Monday, May 08, 2006

Some forecast musings for the next 1-2 weeks.

Well, I did not think it could get worse, but it did- the new ECMWF (European) model is now on board with a massive ridge over the West in the 6-10 day period. This matches very well with the new ensemble mean and virtually all the individual members. So it looks like there is at least an 80% chance of a complete Plains chasing shutdown from Wednesday for at least one week, and perhaps as long as ten days. I hope some miracle occurs and all the models are selling us so much snake oil, but I really doubt it.

Well, I have not seen the 00Z runs yet, hopefully this is just an aberration, but the ensemble members, which have been so chaotic over the past week for the mid-May time frame, have now become very close together all the way to about 180 hours. What they are showing is a persistent ridge in the West until about 240 hours. Then a trough begins to show up in the mean over the SW U.S. with SW flow in the High plains beyond the 10 day time frame. This western ridge scenario has been supported all along by many straight runs of the op ECMWF and other models. What this all means, at least IMHO, is that chasing opportunities in the long range will at first be confined to an occasional NW flow setup, but there will be multi-day stretches of no activity as cold fronts penetrate to the Gulf or as least to south TX. Then around the 17th or so there is a fair chance that a more favorable flow regime will slowly emerge. Remember last May- the last two weeks were fairly lean with only a few marginal days in the NW flow- but then we had the almost unbroken string of good days from June 2 to the 12th. So I am still hoping for a good late May and early June.

Looks like Monday and Tuesday will be interesting in the KS/OK area- if the NAM is close to being correct then OK could see a few tornadoes Tuesday.

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