As we begin to round out the month of January and what's typically the coldest time of the year, there is very little good news if you are looking for warmer temperatures. Our cool pattern has held pretty steady for the last 6 months with a trough entrenched in the eastern half of the country since the start of December leading to several arctic blasts. The month of January is already 4.8° below average in the metro and that number will likely drop as sub average temperatures can be expected to rule the roost through the end of the month. If that wasn't depressing enough, it doesn't look like our weather pattern is going to change much through February which means the cooler than average temperatures will likely continue. Here is a look at the forecast for February from the Climate Prediction Center (CPC).
This shows the probability of having below, normal, or above average temperatures through the month of February. As you see, the sub average temperatures look pretty likely for our area and the Great Lakes with the above average temperatures continuing for the southern U.S.
To look at the forecast that will get here a little sooner… all you have to do is look at the 7-day forecast to know sub average temps are going to stick around through Thursday, but another cold shot of air looks like it will make its way in for the end of the month as well. Here is the extended forecast from the CPC showing another cold snap next week.
So, it appears like the cold will be sticking around, but what about the snow? Yup! Looks like more of that can be expected as well. Here is the forecast once again from the CPC showing the probabilities of below, normal, or above average precipitation heading through the next couple of weeks.
The first image shows the January 25th through the 29th timeframe which looks wetter than average and the second shows pretty much the same story with the 27th through February 2nd likely above average as well. What does that mean?? Well the metro averages about 6 inches of snow through the next 2 weeks. This forecast means that in all likelihood, we will be above that by the 2nd and adding more to our current snow pack. I realize it's a bit early to talk about river flooding, but if we don't get any reasonable melting by the time we hit March, we are one major storm away from some pretty significant river flooding… just something to keep in the back of your mind.