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Snow And Ice In The Northern Hemisphere 2017/18


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you used to be able to run a sequence for the last 30 days on the US National Ice Centre section the NOAA Website, but it's gone. So I've created a GIF of the last 7 days. I'll do one next week f

Absolutely love this thread. Certainly my favorite of the year. And for posterity, here is what we should be aiming for....

Well, it's that time of the year again, where we can all start turning our backs from summer, and start looking north and east towards the encroaching snows of Siberia.   Lets hope that this

Posted Images

1 hour ago, karyo said:

So if I disagree that we are similar to 2010 it means that I think winter is over? lol

no. the general pattern is very similar, give or take the odd patch of snow. if you look back over the years, the snow cover varies widely. dont forget, the theory of the SAI is not about early snow cover but the rate of advance throughout october. more specifically, south of 60º north. if you take that theory and apply it to 2009, at this stage it was terrible but we all know what happened then. also, a mild october in europe has no bearing on how winter will evolve. there are so many other factors at play, to take one of them and say its "not good" in mid october is just being negative before there is really any reason to be. 

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1 hour ago, CreweCold said:

Aye

cfs-4-12-2017.png?12

As much as we take the proverbial out of the CFS at least charts like this are pleasant on the eye. Not saying it will happen, just saying it looks nice. :D 

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Not wanting to take this thread too far off topic but like any anomaly charts the CFS can look very seductive at first glance when we see the reds up north.

I regard these for fun only but just a glance at December for example on the latest run when comparing the 500 anom.chart  with the mean 500 pattern and we can see a somewhat different picture

No real easterly which may be suggested on the anomaly chart to the untrained eye.

cfsnh-3-12-2017.png?18cfsnh-2-12-2017.png?18

The mean 500hPa chart shows what would likely translate to a rather cold continental drift for the se and a milder Atlantic flow further nw and a somewhat weaker jet -stream across the Atlantic if this was the pattern.

There is also the 2m temp and precipitation  charts as well-December

cfsnh-7-12-2017.png?18cfsnh-5-12-2017.png?18

So looking drier than normal on this run-which would tie in with a weaker jet stream and the Continental feed

As i said just for fun as far as i am concerned but it is always worth looking at the means against the anomaly outputs for a general idea of what pattern they are pointing to.

 

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Lot of people upset over the snow, really it is the Ice that we need to be watching, snow can drop and melt anywhere over the next couple of months, the steady build up of ice is more indicative of the overall conditions of the winter.

That ice looks healthy to me right now.

2010 was special though and strangely we look far more similar to 2010 - 

ims2010290_asiaeurope.gif

now - 

cursnow_asiaeurope.gif

than last year -

ims2016291_asiaeurope.gif

Edited by throwoff
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24 minutes ago, throwoff said:

Lot of people upset over the snow, really it is the Ice that we need to be watching, snow can drop and melt anywhere over the next couple of months, the steady build up of ice is more indicative of the overall conditions of the winter.

That ice looks healthy to me right now.

2010 was special though and strangely we look far more similar to 2010 - 

ims2010290_asiaeurope.gif

now - 

cursnow_asiaeurope.gif

than last year -

ims2016291_asiaeurope.gif

Talking about the ice, although the extend is better this autumn than the last couple of years, the ice that was extending east of Greenland towards Iceland is absent so far. It may lead to more cyclogenesis in that area.

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34 minutes ago, throwoff said:

Lot of people upset over the snow, really it is the Ice that we need to be watching, snow can drop and melt anywhere over the next couple of months, the steady build up of ice is more indicative of the overall conditions of the winter.

That ice looks healthy to me right now.

2010 was special though and strangely we look far more similar to 2010 - 

ims2010290_asiaeurope.gif

now - 

cursnow_asiaeurope.gif

than last year -

ims2016291_asiaeurope.gif

Yep Karyo and thanks Throwoff.

Interesting comparisons...

This year has about the same ice as 2010 in extent, and much more than last year. Compared to 2010 we have a slightly greater extent (according to Maisie.  (6802K Km2 compared to 6788K Km2). I must say though that 2010 was growing more rapidly at that stage.    

 It will be very interesting to see how the ice in the Arctic reacts  from here on in..

 Whilst you are correct with regards to more cyclo-genesis, it could be good for the ice to have the larger amount in the east side of the Arctic, as it will be less prone to export via the 'drain' through  Fram. 

With regard to the snow extent. The problem last year seems to be that it fell too early. A lot of it in the west had melted by the middle of November. This year (and is this the clue?) it looks as if the cold will be more entrenched and may well last longer.

As I understood it the SLI failed last year - perhaps if we have a big westward movement in the next 2 weeks it may be more accurate?

 MIA

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9 hours ago, Midlands Ice Age said:

 

With regard to the snow extent. The problem last year seems to be that it fell too early. A lot of it in the west had melted by the middle of November. This year (and is this the clue?) it looks as if the cold will be more entrenched and may well last longer.

This resonates with me. Last year we got very excited early due to massive snow fall, myself included. It then all melted. I remember posting day by day comparisons that actually showed huge patches shrinking.

Prolonged deep cold is the key here. 

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Relatively stable snow cover over Siberia with sea ice gain in the Kara Sea

cursnow_asiaeurope.gif

 

Interesting to see the westward progression of the snowfields over the coming to weeks - the models seem to be giving every option under the sun at the moment. 

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6 minutes ago, Staffordshire said:

Is there actually a proven correlation between snow cover and our winters? If so, where could i read about this? Thanks

There isn't for the British Isles. 

Early Southward expansion of the snowfield from Siberia increases the chance of a colder Winter in Eastern Europe, the British Isles are to far West to benefit. 

Last Winter was good example of this.

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We may see some snow cover advance westwards over the weekend/early next week but probably temporary as the almost perpetual euro high doesn't want to move. The models show further pulses of warmth for much of Europe.

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9 minutes ago, mountain shadow said:

There isn't for the British Isles. 

Early Southward expansion of the snowfield from Siberia increases the chance of a colder Winter in Eastern Europe, the British Isles are to far West to benefit. 

Last Winter was good example of this.

I agree! The ocean rules for us and ideally we would want to see more ice to our north.

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12 minutes ago, Staffordshire said:

Is there actually a proven correlation between snow cover and our winters? If so, where could i read about this? Thanks

An expanded Siberian Snow Cover equals  a stronger Siberian High which enhances poleward heat flux, which equals a weaker polar vortex which equals a -AO.

IMG_2513.thumb.JPG.104f4e7d60ffb31a7613cc05ec8c9218.JPG

This is a typical -AO setup, with a high over the Arctic and a higher chance of winter storms in Europe and the Eastern United States.

This is a infographic that explains it in a little more detail, and explains what happens in years with a less expansive Siberian Snow Cover. However this is no way the only indicator of what is going to happen during winter. It is one of many climate drivers that must be taken into consideration, but the Siberian Snow Cover is an important tool nonetheless. The other guys are correct, noting that Eastern Europe gets colder temperatures during a Strong Siberian Snow Cover event.

IMG_2514.thumb.JPG.0802f4e5f5e16c5a608061444448d59f.JPG

For more information on this, look at Judah Cohen's website. He has been studying the correlation between the Siberian Snow Cover and the AO for years.

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2 hours ago, Snowy Hibbo said:

An expanded Siberian Snow Cover equals  a stronger Siberian High which enhances poleward heat flux, which equals a weaker polar vortex which equals a -AO.

IMG_2513.thumb.JPG.104f4e7d60ffb31a7613cc05ec8c9218.JPG

This is a typical -AO setup, with a high over the Arctic and a higher chance of winter storms in Europe and the Eastern United States.

This is a infographic that explains it in a little more detail, and explains what happens in years with a less expansive Siberian Snow Cover. However this is no way the only indicator of what is going to happen during winter. It is one of many climate drivers that must be taken into consideration, but the Siberian Snow Cover is an important tool nonetheless. The other guys are correct, noting that Eastern Europe gets colder temperatures during a Strong Siberian Snow Cover event.

IMG_2514.thumb.JPG.0802f4e5f5e16c5a608061444448d59f.JPG

For more information on this, look at Judah Cohen's website. He has been studying the correlation between the Siberian Snow Cover and the AO for years.

Very informative. Thanks.

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4 hours ago, karyo said:

I agree! The ocean rules for us and ideally we would want to see more ice to our north.

Totally agree, until ice levels recover to pre 1980 levels, the best we can hope for is a 1-10yr event like 2009

Snow in Winter for Southern areas is a rare beast, bring back the ice & the snow will follow.

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25 minutes ago, SteveB said:

Totally agree, until ice levels recover to pre 1980 levels, the best we can hope for is a 1-10yr event like 2009

Snow in Winter for Southern areas is a rare beast, bring back the ice & the snow will follow.

Before 08-09 we had well respected members musing that the UK could not achieve even a cool winter again. They were wrong. 

While i doubt we'll see a 63 anytime soon i think it's entirely possible to get proper winters (i.e. 08-09, 95-96 at a minimum) on a fairly regular basis (not every year but every few). Even if we want to see an average winter we only need go back to 14-15 and the main 12-13 or 05-06, that's a third of winters over a decade.

Point being that although the south has been more snowless than recent decades, it's probably down to luck given that we have had plenty of near average or cool winters. 

 

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22 minutes ago, summer blizzard said:

Before 08-09 we had well respected members musing that the UK could not achieve even a cool winter again. They were wrong. 

While i doubt we'll see a 63 anytime soon i think it's entirely possible to get proper winters (i.e. 08-09, 95-96 at a minimum) on a fairly regular basis (not every year but every few). Even if we want to see an average winter we only need go back to 14-15 and the main 12-13 or 05-06, that's a third of winters over a decade.

Point being that although the south has been more snowless than recent decades, it's probably down to luck given that we have had plenty of near average or cool winters. 

 

It is not just the south that has been snowless though, the whole country and in fact northwest Europe has seen a significant reduction of days with snow cover. So I don't think it is just a matter of bad luck.

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17 minutes ago, karyo said:

It is not just the south that has been snowless though, the whole country and in fact northwest Europe has seen a significant reduction of days with snow cover. So I don't think it is just a matter of bad luck.

Isn't that just because after 2013 we were entered the Solar Maximum stage (Where the UK experiences, on the whole, milder winters) of the current Solar Cycle?

Winter 08/09, 09/10, 10/11, 11/12 and 12/13 all occurred Solar Minimum (Where we are likely to see colder than average winters) and the majority of those winters were cold.

We are now declining in Solar Output again and will reach Solar Minimum at the end of 2018.

With Winter 15/16 being a Super Nino year and last year the Westerly winds with the QBO were stronger, both stopped any cold plunges for NorthWest Europe.

I say we can't rule out that we won't see any colder weather - its just a matter of waiting and see if the same thing occurs when we enter Solar Minimum again...

 

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4 hours ago, mpkio2 said:

Isn't that just because after 2013 we were entered the Solar Maximum stage (Where the UK experiences, on the whole, milder winters) of the current Solar Cycle?

Winter 08/09, 09/10, 10/11, 11/12 and 12/13 all occurred Solar Minimum (Where we are likely to see colder than average winters) and the majority of those winters were cold.

We are now declining in Solar Output again and will reach Solar Minimum at the end of 2018.

With Winter 15/16 being a Super Nino year and last year the Westerly winds with the QBO were stronger, both stopped any cold plunges for NorthWest Europe.

I say we can't rule out that we won't see any colder weather - its just a matter of waiting and see if the same thing occurs when we enter Solar Minimum again...

 

Breaking off topic a little here, but I've read solar energy does have a greater impact on conditions over western europe in winter than many other places in the northern hemisphere not sure why. Certainly noteworthy that recent solar minimum periods i.e. 84-85 - 86/87, 95 -97 and late 08-10 have coincided with colder than normal winters, and solar maximum periods 98-00 and 11-14 have coincided with milder than average winters, may just be a coincidence.

What is even more interesting is the correlation between solar cycle 12 and current solar cycle, and the fact that we have endured one of the most active hurricane seasons so far in terms of number of strong category storms - up there with three winters in the solar cycle 12 period of the 1878-1890 period- more than just a statistical quirk.. 

Back to the topic at hand, yes early snow cover build up over Siberia can induce an influential feedback effect on the polar vortex, weakening it and therefore enabling colder blocked conditions to envelop west russia/east europe for lengthy period, but it isn't as others have stated a key signal that we will also see a cold blocked winter, however, if we have  a weak atlantic there is more chance of the jetstream unbuckling and trough disruption allowing cold air to filter in from the SE and east, 2005/2006 was a good example.

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Ice continues to bed in, snow about where it should be.

cursnow_asiaeurope.gif

At this point in 2010 (and forgive to keep harping on about 2010, but it is a good example of conditions that were related to a cold one) the ice had spread a little further in some areas, not as far in others. The snow had just made its first westerly run.

 

ims2010292_asiaeurope.gif

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16 hours ago, mpkio2 said:

I say we can't rule out that we won't see any colder weather - its just a matter of waiting and see if the same thing occurs when we enter Solar Minimum again...

 

I don't think anybody is saying that we won't see any colder weather, but it is getting more and more difficult to achieve below average temperatures (never mind snow) for a significant length of time. 

As for the solar maximum, yes I agree that it coincides with warmer winters for us. However, even during a solar maximum there should be some colder spells and indeed the maximum that we just had was weak compared to other cycles, yet we have to go back to 2013 for the last memorable cold spell.

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