Sunday, November 2, 2014

My 2014-2015 Winter Forecast. For The Mid-Atlantic States and CONUS ! Discussion and Maps.

By John Ruggiano

November 02, 2014

From December 2014 Through February 2015 (Dec, Jan, Feb)

Another Cold Winter can be expected for the Central and Eastern CONUS. Expect higher snowfall amounts, and a more active storm track to shift further south and east this year !

A Weak El Nino Signal , along with a pronounced STJ (Subtropical Jet), will bring stormy conditions across much of the Southern US, and a good part of the Eastern 1/3rd of the Nation.

  Another cold and snowy winter is on the way, but the coldest weather and most snowfall will occur further south and east this year compared to last year. The cold air will be delivered by another -EPO signal and -AO due to a blocking type pattern. Warm SST’s continue over the Northern Pacific and near AK. This continues to promote a -EPO and + PNA signal, which allows for more ridging over the Western CONUS, Western Canada and Alaska. Colder air is then forced SE and downstream into the Central and Eastern US, very similar to last year. This will continue for this upcoming winter, but not as harsh as last years brutal cold spells.  (See Temperature Map)

With a weak El Nino (ENSO signal) expected for this year, a more active southern branch of the jet stream is likely. The Polar and Arctic Jet driven by a -EPO combined with the Southern Jet Stream driven by a weak El Nino, will produce a very active and stormy pattern for much of the Southern States, The Mid-Atlantic, and Northeast. Often We’ll see a Split Flow type pattern, Especially from Mid January into early March !

So this year things will change in comparison to last year, as the main storm track will likely be much further south, as weak El Nino conditions prevail. In addition, a more active subtropical jet can be expected. Last year we had a more pronounced Polar and Arctic jet, with a limited amount of activity from the Southern Branch. A strong -EPO and Pacific signal dominated for the most part, leaving the Midwest, Northern M/A and the NE in the Icebox with much above and record breaking snowfall.


The mean storm track for the 2014-2015 Winter Season will extend from the Southern Rockies, eastward to the SE States, and then mainly east of the Apps, through the M/A States and New England. Overrunning events will also be quite common from the Tenn/Ohio Valley into the Lower M/A States. This will also raise the flag for possible Moderate to Severe Ice Storms, from the Southern Plains, The Deep South and into parts of  the SE. This is something to be aware of this winter season. I expect plenty of this from mid January into much of February.

Clipper type systems with the Polar Jet (P/J) and Arctic Jet (A/J) will be less common, than the last year. Sure, we’ll still have a fair amount of activity with the Northern branch, but most of the energy this year will come from the STJ and the effects of a weak El Nino, with more southern storm systems.

Some of these Southern systems will get a chance to phase with the Northern branch energy, so I expect several Miller A type storms, mainly in January and February ! With this setup, a Split Flow pattern will be more common during the mid and later part of Winter. (See Storm Track Map)
This year I'm forecasting "Above Normal Snowfall" to be concentrated from the Southern Rockies into the Southern Plains. The second area will be from parts of the Deep South, into the Tenn, and Lower Ohio Valley, much of The SE, all of the M/A States, and into New England.

All other areas will be "Near Normal Snowfall", with the exception of the NW PAC and The Northern Rockies, where I'm forecasting "Below Normal Snowfall". (See Snowfall Map)

The NAO (North Atlantic Oscillation) And other key Teleconnections.

The NAO/AO couplet that I mentioned in the past is starting to show up again from this past summer into the fall. I’m seeing very similar wavelengths, and I expect this couplet to continue into the fall and winter months. The overall trends are showing Neutral to Negative wavelengths, which suggest blocking is developing. Last year the NAO was more Positive and the AO neutral to negative thanks to the -EPO helping some. SST’s over the North Atlantic do suggest more of a NEG NAO developing for this upcoming winter. So when we do see the NAO going negative, storms from the Southern Branch or STJ, will likely move up and along the Eastern Seaboard !

My Winter Forecast for The Mid-Atlantic States (M/A) and Virginia !

    The M/A and VA will see Below Normal Temps of (-1 to -3) and Above Normal Snowfall (125% to 175% of Normal Snowfall) for the 2014-2015 Winter Season !

Parts of Southern WV and the mountains of far SW VA, could see even colder temps of (-3 to -5) and Much Above Normal Snowfall (150% to 200 % of normal snowfall).

The winter season will start off slow with December being the mildest of the 3 winter months at near average temps and snowfall. Both January and February will be colder than normal with Above normal snowfall. February will be the coldest and snowiest month. As a bonus for snow fans, this could continue into early March before the pattern breaks down.

Here’s a breakdown for each month for the M/A Region, along with some forecasts for some selected areas.

December 2014
Temps: Near Avg. (-1 to +1)
Precip: Near Avg.
Snowfall: Near Normal

January 2015
Temps: Below Avg. (-1 to -3)
Precip: Above Avg.
Snowfall: Above Normal

February 2015
Temps: Below to Much Below Avg. (-2 to -5)
Precip: Above Avg.
Snowfall: Much Above Normal

My Forecast for Lynchburg, VA. (LYH)
Dec 01, 2014 - Feb 28, 2015  (Dec, Jan, Feb)

Mean Temperature: -2.0 F
(Below Avg.)

Mean Temp Range:  -1.0 to -3.0 F
(Below Avg)

Total Snowfall Range:  22" to 30"
(Above Normal)  Normal Snowfall is 17” for LYH VA.

Target Snowfall Prediction:  26"

Total Precipitation: Above Avg.

ROA  (Roanoke, VA)
Temps: -1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 26" to 34" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -2.5 F / Snowfall: 30"

CHO  (Charlottesville, VA)
Temps: -1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 24" to 32" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -2.0 F / Snowfall: 28"

RIC  (Richmond, VA)
Temps: -1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 14" to 22" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -1.5 F / Snowfall: 18"

DCA  (Washington DC)
Temps: -1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 20" to 28" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -2.0 F / Snowfall: 24"

BWI  (Baltimore, MD)
Temps: -1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 24" to 32" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -2.5 F / Snowfall: 27"

PHL   (Philadelphia, PA) 
Temps: -1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 28" to 34" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -2.5 F / Snowfall: 31"

NYC   (New York City, NY) 
Temps: =1.0 to -3.0 F (Below Avg.)
Total Snowfall: 32" to 40" (Above Normal)
Overall Forecast: Temps: -2.0 F / Snowfall: 36"


    In this segment I've attached all my maps, to summarize my overall Winter Outlook. Please see the (4) maps below: Temperature, Precipitation, Snowfall, and Overall Storm Track's. These maps best illustrate my outlook for the Months of: December, January, and February.

    These maps indicate the overall Anomalies for both "Temperatures" and "Precipitation" for the 3 month period. 
In addition I have included a “Total Snowfall Map”, relative to normal and a “Mean Storm Tracks Map”, to show the type of pattern I‘m forecasting for the winter months.

2014-2015 Temperature Map.jpg

2014-2015 Precip Map.jpg

2014-2015 Snowfall Map.jpg

2014-2015 Storm Track Map.jpg

   Take Care,

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Some thoughts and information about this blog. My Winter forecast coming Mid-November.

Hi All !

I just wanted to touch base and let you know I'm beginning to work on my Winter Forecast. I'll issue my call between Nov 10-15th.

In the past, I've issued my calls in early October, but at times found this to be premature for better accuracy and results with my overall calls. Waiting that extra month or so, better ensures a handle on the overall developing pattern, and studying the atmosphere's behavior. My goal is to deliver the best package and be at least 70% accurate with my National call.

Long range forecasting is not an exact science, nor is forecasting the weather. Mother Nature and The weather itself, will always win or beat you at some point. So, no matter how good you think you are, the weather will beat you at some point, that a fact Jack !

So moving on, I'll continue to post on my Blog during the Fall and Winter months with more frequency as we approach the Winter. I do use Facebook as another avenue in communicating my thoughts and forecasts. So please check out the Forum and Weather Page we use on a daily basis for better updates.

It's a closed group of over 400 members now, and you need to ask to join and then be approved. No drama or nonsense here, but we do have fun kidding and joking around, that's for sure. Many of the poster's and members are from the Mid-Atlantic Region and the Northeast.

Overall, it's a great group of weather enthusiasts. The Group name is "Horizon Weather Forum"

The link to the FB page can be found here:

The other information I wanted to share with YA ALL / YOUZ GUYZ, is I'm no longer living in Southern NJ and now live in SW/Central VA in good ole Lynchburg. I'm sure most of you already know this fact, but I wanted to make it more official for the folks that didn't know.

My local forecasts during this winter season will be more Central VA based, but I'll also cover the entire M/A and The Delaware Valley Region's with the bigger events.

Once again, more frequent and daily updates/thoughts will be posted on the Facebook "Horizon Weather Forum" during the Winter Season.

Take Care,

Saturday, August 2, 2014

The important driver to keep a close eye on from the Pacific !

This NEG EPO was the driving force for last Winter's Cold and overall storm track. As we know, a strong NEG EPO signal ruled for much of last winter.

The Atlantic signal was a flop, with a Neutral to Positive NAO. With a strong NEG EPO during last Winter, the Cold and Arctic air flooded the Central and Eastern CONUS for a good part of the winter. 

The Pacific signal IMO, can over-rule the Atlantic signal in a heartbeat. A bad Pacific signal (POS EPO) will in most cases negate a NEG NAO signal.

Such as last winter a POS NAO would in most case bring a milder and less stormy pattern to the East Coast, which was not the case due too a NEG EPO from the Pacific. Thus the PAC signal rules.

Here's a good illustration of a - EPO (top) vs. + EPO (bottom)

Monday, March 24, 2014

My Call: For Tuesday into Tuesday Night Snow event !

For ROA / LYH / CHO VA Areas:

Periods of Snow on Tuesday, with taper off and end by early to mid afternoon. Around 1"-2" of snow accumulation can be expected.

For The Delaware Valley Region:

Snow will develop during the mid and late morning hours and continue into Tuesday Evening. A general 2"-4" of snow can be expected with the higher amounts of 3"-4" falling from near PHL and points South and East mainly over Interior Southern/Central NJ and much of Northern DE.

The snow will mix with rain during the afternoon hours, towards Coastal Southern NJ, and over Central and Southern DE.
1"-2" can be expected in these areas.

Monday, March 17, 2014

Snowfall totals from 3-16 & 3-17 Snow event for parts of the M/A !

Wow ! If that Isn't a perfect picture of this winter's overall pattern here in the M/A ! Of course some systems further north but only few south of this map. I hate to say it for those waiting on Spring, but another Cold shot and winter sto...rm threat for the M/A and NE is looking good for the early to middle part of next week !

It's not very often, the M/A would see this much cold and snow with a neutral to positive NAO and no blocking. But, a strong and favorable Pacific EPO and PNA has be the pattern driver and force this winter. This has been sending the wave after wave of Arctic air downstream into the CONUS. With this comes numerous clippers and an occassional split flow and STJ, which has phased in to produce plenty of snow from the Midwest into parts of the M/A and NE.
Snowfall totals from 3-16 & 3-17 Snow event for M/A.

Sunday, March 16, 2014


I'm lowering snow/sleet accumulations in many areas ! This system will not be as impressive as some models are showing. Dry slot developing already and Thunderstorms over the MS Valley this morning. Storm will lose energy of Apps with downsloping effect.

Taking lessons learned from the flop storm earlier this month coming from WSW and same setup. This will be a under performer storm for many.

The only areas having a shot of 3"-6" ot 4"-8 will be Mountains of VA shown on snowfall map. Many will see a 2"-4" event and or under 4".

 A few spots in Central and Northern VA into the delmarvia could see 5" in a few spots.

Saturday, March 15, 2014

Another Winter Storm on the way for much of VA, Central and Eastern MD, and into parts of the Delaware Valley ! For Sunday Night into Monday.

Issued: 8:00 PM
Saturday 3/15/14

Here's my thoughts on this storm.

For VA: ROA/LYH/RIC: A general 3"-6" can be expected for Sunday night into Monday morning. Rain will move in during the afternoon and quickly mix with and change to IP and Snow by evening. Sleet and snow will change to all snow Sunday night and could... be moderate to heavy at times.

Extreme Southern VA to NC line. A general 1"-3" of IP and Snow.

For much of Central VA and into parts of northern VA, a general 4"-8" can be expected.

For BWI and DCA areas and into much of DE and Extreme Southern NJ (Vineland to Mays Landing and points south) ... 3"-6".

For PHL / Extreme SE PA, and into the rest of SJ, mainly north of Vineland to Mays Landing line ... 1"-3" can be expected.
Take Care,