A note from the Doc: The references to planets and constellations on this site are not astrological in nature, merely the clearest way to reference these positions and angles. For more, please read: Astrology or Astronomy »
In the fall of 2005 there was a shift in the climate pattern that happened with the shift of the first eclipse pair on October 3rd. The old solar point was at 23° Pisces creating the 45° jet curve (red curve) in a N/S placement from Cuba to Washington DC. The new solar eclipse point was at 15° Virgo (Pisces reflex) This shifted the 45°jet curve to the west at about 85° W. The new curve now runs N/S between the Florida panhandle and Lake Erie (blue curve). The old curve near Cuba influenced the Bermuda High in the summer and was influential in the active hurricane season, as hurricanes steered around the southern side of a high that kept forming on this curve in the southwestern Atlantic. The shift of the eclipse point, putting the jet curve farther to the west, quieted the extreme hurricane activity for this year.
Then, in mid-October the lunar point shifted to a position at 28° Pisces. The 45° jet curve from this point runs N/S from the eastern tip of the Maritime Provinces to the general longitude of Bermuda (red curve in figure 2). The previously mentioned jet curve is the western curve of the new pair (blue curve in figure 2) and the new lunar point is the eastern curve of the new pair. Together they bracket the East Coast for the winter of 2006 until a new eclipse in March 2006 makes another shift.
The western shift of the two eclipse points means that there will be an active force over the East Coast this Winter. The shift in the weather didn't take effect immediately but took its time to unfold. This was because the shift of the eclipse points happened in October a month that is the fulcrum for major changes in the northern hemisphere. These changes hinge on the descent of the polar jet stream from a northerly summer position to a southerly winter position. This October the eclipse shift happened in advance of the descent of the polar jet.
But when the polar jet stream finally got far enough south to make a difference a strong shift in patterns was evident. One element of this change has been that the weather has turned frigid in the Midwest. This is because the polar jet stream has now dropped to its mean winter southerly position. This shift allows incursions of cold air from Canada to pour into the United States. However, the new position of the 45° jet curves over the East Coast this winter is a feature that can bear close watching. To understand the dynamics of 45° jet curves, a comparison to a previous year can be made.
In 2001 there were also 45° jet curves placed in a very similar longitude to the 45° jet curves in the current eclipse set. The only difference was that in 2001 the 45° jet curves were curved with the concave side of the curves facing west. This was because the eclipse points (reflex points) were situated over the eastern Pacific instead of the middle Atlantic. This type of placement can be linked to a rising jet stream path as the polar jet moves from west to east. In Doc Weather this type of formation is called a berm. The jet stream coming from the west runs north up the west side of the berm. During the winter of 2001 the berm formation pushed the polar jet to the north resulting in a very warm winter pattern for the eastern third of the continent. The two berm curves (red curves) can be seen supporting a strong high-pressure area over Hudson Bay. The red arrow is the path of the mean polar jet during that year.
In contrast to this pattern, with the current set of eclipse points the 45° jet curve lines are placed with the convex side facing west, that is, towards the flow of the continental jet stream (figure4). It can be noted that the two sets of 45° jet curves are in the same geographical position. However the direction of the curve and the relationship to the central element of the eclipse disturbance diamond changes the way that the jet stream reacts to these two different configurations of jet curves.
In contrast to this the current placement tends to support a jet stream (arrow) that rises to the west and then falls into the eastern third of the nation. In Doc Weather this is known as a cascade. This placement tends to support high-pressure on the West Coast (from the disturbance diamond) and the Greenland area (High over the Maritimes from the two 45° jet curves) during the winter. This makes for dry periods on the West Coast, the inter-mountain areas and the southern High Plains with early warmth to the north as the circulation around the ridge pulls warmth into Canada. However, as the winter regime develops and the polar jet drops further to the south the tendency towards ridge formation in the west (disturbance diamond) begins to block cold from the west at high latitudes. When this happens the cold that is dammed up often breaks out when the ridge weakens or migrates and then cold surges south in strong cold outbreaks into the Midwest. The outbreaks are accompanied by fronts moving across the northern tier of states. The current rash of lake effect storms that have been bringing ice, snow and rain from the Great Lakes to the Northeast are part of this pattern. The outbreaks tend to happen at about ten day intervals. In Doc Weather the outbreaks can be linked to motion in arc events in the vicinity of the eclipse points that involve faster moving planets. The moon moving between Sagittarius and Aquarius is also often part of the outbreak pattern.
As this winter pattern develops into the future look for the cold to be enhanced in the middle of the country. The current dryness on the West Coast is likely to be an enduring pattern overall but when the ridge breaks off and places an enclosed blocking high over Alaska then the dry pattern will shift to rain in fronts as the polar jet steers around the high latitude enclosed blocking high by shifting the south. The storms in these types of situations tend to be strong, windy and short-lived like the current series of storms now moving against the West Coast. These late December storms are the first true winter storms on the West Coast for the fall of 2005. This is fairly late for the onset of winter storm season but good rains are now falling in Northern California and the PNW. Southern California is not yet part of a strong rainy pattern this fall. As more chances for high-pressure to surge to the north over the Gulf of Alaska arise this winter rains may begin to work their way to the south. With the disturbance diamond directly over Southern California it will take a special set of conditions for the track to move to the south.