Thursday, November 1, 2012

MN Weekend Snow? Northeast Slowly Climbs Back for Superstorm Sandy; Most Get Power Back After Election Day

October in the Books

By Todd Nelson

October 2012 is officially in the books and thanks to Superstorm Sandy, we finished the month with below normal temperatures! Yes, you read that right... we were BELOW NORMAL!
The reason why that's significant is because up until October, we had 16 consecutive months with above average temperatures; starting in June of 2011. To put that into perspective, if you were to flip a coin 16 times (assuming a fair coin), the odds of that happening would be 1 in 65,536 (calculation provided by wolframalpha). Now, is it possible that a warming climate would have an impact on those odds, in a sense not using a fair coin? Yes. Regardless, that is a remarkable feat. Not sure I can ever remember a stat such as this.

Our persistent northwesterly flow, drivin by the remenants of Hurricane Sandy out east, will keep temperatures near average over the next few days. However, as Sandy eases east, clipper systems from remnant Pacific storms will take her place. It appears that a more active weather pattern will set up; weak disturbances sliding through every other day. Light rain/snow arrives tonight with a dusting of snow possible up north for deer hunters by AM Saturday. -Todd Nelson

Todd's Conservation MN Outlook for the Twin Cities and all of Minnesota (and western Wisconsin too):

FRIDAY: Sunny start, fading PM Sun. Light snow develops late across far NW Minnesota. High: 43. Winds: ENE 5-10mph.

FRIDAY NIGHT: Light rain/snow mix possible, better chance across far northwestern MN; dusting possible in far northwestern MN by AM Saturday. Low: 32

SATURDAY: MN Deer Hunting Opener. Cloudy with a few light showers, mixed with a wet flakes in the morning. Fall back one hour before bed. High: 44 Winds: Light E turning westerly late.

SUNDAY: Lingering sprinkle or flurry possible early, peeks of PM Sun. Low: 32. High: 45

MONDAY: Fast moving clipper sails south of us, spreads clouds and light rain into southern MN. Low: 33. High: 47

TUESDAY: Breezy. Mostly dry Election Day. Low: 35. High: 50

WEDNESDAY: Jacket worthy northwesterly breeze. Low: 32. High: 47.

THURSDAY:  Dry November day. Low: 34. High: 46

Meteorologically speaking, Superstorm Sandy is just about over with. Yes, there are still lingering clouds, showers and some flakes, but the overall threat of widespread damaging weather is over with! As things come back online and everyone gets up to speed with somewhat of a ‘normal’ life, those trying to get from point A to point B are finding that everyone else is trying to do the same thing. Here’s the line for gas outside of a New Jersey gas station.

A line that stretches over 1/4 mile long of motorists waiting to fill up with gas at a Valero station on Rt. 130 in Cranbury. 10/31/12 (Tony Kurdzuk/The Star-Ledger).”

Slowly Getting Back on the Grid
It’s amazing to think how dependent we are on specific things; Power, transit systems, food, water, internet, etc. When a major natural disaster, like Superstorm Sandy, takes down the things we take for granted on a day to day basis, we are really put to the test. It make it even worse when some of the largest populations in the United States are impacted at the same time. The story below, from the, talks about the recovery still underway in NYC.

NEW YORK— Subways started running again in much of New York City on Thursday for the first time since Superstorm Sandy, but traffic at bridges backed up for miles, long lines formed at gas stations, and crowds of hundreds of people, some with short tempers, waited for buses. Lines formed at gas stations amid fuel shortages around the U.S. Northeast and emergency utility crews struggled to reach the worst hit areas and restore power to millions of people. At least 82 people in North America died in the superstorm, which ravaged the northeastern United States on Monday night, and officials said the count could climb higher as rescuers searched house-to-house through coastal towns.”

Sandy Brings Several Records
Data from the NOAA shows the number of record COLD HIGHS that were occurred across the nation over the month (New Records: 62). Note the cluster of blue dots over the Appalachians, this coincides with Superstorm Sandy, temperatures here over the last few days were nearly 20° to 30° cooler than average!

October Snowfall Records
Temperatures were cold enough in these areas to pump out massive snow. Reports of nearly 3ft. to 4ft crippled many in the West Virginia mountains. Nationally, there were 59 snowfall records, but many of those occurred in the white ring below thanks to the Superstorm.

NOHRSC Snowfall Analysis
This product from NOAA, esimates a good 30″ to 4o” of snow on the ground in these areas!

Massive Snow – A Wintry Mess
Here’s a picture from WVDOT. This is scene that many of us across the wintry sections of the U.S. will probably see not to long from now. Are you ready?

Record Precipitation
The Superstorm also helped to kick out record amount of Precipitation. According to NOAA, there were 97 record precipitation events through the month of October. Several of those came in over the last few days in the Northeast.

Radar Rain Estimates
According to radar rain estimates over the last week, there was a good 8″ to 10″ + swath of heavy rain from near the Outer Banks of North Carolina to the Delmarva Peninsula and over towards our Nation’s Capital.

Some Flooded Out and Out of Luck
Many homeowners who suffered losses because of flooding from Hurricane Sandy are likely to find themselves out of luck. Standard homeowners policies don’t cover flooding damage, and the vast majority of homeowners don’t have flood insurance. Yet it’s likely that many Northeasterners will purchase it in coming months, hoping they’ll be covered the next time around, at a cost averaging around $600 a year.”

(Photo Below Courtesy @NYGovCuomo)

Pacific Northwest Getting Much Needed Moisture
After several weeks of very dry and warm/hot weather over the summer and into September, it seemed as if October was the month when Mother Nature came to life out west. Strong storms have made a much needed return to these areas, but in some cases it’s almost a little too much. Record precipitation records have occurred in these areas and contributed to the 97 national precipitation records during the month of October.

Soggy Commute at Seaside, OR
Take a look at this traffic cam from ODOT at US101 in Seaside, OR. Note the pool of water there in the ditches along the road!

Radar Estimates of Rain in the Northwest
Here’s another map of radar estimated rainfall over a 7 day period in the Northwest. Note that most of this came within the last couple/few days. Heavy enough to cause areas of flooding.

Fish are Swimming in the Streets… WHAT?
LOL – Heavy rain over the past couple of days near Seattle, WA… so much rain that salmon are swimming in the streets! Check out Fido’s big catch!

Looking Ahead: Precipitation Forecast
NOAA’s HPC 5 day precipitation forecast keeps heavy moisture across the Pacific Northwest where several inches may wring out over the higher elevation of the Olympics, Northern Cascades and the Canadian Rockies. As the disturbances cross over the Continental Divide, they tend to dry out a bit, so moisture the moisture content with these systems aren’t as impressive. Note the additional moisture expected east of the Rockies through the early portions of next week. Some of this may even fall in the form of snow!

North Dakota Snow
The National Weather Service has issued a WINTER WEATHER ADVISORY for parts of North Dakota through AM Saturday. Accumulations could be anywhere from 1″ to 3″ along with a little light freezing rain, making those roads a bit slippery over the early weekend!


Looking Ahead: Weekend Snow?
According to our RPM model, snowfall accumulations should be fairly light. There could be a few isolated 2″ to 4″ amounts, but they will be few and far between. I could see a slightly larger swath of a dusting up to 2″ from North Dakota into NW Minnesota. A few flurries may also be possible across the Twin Cities, accumulations are not likely at this time.

MN Deer Hunting Opener
This may actually be good news for those who have plans to be in the NW corner of the state. The MN Deer Hunting opener is this weekend and a little snow might help track those deer!

Deer hunting should be good when Minnesota’s firearms hunting season opens Nov. 3, according to the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources (DNR). “Minnesota’s deer population is up from last year, in part, because of the mild winter,” said Lou Cornicelli, the DNR’s wildlife research manager. “Mild winters result in more survival of adults, more fawns being born, and more deer in the state’s fields and forests the following hunting season.” He estimated the deer population at about 1 million.”

Read more from the MN DNR HERE:

Thanks for checking in on this Thursday, have a great rest of your week.
Don’t forget to follow me on Twitter @TNelsonWNTV

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