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Old 12-01-2014, 11:05 AM
 
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Has anybody noticed than quite often in December polar air masses reach down into the middle of the country while the east coast remains warm? It creates strong temp divide running from the gulf coast states up to around Boston. For instance, today Dallas and Memphis are are colder than NYC.

Is this a common pattern of the jet stream this time of year?
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Old 12-01-2014, 12:08 PM
 
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Yes.

The jet stream can dip all the way to the gulf. The East Coast is buffered by the Great Lakes (blocking Canadian Air) and North Atlantic Current.
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Old 12-01-2014, 12:24 PM
 
Location: SWCT - close to coast
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Opin_Yunated View Post
Yes. The jet stream can dip all the way to the gulf. The East Coast is buffered by the Great Lakes (blocking Canadian Air) and North Atlantic Current.
I'm curious why you would think the Lakes would block Canadian air.

Quote:
Originally Posted by workaholics View Post
Has anybody noticed than quite often in December polar air masses reach down into the middle of the country while the east coast remains warm? It creates strong temp divide running from the gulf coast states up to around Boston. For instance, today Dallas and Memphis are are colder than NYC.

Is this a common pattern of the jet stream this time of year?
It's not just December, it happens anytime of the year but it's more noticeable in winter months. But the Jet stream doesn't stay still. meaning.. you're right about todays torch in the east but things always move and that air to the west of us is coming. So while it's colder in Texas today then NYC, tomorrow it will match as the air pushes Eastbound.

I haven't seen it happen often but for the northeast to get cold anomalies without points west getting them the trough/Jet has to have a negative tilt and aim right for NYC from Canada. Earth's tilt and weather flow doesn't allow this to happen often.

Speaking of jet.. see where it goes after this week? No win here. Warm Atlantic or Warm Pacific. LOL

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Old 12-01-2014, 12:37 PM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post

I haven't seen it happen often but for the northeast to get cold anomalies without points west getting them the trough/Jet has to have a negative tilt and aim right for NYC from Canada. Earth's tilt and weather flow doesn't allow this to happen often.
March 2014 had stronger month anomalies in the Northeast than northern Midwest. You'd have look at individual weather events for more detail, but on average the cold must have focused more on the east coast.



http://www.ncdc.noaa.gov/sotc/national/2014/3

Note this is a ranking map. Since the Midwest is prone to more extremes, the same temperature deviation isn't as noteworthy in the Midwest than Northeast. But I think the ranking map is more telling on the strength of the anomaly: it takes a powerful cold event to chill the Northeast the same amount as the Midwest. But here's the temperature deviation map: western Great Lakes actually had a higher temperature deviation.

Current Climate Summary Maps - Powered by ACIS - High Plains Regional Climate Center

Still, you can see the focus of the cold was centered more to the east, as the Dakotas missed much of it.
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Old 12-01-2014, 01:08 PM
 
Location: SWCT - close to coast
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Originally Posted by nei View Post
March 2014 had stronger month anomalies in the Northeast than northern Midwest.
Here are the anomalies for March 2014. Northeast had the same as Midwest, in fact Upper Midwest had it colder. It's very hard for the Northeast to get colder anomalies than points west. The trough has to either drop straight down from Eastern Canada or there has to be some crazy negative tilt.

Keep looking, I'm curious.

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Old 12-01-2014, 10:21 PM
 
Location: Massachusetts
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I would guess the coast moderating a bit. I live in coastal MA and you don't know how often the temperature and rain/snow line is different for us on the coast (rain, 43F) and 30-50mi inland (snow, 31F).
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Old 12-02-2014, 04:22 PM
 
Location: Paris, Île-de-France, France / Terre Haute, IN
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Just found the picture from my folder that saved almost a year ago.
Fayetteville, NC reached 81 degrees in December 2013.
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Old 12-03-2014, 05:37 PM
 
Location: SWCT - close to coast
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How about January 2004? Northeast was more below normal than midwest. But same as northern Plains. Would like to find where northern plains or midwest doesnt have same or colder anomalies then the northeast.

I will even be curious on a weekly scale instead. Its tough!

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Old 12-03-2014, 06:29 PM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cambium View Post
How about January 2004? Northeast was more below normal than midwest. But same as northern Plains. Would like to find where northern plains or midwest doesnt have same or colder anomalies then the northeast.

I will even be curious on a weekly scale instead. Its tough!
Oh yea, I remember that as one of the coldest months ever. I think last year and maybe January 2009 recorded more cold temperatures, but January 2004 was more consistently cold. It'd help if that map included Canada to see the full picture of where the cold was coming from.
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Old 12-03-2014, 06:36 PM
 
Location: Western Massachusetts
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nei View Post
March 2014 had stronger month anomalies in the Northeast than northern Midwest. You'd have look at individual weather events for more detail, but on average the cold must have focused more on the east coast.
March 2007 is a better choice.



February 2010 was the opposite, with the extreme Northeast having the warmest anamolies. Remember that month for mildness — until 2012. But for a lot of Maine, February 2010 was warmer.

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