By MARK HANOK
Instead of moving from west to east, during the past week the jet stream has been diving southward from northern Canada to the northern Great Plains, along the east side of a large ridge of high pressure that has remained stationary over the Pacific Northwest and northern Rockies.
West of the jet stream, temperatures have averaged above normal throughout most of Montana, even though arctic air has been dipping southward not far to the east, like North Dakota where highs have been in the single digits.
With a very strong northwest flow aloft, a series of Alberta clippers have been racing southeastward, bringing snow to our region every few days, but except for the snowstorm on Saturday, snowfall has been light. During the upcoming week, the very cold, arctic air will continue in place on Friday, followed by a gradual moderation in temperature over the weekend.
On Friday, arctic high pressure will slide south and east to New York State and New England, and with very cold, extremely dry air in place, skies will be mostly sunny with highs only in the single digits.
As milder air aloft pushes up and over the very cold air at the surface, we’ll get more cloudiness on Saturday. With variable cloudiness and breaks of sunshine, there’s the chance of snow showers, and highs from 10 to 15 degrees.
Temperatures will finally reach the low 20’s on Sunday, on a southwest flow ahead of low pressure over the western Great Lakes. Skies will be mostly cloudy with occasional light snow. Monday will feature partly sunny skies and highs in the mid to upper 20’s. Following a cold front Monday night, northwesterly winds will return on Tuesday, with partly sunny skies and the chance of snow showers, with highs from 22 to 27 degrees. Although the wind on Thursday told a story of bright sunshine in Otsego County, most local weather forecasts on Friday called for a mostly cloudy day with occasional snow showers.
The brisk northwest winds continued around a huge storm system in Newfoundland, and after snow showers in the morning, skies were mostly sunny in the afternoon, as cold, very dry air pushed southward from eastern Canada, with highs in the low 20’s. Lakeeffect snows stayed to the west, over western New York. An Alberta clipper tracked eastward from central Illinois early in the morning to southern Ohio by evening. Very cold, very dry arctic air was in place over the Northeast, with a low of 22 degrees below zero at Saranac Lake in the Adirondacks.
The air was so dry that it took all morning for snow to get from north central Pennsylvania to the central Southern Tier, finally reaching the Cooperstown area during the early afternoon.
Snow continued through the evening and overnight, with 6” to 8” of snow across our region.
Mark Hanok is an Otegobased meteorologist. You can visit him on the World Wide Web at http://members. aol.com/weathergazette.
By MARK HANOK
- Weather Watch
- Weather watch The Susquehanna River level will be unusually low for the General Clinton Canoe Regatta during Memorial Day weekend.
- Weather Watch It’s really uncanny how the very dry weather pattern has continued in this area despite the succession of major storms that have moved to the west and south.
- Weather Watch Now that north has become a synonym for sunshine and south has become a synonym for rain, there’s no way that this extremely dry weather pattern can change at least for the next four weeks.
- Weather Watch March was the third straight month with below normal precipitation, and it looks like April will also turn out to be drier than normal.
- Weather Watch Temperatures were near normal in March, with precipitation around an inch below normal.
- Weather Watch On Friday a major storm will move to the Ohio Valley, while high pressure builds southward from eastern Canada. Skies will be partly sunny with highs from 55 to 60 degrees.
- Weather Watch When it’s warmer to the north and cooler to the south, it’s so easy to get into an extremely dry weather pattern in Otsego County. The weather forecast in last week’s weather column was more optimistic than other local weather forecasts, but the weather was actually much better than even we predicted.
- Weather Watch The jet stream will shift southward this week and a series of low pressure systems will move well to our south.
- Weather Watch Exactly as we predicted at the beginning of the month, it was one of the driest Februaries on record in Otsego County and throughout most of central and eastern New York. Thanks to the extreme upside-down temperature pattern with much warmer weather in Montana than in Georgia, and strong winds on Monday and Tuesday, an extremely dry weather pattern will be the theme for at least the next two to three weeks.
- Weather Watch Exactly as we’ve been predicting for the past month, this is turning out to be an exceptionally dry February - one of the driest on record in central and eastern New York.
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