It has been a remarkable stretch of warm, dry and sunny weather for us here in central new York. While we haven’t been close to any daily high temperature records, the 70 degree weather has been consistent.
This warm dry weather has coincided with the start of Fall a week and a half ago but there may be a couple things that keep us from calling this stretch of weather a true ‘Indian Summer’ Believe or not, the American Meteorological Society has a definition for Indian Summer and it starts like this:
A period, in mid- or late autumn, of abnormally warm weather, generally clear skies, sunny but hazy
days, and cool nights.
That sure sounds like the weather we’ve just had but notice it mentions “mid or late autumn” and we are just a little over a week into the true Fall season. Then there is this part of the definition:
In New England, at least one killing frost and preferably a substantial period of normally cool
weather must precede this warm spell in order for it to be considered a true "Indian summer."
I know we aren’t technically in New England but even as I grew up here in central New York it seemed like you needed to get that first frost out of the way before we could start thinking about Indian Summer. So far, the coolest Syracuse has been this Fall season is just 37 F way back on September 17th. I’ve even heard some people say that we need to get our first snowfall before Indian Summer can arrive.
So it seems like our current weather isn’t quite Indian Summer but it is acting like a pseudo-Indian summer. Our temperatures, in fact, look to get even warmer for the weekend. Unfortunately, there is going to be more moisture around and thus the chance of showers and even late season thunderstorms.
Beyond this weekend there are no big changes to the above normal temperature pattern. A cold front sweeps through on Monday but we don’t see much in the way of cool air behind the front. In fact, temperatures through the end of next week should remain above normal. We like to look at the ensemble means from our computer models when we look out in time. When we see good agreement in these means, our confidence level increases. Here is an ensemble mean map at the jet stream level for the Thursday-Saturday period next week (October 10-12th) for both the European and GFS models.
There is a slight difference in the position of the ridge of high pressure (the European mean is farther west) but for both models this is a warm pattern for us here in the East.The European solution would just be a bit warmer than the GFS. How warm COULD that be for us? Well, temperatures at 5,000 feet on both the European and GFS models for late next week are in the +12/+13 c range which is close to what we have over us right now and we are easily making it into the mid 70s. So at least in the foreseeable it doesn’t look like the other shoe is going to drop for central New York’s weather.