Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Washington and Sierra Mountain Weather Extended Outlook

Issued 12-22-2015

Forecast models are starting to suggest a change from the much above precipitation that has been in place for much of December for the Sierra and the Cascades. Starting the first week of January we see an upper level ridge of high pressure that forms over the West Coast. With this pattern we can expect below normal precipitation for both the Northern Sierra (Lake Tahoe and north)  and the Washington Cascades. Also temperatures close to normal for Washington and below normal for the Northern Sierra. This pattern should be in place for at least part of the first week of January.

How about for the rest of January? Well several nationally based meteorologists have been suggesting a "big shift" in the weather patterns. The big shift is the Midwest and East Coast going from record breaking warm temperatures (for much of December) to much colder conditions and snow in January. They are forecasting a big trough of low pressure to form over the Midwest and East Coast and that "can" bring a ridge of high pressure and dry conditions over the West Coast. However, it is too far out in the forecast cycle to have much confidence in that forecast.

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