Full Court Press of Winter Ahead

By Meteorologist Joe Joyce, WBZ-TV

I am not really going to bother talking about the weather upcoming for next few days…simply because it is so boring. It’s mainly cool and dry with a mix of sun and clouds…moving on! I am sure you are all aware by now.

What has me and I am sure all of you jazzed what lies ahead for this weekend and beyond! So let’s get to it. Just like in a basketball game, suddenly this winter has gone on the offensive and is going into a full court press. You may not know it yet..but the weather is starting to line up for plenty of cold with the chance for a few snowstorms before the month is through.

Obviously, this far out in the game we are just having fun tossing the ball around…but the pressure will mount as these storms start to bear down.

High pressure is currently parked over Greenland. This is a very typical blocking pattern in a negative North Atlantic Oscillation. The Arctic Oscillation will remain negative straight through mid-January as well. These are all favorable signs for cold, troughs and storm formation across the northeast.

 This high will gradually start to move westward this week towards Hudson Bay. This will push energy and cold down into the continental US and spill right into a deepening trough in the eastern US.  This energy will combine with energy coming from the Southwest US along the subtropical Jetstream. When and Where these two merge is the big question. But all signs show a merging and deepening off the  mid-Atlantic coast with another intensifying storm off the coast of New England in the late Friday-Saturday timeframe. This storm will gel south of us, then deepen east of us and possibly back into us before pulling away. 

Of course this far out plenty of variables are still in play so anything can happen really. But it does appear we have a storm to deal with.. which will likely provide a plowable snow and strong winds at the coast again. I do not think this will be as powerful a storm as the last…but is still could come with a wallop depending on how and where it deepens! The potential for over 6″ of snow is certainly there…but again…too much can happen between now and then to nail anything down now.

Once this storm leaves…colder air will continue to press down from Canada. Setting the table for the next storm. Again the combination of energy spilling in from the Northwest and linking up with energy from the Southwest US will be the origins of another possible storm in the January 12th-13th timeframe. This storm has the makings of being even stronger than the storm that will likely affect us this weekend. With cold arctic air charging south with an active polar jet, clashing in with warmer moist air supplied by the southern jet, this second storm will certainly have more moisture to play with as a low should track out of the Gulf of Mexico and then up the eastern seaboard.

Impossible to say at this point where that will track inside or east…but there will be so much cold in the pattern it is hard to see anything but snow..even if the low tracks over the Cape! So round 2 in the middle of next week has real potential as well. Behind this storm…guess what?…more cold where the coldest air of the season will likely settle in. ..just in time for the heart of winter! Best bet is to just focus on round 1…but I know you are curious so why not talk about it…that is what this blog is here for right?

Again..we are just tossing the ball around right now. A simple game of toss. Nothing but pure speculation at this point. But you and I know what time it is.  The deck is stacked. It is just a matter if all the cards fall into place at just the right time. Nothing to do now but wait and enjoy the fair weather….and keep and eye on the not so distant future!

Comments

One Comment

  1. WeatherWizard says:

    Thanks Joe and Happy New Year!

  2. WeatherWizard says:

    I wonder if we will have any Patriots’ playoff games in the snow?

  3. JimmyJames says:

    Happy New Year Joe and I can’t wait for late week and beyond tracking POTENTIAL snow. The Snow Index might get a good workout before the month of January is over.

  4. Scott says:

    Thanks for the update Joe, that was perfectly said. We shall see what happens in the next few days. I think it’s safe to say that their arnt any thaws in sight. So any snow that does fall with be hanging around for quite some time.

  5. kat says:

    Happy New year, Joe. And thanks for the insight into what MAY come. As a snow lover, I hope it all comes to fruition…..althought the bones aren’t aching yet…lol

    1. shotime says:

      Too soon for any joint aching, at least for me. Mine usually start the day before. I’ve heard it has something to do with barometric pressure change???? Kat, did your bones ever end up aching before the last storm?

  6. leo says:

    Thanks Joe, Great blog! Keep up the good work!

  7. Mazza says:

    Cant wait till Friday

  8. leo says:

    I understans the 18z GFS ?doesnt hold much weight in the forecasting community but what about the 00zGFS? Is that a much better model run?Thanks!

    1. Hadi says:

      12z and 00z was much better, they initialize better and have more data to use.

  9. Hadi says:

    Thanks Joe!! Really appreciate your thoughts and efforts in the blog. It should be an interesting 10 days ahead!! Btw here is EURO for next week in anyone is interested::))

    http://meteocentre.com/models/explorateur.php?lang=en&map=na&run=12&mod=ecmwf&stn=PNM&hh=216&comp=1&run2=12&mod2=ecmwf&stn2=PNM&hh2=240&fixhh=1

  10. leo says:

    Are we going to have a strong high pressure to the north for the next system or a weaker high? Thanks!

  11. leo says:

    Thanks Hadi! Enjoy your blogs also!

  12. RMB says:

    Joe thanks again and Happy NewYear as well..

  13. leo says:

    Im afraid to go to florida at the end of February, dont want to miss a storm! Is that sick or what? Cant help it though!

    1. Cat966G says:

      Thats why i take my winter vacations in late march or early april

  14. BaileyMan says:

    Well nice job and analysis Joe but, I do think you are definitely underplaying the potential of this first upcoming late week and/or weekend storm threat! Due to the alignment of the upper level winds along with counterclockwise upper wind dynamics, the storm could easily retrograde enough getting caught within the vortex of circulation aloft, allowing the storm to stack and temporarily stall or, barely crawl within the center of the atmospheric “whirlwind”. Meanwhile being re-energized by packets of energy rotating around the area of low pressure circulation perhaps as low as 968 mbs! Before being bumped far enough off the coast sometime Sunday allowing precipitation to taper off and end! The way I see it the potential is there for at least 10 to 20 inches of snow! ~ Or more, should the storm intensify and slow down even further than current models suggest?! Now I do need to point out, I am in NO way predicting this will definitely occur! In other words, I will not take a stab at the forecast until Wednesday. We all know computer models are sophisticated but, when predicting future events, especially ones that entail potentially powerful storms, it is prudent to be cautious and understanding that things can and sometimes do change!

    1. Hadi says:

      Always well said BM

    2. Scott says:

      Either way, we are in a cold and snowy pattern. Hopefully the models don’t do a 180 on us by morning.

    3. TomfromActon says:

      baileyman are you a met? you are pretty good!

      1. Topkatt88 says:

        BaileyMan is a seasoned veteran met, probably older than I am. ;-)

  15. JimmyJames says:

    Leo I am going away in February for a few days so I hope we have a boring weather pattern or if it is going to snow I hope it will be a MINOR event.

  16. john says:

    Baileyman is so awesome…he is the best on this whole blog…he’s been right with every storm…almost like he controls the weather…god is that you?

  17. john says:

    I’m just kidding…I know its not god but by my count he has been right on each storm so far.

  18. smitty says:

    haha john baileyman may be a good met but topkatt is better, if it was a competition it would be no contest lol

  19. Hadi says:

    Btw not sure if anyone posted this earlier fromHPC

    http://www.hpc.ncep.noaa.gov/discussions/pmdepd.html

  20. joejoycewbz says:

    I certainly am underselling this storm at this point. I do not want to be accused of starting the “Hype” so early. Best to have a few more runs come in. But don’t think I have not thought exactly what Baileyman so eloquently stated. I don’t think I could say it so perfectly if I wanted to. Well done! A sizeable storm is certainly in the works…if it all comes together…

    1. Hadi says:

      Please don’t worry about what some people say Joe!! You do a great job!!
      Please always tell us what you really think hype or not:))

  21. BaileyMan says:

    Thanks for the kind words John ah but a “bit tongue and cheek” hey?! Loll and this winter season I have been pretty lucky to this point…I must say! But, the season is young and well? You know…. By the end of the winter season I’m sure I will have missed prognosticated a few. But, I hope I didn’t just jinx myself with the next storm now! And yes, Topkatt who is without equal on this, and perhaps any blog is one of the most versed and knowledgeable mets I have ever come across! As for me, I have dabbled in forecasting but in the distant uh hmm! past? Let’s just say! And I’ll keep my past a bit of a secret too at my ripe old age of 51. Does that top you Topkatt? Or, Brian? Sorry…Lol

    1. Topkatt88 says:

      Geez go out shopping and I come back to all this? Good thing I DVR’d the Bruins, because I need to watch that now while I start looking over these weather charts. So, you’re 51 eh? I’m only 43, so you have me beat on the year thing!

      Great blogs btw. Always like your analysis whether I agree with your conclusions or not. :-)

  22. matt says:

    seasonable temps this week . after seasonably warm and moist over the holiday weekend. the models are agreeing that a coastal storm will form off the coast. there are 2 scenerios that i give 40 percent chances of happening one a massive storm hits all of southern new england. with a possible mix for boston southern areas. and coast. 2 we get snow but not the most northorn new england gets the most. as the storm streangthens in gulf of maine. 3 which is 20 percent it goes out to see and brushes us another storm for mid week next week

  23. Douglas Cote says:

    In case anyone is interested, this site has a pretty decent aggregation of models and a helpful tutorial discussing how to read the maps:

    http://www.meteo.psu.edu/ewall/ewall.html

    1. lorrie51 says:

      Thank you, Douglas; for those of us who are really, really amatures, it is an interesting site.

  24. mark says:

    joe your a total wack job,chill out and forecast the weather.

  25. RexRyan says:

    joe, great blog. Appreciate you letting us know what the potential is with the upcoming storm. I for one am concerned the storm will be too far OTS or more for northern new england. I am pulling for the 18Z DGEX. Keep up the good blogs Joe..

  26. john says:

    Haha…I have to admit baileyman I think you’ve been lucky a little so far…you have gone out on a limb a couple times well in advance of these storms and have nailed them…topkatt I agree within 48 hours of the storm he is as good as any met on tv…well just a notch below barry and harvey. Whya re people always jumping on joe…I find him to be very “anti hype” and after barry and harvey I think him and matt noyes are the most accurate…good job joe…keep it up…if u want hype

    If you want hype go see pete

  27. BaileyMan says:

    this is BaileyMan but for some reason i can not get on my last blog and i want to! so i will blog my comment next under the name baileymanTo

  28. baileymanTo says:

    I would definitely be doing the same but, then again, this is a blog and the anonymity of such a media makes us all bolder then we might otherwise be. And when you miss on a blog? It’s just some blogger and one can lay low for a time! Lol As for you television mets?! The acknowledgement you get for nailing a storm, as great as it gets! Pales in comparison to totally being bamboozled by some fickle data and computer runs! So I wish you the best always Joe! You’re an excellent met that’s why you’re on WBZ!

  29. BaileyMan says:

    I am really upset with this blog my beginning statement was cut out?! No idea why?
    What I said was Topkatt is without question one of the most versed and knowledgeable mets anywhere period! And I value his insight and look forward to his blogs! And Joe, you are one of the most professional and polished mets on television in any venue! Your presentation is excellent and your forecasting skills are equally good! So I look forward to your forecasts and appreciate your feedback on these blogs! And by the way, I loved your Christmas day message on your blog!!! Couldn’t have agreed more!!

  30. BaileyMan says:

    thanks douglas i actually did not have that particular site i look into it now
    by the way, does anyone have any ideas as to what, why, or, how? all those 5000 plus bluebirds and 100 thousand fish died?? real weird!

    1. Merlin says:

      I heard it was fireworks that got the birds up in the night time and they don’t fly in the night so they were flying into each other and anything else,. Don’t know about the fish though.

  31. Topkatt88 says:

    I’m impressed with the GFS this week.
    And I’m impressed with the general agreement between it and the Euro.

    The only thing I wish was that the event wasn’t 5 days away so I could start talking about snow amounts for Saturday. But, it’s gonna snow. That I know.

    1. RMB says:

      Topkatt just want to make sure, this is you rught?? :) This blog has not been normal lately..

      1. Topkatt88 says:

        Yes it’s me RMB. There are always ways you can tell it’s the real me and not the fake me. ;-) Pay attention long enough and you’ll be able to tell easily.

  32. ChrisT says:

    Baileyman, Topkatt are both excellent period! DIFFERENT STYLES BUT THEY KNOW THEIR STUFF!

  33. smm77 says:

    Joe and everyone on this blog I really appreciate and look forward to reading your comments on a daily basis. I hope I can take something from all of you someday and provide some of my own insight. I’ve been into weather since a very young age when I would watch the weather channel for hours upon end. Thanks to the wbz weather team and all you bloggers for making this a great place to come talk about the weather!

    1. Topkatt88 says:

      I remember coming home from high school in 1982 and watching TWC for about an hour while I ate cereal or pizza or whatever I was in the mood for.

      And I mean no disrespect to the current TWC, but I thought it was a much better network back then. They had an excellent lineup of mets both behind the scenes and on camera.

      1. smm77 says:

        Definitely agree with you on that Topkatt. I do enjoy Jim Cantore.

      2. Brad Guay says:

        Hahaha I used to do the exact same thing when I was in elementary school!

      3. lorrie51 says:

        I totally agree, Topkatt88 — today it is sensationalism, commercialism — ever since NBC/Universal bought them, they are not the same…missing too many of the former mets….

  34. hcarool says:

    Baileyman, I heard they were investigating on that mystery today. I can wait for their conclusion

  35. BaileyMan says:

    i hope its not the end of times? jk ..well?.. but, so many people have been blogging about it and coming up with a ton of scary theories. it is strange and an enigmatic occurance will be interesting to see how or if? they find an answer and smm77 glad you enjoy this blog and feel free to throw in your 2 cents with the rest of us regarding the weather!!! nite all ..got to sleep to teach those pesky college and grad students! be safe cant wait for the latest computer runs and the entailed saga that goes with them tomorrow! peace

    1. Uncover says:

      Similar events to this have happened several times before around the world and they never figure out what happens, and as you may have guessed, the world did not end.

  36. ChrisT says:

    who is baileyman??????????????????????????? my guess todd gross?

    1. Uncover says:

      I am still going with ImAlwaysRight

      1. Topkatt88 says:

        It is IAR.

  37. DannyG says:

    Hello, I know this is the snow lovers are in the limelight right now, but I was wondering if topkatt or anyone else sees a light at the end of the tunnel for us snow haters in late Jan or early feb? This past thaw was too short.

    Thanks.

    1. Topkatt88 says:

      We’d have to see an end to blocking, OR a major southward shift of features if the block were to continue. If the high pressure ridge over eastern Canada & Greenland made its way southward, average temps would warm from north to south. Don’t see this is a likely scenario right now.

      I think overall temps remain below normal for a while, and that we are seeing the start of a trend that will last much of this year, biasing the 2011 climate toward cool rather than warm, in sharp contrast to 2010.

      1. DannyG says:

        Hi topkatt. Thanks for the quick reply. Do u see this stormy pattern lasting for awhile or will we see something similar to last year which was cold, but dry?

  38. RMB says:

    Topkatt i figured, just qanted to make sure.. Anyway can you go out on limb for me and tell me if we are entering a stormy pattern?? Messy Storms or just plain Snow?? :)

    1. Topkatt88 says:

      Initially, I’d lean snowy rather than messy.

  39. Joshua Alexander says:

    Pete Bouchard / WHDH is pulling the trigger, saying this thing could sit for 2 days and just snow heavy the whole time, due to the blocking High over Greenland. He also threw out preliminary numbers for at least a foot, with the potential for a lot more.

    Matt Noyes from NECN is also mentioning the possibility of a storm stalling in the Gulf of Maine, that buries an area from Cape Ann through Southern NH all the way to northern Maine.

    1. RexRyan says:

      Pete also said, he may take the snowflakes out of the forecast if needed. The guys throws out 2 foot humbers, and in the same sentence, says he may pull it from the forecast. He is confusing to listen to…..clearly the guy is talented, but on air can contradict himself so many times

    2. Topkatt88 says:

      This is where I think it’s a mistake to go on air and mention details such as that. A blog is one thing, ok… On air is a different story. I also realize that many media met’s are under pressure from their higher-ups in the name of ratings, which again I think is a mistake by those higher-ups. Sacrifice accuracy in the name of ratings? Not they way I’d want to operate, which is why you’ll never see me on TV, even if I was good enough to be there. ;-)

      1. Omegablock says:

        Btw Topkatt, it’s great to see another Bruins fan! I’ll be looking forward to tomorrows analysis. Thanks for the postings.

      2. Joshua Alexander says:

        Topkatt, I agree with you and Rex for the most part, however a lot of people (especially on this blog) gave the TV Mets a hard time for flip-flopping or waffling on the last storm, so this may well be a “reaction” to those sentiments.

  40. Topkatt88 says:

    DannyG… First off, I was caught off-guard by the pattern as it is shaping up. I did NOT anticipate blocking being a factor for this long. But that’s forecasting. After looking everything over, I don’t see the pattern changing all too much in the next 10 to 14 days. But watch it fool me yet again.

  41. Craig@Northeastweathereye.com says:

    Pete pulled the trigger early as well on the last event and does it again this time..Joe,you are awesome and I have followed you since you were on NECN. Bailyman…you do know your stuff.,..very impressive.! Love all the model mania…It brings the little kid out in all of us with the upcoming weekend event….The dynamics are there for this big event to happen…and I am counting the hours for this to start cranking…I am in awe of things to come for us New Englander’s.

  42. FatherDougie says:

    Not sure why people are cheering for a storm that will cause injuries, deaths and property damage. Are you that sociopathic? The LEAST that happens in a sorm like this is icy roads where people skid out and have their vehicles damaged, people lose power, slip and fall. costs municipalities millions to remove the snow.. and you guys cheer it on like it wont effect anyone? Shame on you all.

    1. Topkatt88 says:

      Shouldn’t you be saying shame on the atmosphere for causing the weather? This is a location where these things happen. NONE of us root for misfortune. Many of us are fascinated by the power of nature. It’s the very feeling that science is based off of. We want to observe what happens, and learn about it.

    2. Andre Dursin says:

      You’re right Father. I’ve said it before, some — not all — but some of the people who show up on this blog act like a group of elementary schoolers with their “rooting” for storms, calling people “snow haters” as if it’s a game that’s going on. Mixed in with some of the intelligent analysis of the models are some real juvenile, idiotic comments that give this blog a sour taste, especially when storms are coming.

      Sadly the potential for devastation seems to bring out the worst in certain people. These are some morons who “root” for hurricanes to come barreling up the coast.

      It’s actually very sad.

      1. Merlin says:

        I guess if everyone was cheering for hot sunny weather it would mean we were hoping that crops would fail, people and animals would be dying from the heat and so forth. These are things only God can control but if it makes you feel better thinking that the bloggers have the control so be it.

  43. Topkatt88 says:

    Joshua… I have at times been critical of met’s that flip flop. It’s just my personal opinion. I still have respect for all of them are forecasters, even when I don’t agree with the style.

    Omega… Sometimes I wish the Bruins could play all their games on the road. They play much better there! And yes it’ll be fun to watch how this next system evolves. I have a better feeling about this one earlier than I did the last one (not saying it’ll be as big as the last one in some areas) but just the general idea that a blocking pattern tends to cycle a couple to several repeating events, with differences in details of course. Last storm, I was the last one on the bandwagon. This time, I may be willing to drive the wagon… ;-)

    1. RexRyan says:

      Topkatt, i would be interested to get your take at the moment for the storm this weekend. Seems while the models are in agreement of a storm exploding off shore, they can’t seem to pinpoint the area that will get hit the hardest if at all…….I am pulling for the 18Z DGEX……

      1. Topkatt88 says:

        I don’t think it will be as intense, magnitude-wise, as the storm Dec 26-27, but probably a slightly weaker version with similar behavior, maybe just a little slower.

  44. Longshot says:

    11 pm.

    Pete B. said a few inches if OTS. If it stalls, “a foot, foot and a half.”

    Other 2 mets, Joe and Harvey, did not committ to amounts and instead used terms like plowable snow.

  45. js81 says:

    sorry here is the right link

    1. Craig@Northeastweathereye.comg says:

      js81…Link does not work?

  46. Craig@Northeastweathereye.com says:

    Craig@Northeastweathereye.com

    To the Father of what ever church your from…..We observe our great atmosphere that delivers all facets of weather on a daily basis…You are to forgive our weather sins we have commited on this blog,but by no means do we not wish to deliver to have anyone of these weather systems bring death or destruction or injury to the general public. Now back to our regular scheduled program all ready in progress.:)

  47. js81 says:

    hmm maybe you can’t link to that site. it shows between .75 inches to 1.5 inches qpf for the weekend for most of MA and Srn NH

  48. Craig@Northeastweathereye.com says:

    thanks js81…..it just gave an error message…thank you for clearing that up for me

  49. Joshua Alexander says:

    js81…i’m LOVING the 00z GFS !!

    I live in Nashua NH, in the middle of the bulls-eye.

    1.75″ QPF translates into 26″ of snow !!

    Now if only this were to verify !! One can dream, can’t they? LOL

  50. joejoycewbz says:

    Thanks for all the positive feedback guys! The potential for over a foot of snow looks great today for Saturday. But Will it look like this tomorrow? Wednesday? I think so…but there is just too much time…too much can happen between now and then…More to come in the days ahead. This is going to get fun! :Not rooting for destruction, misery, distress, ect…:)

  51. Joshua Alexander says:

    Topkatt, I see your point. I also give Pete credit however, for taking a position and not sitting on the fence. After Barry, he is my next favorite Met.

    1. Topkatt88 says:

      I agree. I do like Pete. He may have a style that would not be mine, but he has his way and sticks by it, as does Mr. Joyce here, and all the others. Just like I have my blogging style and BaileyMan and all the others have theirs. Whatever works for you, right?

  52. Joshua Alexander says:

    Excellent point Joe !! Thank you !

  53. js81 says:

    haha! that would be something if that verified. It looks like any slight shift will make a huge difference with this storm. The gfs keeps it around for a while. I am now expert but it looks like snow starts sometime friday afternoon and ends Sunday morning

  54. Matt says:

    Any chance of this storm speeding up for Friday or is it definitely mainly a Saturday event?

  55. shotime says:

    My son is thinking about rebooking his Boston to Chicago flight which is right now booked for Saturday 11:30am. He’s hoping by Wednesday more should be known about the about the possible weekend storm. I’ll be lookng for some solid predictions by then.

  56. NortonDave says:

    Just a comment about reading everyone’s blogs. First of all I find Barry and Joe to be the best in the business. I started watching Channel 4 in the 1950’s and immediately found that Don Kent and his coverage of Hurricane Diane was captivating. That immediately gave my my life-long appreciation for the forces of nature and the weather. I have been keeping local weather records for 24 years. Keep up the good work guys!

  57. joe says:

    Dougie, nobody on here is rooting for death or destruction to life or property. ‘Weather happens’, and nothing anyone says on here is going to change it one way or the other. The weather is fascinating because it is one of the things in life we have absolutely 100% zero control over. Actually, the public will be safer by intelligent educated people talking about it and trying to figure out a potential storm before it hits. The no name storm (the perfect storm) changed my Outlook and respect for mother nature. Two days after I drove down to inspect my family’s house in humarock beach scituate. The news reports didn’t prepare me for what I would see. I knew it wasn’t going to be good when I had to show two forms of ID and a utility bill to armed national guard troops blocking entrance to the bridge. Once I made my way over I couldn’t believe what I saw. There are three things I will never forget. One, a fully intact house, with the electrical service still attached, was picked off its foundation and floated a quarter mile into the middle of the south river. It sat there for almost a year while the insurance co figured out what to do. second, a 1980 olds cutlass had been picked up so high by the storm surge its axle became wedged on a telephone pole. When the water receded the car remained stuck hanging from the top of the pole. And lastly, I remember walking the beach where about 20 houses were so badly destroyed that it looked as though a half dozen F-18’s flew over the beach and dropped every bomb they had on the houses below at once. I would never wish that on anyone and I hope I never have to witness destruction like that ever again.

  58. Merlin says:

    Father Dougie, due to the efforts of the weather forecasters and blogers today many lives have been spared not taken. The snow events of yesterday were not known about until they happened and many lives were lost. Today it’s a different story and with the knowledge of such an event about to take place the folks can prepare themselves and avoid all the pitfalls you mentioned. You might want to thank them instead of trying to ridicule them! This of course is my humble opinion and you have every right to feel any way you want about it.

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