What’s The Outlook For Winter?
National Weather Service is predicting some rain moving into Northern California as far south as Monterey Friday and Saturday, the first wet pattern seen this fall that starts September 22. Not much of a start but it is a start.
NOAA says it has been a wet summer for parts of the US including Arizona with its Monsoon rains helping to make it the 4th wettest August in their history. Of course heavy Monsoon rains have caused widespread damage in Colorado but east of the Continental Divide – at the base of Rockies – meaning the water flows east- not west where it could help fill reservoirs on the Colorado River that also feed southern California.
It’s been a wet summer in parts of California including, surprisingly the mountains of Tulare County. NWS says in August Hockett Meadow got 0.68 in of rain and 0.85 in July and Mountain Home on the Tule got nearly an inch in August.
Along the Colorado River Needles received nearly 3inches of rain in August and along the Eastern Sierra – Independence got 1.67 in in August. Even Big Bear above LA got 2 inches of rain total for July and August.
Look a the map to the left. Notice the wet spot above Shasta and in Tulare County.
So what is the outlook for rain this winter?
NOAA‘s Climate Prediction Center is still suggesting ENSO neutral conditions meaning neither an El Nino or La Nina weather pattern so they can’t help with rain predictions.
Forecaster Alan Fox says “There will be a small and gradual increase in El Niño influence as suggested in the guidance for the fall according to the latest NOAA sea surface temperature anomaly guidance posted on the NOAA/NCEP/CPC CFS2 web site. Scripps ECPC does not expect any increase in El Niño until next late winter and spring.
Although we start the period with east winds at times, and hot conditions, this trend is unlikely to continue due to presence of El Niño. At the least we can expect some cutoff low activity during the fall and early winter, recurrent high pressure off and over northern California, and dry conditions. Predictability of rain events will be a challenge due to the lack of a well developed storm track into northern California. As long as weak El Niño conditions are present, there will tend to be cutoff lows during this particular season. In this case, weak El Niño conditions will tend to support cutoff lows and a lack of consistency between the midlatitude and subtropical branches of the westerlies. This supports a lack of predictably”