Weather Weekly! What A Boring Pattern!

By: Chris Martz

Good evening everyone! Welcome back to another “Weather Weekly” forecast discussion!

In tonight’s blog/video, I will be doing a medium-range forecast for North America. We have been in a pretty quiet weather pattern over this time period, so there really isn’t much to talk about.

Before I get into the overall pattern and forecast, I wanted to bring the Cherry Blossoms to your attention. Thousands and thousands of people visit our nation’s capital this time every year to see the cherry blossoms, which are currently in stage three. The forecast dates for peak bloom are between April 3rd and 6th, so go ahead and book a trip for that week if you are interested in going!

It was also a very nice day today across the Mid-Atlantic and southeastern states. Highs at all three airports were into the mid 60s today.

Today’s highs March 24, 2019.

As cloud cover moves in tonight, lows will hang in the 40s.

Low temps overnight: March 24-25, 2019.

Across the eastern seaboard, high pressure is in control allowing skies to be free of clouds. Out to our west are some very cold temperatures and you can easily see that due to the rather large cold front extending across the Great Plains and Midwest.

Current surface map.

However, things will start to change tomorrow as a cold front moves through the east causing temperatures to drop. There will be scattered showers across the Mid-Atlantic south of the Mason-Dixon line, while there is severe weather potential across the Deep South.

Surface map via Weather Underground.

Because of this, the Storm Prediction Center has issued Moderate to Enhanced convective outlooks because of the high potential for thunderstorms and even tornadoes as the frontal boundary comes through.

Severe weather outlook for March 25, 2019.

Switching gears to the medium range forecast, things are a bit fuzzy.

First, let’s take a look at what’s been happening this month. Over the past 24 days, it has been pretty chilly relative to average across the Lower 48, especially across the west. This is because there is a nice high pressure block over Alaska and the Arctic forcing the cold air south. This is basic laws of physics; for every action, there is an equal and opposite reaction – although some loonies out there would like to think this is an apocalypse of climate – therefore for every trough, there is a ridge.

Map via WeatherBELL.

Looking forward, there is a bit of model confusion. The 12Z CFS run from earlier today is predicting an eastern pool of colder than average temperatures with some ridging in the west for April 4th through the 9th. This makes a lot of sense based on the laws of physics – if you have a trough in the east, then you must have ridging in the west.

Map via WeatherBELL.

However, the very next run of the model, the 18Z run today, just blowtorches the U.S.

Look back and forth at these two runs and tell me which looks more realistic; the 12Z or 18Z?

Just by looking at the 18Z forecast, the ridging in the east would have to be accompanied with a trough in the west and yet the model just shoves the cold air to the north.

This is a typical flaw with the CFS as it bounces back and forth between warm and cold and it really is a model that I do not like using. However, based on the fact that model output statistic consensus show that we are potentially trending cooler for week one and two of April, then I would put money on the 12Z run to be most accurate once we cross that bridge.

As it stands right now, March 24th, this means that my friends on the west coast should expect some drier conditions over the next few weeks with warmer than average temperatures while an active storm pattern will ensue over the east accompanied with below average temperatures.

Whatever happens, happens, and there is nothing you can do about it! Between now and then, please travel safe, stay safe, and God bless! Remember, “all weather is good, it’s what you make of it!”

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