• Category Archives JAMSTEC
  • Winter Ideas…

    We continue to finalize our winter forecast, which will be posted, as always, here later this month.

    As little as only a few months ago, data suggested a major La Nina for the upcoming winter season.  That data has since backed off significantly.  In fact, some runs suggest we’re back into a weak-ish El Nino state by spring.  At the very least, we are confident on avoiding a strong La Nina this winter and lean more in the direction of a weak Nina, at best, to neutral signal.  The CFSv2 is interesting, as always, with the spread in region 3.4.


    sstanimIn addition to the central PAC anomalies, we also are keying in on some other items of interest in the overall SST configuration:

    I. Warmth in the GOA (Gulf of Alaska)

    Argues for central cold this winter, spreading east with time.

    II. Warmth off the eastern seaboard

    Will likely serve to limit the ability for the cold to spread east early on in the season

    92916sstThe SST CA model is quickly becoming one of our more trusted seasonal forecast models.  We note how it becomes increasingly bullish on a central and eastern trough as winter wears on (by the way, this is likely to go deep into spring this year, too).


    screen-shot-2016-10-02-at-10-53-04-amCold overwhelms the pattern and when you combine it with the active storm track (noted by the green hues, suggesting above normal precipitation through our neck of the woods), confidence is continuing to grow for an above normal snow season.


    screen-shot-2016-10-02-at-10-58-05-amThe SST configuration on the JAMSTEC would suggest a cold, stormy set-up, locally.  That said, while it sees the above average precipitation, it’s awfully warm at the surface.



    temp2-glob-djf2017-1sep2016The NMME (to no surprise…) would suggest a very warm, wet winter.



    screen-shot-2016-10-02-at-11-08-47-amAs a reminder, our complete and final annual winter outlook will be posted here during the second half of October.  That will include additional model data, along with several other points behind our reasoning for our winter forecast.  As we always do, we’ll put “pen to paper” when it comes to our winter forecast, including our expected temperature and snowfall anomalies.  Given the data above, including the warm JAMSTEC and NMME, it’s going to be very, very hard to see a warm winter here.  In fact, our idea is for the exact opposite, given the SST configuration, and lines up more closely with the SST CA idea at this point.  We’re also in the camp of a very, very active storm track through the Ohio Valley.  “Big-hitter” potential is present from a winter storm perspective, especially given that we are likely to see resistance from the SE ridge.

    Much more later this month…

  • Very Windy Today; Next Big Storm Next Week…

    Screen Shot 2015-11-12 at 7.17.23 AMHighlights:

    • Very strong winds
    • Dry times return
    • Big storm next week

    A cold front swept through the state during the predawn hours.  While a few breaks of sunshine may be seen early this morning, low clouds will quickly spread back over the region.

    Wind will be the big story today as we still think gusts over 50 MPH are a good bet throughout central parts of the state.  Note the tight pressure gradient that remains in place across the region today into Friday.  Friday won’t be AS windy as today, but still quite blustery.


    gfs_ptype_slp_conus2_7Our next big weather maker will arrive during the early to middle portions of next week.  Model consensus continues to highlight a hefty rain event and thunderstorms.  Early numbers would suggest 2″-3″ potential.  More details on our next storm tomorrow and on Twitter (@IndyWx).

    Before we close this morning, we wanted to post the updated JAMSTEC seasonal outlook for the upcoming winter.  As a whole there aren’t a lot of changes from previous runs.  (We like to see consistency :-)).



    JAMPrecipOverall, it agrees with our forecast and strongly disagrees with any of those warm winter forecasts out there for the south and east.  One note, just because the drier anomalies show up over the Ohio Valley (what you would typically expect during a moderate to strong El Nino event) doesn’t necessarily mean it’ll be a lower than normal snow season.  Keep in mind, moisture content in snow is much less than rain.

    After taking a look at things, I like where we stand with our Winter Outlook.  One thing’s for sure, time will tell!

  • Updated JAMSTEC…

    6:51a, 9.16.15

    I tried my best to stay up late enough last night to post this update, but decided to finally turn in after nearly two collisions with me falling asleep with my iPad in hand (talk about a rude wake up)!

    In any case, the updated JAMSTEC is in and suggests colder, wetter than average times ahead as we progress deeper into fall and winter. Our official IndyWx.com Winter Outlook will be posted in mid October, but we wanted to show this in stark contrast to the CFSv2 (blow torch look) and other seasonal outlooks that seem to lean heavily on the strong niño, and only the niño.

    Note how the JAMSTEC shifts the warmest SST anomalies into Niño 3.4 as we progress into winter.

    Sept, Oct, Nov

    Dec, Jan, Feb

    March, April, May

    See how the initial central “pool of cool” expands to more of a coast-to-coast colder than normal pattern during winter. 

    Sept, Oct, Nov

    Dec, Jan, Feb

    The model is also bullish on a wet pattern shifting north to include the Ohio Valley and Mid West, with expected dry and warm winter conditions across the Pacific Northwest.

    Needless to say, this model (and there are others out that support it) is very much not in the camp of a warm winter upcoming. 

    Let the fun and games continue…

  • Monday Morning Weather Rambles…

    September is still running much warmer than normal, despite the recent well below average regime.

    See the temperature anomalies over the past (7) days:

    and the month-to-date:

    It’s also been a dry month. Officially, IND is down nearly 1″ month-to-date. For the year we’re still running wetter than normal, powered behind a wet start to the year and wet July.

    After a dry August and first half of September, some “abnormally dry” areas have kicked in on the drought monitor around the region.

    The fall feel of late last week and the weekend will begin to moderate this week as ridging develops. 

    The PNA, or Pacifc North American pattern, can be a huge help in forecasting patterns in the mid to long term. The state is one that screams warmer than normal (predominantly negative PNA), but not to the extent of the early September persistence. Note the return to neutral over the weekend. This will be associated with cooling after a front moves through Saturday.

    Speaking of that front, the GFS sees it moving “limping” through Saturday with little moisture followed by cooler high pressure building in Sunday.

    But, as shown above, the cool won’t last as the PNA takes another significant nose dive. Ridging will follow.

    The tropics are beginning to show some life as we’re in peak season now.

    The latest SST anomalies remain bullish on the strong El Niño signal, but we note recent cooling in Nino 1+2. Is this just a temporary thing or more of a trend towards a central-based Nino (modoki)? An El Niño with warmest anomalies in 3.4 argues for colder and snowy times compared to normal for our region, versus a warmer, drier regime when located in 1+2.

    Also note the central and northern PAC warm anomalies. This is also crucial to our winter pattern.

    The latest CFSv2 says lovers of winter shouldn’t get too excited for the upcoming cold season.

    BUT…the CA model and JAMSTEC paint a much different picture.

    Note the JAMSTEC really likes the idea of a modoki El Niño coming on as the warm anomalies shift west as we progress into winter.

    Stay tuned as we have a long way to go…

  • Thoughts Shifting To Fall And Winter…

    We may only be in mid August, but the IndyWx.com office is busy putting together initial thoughts around fall and winter (it’ll be here before you know it)!

    The upcoming cold season will be a challenging one- more challenging than usual. Yes we have a strong (and continuing to strengthen) El Niño in place, but we also have very warm sea surface temperature anomalies in the eastern and northeastern Pacific.

    SST Anomalies 8.10.15  
    These are conflicting signals. The strong El Niño favors warmer, drier than normal conditions for meteorological winter (D, J, F) while the warm northeast Pacific anomalies promote AK and western Canada ridging. Downstream this favors colder conditions across the eastern half of the country. It should be noted the primary driver (not sole driver) of the past two cold, snowy winters has been the warm northeast Pacific profile (otherwise known as a positive Pacific Decadal Oscillation). Overall, this pattern remains in place.

    Seasonal modeling continues to trickle into the forecast office concerning the upcoming winter. Like clock work, even the thought of winter weather, or outlooks, seems to get some of the immature weather community into a tizzy. Might we suggest “raising an eye brow” to any one, or source, trying to bully, intimidate, or talk negatively about others in the weather community- particularly degreed professionals. At this stage in the game, no idea should be scoffed at.

    Speaking of that modeling, we wanted to show you three different modeled projections of sea surface temperature anomalies for the upcoming fall/ winter season. There’s a common theme shown with each and it’s a conflicting one as for the sensible weather we can expect here.

    Jamstec predicted December, January, February ’15-’16 sea surface anomalies


    CFSv2 predicted December, Janaury, February ’15-’16 sea surface anomalies

    European predicted November, December, January ’15-’16 sea surface anomalies

    A couple items of interest: 

    1.) At the surface, a strong El Niño is easy to write off as an easy winter, locally, without much cold or snow relative to average.  

    BUT…The warmest anomalies shift west with time as we get deeper and deeper into the winter. This is a positive sign if you like cold and snow across the east. The strong ’97-’98 winter had those warmest anomalies stacked east and up against the coast. 

    2.) Note the CFSv2 and Jamstec show the warm eastern/ northeastern PAC anomalies remaining into and through the winter. This is another positive sign for cold and snow across the east.

    3.) Only the Good Lord above knows the future and what lies ahead this winter, but despite a strong El Niño in play (and expected to continue through the winter) doesn’t necessarily mean it’s time for snow lovers and other winter fanatics to throw this winter into the trash. No El Niño is like another and there are several other drivers (not even mentioned here tonight) that can and do have a large impact on our seasonal weather. 

    4.) We’ll discuss other factors that will play a role in the upcoming winter in the months and weeks to come (blocking, volcanic activity, SOI, etc.)

    Remember you can always follow us on the go at Twitter (@indywx) and Instagram. You can email us at bill@indywx.com. 

  • Catching Up And Looking Ahead…

    From the IndyWx.com family to yours, we wish you a very happy Thanksgiving! Thank you for taking the time to read our content daily and for all of your support over the years! We appreciate it more than we can tell you.

    After one of the coldest Thanksgivings’ on record (official IND high Thursday was 31°), Black Friday shoppers are having to bundle up against blustery and frosty air (don’t worry, we won’t start singing Christmas carols on here). It’s just a continuation of a brutally cold November to date.


    A byproduct of the cold pattern is also a drier than normal pattern, albeit slightly so after last weeks rains.


    Note Thanksgiving snow cover is impressive for the second straight year from a national perspective. See the clipper system that deposited snow to our west Thanksgiving eve and the nor’easter snow east.


    The upcoming 7-10 days will feature a milder pattern, but still with plenty of challenges. After a cold Friday, temperatures will moderate courtesy of a southwesterly air flow this weekend. Along with the milder air will come clouds and light rain/ drizzle.


    Colder air returns Monday and the combination of cold high pressure north and a boundary lurking just to our south will keep us on our toes this weekend for possible changes. Northward shifts happen in modeling from mid range to short range from time to time and we’ll keep a close eye on things.


    Towards day 7 a milder rain storm is on the models.


    It’s all part of a “topsy-turvy” pattern in the short to medium range as noted on the latest GEFS temperature anomalies. After the mild spike this weekend we chill early week.


    Longer range, we remain bullish of a heavy-hitter winter for the region. SSTs are aligning in classic form that feature colder and snowier than normal conditions across our region.


    The latest JAMSTEC agrees on a cold winter locally.



    Note the Madden-Julian oscillation (MJO) rumbling into the colder phases of 7,8, and 1. This has sparked interest particularly mid and late December for an uptick in wintry potential…




  • Weekly Outlook: Active And Cool!

    Another active period of weather is in store for the region. (After an extended stretch of pleasant conditions from late September into the opening of October, I guess we shouldn’t complain too much).

    Dry days will be at a premium over the course of the upcoming 7-days.  The final in a series of disturbances in the fast northwest flow will blow through the region Tuesday.  This will offer up a threat of scattered showers and a possible rumble of thunder through the daytime hours. Latest forecast radar data suggests showers and embedded thunder will be ongoing Tuesday morning.


    After a dry day Wednesday (filled with lots of sunshine), we anticipate clouds and rain to quickly return as early as Thursday.  Forecast models handle the evolution of things differently at this juncture. For now, we’ll side with a blend of the GFS and Euro and serve up best rain chances late Thursday into Friday, followed by less concentration of rain Saturday, coupled with cool north winds.


    Saturday is a tough call at this point.  The cold front will be south of our area and chilly Canadian high pressure will be building in, but we may keep considerable cloudiness and pesky showers around (similar to last Saturday?). Stay tuned as we continue to fine tune.

    Note the cooler than normal air settling in over the weekend.


    7-day rainfall numbers vary greatly from model to model.  Upcoming weekly rainfall totals range from as little as 1″ to as much as 2″.  The Canadian model is the most aggressive, suggesting over 2″ on a widespread basis.


    Just beyond this time next week we may be looking at an even more significant storm system, but we still have time to fine tune things as we move forward.

    Despite the dry weather late September through October’s open, the past 30 days have featured beneficial to excessive Corn Belt rainfall…


    Year-to-date has featured a wet eastern region.  Also note the dry pattern across the southwest (some places under 1″ YTD)!  Officially, we’re just slightly wetter than normal at IND, year-to-date (+0.53″).


    Thinking longer term towards the darker, colder, and snowier months ahead… The JAMSTEC remains “bullish” on a regime plenty capable of delivering the cold and snowy “goods” for the region…  BTW- we usually post our annual winter outlook the first Friday of October.  Things have been very hectic as of late and we’re going to have to delay this release by a few weeks….


  • JAMSTEC Take On Upcoming Fall/ Winter

    With each passing day our thoughts turn more and more towards the upcoming busy fall and winter months ahead.   Among the vast array of data to sort through, we wanted to show you the latest JAMSTEC (Japan Agency For Marine-Earth-Science And Technology) take on the upcoming fall and winter.  Admittedly, we’re still a ways off from being able to tell you with any sort of certainty what the upcoming winter holds in store, as far as the “concrete details” go.  That said, thinking, at least here, remains on the side of the camp that believes another colder/ snowier than normal winter lies ahead for our region.

    As far as the fall goes, we’re likely to see a predominant southeast ridge dominate the pattern, with more of a “back and forth” fight across our immediate neck of the woods.  In some ways, we’re beginning to see this type reflection in the pattern this week.

    In any event, the latest JAMSTEC fall (Sept-Nov) idea as far as temperature anomalies go:


    Note the southeast ridge should keep the south-central and south-east (on up along the eastern seaboard) a touch warmer than average.  The center of the cool will back west for a time to include the Rockies, N Plains, and northern Lakes.  Again, more of a back and forth fight here, and quite active!

    Before we close, as stated above, we think another cold, snowy winter lies ahead for our area.  The JAMSTEC remains bullish on another cold winter (Dec-Feb) for the 3rd month in a row:


  • Saturday Morning Rambles…

    Happy Saturday! Upper level energy will hang around the region today, creating a continued chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms. Similar to Friday, a few of these could be strong and include torrential rain and hail.



    Sunday should feature more in the way of sunshine around central Indiana.

    Temperatures remain below normal across a large portion of the eastern half of the nation this morning- continuing the “cool” theme from July.


    The next item of interest will come late next week as two of our more reliable mid range models have two vastly different solutions for Thursday. The European model would imply a rainy and stormy set up, including heavy rain. On the other hand, the GFS is much less aggressive and would even result in another punch of cooler, drier air at the same time. Stay tuned as we continue to fine tune.

    As we close, our long range thoughts continue to turn to fall and winter. The JAMSTEC suggests another cold winter is on the way for our region, along with the south and east. Our early thinking would lean this way, as well. Still, of course, early in the game here…