Wednesday, January 16, 2019

Get Ready For Model Mayhem...

Taking a quote from Joe Bastardi of Weather Bell Analytics,  "Model Mayhem" is likely for the next several weeks with changes from run to run that are significant.  For instance, this morning's and afternoon's GFS runs are way warmer for Sunday and Monday and into next week than what I have been talking about in previous posts.   What's up? Why?    The brutal cold (25-35 below) is still there in Canada with sub zero now into northern ND/Minn.  The big change is models now do not dig the east coast trough as deep resulting in a storm track that is no longer along the northern Gulf but farther north in Arkansas & Tennessee.  David mentioned tonight that he's always cautious when models flip-flop and so am I.   If tomorrow's runs confirm this warmer shift, then I can buy into it.   But I really haven't change my thinking that some of the brutal cold will slide in for Sunday & Monday giving the North Shore 24-28 with 29-33 south of Lake P.   Numerical guidance is much higher, but we are still 4-5 days out.  If we dodge a freeze with this cold blast, more are coming for later next week that look colder AT THIS TIME.  

In the short term, we finally enjoyed some sunshine today and that resulted in highs 10-15 degrees warmer than yesterday.  Clouds are approaching tonight as a weak upper disturbance is passing far to our north.  We could see some brief light showers towards dawn, but they should be gone by 10-11 AM.  Depending on the cloud cover, highs Thursday will be back into the 60s perhaps 65-70 if we see enough pm sun?  Friday looks to start foggy but highs should top 70 if we can get the sun to break through the low clouds.  An Arctic cold front plows through after noon on Saturday with perhaps some strong storms ahead of the front in the morning.  The real chill sets in after dark with highs early on Saturday 70+ plunging into the upper 30s by daybreak Sunday and staying in the 40s with stiff north winds.  Monday morning will be the coldest with a brief moderation for Tuesday & Wednesday.  Whew!   Model Mayhem!  Stay tuned!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Today is Why They Call It the Blues...

Geez, another dismal day of cloudy skies & cold temperatures.  Some of the area did get into afternoon sunshine, but the South Shore got hosed as the low clouds hung in until just before sunset.  The clear skies won't last long as another fast weak upper disturbance will spread mainly mid- high clouds in after midnight.  Wednesday will be warmer as the filtered sunshine should allow temps to rebound to 55-60.  Thursday & Friday look to be much warmer(70+) with only a slight chance for a passing shower before Saturday starts windy & warm (70+) with some possibly strong storms developing along an Arctic front that arrives before dark.  Temps by daybreak on Sunday will be in the 30s and despite bright sunshine, highs will struggle to reach 40 ( I like David's 39) with strong (20-30+) north winds making it feel much colder.   The real challenge is how cold will it be on Monday morning?  Computer guidance has warmed slightly (22-25 North, 28-32 South) and since it doesn't appear there will be a southern snow cover nearby, I'm comfortable with those numbers.  Tuesday & Wednesday with a weak system staying to out north.  A much stronger system should arrive towards the weekend and that cold blast could be worse than this weekend's.   Lots to watch for the next 10-14 days as models have locked in on a colder pattern, but are having difficulty on nailing where the storm tracks will be.  A low track to our south in the Gulf vs a track to our north makes a huge difference in where the snow cover ends up.   Looking back at last January, it was on the 20th that we dropped down to 20 in Kenner (19 in Metairie) and 15 on the North Shore.  I don't see us that cold YET, although the last week of January could get quite chilly.   Stay tuned!

Hey I'm thinking about this weekend's football games.  I'd like it to be Brees vs Brady in the Super Bowl as the younger QBs will have lots of time to get there in the future.  For Drew & Tom, their windows of opportunities are closing.   I think both games will be close.  Will it be experience winning out?  Or will youth be served? Who Dat!

Monday, January 14, 2019

The Saints & Cold Are Coming...

New model runs continue to be bullish on driving several waves of Arctic cold down into the northern Gulf the next 7-14 days with possibly 3 (or more) opportunities for freezing temps south of Lake P.  The first blast hits after dark on Saturday with Sunday's high temp (50-ish) occurring at midnight.  It'll be in the 30s by Sunday dawn with strong northerly winds (20-30+) making for brutal wind chills.  Highs should stay in the 30s dropping into the 20s (24-28 South Shore) and perhaps high teens on the North Shore for Monday morning.  New model runs are now developing a Gulf low with snow not very far from us for later next week.  As David pointed out last night, we are still 5-6 days out and things could change, but I keep seeing consistency with the models driving the Canadian cold deep into the South.   What could make the chill even colder would be a far southern snow storm laying down a blanket of white across northern/central LA/MS.  With winds coming off a nearby snow pack, we easily could see lows colder than mentioned above.  That is something I'll be watching for.   But we have time to monitor the situation.   What I will do before the real cold arrives is winterize my yard & home.    # 1) put my outside faucet covers on.  2) drain the water out of my outside hoses.  3) During the day on Saturday, bring my smaller potted plants into my backyard shed & get my 100 watt bulb set up ready so I can keep temps above freezing.  4) Take large plastic garbage bags and tightly wrap my larger flower pots & scrubs making sure the bags will not be ripped off in the strong winds on Sunday.   Once we get closer to Sunday night, we'll start thinking about the "pipe rule"...pipes will freeze once temps get to & stay at 28 or below for 4 hours or more.  Then we must let an inside faucet or two have a pencil thin drip to keep water flowing preventing your pipes from freezing.   We have done these preparations before so, unless the cold gets worse, we should be fine.

In the short term ahead of this weekend's cool down, sunshine should finally return for Tuesday and that will warm highs into the mid 50s after today's chilly 46.  Wednesday could top 60 as clouds start to return with Thursday 65-70.   A few showers might develop along a weak frontal boundary late Thursday into Friday, but the better rain chances occur ahead of the front midday Saturday.  To show you how strong a blast of cold this will be, our local NWS office even mentioned the slight possibility for flurries north of the Lake into Mississippi for early Sunday!   Yea it was cold today, but the worst is yet to come.   Historically, we are in the coldest weeks of Winter so this should be considered "normal" for this time of the year.   You snow freaks, get ready, opportunity may be knocking next week.  Stay tuned!

Sunday, January 13, 2019

Championship Sunday will be Frigid...

Well the game didn't go quite like I expected, but a win is a win and we are one win away from going back to the big dance.   Was I nervous? Sure, but these Saints find a way to win instead of a way to lose.   I'm thinking it's Brady vs Brees in the Super Bowl!!!

What a crummy day weather-wise as we saw no sunshine and the daytime high only reached 51.  Clouds will be slow to leave on Monday with sunshine returning for Tuesday and Wednesday.  If you have tennis in the morning, you'll need to dress for temps only in the 40s with highs struggling to top 50 later in the afternoon.  Tuesday warms to 55-60 with Wednesday 60-65 and Thursday near 70.  Another front approaches late Thursday.  Some showers could develop ahead of our next weak front on Friday with a much stronger front arriving late Saturday afternoon & evening.  Saturday's highs could reach 70+ before plunging into the 40s before daybreak on Sunday.   Tailgating next Sunday will be difficult as highs will stay in the 40s (maybe upper 30s!) with brisk northerly winds 20-30+.  Monday morning lows look to be in the 20s on both sides of the Lake before a warming begins on Tuesday.  The question is...will Monday's lows be 20-25 South Shore (15-20 North) or more like 28-32 South & 22-25 North?  Alaska has moderated from 50+ below to 25-30 below tonight.  Usually when Alaska starts to warm, it's a sign that the brutal cold is heading towards the lower 48.   One difference today is models are not as impressive with the second cold surge later next week.  Instead of developing a low down in the Gulf, models bring a surface low to our north getting us back into the warmer air sector.   I'm sticking to my thinking that the first surge will lay down a snow cover that will make the second surge even colder.  Bottom line, we have 5-6 days to get ready for a possible hard freeze NEXT Monday.  Each day we'll see if the computer guidance comes into some agreement/consensus.  Stay tuned!