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The All New 12/13 Weather Outlook Thread

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Wonder if there is an outside possibility of some August bank holiday snow on the top of Scottish mountains from this?

Cairngorm GFS ensembles
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Short answer to that question above is no based on this morning's output.

Here's another article on that Arctic storm.

ICE VS. STORM: 2012’S GREAT ARCTIC CYCLONE
TWO RARITIES LEAD TO A COLOSSAL MATCHUP
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Some suggestions in CFS over the last few days of a more blocked set up to the north (possibly heralding colder weather pushing down) starting to appear as we move through into the second half of winter.

http://www.cpc.ncep.noaa.gov/products/CFSv2/htmls/glbz700e3Mon.html
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noza..thanks for all the updates, just wondered if you knew when this heatwave in europe was due to end? the glaciers are not looking to healthy!
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letelemarker, this is probably the peak of "la Canicule" still very hot for a few more days, but cooling by the weekend. Still looks above average temperature wise as September pulls in, but not on the current scale.

The end of August almost always sees the glaciers looking pretty disheveled (though I've hit 40cm of fresh in Hintertux in the past). On the plus side the snow in April (and heavy snow in December and January) will have helped them build up some strength, on the downside an often very warm summer will have had it's impact.
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Thanks for these - always interesting to see these develop, especially from as far out as May.

Is there a short-ish answer that laypeople can understand to the following two questions:

1) how likely is there to be an above-average amount of early-season (November-January) snow in the Alps (say France and Switzerland)?
2) how likely is there to be an above-average amount of mid-season (February/March) snow in the Alps (France and Switzerland)?

Thanks
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boardiac wrote:
Thanks for these - always interesting to see these develop, especially from as far out as May.

Is there a short-ish answer that laypeople can understand to the following two questions:

1) how likely is there to be an above-average amount of early-season (November-January) snow in the Alps (say France and Switzerland)?
2) how likely is there to be an above-average amount of mid-season (February/March) snow in the Alps (France and Switzerland)?

Thanks


Hi boardiac the short is it is simply not possible to tell at this range.

Sometimes over autumn you may see a pattern developing which may develop, sometimes not.

So far this year there has been a switch towards El Nino conditions and this looks likely to increase in the coming months, that said it looks like it will be weak to moderate rather than strong, and possibly may fade quite quickly. Either way ENSO doesn't have a close correlation with snowfall in the Alps (it can do in the US and can often mean less snow in the PNW which does much better out of La Nina years in general).

There has been some suggestion in CFS in the last couple of months that winter may start with a positive NAO (mild and wetter over the northern Alps) and more recently a few indications of a more negative NAO (colder and drier over the northern Alps) as we go through winter. But I really would not put much faith in that.

So at this stage the honest answer is I don't know and I don't think anyone else does either.
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The recent extreme heat in parts of France broke records for maximum temperatures in many places.

Here's a couple from Sunday 20 August (previous records in brackets).

- Val d’Isère (Savoie) (altitude 1850 m) : 28,3°C (26,9°C le 04/08/2003)
- L’Aiguille du Midi (Massif du Mont-Blanc, 3845 m) : 13,4°C (13°C le 23/07/1995)

[Meteo France]
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A good piece from Wasatch Weather Weenies.

Seasonal Forecast Insanity

With a helpful graphic from Powder magazine.
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ENSO rising to +0.96, comfortably in El Niño country.

http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/enso/monitoring/nino3_4.png
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An article from New Scientist:

Arctic sea ice Set to hit record low within days

And here's an earlier piece from NOAA:

Summer weighing heavily on Greenland ice sheet

That same high pressure blocking over Greenland has caused low pressure systems to take a more southerly track across Europe this summer (a -NAO) leading to a very unsettled summer with heavy rain in many places at times.
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Here's La Chaine Meteo's seasonal outlook.

Prévisions saisonnières jusqu'à l'hiver 2013

November: A trend towards below average temperatures in a N/NW flow, favourable to heavy snowfall in the northern Alps.

December: Seasonal, no particular anomaly present.

Winter 2012/13: A trend towards cold weather from January, snowier in February.

Obviously at this range I would take this with a heavy dose of salt!

That said there is some support for this in the CFS model (and I imagine La Chaine Meteo's forecast will have drawn from this) which suggests a +NAO early season becoming a -NAO as we move through into January and February with blocking high pressure building towards Greenland.
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Quote:

a heavy dose of salt!

no! That's not at all good for the snow.

Very sudden change here this evening, in the northern French alps. Been very hot for weeks, now much colder, and some rain about. Pluie/neige limit only 2100m tomorrow, though rising afterwards. Would be nice to see a dusting on the hills. Little Angel
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pam w, I can't wait to see those webcams with a sprinkle of White on them!!!
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Mont Blanc just emerged from the clouds - looking much whiter and fresher than yesterday! snowHead Only high up though!
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Brrr. It was looking so lovely I had to have supper out on the terrace, to take in the fantastic mountain view (I'm going home tomorrow) but it was only 8 degrees. Until yesterday it was still warm enough to eat out in a T shirt!
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The end of the week should see a further brief cooler push as we move into autumn. Any snow looks like being focussed on the eastern Alps, but could fall down to 2000m, which should freshen up the glaciers. The first faintest hints perhaps of the winter to come.

Here's a good piece on the NOAA's CSI team and their investigations into the culprits behind the cold 2009/10 winter.

Forensic meteorology solves the mystery of record snows
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Hintertux is white today!
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Still looking good for a short snowy spell above 2000m to welcome September. Looks like between 5cm to 30cm at the end of the week into Saturday, more so in the eastern Alps. Obviously it won't last long, but a little appetiser looks possible.
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nozawaonsen, I get married on september 15th in Manchester. Any ideas on the weather outlook for then???
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Ricklovesthepowder wrote:
nozawaonsen, I get married on september 15th in Manchester. Any ideas on the weather outlook for then???


Bit far out to be honest.

But, for the UK the first week of September looks likely to be heavily influenced by high pressure, so for much of the country this could translate to more settled, mild and sunny conditions. The north of the UK and Scotland may be a little more unsettled at times, but the overall pattern has been cropping up in run after run so I'd be fairly confident about it.

At present it looks like breaking down at the end of the first week with low pressure pushing in from the Atlantic. But that's already ten days out so a lot of uncertainty. As for 15 September, maybe a few more ideas by the start of next week.

In any case whatever the weather I'm sure the wedding will be great, just keep the speeches short, the guests well fed and the drink flowing. And turn the music up.
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Quote:

which should freshen up the glaciers.

Having been up to the fast shrinking La Plagne (Chiaupe) Glacier today, that will be most welcome as it is a most unattractive shade of slate grey at the moment Sad
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Yes, this time of year the glaciers often look rather raggedy. And the record breaking temperatures in August won't have helped.

On the subject of records Arctic Ice now below the 2007 low.

Arctic sea ice extent breaks 2007 record low

As is often the case with climate some have now challenged the basis on which the records are kept.

Meanwhile it still looks good for some early autumn fresh snow in the Alps above 2000m at the end of the week into the weekend. The eastern Alps in particular. Bergfex suggesting 50cm+ for Hintertux.
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Snow is coming in the Alps Thursday and Friday.
Vorarlberg - Austria: http://vorarlberg.orf.at/news/stories/2547739/
Italy: http://qn.quotidiano.net/cronaca/2012/08/29/764521-meteo-maltempo-neve-freddo-weekend.shtml
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nozawaonsen, its the first time in recorded history that the peak of Snaefellsjokull over here has been ice free as well.

Still summer is most definitely on it's way out and snow on the way back!
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It sleeted at the top of Nevis range today... winter is here Very Happy
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What was the '07/'08 snow records like for the Alps after all that arctic ice melt in the summer of '07. Is it possible that all that ice melt leads to cooler ocean temps, and increased percipitation? Too be sure, there are many other factors but I guess we will just have to wait and see how things shape up this winter.
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kerekip wrote:
Snow is coming in the Alps Thursday and Friday.
Vorarlberg - Austria: http://vorarlberg.orf.at/news/stories/2547739/
Italy: http://qn.quotidiano.net/cronaca/2012/08/29/764521-meteo-maltempo-neve-freddo-weekend.shtml


Few flurries expected in France too. Val Thorens reckons it's getting some.
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Toadman, there is certainly some research that indicates that the reduction in Arctic sea ice may be a factor which contributes to increased blocking and increased snow fall.

" We conclude that the recent decline of Arctic sea ice has played a critical role in recent cold and snowy winters." [ Impact of declining Arctic sea ice on winter snowfall. http://pubs.giss.nasa.gov/abs/li00600k.html ]

But depending where a block sets itself up it can also lead to decreased snowfall. A lot about the impact of low Arctic sea ice is of course unknown and I guess we will start to find out in the coming years unless the trend reverses itself.

Back to the shorter term and some early autumn snow is certainly on the cards for parts of the Alps above 1800m in the next few days, particularly the eastern Alps. Here's the latest GFS ensembles near to Hintertux.

Hintertux.
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Here's SLF's forecast for the snow over the Alps in the next couple of days

Snowfall to below 2000 m, increase in avalanche danger particularly in high alpine regions http://www.slf.ch/lawineninfo/lawinenbulletin/nationale_lawinenbulletins/index_EN

"... on Friday night [the snowfall level will] drop further to 1600 m. By midday on Saturday, 1 September... above 3000 m: northern flank of the Alps, 60 to 100 cm; Valais, Ticino and Grisons, 30 to 60 cm. At 2000 m on the northern flank of the Alps, 10 to 20 cm of fresh fallen snow is anticipated; in the Valais, in Ticino and in Grisons, as much as 10 cm of snowfall."
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first pics of 2012/13 alps snow Smile

from http://www.latania.co.uk/blog/?p=3658

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Dustings at L2A, Val T, and Tignes also. Sounds like it's fairly prevalent above about 2000m.

Someone at work just had a new snowboard delivered.

Val T opens in about 80 days time!
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Now the clouds have cleared a bit, I can see some on the hills around the lake. Definitely below 2000m!
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This summer now over has seen a strongly negative NAO.

That's on a par with the negative NAOs of winter 2009 and winter 2010. Strong high pressure blocking over Greenland forced the jet on a far more southerly route than normal producing often very wet weather especially in June and July (see some of the stormy weather in Styria in an earlier post).

It would be odd for it to remain strongly negative all through autumn and winter. At present there are some indications in CFS seasonal pressure anomaly charts for a more positive NAO in early winter with a return to northern blocking in January and February.

As for El Niño, ENSO has dropped to +0.78 according to BOM. Looking at CFS again it looks like any El Niño might be weak and short lived (returning to neutral even as early as December).


Last edited by You need to Login to know who's really who. on Mon 3-09-12 7:42; edited 1 time in total
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Generally warmer, if at times unsettled, weather returning to the Alps now and above average temperatures looks set for most places for the next week or so (Thursday night looks a little chilly).

Looking back at last year there was some early snow on 27 August 2011. Not as heavy as the snow at the end of last week, but notable for the sudden drop in temperatures (and subsequent rise).

Ski Amade Snow Report: 2011/2012

Out west the Farmer's Almanac has put out some forecasts for the US and Canada, as ever with a LRF I'd be pretty cautious about how much weight to put on it. The dry and warmer than usual PNW is in line with what you might anticipate during an El Niño year.

Will Winter Return With a Vengeance? "We think it will be a “winter of contraries, as if Old Man Winter were cutting the country in half. The eastern half of the country will see plenty of cold and snow. The western half will experience relatively warm and dry condition."

Will Winter Return to Canada? "The eastern half of Canada will see plenty of cold and snow. The western half will experience relatively warm and dry conditions.”

As ever what you ask for and what you get can differ...


http://youtube.com/v/Gq1y5nMj8wY
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Keeping a vague eye out to mid month for RLTPs wedding... Looks like the warm spell will be basically in place till 11 September. Mid month could see the remnants of a hurricane reaching the UK and a bit of a breakdown. A lot will depend on the track it takes as it could end up reinforcing the high pressure.
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ENSO rises again to +0.92.

http://www.bom.gov.au/climate/enso/monitoring/nino3_4.png
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nozawaonsen, Hi. Any better ideas of the weather for the 15th September when I get married in Manchester? Cheers
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A good round up from SLF on August in Switzerland.

Above average warmth, plenty of sunshine and snow down to mid levels at the end of the month
http://www.slf.ch/lawineninfo/wochenbericht/2011-12/0801/index_FR

- 3.5C above average in the Alps during August.
- During 01 September snow line briefly fell to 1300m.
- Between 31 August and 02 September snowfall above 2000m

30-50cm western side of the Northern Alps
15-30cm Northern Valais
15cm Central Valais

Undoubtedly larger amounts of fresh snow at higher altitudes.

Ricklovesthepowder, the current fine weather in much of the UK looks like breaking down early next week with the arrival of a series of former tropical storms, uncertainty about the track of these storms is making it very tricky to get a feel for how the weather might look by the 15 September for the time being.
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nozawaonsen, Cheers. Have you got a link for these tropical storms so I can track them please?


Thanks.
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