• Content count

  • Joined

  • Last visited

Community Reputation

245 Excellent

About virtualsphere

  • Birthday 15/06/78

Profile Information

  • Gender
  • Location

Recent Profile Visitors

5,167 profile views
  1. This one still brought the deepest single snowfall I can remember, on 9th Feb. As @I remember Atlantic 252 mentioned the snow had been predicted to turn to rain, but all fell as snow, and we ended up with nearly a foot. My workplace closed early due to the weather but I couldn't get home as the A48 had closed. We had a similar depth of snow in 2010 which accumulated over a couple of weeks, but as a single event I don't think we've had anything like it since January 1982, which I sadly can't remember well as I was only 3. As @CreweCold says, the winter was very memorable for that one event. Sadly it rained on the Saturday and the snow melted fairly rapidly so we never had a chance to go out and enjoy it properly.
  2. 4.9C please
  3. That's an interesting observation - it reminded me of this post from @Catacol I read earlier which suggested that based on MJO forcing we may see an increasing likelihood of high lat blocking into Feb. I'm not sure what the MJO evolution was in Feb '91, could it be a similar evolution to that currently being modelled perhaps?
  4. 6.4C please, I feel it could be a disappointingly warm month but hope I'm wrong!
  5. I completely agree that lying snow has become less frequent, but surely the 1981 - 2010 chart for December would be skewed by the inclusion of both Dec 1981 and 2010 in the data? So it wouldn't really be that realistic to expect that much lying snow in December anyway?
  6. I wouldn't be surprised if we had a better chance at an easterly spell during this winter - this is just a guess, but I've noticed a few notable easterly charts pop up throughout the year with some quite unusual synoptics. In May and June, for example, we had several days of home-grown thunderstorms here in SW Wales due to a convergence zone setup within an easterly / north easterly flow and sea breezes from the SW - this is very unusual and I can't remember it happening before, certainly not in the last 10 years or so. e.g. We had storms on this day: Some other examples: In general, since last winter we've seen some strong blocking anomalies to the NE and quite a muted signal elsewhere: ...which certainly compares to the same period last year, preceding that record warm December: Obviously this isn't a scientific observation and it doesn't mean the setup will occur again during the winter season, especially if the polar vortex strengthens and introduces a greater chance of a zonal flow, but if there are no strong drivers to push the atmosphere into a different state then I wonder if we'll have a greater chance of a continental easterly this season than in recent years? Compare this to 2010, preceding the exceptionally cold December - notable heights over Greenland throughout the April to November period: As a caveat I should point out this doesn't always work - in 2014 a similar anomaly to this year didn't result in an easterly winter. I've just watched Gav's winter forecast (posted by Summer Sun above) and interesting that he's going for a possibility of Scandinavian blocking as well.
  7. A couple of links to some excellent posts by Roger J Smith from the Seasonal Forecast thread a while back which could be relevant to this discussion: Also worth reading the NW winter forecast if you haven't already, with some discussion of solar flux and the impact on UK winter:;sess= The research would seem to indicate that sunspot peaks aren't necessarily a bad thing for colder UK winters, e.g. 1947 - but the descending phase of the cycle seems to have more of a link to a +NAO and therefore a reduced chance of cold for us. I'm sure I've read previously (but can't find the link at present) that increases in solar activity can actually affect the synoptic setup in different ways depending on other background factors such as ENSO / QBO etc., and so while an uptick in solar activity now might change the outlook towards a colder set-up, the same uptick might actually increase the potential for a colder outbreak if other teleconnections are in a different phase.
  8. I wonder if my 5.7 is in with a shout. Hopefully a few downward corrections come into play!
  9. Excellent - thanks for the links, I didn't realise you could get such detailed data going back that far, so that's really useful. The paper also looks interesting, thanks Lorenzo - off to read now! Thanks for posting your methodology as well, I can see even more work has gone into your forecast 'behind the scenes'.
  10. Re-reading this again and one thing in particular from the posted charts that stands out for me is that isolated dark blue rectangle amongst the oranges in the declining solar / NAO chart. If I've read the forecast as intended, I believe this is what we'd be looking at - another blue block in this line for a negative NAO in a declining solar flux regime? Is that blue block in cycle 17 winter 1939-40? The chart archive suggests Nov 1939 wasn't really similar to the current November with quite an unsettled zonal flow, but high pressure builds in to the UK and then Greenland after mid-Dec 1939 bringing a setup which seems to resemble perhaps what the winter forecast might suggest? I doubt 1939-40 is a valid analogue to our current setup given this was a strong solar cycle and the sea ice extent must have been much greater than today's record minimum, but thought it was an interesting anomaly. Does anyone know whether there were any other similarities in 1939, e.g. ENSO etc? I guess stratospheric data isn't available that far back? Of course I could have misread the chart and this could be a completely different winter...
  11. autumn

    Yes, I have to admit I've really enjoyed autumn this year. While we've had quite a few dry autumn spells in the last few years, they seem to have been of the warm variety or earlier in the autumn (eg Sept '14) so it's been a refreshing change to have something a little colder without having to endure the usual zonal fayre. The lack of any significant gales here until last weekend's storm also kept the leaves on the trees long enough to produce some beautiful autumn colours - can't recall anything similar in a long time. Here's hoping for a more seasonal winter too!
  12. A very well explained technical forecast and a thoroughly enjoyable read as usual - thanks for all the effort you've put in. A shame Chionomaniac wasn't able to input this year but great to see Matt Hugo, another very well respected forecaster, on board with Lorenzo. Thanks to Netweather as well for keeping these excellent forecasts free of charge! Looking forward to the regular updates as well.
  13. Saw one bright flash of lightning and heard thunder at work in Swansea earlier accompanied by brief torrential rain and hail. Sunshine and blue sky now!
  14. An excellent read - a well thought out and detailed forecast, thanks for sharing. Quick question: I notice you have both 1981 and 2010 in your Dec analogues which were obviously very cold compared to average. Do you think these are likely to skew the forecast - i.e. if these 2 years were pulled out, would the synoptics be broadly similar or would it affect the likely pattern?