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Signs Of Christmas Week Weather

December 17, 2012, 8:16 PM by Scot Mundt

Time to update what might happen based on the LRC cycle I wrote about on November 28th’s “Signs Of Winter”.

The next day on the cycle I have marked on my calendar is this Wednesday; it dates back to when Sioux Falls had .13” of rain from November 4. While we do have a chance for snow that day, the bulk of it will be to our south. But this does show energy and moisture from the cycle.  Seems like the cycle is 45-47 days.

I’m more interested in what might happen Christmas week.

I have Christmas Day marked from a big trof that developed and moved through the United States during the November 10 & 11 timeframe. While this one did not give us any measurable precip in Sioux Falls, I stored the weather feature in the back of my mind… of what “could” happen when the cycle repeats itself.

Being just eight days away from Christmas (and ‘yes’ MY Christmas shopping is done), things are looking more and more interesting.

I first want to start with the 500 mb level from November 10th, notice the big trof in the western United States.

Here’s the American GFS model for the day after Christmas (December 26th).  This also has the trof digging in the west, 46 days after November 10.

There’s a lot of precip and wind showing on the 850 for December 26th also. 

Here’s a look at the total precip from Christmas morning through December 26th.  It shows a band of heavier precip in central SD with a quarter to a half inch of water.  The EURO also has some precip, but at this time it’s not as heavy.  It should be interesting to watch over the next week, but don’t be surprised if we start adding precip chances in the seven-day forecast.  Brian Karstens is always a big advocate for southern storms to move north, so it will be watched.

I also want to go on a tangent on this week’s storm to our east and southeast and the LRC cycle.  Winter Storm Watches are posted from northern Kansas to eastern Wisconsin for the potential of six inches or more of snow combined with strong wind.  In my earlier blogs, I mentioned the wind storm from this past October looked a lot like the wind storm from October of 2010 that gave record low pressure in Minnesota.  That pattern that year gave a big Groundhog Day blizzard to Chicago.  I think the overall pattern is now looking very similar to that of 2010-2011.  In fact, February 2 is about 47 days out from the storm system rolling through the Corn Belt this Wednesday.  So, is there a blizzard in the works for Chicago at the beginning of February?  While I can’t answer that question at this time, I think a shadow might be seen by the groundhog!

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