Nicest weather of the summer in sight...(8-10-13)

<B>(12:30 pm Saturday August 10th)</B> At times the Summer of 2013 been very wet and other times very hot and humid. However, as we head into mid August central New York could be about to hit our best weather of the summer so far.

We just went through a few warm and humid days here in central New York and we are going to get a nice break from the humidity starting today.  If what we are seeing holds, this could be the start of the nicest stretch of weather this summer, potentially lasting up to the start of the State Fair.  Just so there is no confusion let me cut to the chase: I think we are looking at generally sunny days across central New York (just a chance of some showers /t-storms late Monday into early Tuesday) with daytime temperatures mainly in the 70s now through at least Monday July 19th.

If that makes you happy and you want to head out and enjoy the nice summer weekend, be my guest.  If you want a somewhat more technical discussion about what is coming down the pike leading up to the start of the New York State Fair, read on.

You are probably saying “But Jim, you’ve been showing us maps the last few days that give us below normal temperatures.”  My answer is yes, that still holds: temperatures will average below normal during this time but I also said that the cooler than normal forecast did not necessarily equate to bad weather. In fact, looking at the latest 8-14 day forecast, central New York remains on the edge of the below normal temperatures:

Looking at the big picture, we have a trough of low pressure in the upper atmosphere anchored over eastern Canada but extending south into the Northeast and the Great Lakes.  Starting during the middle of the week, this trough will start to weaken.  It will still be there, but the center of the trough will shift north a bit and that is important.

A closer look at the jet stream forecasts show the main branch of the jet stream winds up over Canada by late in the upcoming week. Here is a map that shows the ensemble means on both the GFS and European models centered on next weekend.


I think the real key is we won’t have an upper low sitting up near Hudson Bay and eastern Canada like we do right now. This pattern should keep our weather generally dry over the next week to 10 days as any major weather systems bypass us, perhaps the driest stretch we’ve seen this summer.  Temperatures, however, would likely still stay a bit below since technically there is still a trough (albeit a weaker one) over us.  The good news is both the GFS and European computer models have been showing this set up for the past few days which gives us a decent amount of confidence even though the timeframe we are talking about goes out 10 days.

How dry could it be? Here is a map that shows the total amount of rain from Saturday through Monday August 19th (10 full days) it it paints less than .25” for much of CNY.

Given this is still fairly far out in time, I do have to give a couple of qualifiers or ways this forecast could go wrong.  1) We are still in a troughy pattern and there may be some disturbance in the flow for later next week or weekend that the models aren’t handling well.  This disturbance deepens, or sharpens, the trough and we end up with wetter weather on several days 2) There will be moisture/precipitation just off the East Coast back into the Southeast US along the cold front that moves through here Tuesday then stalls.  If high pressure at the ground gets a bit too far off the coast, the return southerly flow will bring that moisture back and it gets a bit wetter although it stays warm.

Those two scenarios are possible but not as likely of happening as the mainly dry and slightly cool scenario I painted above.

So if you have a vacation coming up over the next week and you are staying in central New York or New York state in general, you picked a good one.  If you work outdoors, whether painting, farming or some other job that is weather sensitive, you are going to have a very productive stretch.

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