Joe’s Weather Blog: Two massive storms and the “LoJ” (SAT-12/15)

Good afternoon…really nice weather out there today and the trend is our fried for the next 4-5 day or so as milder Pacific air has infiltrated the Plains region. This means a decently long stretch of milder than average temperatures that will continue into next weekend more or less. There will be a couple of cold shots mixed in but they should be fleeting.

This blog will be somewhat brief as well because I need to spend some time creating my very silly outfit for the 6th annual”Lighting of the Joe” which is Sunday the 16th at 8:45 on FOX 4 News. This bizarre FOX 4 tradition started back in 2013…and has taken a life of it’s own. It’s so silly…so ridiculous…so strange…and frankly so bad that our viewers get the biggest kick out of it. It’s the “ying to the blogs yang” from one extreme to the other.

That’s why I think it’s so funny…or as Rob Collins referred to it…”brilliantly stupid”. I like that description!

  • Forecast:

Tonight: Clear and cool after some late evening clouds…but not too bad for this time of the year with lows 25-30°

Sunday: More or less the same as today with highs in the 50s

Monday: Nice with highs in the 50s

Tuesday: Same with some more clouds and highs in the 50s

  • Discussion:

There is an interesting dichotomy in the weather around these parts…we’ve gone about 6-8 weeks with cold and snowier than average weather…and now we can’t buy a snowflake. The last accumulating snow was on the 6th…and assuming nothing happens Thursday…the next accumulating snow is not showing up really until perhaps later in the month.

A reminder that December brings us on average almost 5″ of snow and so far we’re about 10% of the way there at the halfway point of the month.

When you see forecasts like this over the next 6-10 days…well it’s not encouraging.

When you see forecasts like this over the next 8-14 days…it’s not helpful.

Those are pretty strong probabilities of above average temperatures…

There should be systems to track though and while much of the country will be warmer than average, it’s not a blowtorch up north…so it appears that it will be a needle in a haystack approach for the right storm at the right time incorporating cold air at the right time in the right place to get us some snow. Right now there aren’t too many candidates for that recipe.

The period after Christmas seems a bit more interesting to finish of 2018.

There are two big storms showing up today…one is already in the eastern part of the country.

Then in the Pacific Ocean there is another big storm…that is generating high winds and high waves in the Pacific Ocean.

Those are some almost 50 foot waves out there….


and the forecast for those waves means crashing waves in the PAC NW and British Columbia.

This Pacific storm is sending mild air into Canada…which will be flooding into the northern Plains and Canada early next week…you can see this by looking at what’s going on above the surface at around 5,000 feet or so (compared to average). That’s some mild weather.


This Pacific storm is going to send out a couple of pieces of energy in the atmosphere…stronger areas of winds aloft really…one tracking through the SW US and another through the western US (the bigger wave)…these 2 pieces may merge towards the central and eastern MO later this week and turn into an “inland runner” of a storm as it moves up through the eastern part of the country…inland meaning all rain for most of the east. However where the cold core of the storm tracks…may factor into a snowstorm for parts of the OH Valley.

On the heels of that system MAY be one fast moving way coming out of the Pacific SW towards the 23rd-24th or so…it doesn’t look to be a big event…but maybe there could be some snow with it…and that may be our only hope for snow on the ground on Christmas Day.

We’ll see…a few days ago…I put our chances of a White Christmas at 5%…I thought about increasing that to 10% today…but I”m going to wait a couple of more days..

The various ensemble members of the GFS run this morning are generating something…whether it’s a rain>snow or a snow or a rain event remains to be seen..but there is something that will need to be watched it appears.


5 of the 21 members at least have some precip of some sorts around the region…it’s not much but trying to find a needle in a haystack is not easy right now. Hopefully that changes…

There will be other activity after Christmas to follow it appears…more on that tomorrow. I started to do a “reverse” storm track of the Christmas potential. This is when I trace the steps back in time from Christmas to today and try and find the origins of any potential system…I think I found the origins of this possibility…and it’s west of MONGOLIA I think…perhaps up into southern parts of Russia.

I wasn’t thrilled with the overnight EURO run for potential…or it’s ensembles BUT they also indicated at least there might be something around the 23rd as again something to watch.

OK that’s it for today…more tomorrow afternoon.

Our feature photo comes from ‎Lindsey McCartney and reminds us of a snowier time several weeks ago!


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