The storm train continues, here is a look at the current conditions in the Pacific Ocean:
Much of this moisture is due to a very active MJO in the Western Pacific. El Nino is tapping into the MJO and sending storm after storm our way.
El Nino + Strong MJO = Dangerous Combination
We expect these storms to increase in size and intensity. Also, perhaps starting next week, we will start to see warmer storms with rising snow levels. We have been warning about this for months now. As the Pineapple Express taps into the unusually active MJO, we could see snow levels rise into the 8,000-9,000 foot range with extremely moist storms. As the snow pack in the upper elevations continues to increase, we will have to keep a very close eye on this. Folks, all that water has to go somewhere and down is the only way. Be aware that the risk is very real over the next 2-3 weeks, at least. If snow levels stay under 8,000, flooding will be minor. At 9,000, streams and rivers will overflow their banks causing moderate flooding. Over 10,000 could mean total disaster.
Averages Mean Something
Averages. For years, we have kept a very level head here at TWB. If an area averages 12 inches of precip a year, that does not mean that they should get 1 inch a month, every month. Our precip averages are based on results from over 100 years now. That means that when we have 4 dry years, we are due for some very wet years. That is what we are seeing. Our top researcher believes there is at least a chance for this El Nino to continue or reform for next year as well. Multi-year El Nino's may become a reality as our planet balances the global temperatures. We will wait and see.
In the meantime, we are currently getting pounded by a slightly larger, more moist and warmer storm that we talked about in our last post. This will bring heavy snow to the Sierra through tonight. Tomorrow could be epic as we enter a very brief drying out period. The next storm comes in Friday afternoon and will impact our weather starting very late Friday night. This is a larger storm that will bring more beneficial rain to much of California as the storm track starts to move south:
The ECMWF model then has us drying out, but we are seeing things very differently. That dry out period could also be the southern jet moving further north and could signal the beginning of the storms that impact Southern California, the warmer storms that we have been warning about.
Stay Tuned ...