Milder air brings the rain

Good Saturday to one and all. Old Man Winter is cutting us a bit of a break this weekend with some milder temps pushing in. This milder air will also bring an increase in rain and gusty winds before the weekend is over. That won’t last long as much colder air returns for Thanksgiving week.

A couple of showers will try to pop early today, but we should see a lot of dry weather. Highs today soar well into the mid and upper 50s as winds pick up from the southwest.

Current temperatures

A strong area of low pressure develops to our west tonight and Sunday. That will lift northward into the western Great Lakes by Sunday night. That’s a path that will bring a big increase in wind and heavy rain:

NAMMuch colder air will slowly filter in behind that system on Monday.

I’m also keeping watch on the upcoming busy Thanksgiving travel period. A lot is going on in the atmosphere and the models are responding in the way I said they would… with trouble. They are having a difficult time in determining which system to develop and which system blows up.

The GFS Ensembles show the possibility of a more phased system by late Wednesday and Thanksgiving. Check out how energy dives in from Canada and merges with a disturbance moving in from the south…

Euro

Some kind of system should come out of all that, but the details are still murky to say the least. Most models do agree that some snow will be possible on Thanksgiving…

GFS 2

As always, we shall see.

Make it a great day and take care.

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The winter forecast

Old Man Winter has invaded the Bluegrass State much earlier than normal this year. We’ve had record snows and cold across Kentucky in recent weeks. Can we expect more of the same as we roll into the actual winter season? Let’s find out with the winter forecast.

We seem to be in a period of colder-than-normal winters across our part of the world, and I don’t see that changing this winter. Many of the factors I look at on a global and local scale argue for a cold and snowy winter across Kentucky.

LOCAL WEATHER

The current pattern we’re in is very similar to that of 1976. The winter of 1976-77 was legendary, with record-breaking cold and snow that covered the ground for many days. It’s important to remember that no two winters are the same, but similar patterns often feature reasonably similar results.

2000 is another fall that seems to have been similar to the one we are in now.

GLOBAL CONNECTIONS

The first factor I look at is the state of the Pacific Ocean. The waters near the equator are beginning to warm, and we are moving into a weak to moderate El Niño.

WinterWeak El Niños tend to feature lower-than-normal temperatures across the eastern half of the country. They also can supply energy for an active southern jet stream. That active jet is already showing itself this fall, with big storms working in from the Deep South.

Another big factor continues to be the abnormally warm water off the West Coast and in the Gulf of Alaska. That warmer-than-normal water has been there since last winter, and that was one of the main drivers of the pattern last year.

That warm water helps promote a blocking high across western Canada and in Alaska.

Winter 2That forces the jet stream to then take a big dip across the eastern half of the country, with cold air flooding in from the north.

Winter 3One of the other factors is the huge buildup of fall snow cover across the Northern Hemisphere. Many studies suggest that a rapid and substantial buildup of October snow across Eurasia tends to promote blocking across the North Pole. That air then gets displaced and can find its way into the United States. We saw that several times last winter and have seen it already this November.

 THE FORECAST

What does all that mean for our weather in Kentucky? Here’s a look at what I expect:

Winter 5As you can see, I expect January to have the coldest departures from normal. December is likely to feature a lot of back-and-forth with temperatures, and it should have some substantial cold shots to skew us below normal. February might start cold, but the harsh winter breaks around mid-month.

Temperatures are much easier to forecast than snowfall, but with an active southern jet stream colliding with a supply of cold coming in from the north, things can get busy. The call is for above-normal snowfall across the region. Here are some numbers:

Winter 6Last winter I made a bold prediction that Lexington would set a record low for the first time since February 1996. We did just that. What’s the bold prediction for this winter? This is the winter we finally get the “big one.” We haven’t had a widespread double digit snowstorm since the infamous “dusting” of February 1998. The pattern for this winter suggests that streak comes to a snowy end.

Happy winter and take care.

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Big temperature changes ahead

Good Thursday, everyone. We continue to be in the deep freeze across Central and Eastern Kentucky. Low temperatures have made history in recent days, but it’s more of a wild ride in front of us. Cold … mild … then cold again.

Highs Thursday will range from the upper 20s in the north to the mid-30s across the south. Gusty winds will make it feel even colder as a few snow flurries dance about our sky.

Track whatever is showing up out there:

Current temperatures

Milder air pushes in for the weekend and might bring a touch of sleet by Friday night. Showers set in for Saturday as temps slowly rise. Heavy rain and wind look to become common for Sunday:

EuroSome rumbles of thunder will be possible as this storm wraps up and passes by to our west. This thing will crank up by Sunday night and Monday. Check this thing out:

Euro 2

That’s a lot of wind and falling temps on Monday. Much colder air swings back in for Thanksgiving week. The pattern is going to try to throw a couple of winter systems our way before the holiday period is finished. We will have to fine-tune those as we get closer.

If you’re a fan of winter, you will want to check back Thursday evening. That’s when I release my winter forecast.

Have a great day and take care.

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Check out this record

Good evening, everyone. Lexington hit 11 degrees Wednesday morning, setting a record low for the day. It doesn’t stop there:

recordYep, that 11 degree mark is the coldest we’ve ever been this early in the season. Records for Lexington go all the way back to the late 1800s.

Take care.

 

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Another arctic front arrives

Good Wednesday to one and all. Record cold continues to grip the Bluegrass State. We had a record low and a low high on Tuesday in the coldest November day since 1976. Guess what? We’ve already set a record low for Wednesday.

That happened in the first few minutes of the day when the temperature dropped to 11 degrees. You are living through a history-making cold period here. To me, the past week of cold is more impressive than any of the brutal cold shots we had last winter.

Another arctic front arrives on the scene Wednesday night and could bring a band of snow showers and flurries through the region. The NAM says some light accumulations will be possible in some areas:

NAM 2

Highs ahead of this front will spike well into the 30s Wednesday with gusty wind. Temps behind it will drop, with highs Thursday in the upper 20s and low 30s. Lows by Friday morning will be deep into the teens again.

Friday will find some milder air trying to fight in. That could lead to a period of frozen precipitation by Friday night and Saturday morning. The GFS shows this well:

GFSThat milder air means highs in the upper 40s to low 50s on Saturday with some showers. The heaviest rain comes our way by Sunday, as low pressure moves across the region from the south:

EuroHeavy rain and gusty winds will be likely on Sunday, with highs trying to spike close to 60 degrees.

Don’t get spoiled by that, because more cold air moves back in later Monday and sticks around through Thanksgiving week.

Have a great day and take care.

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Bitterly cold for November

Good Tuesday to one and all. It’s about as cold as it can possibly get this time of year in the Bluegrass State. Temperature records might fall in many areas as a few snow flurries continue to fly.

The records for Lexington look like this:

Low: 12 (1959)

Lowest high: 24 (1903)

We have a chance to break both of those Tuesday, and that’s nothing short of incredible. As a matter of fact, Tuesday should be the coldest November day we’ve had since Nov. 30,1976. That year went on to produce a brutal winter across our part of the world.

Today’s tracking tools:

Current temperatures

Wind chills might drop below zero Tuesday morning and hit single digits at times in the afternoon.

Another weak cold front will drop in from the northwest Wednesday night, and that might bring a band of light snow and flurries:

NAM

That takes us toward a mild thaw for the weekend as a big storm develops in the Plains and lifts to the north. This could be a big wind- and rainmaker in our region later in the weekend. The European Model then crushes the warm-up with colder air returning by Monday:

Euro

Colder-than-normal air returns for Thanksgiving week with this type of a setup:

Euro 3

If the European Model is correct with that setup, more wintry weather would be possible over the holiday weekend.

Have a great day and take care.

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Arctic cold surging in

Good Monday afternoon. Record snows fell on much of the Bluegrass State overnight and Monday morning. Additional snow showers and squalls will fire up in the afternoon as arctic cold surges in from the northwest.

The temperature might drop all the way into the upper single digits and low teens Monday night. Records could fall. The wind chills will be brutal Tuesday morning:

GFS

I’ve never seen numbers like that this early in the season. Never.

Let’s get back to tracking:

Current temperatures

Hamburg Area from WKYT Studio
Lexington

I-75 @ Winchester Road Lexington

I-75 @ Winchester Road

I-75 @ Clays Ferry Bridge South Between Lexington and Richmond

US 60 @ US 127 Frankfort

US60 @ US127

US 127 @ Frankfort Frankfort

US127 @ Frankfort KY

US 60 @ US 460
Frankfort
US60 @ US460

I-75 MP 127
Georgetown
I75 NB @ MP 127

I-64 MP 97
Winchester
I-64 WB @ MP 97

I-71/I-75 at Buttermilk Pike Near Covington

I-71/I-75 @ Buttermilk Pike

I-71/I-75 at Mt. Zion Rd.
Near Covington
I-71/I-75 @ Mt. Zion Rd

I-64 @ 3rd St. Exit Louisville

I-64 @ 3rd St. Exit

Downtown Louisville @ 2nd & Broadway Louisville

Downtown Louisville @ 2nd & Broadway

I-264 @ Freedom Way
Near Louisville International Airport
I-264 @ Freedom Way

Take care.

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Tracking a major shot of winter weather

Good Monday, everyone. We’re tracking a big blast of winter weather across Central and Castern Kentucky. Snow will accumulate across much of the region early Monday. Arctic cold will follow with what amounts to a harsh January pattern in the middle of November.

But first, some headlines:

– The areas of heaviest snow will fall from the Bluegrass region into the northern and western parts of the state. Don’t be surprised to see a few 4-inch or 5-inch reports north and west of Lexington. Amounts across the south and east will be much lighter. There will be a sharp dividing line from the heavy snow to the lighter snow. This sets up across Central Kentucky.

– Arctic air surges in later Monday afternoon and evening. Snow showers and squalls will kick in and could cause some additional accumulations in some areas.

– Near record or record low temperatures will be likely Tuesday. Lows might drop into the high single digits in some areas, and highs will struggle into the low 20s. Record low high temps will be possible.

– Winds will be very gusty through Tuesday, and that might create dangerously low wind chills. I’ve never seen these kind of numbers before this early in the season:

GFS Temps

– That might be on the extreme end of the envelope, but wow!

That’s all for now, but please post the weather conditions where you live, and I will stop by later with some updates.

I leave you with a ton of tools:

Current temperatures

Hamburg Area from WKYT Studio
Lexington

I-75 @ Winchester Road Lexington

I-75 @ Winchester Road

I-75 @ Clays Ferry Bridge South Between Lexington and Richmond

US 60 @ US 127 Frankfort

US60 @ US127

US 127 @ Frankfort Frankfort

US127 @ Frankfort KY

US 60 @ US 460
Frankfort
US60 @ US460

I-75 MP 127
Georgetown
I75 NB @ MP 127

I-64 MP 97
Winchester
I-64 WB @ MP 97

I-71/I-75 at Buttermilk Pike Near Covington

I-71/I-75 @ Buttermilk Pike

I-71/I-75 at Mt. Zion Rd.
Near Covington
I-71/I-75 @ Mt. Zion Rd

I-64 @ 3rd St. Exit Louisville

I-64 @ 3rd St. Exit

Downtown Louisville @ 2nd & Broadway Louisville

Downtown Louisville @ 2nd & Broadway

I-264 @ Freedom Way
Near Louisville International Airport
I-264 @ Freedom Way

Have a great day and take care.

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Winter Weather Advisory

Good afternoon, folks. Things continue to progress nicely toward a significant blast of winter to impact our region over the next couple of days. I’ve seen nothing today that would make me think differently about how things play out. Of course, a few changes will have to be made to tighten up the snow numbers and placement. That’s always the case as we get closer to an event.

Much of the region is under a Winter Weather Advisory with a WINTER STORM WARNING out for northern and western Kentucky:

Warnings

Again, the winter weather won’t impact the Lexington metro until very late tonight and Monday morning.

Current temperatures

Another update comes later today. Take care.

 

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Tracking a winter storm into Kentucky

Good Sunday, everyone. Winter weather has been common across the region over the pasts several days. We’ve had rounds of light snow and flurries and record cold temps. Now we track a developing winter storm into the bluegrass state. This system promises to bring accumulating snows to several areas.

Let’s start things out with a look back at record cold from Saturday. My tweets do the talking:

Here’s a look at what I expect from our storm system moving in today and Monday:

– Our day will start with a period of light mix and some snow with the first wave of precipitation. Light accumulations are possible.

– Temps warm toward 40 this afternoon and early evening as another round of precipitation moves in. That will be in the form of rain for central and eastern Ky with a mix in the north and west.

– That will make the transition to snow from west to east tonight. That’s when the Lexington area will begin to see snow breaking out. That would then carry us into early Monday.

– Areas across the east and southeast will mainly see rain with a change to light snow on Monday.

You can see this progression well on the GFS:

GFS

– This is a very tough call on the snowfall because I expect a very sharp gradient to set up across central Kentucky. Here’s my best shot at the moment:

Special 2

– Those numbers and lines are certainly NOT set in stone and may get pushed around some with future updates.

– Wraparound snow showers and squalls will then become common late Monday into Monday evening. That will be on the nose of some VERY cold air moving in. Record lows will be very possible by Tuesday morning when a few spots threaten to reach the single digits. Highs Tuesday may not get out of the low and mid 20s.

Some early day tracking toys:

Current temperatures

Hamburg Area from WKYT Studio
Lexington

I-75 @ Iron Works Pike Lexington

US 60 @ US 127 Frankfort

US60 @ US127

I-75 at MP 36 London

I-75 @ MP 36

I will have updates later today so check back.

Make it a great Sunday and take care.

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