Get Ready for Extreme Cold!

The weather is well, boring this week. But, we may be making up for it by next week as the GFS model continues to show a powerful shot of some cold air moving in this direction. And, this is not one of this quick blows of cold air that comes and leaves in a day or two. We’re talking about the potential to see this cold persist for at least 5 days starting Monday. And, it’s just in time to coincide with what climatology says should be our coldest week of the entire year! But why?

Think about what is happening well north of The US/Canada border right now. The days are incredibly short, the nights are extremely long and you have a very hard snowpack on the ground. Those ingredients right there will allow that air to really begin to cool down and eventually, at some point, something “kicks” that cold air out of its current place and into a particular direction. It just so happens to be that, that direction is The United States. So, get ready for some serious cold next week. Single digit lows and highs in the upper teens could indeed happen.

-Damon

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2 Responses

  1. or we can get technical.

    Stratospheric warming event in the 10mb levels possibly induced by the recent volcanic eruptions over the past few years. While the stratosphere can warm on its own especially when the QBO is easterly the buildup of SO2(sulfur dioxide) can also contribute. The reason I suspect volcanoes is because the QBO is west based and also a La Nina which typically do not favor this type of setup. This ENSO event has been largely overwhelmed this winter by a variety of drivers such as the NAO and low solar activity to name a few and thus the complex and sometimes unpredictable weather pattern that has resulted.

    Another reason is the anomalous height rises underway across Alaska and western Canada and the negative AO which all induce large scale blocking and buildup of polar air. The kind of cold that’s set to arrive next week looks to be some of the coldest we have seen in YEARS… possibly record breaking. I would not be surprised if the pattern holds up to see most if not all of next week spent below 32 degrees. There will also undoubtedly be the opportunity for one or more winter storms as patterns like this are notorious for snow, ice, or both.

    • Thanks for the reply Zach. Yes, the AO has been very much negative since the beginning of September, with just a few periods in between when it went positive. But, since mid November has spent most of the time negative by a good amount. The snow and ice in Europe as well as the northeast has made seeing the negative phase of the AO rather obvious.

      I can not speak on how the volcanic eruptions may have impacted the weather in the mid-latitudes, but either or, this cold spell will make last January’s look rather weak.
      -Damon

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