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A Winter's Tale

Winter 2011/2012

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As we are now Beyond Summer and into Autumn I think now is the time for a thread dedicated to certain time of year known as winter. With the presence of Northern Blocking, the first snows in Eastern and Northern Russia (better than this time last year) and other such factors, it looks favourable for something cold this winter. Whether we are restricted to a two week big freeze with once in every while 4 day cold spells following or an incredible Big Freeze winter is totally uncertain, however the picture will get clearer as we progress through Autumn. A weak La Nina would be decent for a cold weather, a strengthening La Nina could find us heading into winter with a cold start and a mild end.

Whether you are hoping for the coldest winter on record with frequent snow and depths of two feet or a winter with endless storms or even sunshine with pleasant temperature with the frost, this is the place to discuss Winter Properly from now until the end......of Winter 2011/2012.

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I like your optimism.

However Roger J Smith's initial thoughts for this winter are very disappointing if you are a snow addict. He seems to think Winter will make an early appearance this year, but he doesn't foresee any sustained cold taking hold. In fact he seems to suggest that we're in for a normal winter, once the early cold spell is over. As much as i'd like him to be wrong, he was spot on about the early start to Winter 2010/11.

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I like your optimism.

However Roger J Smith's initial thoughts for this winter are very disappointing if you are a snow addict. He seems to think Winter will make an early appearance this year, but he doesn't foresee any sustained cold taking hold. In fact he seems to suggest that we're in for a normal winter, once the early cold spell is over. As much as i'd like him to be wrong, he was spot on about the early start to Winter 2010/11.

Hm, so were many people. Everyone is saying something different, it's simply way too early to tell, so I will just wait until winter arrives (and by winter I mean winter, not November).

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My gut feeling is another cold winter, but I'm probably just saying that due to wishful thinking, and because recent winters have been so cold I can't imagine otherwise!

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I must admit to being entirely unconcerned as to who thinks, at such an early stage as this, what the upcoming winter is going to be like; it'll do whatever it wants to do, and no amount of wishful thinking (or otherwise) will make an iota of difference...

IMO, at the present juncture, a guess is a guess?

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I like your optimism.

However Roger J Smith's initial thoughts for this winter are very disappointing if you are a snow addict. He seems to think Winter will make an early appearance this year, but he doesn't foresee any sustained cold taking hold. In fact he seems to suggest that we're in for a normal winter, once the early cold spell is over. As much as i'd like him to be wrong, he was spot on about the early start to Winter 2010/11.

Interesting. Can you point me towards Rogers thoughts please? :)

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Interesting. Can you point me towards Rogers thoughts please? smile.png

"I did mention to a friend in a chat section of one forum that it wouldn't surprise me if winter came a bit earlier than last year, but I'm not convinced it will dig in for a long, furious assault. It may just come and go early."

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If only based on statistics you'd have to suspect maybe a milder winter then we've had recently, afterlal we've now had 3 cool/cold winters now in a row, I'd have thought it'd be rather unusual even in the much colder times of the past to get 4 in a row.

Suspect we'll have a winter like last year but much less severe and we'll end up above average overall BUT with one month having a fairly strong cold outbreak. La nina's tend to be front ended so I'd guess more likely to be another November/December cold spell if we do end up getting it.

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"I did mention to a friend in a chat section of one forum that it wouldn't surprise me if winter came a bit earlier than last year, but I'm not convinced it will dig in for a long, furious assault. It may just come and go early."

LOL! Thanks. smile.png I'm not sure Roger would want us to read too much into that at this stage.

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I cant see us getting a mild changeable winter.November will be a interesting though. I have a feeling that we are in for a winter that will last longer then the 2010/2011 winter.Maybe not as severe though

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What I will say is the pattern over the Atlantic has been amazingly stable over the past 2-3 years, unless La Nina really ramps up alot its hard to see the set-up aloft really changing too much from what we've had.

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the old wives' tale rears its head

http://www.metro.co....sh-winter-ahead

as has been said before, plants react to current conditions, they don't know whats coming!

Don't be too quick to dismiss these signs, i'm no tree hugger and you're quite right, plants react to prevailing conditions. The flip side to this though is that those current conditions that the plant reacts to may well be precursors to the following months weather. Millions of years of evolution and co existance with animal life may well have brought about this reaction to help the plant and wildlife cope with a harsh winter. Old wives tales often have a root in fact and although they may not be right all the time they are probably right more than not to exist at all.

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Some people have clearly not analised La Nina winters properly if they believe they all end in mild mush. My analysis in the other thread showed that there was a strong likelyhood of a December below the 1971-2000 average but that the link between above or below average Decembers during a strenghtening La Nina was weak (i.e. down to other factors). My analysis also showed a strong link between a strenghtneing -QBO and a January below the 1971-2000 average with only a weak link during December and February.

On that basis, at this juncture i would go for a below average December (sub 4C) and January (sub 3C) with a more average February. Perhaps more interestignly is that January may be the wettest month, so perhaps quite a bit of snow.

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Well my hunch at the moment for the Winter ahead is that it will be somewhat milder than the last three. This is partly due to the fact that as others have mentioned it would be notable to get four cold ones in a row although by no means out of the question. Another reason is that solar activity seems to be picking up. The rest is pure gut instinct! However, I don't necessarily feel it will be a very mild Winter, just more normal with typical short cold snaps alternating with milder periods. I hope I'm wrong and we do get another cold one but saying that I do feel we've done very well during the last three years. Having the coldest Winter since 78/79 in 09/10 and a sub zero December last year would have been almost unthinkable just 3 years ago after what we had become used to and snow lovers should appreciate this.

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I haven't got a clue what next winter will bring. The last three winters were different to each other despite ending up below average overall.

The first half of each winter month of 2008-09 were colder than the 2nd half, the winter of 2009-10 had hardly any mild spells between mid December and early March whilst winter 2010-11 had the coldest pre Christmas period on record but a very mild February.

Its unusual to have similiar winters following each other even though the overall stats may suggest similiar. This may be hard to believe after living through the numerous mild winters of the 1990s and 2000s but even they had their differences.

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On a very non scientific analysis. The notion that we've had 3 below average winters in a row (as Mr-Data points out not exactly the same Winters which is important) seems to suggest we can't have another, i.e. we will have a mild one, it's a mild winters turn. I see this differently. Again just guessing, pointless I know. We've had 3 cool Winters, or cooler than the 90's in a row, well there is a pattern or something causing this, and therefore we can expect another one now. Series might break for sure, but the cause of the recent 3 might be there to some extent. I mean saying we've had 3 poor summers in a row doesn't guarantee a great one next and anyone here suffering from vitamin D deficiency can attest to that!

So here is a total guess based on a weak La Nina and -NAO around mid-Winter, something opposite to the last 3, sure why not.

I'll go for a wet windy October dominated by Atlantic conveyor. November very average. First 10 days December Anticyclone centered around SE England, nice shopping weather and frost at night. Then move's to a Major Greenland Block and extreme Cold last week December, low over Scandi, this then ending mid January to cold NW returning Polar air and snow showers in the NW of the B Isles.Then a dry mild and increasingly warm spring.

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The one thing that does back up the idea of possibly a winter not that dissimilar broadly to the last couple would be the fact that the upper pattern is utterly stuck rigid over the States/Canada at the moment. when you get something like that happen it tends to require a large shift in the global pattern to kick things off, but with a similar looking broad profile I'm not sure things will be all that much different at least for the late Autumn/early winter.

Even the NHC have noticed this, with one of Katia's discussions mentioned the fact that the pattern has been in deja vu since 2009.

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Something that I mentioned last winter is that if we can still get notable Greenland blocks during the winter months then I see no reason why we can't get a winter where Scandinavian blocks dominate and effect us directly. With the last 3 winters this was not the case as the Scandinavian high quickly subsided when it did form but there is going to be an occasion when it will be the controller, I'm certain of it.

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The Atlantic could be a big feature this winter, we've been locked in this atlantic set-up for ages now and it doesn't look like really slowing down for a substancial period of time

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The Atlantic could be a big feature this winter, we've been locked in this atlantic set-up for ages now and it doesn't look like really slowing down for a substancial period of time

I disagree totally the jetstream is further south than it should be which is why where experiencing atlantic set-up weather over summer and as it continues to move south more blocking periods from the north and east will occur :) just my thoughts...

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RJS will have his early longterm thoughts but won't be definitive but they aren't likely to change that much as his theory isn't likely to be dramatically interfered with short term so my reckoning is that it will remain simialr to.... and if he was rigid last winter he would have been very close...I convinced him to go for second prolonged cold push in Feb.

BFTP

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BFTP can you please explain this "his theory isn't likely to be dramatically interfered with short term so my reckoning is that it will remain simialr to.... "

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I disagree totally the jetstream is further south than it should be which is why where experiencing atlantic set-up weather over summer and as it continues to move south more blocking periods from the north and east will occur smile.png just my thoughts...

The jetstream appears to be over us atm, if it was to the South of us, pressure would be low across France and Spain yet pressure is high down there. Anyways, nothing unusual about this weather pattern, its quite normal really although in recent September, the Atlantic tended to be blocked with high pressure over us but this year so far seems to be going against that and about time too imo.

How long this pattern last for, who knows but with heights low over Greenland then I would not bet against on the Atlantic systems to keep on being a player for the foreseeable although if the jetstream angles more to a NW/NE'ly direction, then high pressure may come into play again in Southern areas but it certainly not what we want too see in 3 months time!

Remember, pattern changes occur very quickly so theres no need to worry about the winter, not that it should even be disscussed in September. :rolleyes:

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A treat in FI? rolleyes.gif

h500slp.png

Here's to hoping that, like last winter, such a pattern does take hold and stay there for a prolonged period of time...

(I know I haven't really added anything to discussion, but came across the above and couldn't resist posing it hehe)

On a serious note, I do think that we will be in for a winter very much similar (although, simply following laws of probability, I imagine it won't be quite as severe), winter taking hold early with quite a bite and being rather cold with a blocked pattern, before petering out early into next year.

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