WeatherWatcher: Thanksgiving Forecast, Rain, la Niña

Tuesday, November 22, 2016

Thanksgiving Forecast: Wednesday expect to see some showers throughout the day. Wednesday night will probably have a pause as the next storm front starts the approach. We are going to follow tradition this year, with a wind storm for Thanksgiving morning, then a second wind storm Thanksgiving evening. Both systems are expected to bring some moderate winds up to possibly 40mph. These storms are not strong enough to prompt any watches or warnings from the National Weather Service at this time. It'll be windy, but not severe or damaging for the most part. A small scattered power outage or two is possible.

Rain is expected most of the time from Thursday morning all the way through Monday. Active weather is expected through early December. Our temperatures are cooling down, finally, after having a much warmer than normal start to November. We are looking at temperatures to average in the upper 40's for a high and mid-low 40's for a low through Tuesday next week.

October and November Rain:
Not only have we been warmer than normal the past two months but we have also been much wetter than normal. October shattered records everywhere across the northwest for total rainfall. Here in Shoreline we came in at 8.27 inches of rain for October. The normal is 4.62 inches, nearly twice as much as normal in just my station's seven years of history.

November we are much closer to normal on the rainfall end. Below are two graphs, one for October, the other is for November. They compare the actual rainfall to the monthly average.
October monthly rainfall compared to average.
November monthly rainfall compared to average.

November's warmth has also been clear as day on my daily average temperature graph:
Daily average temperature compared to 7-year average.

I also wanted to talk a little about the ENSO (El Niño Southern Pacific Oscillation). Currently we are under a la Niña advisory. A weak la Niña has developed and is expected to get a little stronger December through February. This means a wetter and cooler than normal weather pattern for our area.

What about snow? Weather patterns and sea surface temperature patterns over the Pacific this fall have been hinting at doing something that produces a good set up for mid winter snow events. In addition there is a lot of cold arctic air building in Russia and Siberia, the latter being the typical source of arctic outbreaks for our region. All the right things are in the right places to produce a typical number or greater number of snow events for our area. That said, there is still a chance a snow event may not happen; however the chances of a significant snow event are much higher than they have been in years.

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