e05218aebcf364.jpg

    • palmsprings

      Brettschneider’s maps are always interesting!

  • matt

    My newer laptop was down for a couple of days my youngest brother had to get rid of some nasty viruses on it. Should be back to normal soon. and i have to get a replacement wind vane for my weather station. But here in the high desert Lancaster area been warm during the day but very cold at night. About 30 outside when i wake up in the mornings.

    • Can you order some replacement precip while you’re at it? Ours broke.

      • matthew

        That’s it! Our climate has some nasty viruses. Need to adjust the parental filter to keep it off the porn sites.

  • SoCalWXwatcher
    • 90k people being ‘dealt with’ doesn’t seem like much fun.

      • Charlie B

        Sound ominous to me.

        • Stereolab

          Somebody’s got to be thrown in the volcano to appease the gods…

    • PRCountyNative

      Arak Attack!

  • AlTahoe

    Here is a snippet from the January 1982 event.

    “Weather maps of this event indicated a strong zonal flow with very moist
    air moving west to east across the Eastern Pacific. This juicy fetch of
    moisture from the southwest collided with colder air flowing down the
    eastern side of a high-pressure system centered over the Gulf of Alaska.
    At Echo Summit, 67 inches of snow (5.6 feet) fell in just 24 hours,
    which ranks it as the second greatest single day snowfall total in the
    United States’

  • molbiol
    • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

      Wow, I don’t recall that area warming like that in previous La Ninas. Wonder what is causing this and if it can have any global effects. Here was 2011. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6a7e415e9a6d0fbb16da327c865a4a1622fa763ba20c90471fb0eb50b2381acd.gif

      • AlTahoe

        Yeah I was going to comment that I have never seen that spot warm up so drastically before. I have no idea what it means so I will just say that it will correlate to an awesome ski season for us and hope I am right. 🙂

        • Did Oz came up with calling their seasons (and SH) Austral? Does Boreal stand for real boring?

          Something tells me Howard is not discussing this his Dweebs..LOL

      • molbiol

        It looks as if a persistent ridge has been sitting over that area for the past couple of months. According to their weather service, high pressure has been in place bringing early season heat waves and northwest flow….just in time for the start of Summer. Not sure if this is the sole reason though…

        https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/456d28c700004caf1dc66c1463a2c619803141d26b77df08e7430050d3f1ac0c.png

        • Nathan

          Well I’m headed there for a backpacking trip so I’m fairly certain that will bring torrential rains…

          • molbiol

            Nice area I wouldn’t mind visiting one day.

      • It might be far enough that it isn’t “steering” anything for our neck of the woods, however someone with better skill than I and access to the right tools could probably deduce its actual impact – Nullschool Earth? Wondering, @Weather West:disqus I would think something that far South would impact South America more due to Coriolis effect/rotation of the earth – if the planet rotated diagonally maybe yes? I wish I knew more about global scale patterns ;/

    • 66 degree water can scald.

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      The area east of Hawaii was warm all summer and fall then there was a dramatic cool down in the Eastern Pacific. Now it has just as quickly flared up again. The atlantic is pretty warm too. I wonder if the HP area has warmed it up

    • Dan the Weatherman

      Do you mean that New Zealand is hotter than normal right now, or has there been a big outbreak of brush fires there?

  • Matts comment got me thinking, so I hacked into GFS Workstation #23 and discovered the root of the problem. His name is Bonzi:
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/cfa942ab8fdad8961d81d294c56e63a881a8b5914c1c34851bde5f6f9ce6dfd0.png

  • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

    Euro 12Z still latching onto the idea of some subtropical disturbance flirting northeast into our region and a rather less amplified ridging over the NW… Still worth noting. Newest feature in the model is a rather potent little inside slider that moves over the Great Basin (a likely scenario) would actually round the ridge & return linking up with the subtropical disturbance over the state. This scenario is quite uncommon, so with this newest development. I would raise the bar to an interesting model guidance.

    • This whole year has been quite uncommon! 🙂

      • Chris

        Try last 6 years!!!!

    • gray whale

      i.e. Baja Bomb or not quite that exciting?

  • Fairweathercactus

    I just noticed in years where December was shut out for rain in So Cal it lead to big February rains. For downtown LA

    1912 Dec 0.00 Feb 1913 9.16 inches of rain
    1929 Dec 0.00 Feb 1930 0.45
    1930 Dec 0.00 Feb 1931 3.25
    1958 Dec 0.00 Feb 1959 3.32

    • Is this a concrete pattern I.E. if Dec is dead Feb = always a comeback, or is it just a loose correlation, as 0.45 isn’t much, I’ve had that from one tiny rain band? Were there any years with dead Dec AND dead JFM?

      • Tom & Koyano Gray

        2007 comes to mind as a candidate.

        • Dan the Weatherman

          I hope we aren’t as dry as 2007! That year was downright awful, even though it was quite cool at times.

      • malnino

        The Cactus among us is mostly right. I’ve kept personal rainfall records from various spots along the SGV foothills for nearly 50 years. Don have em with me atm, but in a majority of years when we were bone-dry thru New Years, we didn’t see jack until about mid-Jan, but received at least average precip in Feb/Mar, and led to a decently wet spring. I think there’s a strong chance that SoCal will do OK in about two months, but we ain’t getting sh*the til then!!

        • Farmer47

          Exactly!!

        • Dan the Weatherman

          This sounds similar to 1995-96 in which the rains didn’t get started until mid or late January, and also sounds somewhat like 1999-2000, which was bone dry until after New Years’ and then was wetter from February to April.

    • jstrahl

      Past was never a guidance for the future, but less so more than ever.

      • RunningSprings6250

        History = Fuck it. Right?

        My god, the resident cactus posts a positive comment and your reply is just about the most wrong comment EVER!

        Don’t take it too seriously now ???

        • jstrahl

          The most wrong comment ever? Are there data pointing to a firm connection between December and February rainfall totals, including low December = high February, vs, a loose association ?

          • RunningSprings6250

            Did the proctologist find something that shouldn’t have been there at the appt. this morning?

            You missed the point……

          • molbiol

            whoa!! Gentlemen Gentlemen!!

        • matthew

          Boy, this dry weather sure is making everyone a bit irritable. May I suggest a nice single malt combined with a bong hit to chill everyone out?

          • gray whale

            ian jumping on jstrahl jumping on cactus = distilled essence of WW. it’s even more pure than a single-malt.

          • matthew

            Distilled? More like dehydrated.

          • gray whale

            ha! the astronaut food of WW

          • That’s a visual I can do without :))

          • AlTahoe

            Human centipede WW version?

          • Suzan

            I’ve done that before.

          • RunningSprings6250

            While waitressing?

          • Let’s double bird this stone – State of emergency declared for SoCal, Whiskey filled bongs for every citizen suffering from dry skin.

          • RunningSprings6250

            Did I just get my first comment deleted aftef 10 years here?!

            Oh bother….

            ???

          • SoCalWXwatcher

            Damn, and I missed it. Musta been good! But the Cactus van certainly take the heat. Cause he’s a cactus.

          • Pfirman

            Join the club.

          • inclinejj

            Was in Sacramento yesterday and did the trifecta. Bike Dog, Jack Rabbit and Yolo County Brewing Company. Yes, I wasn’t driving.

            They had a couple quadruple IPA’s didn’t try them but I bet you would be ?

          • Pfirman

            West Sacramento you mean.

          • Tom & Koyano Gray

            scratch the bong

  • molbiol

    I normally don’t like to post articles from CNN since they tend to be over sensationalized and shallow but here:

    http://www.cnn.com/interactive/2017/11/world/greenland-global-warning/

  • gray whale

    Back from the east coast and things are looking very pretty here in the foothills. Major rain last Sunday — 1.4″ in 4 hours! 2.1″ total. Wish I was here for it. Everything still soggy and hoping for some sun to get the cover crop seeds going.

    Sorry for the off-topic post, but does anyone here know how to get “favorite bookmarks” back to being easily accessible in the new firefox? I ask here because it’s the only internet forum I frequent 🙂 (and obviously a “favorite” bookmark)

    • Maybe that little icon that looks like books on a shelf? I hate v57. HATE.

      more OT I wish there were legacy programs that would be tweaked to run on modern hardware. I’d still use Word 3.0 but DVD trays don’t do too well with floppy disks.

  • Charlie B

    Since I am going to be spending (voluntarily) some extended time is SoCal, I checked some rainfall stats. LA averages 14.75″ per year, but the variability is shocking. Out of 140 years, 13 of them saw rainfall under 50% of average, with the low water mark being 3.21 in 2006-7. On the other hand, 18 years had 150% or more for the season (roughly 22″) and that includes 7 with 200% or more for the season (roughly 30″). The high water mark is 38.18″ in 1883-83. That year barely nosed out 2004-05 at 37.25. Thus, the second wettest was two years before the driest. Also, the “dust bowl” decade of the 1930’s averaged 16.7″ which is 2″ above the 140 year average. I find this all mildly interesting.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Voluntarily ?

    • RunningSprings6250

      On the high end mildly no doubt!

      LA averages more rain than Santa Maria! ??

  • RE earlier: It would appear that the NZ heat doesn’t feed back to us, instead Antarctica.
    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/6be32f4cece9c615d09efc7bb023721b9593d152b18c453544c417a79acfddb0.jpg

  • Fairweathercactus

    For what its worth Accuweather is showing 1 day of rain over the next 90 for my area. It is on my Birthday January 20th. Windy with AM Rain.

    • Accufail!

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Why do they stop at 90 days?

      • jstrahl

        The clerks get tired of filling out the forms past 90.

    • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

      They suck at forecasting! It’s not possible to forcast past 21 days accurately!

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      Never look at accuweather beyond seven days. They are a joke. Even Daniel commented about believing their long range forecasts

      • Dan the Weatherman

        Those long range forecasts, regardless of which outlet they come from, claiming to forecast the exact temperature and weather conditions on a given day any more than a few days out are a complete joke. I never bother to even look at them as it is a waste of time.

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          Absolutely

    • jstrahl

      You still using that Inaccuweather kid stuff?

    • KrisKastForecast

      Aww mine is jan 21st,last year was an amazingly wet brithday

    • Pfirman

      January 21 here. Hope you get wet fellow cusper.

  • Tom & Koyano Gray

    .Long Range…The trough axis moves south of the area on Monday
    and the ingredients are coming together next week for a moderate
    to potentially strong Santa Ana next week. All the medium range
    models are in pretty good agreement with a high amplitude 500 mb
    ridge settling over the West next Wed-Sun. Surface winds turn
    northeast Tuesday through Thursday as a cold 1044 mb surface
    high settles over the Great Basin bringing potentially strong Santa
    Ana winds, low humidities, and elevated fire weather concerns most
    of next week.Yaaaay!

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Yay. another Santa Ana. 😉

      • Dry Bones

        I’ll take a cold Santa Ana. Emphasis on cold. Better than dead air.

        • SoCalWXwatcher

          We might get our chance around the 14th. A crazy-cold dome of cold Arctic air slides down into the US. Long range models have been bouncing around with its position with each run, some runs have it just to the E of California, which would setup some cold offshore flow. Other runs have it too far East.

          • Dan the Weatherman

            We often get cold Santa Anas in early to mid December, so I wouldn’t be surprised if some sort of pattern like this did finally set up.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      Sounds good to me if there are no fires. Something different than this bland pattern, resorts can maybe make some more snow, and just maybe the pacific is loading the chamber.

    • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

      Ok. Dan the weatherman, this is what will kick in our wet season. We’ve been waiting for this cold santa ana…just a little late to the party…

      • Dan the Weatherman

        I was just thinking that as well, as December is usually the time for cold Santa Anas, and that type of pattern often eventually leads to rain and mountain snow.

    • Dan the Weatherman

      A moderate to strong Santa Ana would be a typical pattern for this time of year, as many of our strongest Santa Ana events occur between Thanksgiving and New Years’. There have been several weak Santa Ana events (to 25 mph or so) forecast over the last week or two, but nothing more than a slight breeze has occurred in my area here in Orange.

  • Fairweathercactus

    Some nasty high and mid level clouds today doing a whole lot of nothing over the area again today.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Well, they’re shaving a couple degrees off of the daytime temperature.

      • Dry Bones

        Yeah, I’m enjoying a break from full blast sunlight, even if I’m sitting in a coastal basin filled with this weird hazy soup we’ve been having with all this dead air.

    • Dan the Weatherman

      It seems that we have had some degree of high cloudiness every day for the last month or so.

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

    2 Pluvious showed this graphic of the Euro snowfall for extreme long range and said it was kind of accurate. Does anyone have the link to where you can access this?

    • Correction….kind of accurate for last year….hoping it would be for this year! 🙂 I find them on twitter.

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        I registered and logged into the ECMWF website and looked at some of the data they have on there. Some interesting stuff on there but I need time to sort through what the heck some of that stuff is, lol

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)
    • Bob G (Gustine)

      But is it surprising based on what we have been posting here the past couple of days?

      • It runs the whole month. And a lot of us here are hydrophilic.

        • SoCalWXwatcher

          If the long range still looks like this around Christmas, will you be changing your handle back to Xerophobe? 😉

          • jstrahl

            Ah, i was wondering what ever became of him. 🙂

          • Maybe. Haha It may be a real dry year. It’s kind of weird that a few super wet years that were non +ENSO were followed by very dry years. Can’t blame Arctic warming on those. Or can you?

        • Pfirman

          Xerophobic, heh, describes the same.
          Edit to add I did not the see the post below. Oh well. Great minds and all.

    • Azmordean

      Looks like the 4 years prior to last year heh. Warm dry west, cold wet east. Seems to be the new normal of late.

      Hopefully the pattern will break down, but it seems like the longer the ridge lasts, the more self-reinforcing it becomes.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        I don’t think it will be this dry

      • ThomTissy

        The year prior to last was quite wet in northern california.

    • Bartshe

      Looks pretty typical for the last 20 years or so.

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        20 years includes 1997-1998, 2005-2006, 2010-2011 and 2016-2017 so I don’t know what your talking about.

        • jstrahl

          And years like 1999-2000 which ended up above average. Not to mention the quite good 2004-5.

        • A handful of years with much above average and I know exactly what he’s talking about.

      • Yup a precip deficit of 40″ in SoCal area. 20″ in most other areas of CA over 20 years.

        Temps in areas like where you are in the Eastern Sierra have averaged warmer. Conus as a whole has above average temps for DJFM.

      • Dan the Weatherman

        Many recent years have had wetter starts in Socal by now, so I wouldn’t say this pattern has been dominant for the last 20 years. The last year that I can remember that has started out this dry is 1999-2000.

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      Barf.

    • jstrahl

      Though the 18Z (see further up) says otherwise re temps.

  • SoCalWXwatcher

    GFS keeps sea-sawing with that frigid dome of Arctic air around December 14. Some runs have had it slide down just to the East of CA, others have it too far East and keep us under mild weather. 18z brings it a little closer, which could set up some cold offshore flow with very cold nights in SoCal. Odds are it will end up too far East to affect us, but it’s worth keeping an eye on. I’d much rather be talking about potential storms, but….

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/8a4189f539f575d98030c640743ccc2590449990c812213680b3e55bf468c61b.png

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

    348 hours + seems to be favoring undercutting of the jet in late December

    • I think the only way to get anything ‘under’ ridging this year is via Pineapple Express. Those can’t be forecast. IMO best cases for precip will still be from up north if the ridge moves west enough allowing the jet to dip and spawn an ULL and bring precip.

      • 805 Weather (Camarillo)

        Lol, wouldn’t that be something seeing as to how things have gone this far…

        • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

          Shoot why not. I wouldn’t be surprised…I just wish we had some sort of seasonal grass growth before a crazy undercutting wet pattern…

          No widespread 0.25-0.50″ storm before mid December for SoCal is just nuts…

          • Dan the Weatherman

            Socal hasn’t even had a cutoff low in the vicinity this season that brings scattered showers via convective activity.

          • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

            I feel like it’s been many moons since we’ve had a good one with widespread thunderstorms

          • Chris

            What are you talking about?
            Don’t you remember the Labor Day storm??? ?
            I know, I know….. it’s all evaporated since then.

          • Dan the Weatherman

            I am referring to activity from October onward, not what happened during the summer as the summer pattern is totally different from a fall pattern.

          • weathergeek100

            Combine that with a record dry spring….

          • weathergeek100

            Crazy, no? But all the nay-sayers will say ‘oh, it’s too early for rain for you guys. The jet stream doesn’t get that far south until January and you guys can reach avg from just a couple of storms’ – all of which are false. ‘A couple of big storms’ does not equal 12” of rain (unless they’re HUGE storms and those are rare) and growing up down there, I recall periodic times when the jet stream migrated south on occasion and brought quarter inch rains at least once or twice in Nov-Dec IN THE DRIEST OF YEARS. I’ve never seen SoCal go with virtually nil precip from October to December. Ever.

          • RandomTreeInSB

            Yeah, I’m amazed that somehow our native flora is still (for the most part) surviving this and the 5 year record dry period before that. Hopefully we see a front or two before the New Year.

          • Dan the Weatherman

            We usually get our first rains here in Socal in October or November, and if not then, it is usually by December. Like you said, it is NOT too early to start getting some decent storms down here.

        • At least we’re not talking about COL’s for Christmas

      • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

        ULL?

      • Jim (Watsonville)

        Shouldnt we wait to hear from the Storm Master before going all crazy with our best guesses ?

    • Freddy66

      God that seems a long way off

    • SlashTurn (Santa Barbara)

      Hold that thought.

  • http://pittsburgh.cbslocal.com/2017/10/31/climate-change-hops-beer-prices/
    Seriously bring it on! Craft beer is only getting better!
    It’s a climate change article I think
    Just don’t mess with chocolate or coffee

  • Happy Cactus
  • RandomTreeInSB

    Well, I didn’t really take a break from commenting, as I promised. But for what’s worth, GFS has been showing the ridge moving a little west and a colder (possibly wetter) pattern setting up by mid December for 3 consecutive runs now.

  • Unbiased Observer

    November 2017 ended as the 5th driest and 6th warmest in Bakersfield since records began here in 1889. But not to worry….that’s normal anymore.

    • Unbiased Observer

      Also been an ever increasing earwig infestation the past few years, likely due to the lack of freezing temperatures. Anyone else been experiencing this?

      • Dan the Weatherman

        I find earwigs in my house from time to time and has been the case for quite a few years. However, since I live in a nearly frost free climate here in Orange, I cannot blame the lack of freezing temperatures.

        • alanstorm

          I thought one would only find earwigs in ears & wigs?

    • Dan the Weatherman

      That is certainly an indication that the region is not experiencing tule fog like it used to.

      • Unbiased Observer

        It’s a pretty rare site anymore. When I was a kid it was foggy almost every single day in winter between rainstorms. We would go days and even more than a week without seeing the sun.

  • happ [Los Angeles]
  • Bob G (Gustine)
    • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

      Long Range:

      I have beaten this dead horse enough so I will leave it alone for a while and concentrate on the Inter-seasonal outlook.

      Today the ECMWF EPS 46 day weekly’s has updated. All I will say for now is that its long-range teleconnections are encouraging!

      Here is a brief summery of what I have found out.

      The Current negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation turns Positive after the 18th of December and trends more than 4 standard deviation’s above normal by January 7th. So Lower pressure develops over the Arctic which can lead to a more progressive flow across the CONUS. (US) At the moment we are headed toward a very blocky pattern across the CONUS next week with a -AO. This is usually dry for California in a La Nina.
      In the same time frame, “Early January to mid Jan, the EP turns very negative, meaning a strong block over Alaska. A strong block over AK with a -AO is dry for California. However, a +AO with a -EPO could be wet for the West coast. The PNA which is positive now will trend negative between Christmas and New years, while the WPO become negative IE (Blocking over the Bering Sea), toward the end of the year. This suggests Trofing along the west coast toward year end, and a block over the Bering Sea could be a wet west coast pattern. These teleconnection patterns work together and offer various solutions. My sense is that we will begin to turn stormy around Christmas with several period’s of snowfall up to about mid of January. I am just using teleconnections, but that is all I have to work with at this time.

      • jstrahl

        Interesting possibilities. But a genuine question to toss out: How relevant s past experience with the AO given the advanced melting in the Arctic?

        • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

          A related question I have is why does a warm Arctic seem to directly correlate to dry California weather. The Artic sits on the top of the globe So in theory I would think you could have an effect on any area at the same latitude as CA and on the west coast of a continent.

          • CHeden

            With a warmer Arctic, the temperature difference between the pole(s) and the equator are reduced….hence the zone where storms occur shifts north.
            Plus, with a reduced temp differential there are fewer storms, and the land/ocean interface becomes more pronounced which explains the coastal effects you mention.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            With tihis the case shouldn’t the line shift north have similiar effects uacorss the globe or at least the US? Meaning, Colorado, Oklahoma, Tennessee, North Carolina, etc should be seeing a similiar drastic change in weather. It is purely that we sit on the west coast of a continet with a cold ocean?

          • jstrahl

            A warm Arctic didn’t prevent California from having a very wet year this past season.

          • 82/83 El Nino baby (San Jose)

            True, but the “Warm Arctic” seems to be brought up as the reason that the weather is changing in CA or why we are stuck in persistent patterns. I think it plays a role, but last year does prove its not the silver bullet.

          • jstrahl

            In my opinion, “Warm Arctic” does not determine matters in any one direction, but causes a general destabilization, throwing all patterns off the rails. It’s like a deck of cards into which you introduce not one, but 4 or even more jokers.

    • sezwhom

      That’s a lot of phases/oscillations/circulations which either have to change or sync up but there are hints now in middle of December of rain/snow returning.

  • Great Winter of 2017 (SMC)

    Atleast it gonna be a mild and near average temperature wise in this long wait for late December

  • Sunchaser

    Could Mount Agung cause global cooling effects lasting for years?
    https://www.accuweather.com/en/weather-news/could-mount-agung-cause-global-cooling-effects-lasting-for-years/70003412
    What do you think folks?

    • Check Daniel’s tweets. Gotta go big before it shows up at home. We aren’t there yet.

    • At this point: probably not. That piece actually does a reasonably good job explaining why it’s not as simple as it sounds, and why any related cooling would be quite brief and minor in the context of long-term warming.

    • CHeden

      The highest plume of Agung’s aerosol-forming gasses has only reached around half-way to the tropopause (so far). It’s only when high quantities of aerosols form in the Junge layer (between the tropopause and around 30km high) that climate effects on a wide scale occurs.
      Since the eruptive height of Agung’s ejecta roughly follows inverse square laws, it would take a 4x increase in energy to propel gasses 2x higher….and with Agung now started to deflate, the critical period for a major eruption may be on the wane….so all in all like Daniel says, Agung having a detectable climate impact is rather remote.

  • No sign of undercutting in the 0z ECMWF. Hopefully that pattern change happens in 3 weeks.

    • Dude…check out that slug of moisture hitting Mex – that’s the same anomaly showing up in the GFS. If it moves North SoCal could blowCal a fuse…didn’t show up in prior euro runs except a few days ago when it showed up then “blowed” up.

    • sezwhom

      In the category of: for what’s it’s worth GFS past 10 days, the 06z run had serious undercutting with Statewide rain around 16th. Don’t overlook southern branch of jet which as been very active for a while.

  • Arnold Weather Fanatic

    Average YTD precip here is 18,75″.
    Actual YTD precip is 9.40″, pretty much all in November.
    Snow YTD Average is 5.07″
    Actual YTD is 1.25″
    The snow thrower has cobwebs on it.

  • Chris

    GOOD MORNING!
    How about a dose of optimism from Dr Howard and the Dweebs!?!?!?;

    The Current negative phase of the Arctic Oscillation turns Positive after the 18th of December and trends more than 4 standard deviation’s above normal by January 7th. So Lower pressure develops over the Arctic which can lead to a more progressive flow across the CONUS. (US) At the moment we are headed toward a very blocky pattern across the CONUS next week with a -AO. This is usually dry for California in a La Nina.
    In the same time frame, “Early January to mid Jan, the EP turns very negative, meaning a strong block over Alaska. A strong block over AK with a -AO is dry for California. However, a +AO with a -EPO could be wet for the West coast. The PNA which is positive now will trend negative between Christmas and New years, while the WPO become negative IE (Blocking over the Bering Sea), toward the end of the year. This suggests Trofing along the west coast toward year end, and a block over the Bering Sea could be a wet west coast pattern. These teleconnection patterns work together and offer various solutions. My sense is that we will begin to turn stormy around Christmas with several period’s of snowfall up to about mid of January. I am just using teleconnections, but that is all I have to work with at this time.
    Dr Howard and the Dweebs………………….:-)

    • Bob G (Gustine)

      Yea, I read that yesterday and posted it last night. We could use something positive to grasp no matter how small given the models aren’t really giving us anything

      • Chris

        It’s so funny how grumpy people get in here when we get into dry patterns.
        ……. and I thought I was the only one!
        This is like group therapy for me ?

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          LOL, I know it. I do have concerns. I remember back in 2014-2015 where we would go days and people who continue to show the same awful model pics over and over again. We would go in circles looking at the same picture, lol

  • Yolo Hoe

    35F this morning in far southwest Davis — translates to good snowmaking conditions in Tahoe

    • AlTahoe

      Currently 28F in south lake and 26F up at 9k at heavenly. Inversions are starting to setup. Luckily we get another shot of cold air tomorrow night. Lows will be in the teens Sunday and Monday

      • Yolo Hoe

        Thanks for reminder on the inversions — will be at N* this weekend and wondering how floor of Martis Valley will compare to upper reaches of Pluto

        • AlTahoe

          Sunday will be cold everywhere top to bottom.

    • matthew

      Wife is currently out for a few opening day laps at Northstar. Just hope it stays cold enough to keep the current base.

    • Pfirman

      Sooner or later it’s gonna get the basil.

  • CHeden

    Let’s see what the 12Z has to offer before jumping on any bandwagon.
    The 06Z is such a radical change from the recent parade of gloom that we’ll need at least 3-4 runs to see if this solution is credible even on a macro-scale, let alone on our sensible weather.
    Buuuuttt, it is along the lines of what we were chatting ’bout quite a while ago here on WW regarding Pacific energy breaking through the offshore ridge once it started to weaken (as compared to a series of “up and overs”)….so there is cautious optimism mixed in with a heavy dose of skepticism.

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/b4045fbc3ebb83ad99d8ba942675ab43889dbacf80f63200a35726d53d0936be.gif

    https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/a3a292e05d45567588b85238dd9c5848bf7b1e9188623f60246958e3ec8aa608.gif

    • Sublimesl

      Dec. 17th? That might as well be 4th of july, 2019

      • rob b-Truckee/East Bay

        Hmm that could ruin fireworks displays on the 4th then! But by then we may be begging for anything that’d be rain so we’ll take it.

    • happ [Los Angeles]

      This looks very promising.

    • Ensembles show nothing of the sort, though–just the single operational run. Really does look like this West Cost ridge has a shot at persisting for a very long time.

      In any case, I’m working on a post that I think many will be interested in (centering on some recent research) that will probably be ready to go early next week (amidst some pretty quiescent weather here in CA).

      • alanstorm

        North coast streams are rather low for early Dec, lowest since 2015, which was the absolute extreme.
        Besides the late 70’s, there have been others (2003) where the Eel R basically ran dry till mid Dec then did it’s usual recovery by Christmas.

      • FolsomPrisonBlues

        Any thoughts on why it might be persisting? When we had the RRR, it was thought that the warm GOA SSTA’s might be causing a feedback and reinforcing it. With the SST’s a lot cooler in that area, are there some other dynamics being seen that could be driving the ridge?

        • jstrahl

          Global patterns?

          • FolsomPrisonBlues

            True, but I am just wondering what causes the global patterns to always setup shop here 🙂 The crazy hot SSTA’s a few years back were in our backyard essentially, so I can see why that would affect us in that way. But there is nothing similar to that now. Why doesn’t the ridge seem to setup shop over the east coast instead?

            FYI, these are just curious questions from a weather noob. I have read just enough to get myself in trouble.

          • jstrahl

            The following is just speculation. West to east flows encounter the West Coast and the continent long mountain chains as barriers, so it makes sense that a region of blockage would form off that same coast.

          • FolsomPrisonBlues

            Ah that does make sense. That is one thing I forgot, the mountain range. That is one rather large detail that the east coast does not have, and that together with the flow you mentioned… Thank you sir for the insight! I have been doing a lot of reading on this stuff, but trying to put the pieces all together is tough.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            Actually, I kind of remember a couple of recent years where the East Coast did have a ridge that was persistent. It might have been during the EL Nino year where they were talking about their own drought and 70 degree weather in winter

          • FolsomPrisonBlues

            Crazy! Would be nice to know that it doesn’t just happen here. Even if we do have a lot of ridging this year, its at least nice having it cold out and not 70+ in December. The years during the RRR were horrid.

        • GOA SSTs are probably not what has been driving the ridge. That’s actually the exact topic I’ll discuss in the upcoming blog post. Stay tuned!

          • FolsomPrisonBlues

            Sweet! Looking forward to the read!

      • Bob G (Gustine)

        What do you mean by a very long time?

        • Dan the Weatherman

          That’s a good question. Hopefully it breaks by January so we can finally get some rain in Socal.

          • Bob G (Gustine)

            I know. I hope we can spare january

      • gray whale

        new post sounds juicy!

        i’m guessing…. the AO is cooperating with the authorities at NOAA about WPO meddling (read: Siberian) in an ENSO- year, leading to the installation of an illegitimate Ridge…. it’s going to flip any week now, leading to the i?m?p?e?a?c?h?m?e?n?t? removal of the RRR and, at long last, the return of the heretofore fractured and infighting MJO to its proper place at the helm of eastern pacific weather patterns

        amirite?

        • Pfirman

          Heh.

        • thlnk3r

          RRR? -QBO and a Weak La Nina is probably the correct assessment. These (2) drivers are important. -QBO favors blocking in the NH for our cold seasons.

          https://www.esrl.noaa.gov/psd/data/correlation/qbo.data

          • gray whale

            yeah but where’s the siberian meddling in your explanation? we all know it happened.

      • CHeden

        Agreed, the ensembles aren’t reflecting the GFS deterministic 06Z run, and the 12Z has already begun pulling back. But then again, at least this outlier is hinting that the ridge may not be as rock-solid after 10-14 days?

        • Bob G (Gustine)

          I saw a Euro model long range pic posted by Michael Ventrice that showed the ridge pulling back. But who knows

    • Idaho Native

      I’ll take cautious optimism for $500 on the 12z.

    • inclinejj

      CH gloom and doom sells Newspapers!

    • SoCalWXwatcher

      12z doesn’t depict that much rain, but wow the GFS Operational runs sure have been all over the place in the long range after 300+hrs from run to run. Hopefully we see more runs along the lines of what the 6z was thinking. It would be nice to have a pattern change by Christmas. It’s all I want this year. 😉

    • flyboy45

      Question?? The repeated invocation of Pacific energy “Breaking through” or “undercutting” the various ridges means nothing without some kind of forcing.
      Ample Pacific moisture in the upper levels (even below the 500MB level) has been streaming over Arizona for three days now with barely a sprinkle even reported. Where do you think the cyclogenesis might come from without a cold air interaction?

      • CHeden

        Per the 06Z (older run) I was referencing, the forcing would be coming from massive cyclonic flow building over a wide area of the NPacific. Over time, the trough finally gathers enough strength to erode the west coast ridge to south of California and opening up a juicy onshore flow.
        But alas, chances are dwindling as the 12Z is already in reverse.

        • flyboy45

          I would suggest the process you describe often functions exactly in reverse. Deep troughing often pumps up those ridges and makes them even stronger. What the eventual cause of the weakening of these strong ridges is unclear. I admit I find the increasing level of teleconnection tech talk to be intriguing but also fatiguing and subsequently of little value in forecasting? Of course the general circulation is all “connected” but in which direction or directions do the perturbations affect one another? That is the mystery. Thx.

  • inclinejj

    Negativity makes you sick. That’s all I’m saying!

    • PRCountyNative

      Thank you. One can put their attention on what is good, right, and true, or one can focus on one’s own distress (anger, fear, sadness, shame).

      It’s OK to go to those feeling places, except most folks don’t separate feelings from self-worth, and end up thinking they are distressed because they feel distressed.

  • happ [Los Angeles]

    December is the coldest month of the year for much of the Southwest and marks the first month of average maximums below 70F for most areas. Nights drop into the 40’s across the board except just slightly above 50° in foothills locations. Despite latitudes between 32-34N it is interesting that SoCal has a warmer winter than cities much further south such as Houston, New Orleans, Jacksonville.

    • Hollow Scene (The Desert)

      The pacific is our air conditioner and our heater!

    • Dan the Weatherman

      The Pacific Ocean and the local mountains as well as the Sierras and Rockies all help to keep the air milder in coastal Socal. The mountains block the cold from the north and northeast (cold air is denser so it can’t get over the mountains as well), while the Pacific modifies any air mass coming from the northwest.

      • happ [Los Angeles]

        Yes, the mountains protect areas west of the coastal mountains. Periods of offshore winds also play a role in boosting average maximums/ minimums. One has to go to extreme south Texas and Central Florida to get warmer winter temps than SoCal