Good NewsMarch 9th, 2014 at 1:31 am by Bill Steffen under Bill's Blog, Weather
Click on the pics. to enlarge. The first is a MODIS satellite picture from Saturday afternoon. Note the large amount of ice (though past peak) on the Great Lakes. Check out the ice moving in this satellite loop from Saturday (takes a minute to load). There’s still some cold air around. Intl. Falls MN set a record low of -19 Sat. morning. The other two pictures are from Harvey Alley at Riverside Park, where the river is mostly frozen, but there is a little open water and there are some ducks who are managing to survive the late winter. The very good news is that we are in an overall dry pattern. We’re down to 16″ of snow on the ground in G.R. (as of Sat. evening. It still appears that the Tues. storm will be too far southeast to give us more than a trace-3″ and a touch of rain to start, perhaps. If there’s a 3″ total, it’d be down toward Coldwater or Hillsdale. Here’s the GFS model view of the storm on the East Coast late Weds. It was nice to see nearly 80 turn out for the Muskegon Skywarn Training session. Next Saturday we have Van Buren Co. at 10 am and Allegan/Barry at 2 pm. I’m going to try and make the Allegan/Barry meeting at the start – I’ll have to get to work after that. I’m doing the evening shift both Sat. and Sun. next weekend. Happy Daylight Saving Time…sunrise at 8:05 am this Sunday and sunset is 7:41 pm for G.R. March 1-7 temps. were 10-18 degrees cooler than average in Minneapolis, Chicago, Grand Rapids, Pittsburgh, New York City and Boston.
The GFS shows a big (snow) storm around the 17th, but the European doesn’t see that (and I don’t either at this point). The European has +40 temps. on Monday, Tuesday, Friday and Saturday of next week (Weds. and Thurs. look chilly), but an overall dry week. We melt a little snow gradually. We need this pattern to hold until most of the snow is gone and the ice is breaking up on the rivers. Also, people keep asking me about the summer. Following cold, snowy winters…there is usually a 4-6 day period of warm (+10 to +15 above average) in April or May and then summer temps. are near average. We’ve had big flips before (the winter of 35-36 was very cold and snowy – then we had the hottest week in G.R. history in July 1936), but most summers are near average and that would be a good guess for June – August at this point. March severe weather has been weak last year and so far this year because it’s been too cold. Most models suggest we go to an El Nino pattern. You’ll probably see the media hype that. Keep in mind that El Ninos during a cold PDO tend to be weak-moderate and centered a bit more out in the central Pacific rather than the eastern Pacific toward S. America. Weak El Ninos can (not always, but can) bring cold and snowy winters to the Great Lakes (1976-78). I’m not betting on a really warm summer or winter of 2014-15 at this point.