Hey I am back for another update, and it seems that the SSW and the -NAO is bringing intense cold to the European Alps. Intense cold and snow don’t actually go together very much. But things may change in the long term. I am going to explore the models and river that matter for the European Alps in this second last update.
GFS shows a system crossing over the Northern Alps on the 9th, with the main band crossing over the 10th with heavy snowfall. More moderate-heavy snowfall falls over the 11th with a second band of precipitation, and eases over the 12th. EPS Control shows a system crossing over the entire length of the Northern Alps on the 9th and 10th with moderate-heavy snowfall, easing later that latter day. EPS Ctl shows another system starting on the 12th over the Northern Alps with moderate snowfall.
EC Monthly shows a storm passing over the French Alps, bringing moderate-heavy snowfall there from the morning of the 19th, until the afternoon of the 20th. CFS shows a system bringing moderate snowfall to the Northwestern Alps on the 19th and 20th, and another system brings moderate-heavy snowfall to Southern Austrian Alps on the same dates.
Another front on EC Monthly hits the Northern Alps on the evening of the 20th, into the 21st. This delivers moderate-heavy snowfall to the Northern Alps from France to Austria. CFS doesn’t show anything on the 21st.
EC Monthly shows a system from the north, bringing moderate snowfall to the Northern Alps on the 23rd, easing on the 24th, and then coming back to dump moderate-heavy snowfall across the Northern Alps over the 25th and 26th. CFS shows a low coming from the south, bringing moderate-heavy snowfall to the Southern Alps over the 23rd and 24th, easing on the 25th.
The GWO is currently in a negative trend. There are two options, the FT and MT torques increase, which will stabilise the GWO, like the below chart is starting to show. Or the other option is that the FT and MT torques go back to decreasing in a few days, and send the GWO into the low AAM Phases, which favours a +NAO setup. Many forecasters are favouring the latter option, so is the NWP guidance, but the former option is still a possibility with some torque data showing that to become reality. It will be interesting to see how that pans out.
EPS shows the MJO moving into Phase 2, before weakening into Phase 3. Phase 3 + 10 days equals a +NAO, or a more zonal Atlantic setup. This favours more snowfall for the Northern Alps, but GEFS shows the MJO weakening before it enters Phase 3.
EC46 like most models, is showing a big -NAO drop around the end of the month, that supports more snowfall for the Southern Alps. This -NAO pattern persists until mid March, and then stays mostly neutral into April. The ec46 AO forecast shows a similar result. CFS in a rare move, agrees with EC46 on both the AO and NAO.
GEFS and CFS longer term, show no signs of strengthening the polar vortex. The recent SSW is currently allowing a -AO/-NAO pattern to take hold until Mid March. The Stratosphere will probably play less influence after that time.
So the next 2-3 weeks will be guided by cold in Europe and the -NAO in the Atlantic. Beyond Mid March, we may see a +NAO setup start to form, under pressure from the AAM if it stays negative, and it may just generally occur also due to background factors like the sea-land gradient and the weakening yet still observable Nina base state.
Thanks so much for reading. I hoped you enjoyed reading it.
Disclaimer: There is low skill asssociated with using long range model forecasts to find snow systems. All systems you see here will change, as the date gets closer and may not eventuate all together. I don’t give much accuracy to these forecasts, but you can give these a bit of your time and your dreams might come true 😉 I find the chase of these long range snow systems awesome, so come and join me! The climate driver forecasts tend to have a bit more skill than the model forecasts, but certainly don’t put all your money on them. However, climate drivers are an awesome tool to explain the weather around us.
Thanks again for reading this European long range snow forecast, follow me on Twitter @longrangesnow and subscribe to my email list by clicking on the tab on the main header above. In 3 weeks time, the last European long range outlook will be issued so stay tuned for that.
P.S. Some of you guys may notice the lack of climate drivers imagery. I currently have some issues on my side, resulting in the lack of drivers pictures. If you would like the data used in creating this outlook, send me a PM on twitter (above) or send me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org . Sorry for the inconvenience.