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Fall 2005 / Winter 2006 outlook - 11.18.05


A long range look ahead to climate patterns for fall and winter of 2006


Some say that weather is what happens when you're watching the climate patterns. This means that climate is a long-term pattern in a given area of the country and weather is the day-to-day events that flow through the climate pattern. In Doc Weather, understanding the climate pattern is the most dominant feature of the research. Once the climate pattern is established for a particular year then the extreme events possible for that pattern are researched to form an analog year. The extreme weather events for the analog year are then used as a research tool for prediction. Since the climate patterns are linked to the eclipse positions in Doc Weather, the most fundamental requirement for setting up charts to find analog years is to locate years in the past that had the same eclipse positions that the current year will have. These similar positions are used to determine the potentials for a specific climatic pattern to unfold in the future.


Fig.1


Fig.1
eclipse points October 2005

In 2006 the early eclipse period is from January to February. This time period has the eclipse points that were generated in October 2005. These points are illustrated in figure 1.The most recent analog year for this period is the period from January to April 1996. The eclipse points for that period were generated in the eclipses of October 1995. These points are depicted in figure 2.


Fig.2


Fig.2
eclipse points October 1995

By comparing the two figures we can see that the eclipse points in both charts generate a congruence of lines over the Great Basin. In the winter of the year 2006 we can look to the extreme events of the winter of 1996 in search of analogs to build a forecast. The information for this comparison can be found in the online version of the Weekly Weather and Crop Bulletin .In this publication the period between January 1996 and March 1996 provides an analog for the same period in 2006.


Fig.3


Fig.3
oct 95 to feb 96 pressure anomalies

The eclipse grid for the winter of 2006 (figure 1) shows that the 72° jet curves are over the extreme western portion of North America. This feature should be the weather maker in the early winter. In the analog winter of 1996 (figure3) this area produced a blocking pattern in western Canada that pushed the jet stream to the north on the West Coast and amassed cold air over western Canada. This flowed south along the mountains dropping temperatures in the Great Lakes area and also providing a strong impetus for below normal temperatures in the states east of the Mississippi.

This same pattern featured prominently in another analog year to 2006, the winter of 1986-87 when the eclipse points were positioned in a similar arrangement. The winter of that year was very cold in the Great Lakes. This was due to the placement of a persistent high latitude high-pressure area over western Canada.


Fig.4


Fig.4

The southern High Plains and southern Central states had temperatures that were above normal in the winter of 1996. As a part of the blocking pattern that produced the high-pressure over Canada, a high-pressure area over the southern Central and High Plains states kept skies clear in this region for extended periods. The winter of 1996 was dry for these areas. The eclipse points from October 1995 were also active in the winter of 1996. The fall period of 1995 was the driest on record for California. This was due to a strong high-pressure impulse on the 72° jet curve from the eastern pair of eclipse points that was being actively aspected by Saturn. We can see the high in figure 3. At that time, there was also high-pressure support from Jupiter strategically placed in an approach mode to the disturbance diamond area over the Western States. The high that was centered over the complex web of jet curves making up the diamond, extended from the southern Central and High Plains up into western Canada successfully blocking the Pacific jet from dropping south of Mt. Shasta in the fall of 1995. This is a pattern to bear in mind when planets stand in high-pressure aspects to the eclipse points in these placements. This pattern has played out in a very similar way in California for this present fall of 2006. Rainfall for September, October and November is only at 12% of normal.

In the chart for 1995, we can see that further east, the 45° jet curves from the eastern pair of eclipse points are bracketing the East Coast. In the fall of 1995 the easternmost 45° jet curve was being aspected to high-pressure from the points over the eastern Atlantic. This pattern supported the formation of the Greenland Block. In figure 3 this is depicted by the orange and red area in the north Atlantic near Greenland. This block occurs when high-pressure masses form over Greenland and push the jet stream to the south on the East Coast. This brings cold and stormy weather to the Northeast and Mid Atlantic coast. In November and December 1995, and January 1996 the Greenland Block was a strong element in the climate patterns for the winter due to a prolonged aspect between Saturn on station retrograde over Africa and the two eclipse points. An outer planet moving on station in proximity to the eclipse points often dominates the climate regime for that season. This was a case where Saturn moving slowly in the vicinity of the eastern pair for six weeks, profoundly influencing the climate patterns accordingly.

In 1995, at the same time that Saturn was aspecting the easternmost 45° jet curve to high-pressure to support the Greenland Block (red curve), it was simultaneously aspecting the western 45° jet curve to moderate low pressure (orange curve). This jet curve was in the longitude of Hudson Bay during this aspect. Climatologically, Hudson Bay is a dominant low-pressure center at this time in the year. The prolonged presence of the Saturn retrograde low-pressure aspect on the western 45° jet curve allowed this sensitive area to dominate the fall months in the eastern third of the nation with persistent low-pressure events. Coupled with the high-pressure influence from Saturn on the eastern 45° jet curve a protracted climatic pattern of the negative NAO unfolded for these months leading into December 1995. Negative NAO is a pattern where the Greenland Block forms in the northeast region of the Maritimes and a trough forms due south of Hudson Bay(blue area on the east coast in figure 4). Cold drops down from the north into the trough and travels to the East Coast. This pattern was strong in November and December of 1995 and also for the record cold pattern that settled into the United States during the spring of 1996. This pattern bears watching for the winter of 2006 since the eclipse grid is similar to1995-96.

Other analog years of 1986-87 and 1976-77 support these patterns. In general, the western sections of the continent should be drier and milder than normal with rains coming in strong bursts that punctuate extended dry periods. Wetness should be stronger to the north than in the south all across the continent. Look for the Great Lakes area to be the site of unusual cold conditions that should extend east into New England. In the analog years there were heavy lake effect snows in the Great Lakes in early winter and as the winter developed the Northeast became a center for storm activity.