- Special Sections
- Public Notices
We're staring December in the face now, and the word "snow" has been floating around amongst people this week, so let's talk about what is probably coming down the road for us. For starters, the Christmas parade this Saturday looks to be in excellent condition. Dry weather should be the rule, and it will certainly feel like winter with temperatures below freezing at sunrise and into the 40 degree range by noon. Bundle up warm and go enjoy the parade.
Sunday looks to be wet again, as yet another slow moving weather system inches its way into the Ohio Valley. We've already had flooding issues in Anderson County this week, as well as other parts of the state. The Kentucky river is also approaching it's minor flood stage and will cause some problems by Thursday for a lot of folks. We do not need any more rain. At the Lexington reporting station, we are a little over 4.10" away from making 2011 the wettest year EVER recorded. With over a month to go, the odds of smashing that record are pretty good. Despite the fact that we don't need any more rain, we are going to get some, and it starts on Sunday.
Beyond Sunday, I think we'll dry out for a while and just stay cold. I see another pretty big storm system toward the middle of the month, and it could be another big rain producer for us. Even though temperatures are on the way down, none of the weather systems showing up in the near future appear to be snow storms. I think most everything will fall as rain, at least through the first couple of weeks of December.
The La Nina pattern that I discussed in my last blog post is still in full effect and will probably continue to control our weather for the winter. I do think, though, that it will break down slightly as we head into December. Check out this upper level jet stream chart valid toward the middle of the month.
You can see on this chart that a big trough will be swinging through the Ohio Valley. This actually looks to be a little more common going into December. More of the "dips" in those lines on the map can show where the cold air will be moving, and in this case it's moving directly into our region. These troughs will swing through every few days and bring shots of cold air with them. December looks to be quite a bit colder than what we've seen in the past eight weeks, but it does not look to be as cold as last December which was brutal to say the least. Again, the timing of these cold shots doesn't look to be favorable for any big snow storms.
I think that as we head toward Christmas and the new year, we'll see full blown winter move in for 2012. I expect January to be a harsh month here, and I think that if we get a "big one" it'll happen in January. Keep your eye out for possible ice storms during this time as well.
February should bring a relief from the harsh weather with a slight warming trend and some rainy weather and then where we go from there is really hard to say, but I do think that the March to May 2012 period will feature some crazy weather including more severe weather and tornado outbreaks, similar to 2011.
For all you snow lovers out there, check out this snow cover map of Canada. It's not even December yet, and almost all of Canada is already covered in snowpack! This could be a good sign for us going into late December and January, because the snowpack keeps the cold air primed and ready to make a run at the Ohio Valley whenever it gets a chance to. This cold and snow to our north can and lots of times does translate southward, so keep your fingers crossed.
Some of the other winter weather indices we look at are also looking favorable for a wild period of weather, so it should get really interesting here in the next six weeks. But, as always no one can say for certain what's going to happen. We're all just along for the ride. Get those coats ready though, because one thing is for sure... it's about to change from what we've been seeing.