May 6, 2012

Weather Event Forecasting - Second Week Of May

I've updated the 500mb maps below with GFS 500mb forecast maps for the upcoming second week of May. They are the first map of each comparison and look different (there is yellow in them) than the archived maps. Again, the LRC provides a significant confidence factor in the long range models forecast. How will the surface weather affect us this Spring versus last Fall? Whatever it is, this version will provide a significant learning opportunity for all who follow the cycling weather patterns.

As for using the LRC trends to provide a weather forecast for Oshkosh, they point to a 2 in 5 chance of preicp for the 8th, but we are in the odd cycle of the 'every other' add-on theory. If it works out, it probably won't rain at OSNW3. High temps should range in the 60s. As for the 14th, the 2 in 5 chance of precip presents itself again but this recurrence is in the even cycle of the 'every other' add-on theory. This leads me to believe it will precipitate at OSNW3. Highs should be in the 60s. We'll see what happens.

originally posted on Apr 1, 2012
Potential #1 & #2 recurred on schedule. With these recurrences the precipitation made it back into NE WI. Potential #1 dropped over an inch. The cold air made it into the area as suspected as well. Places in northern WI had freezing overnight lows. These recurring features should repeat between May 8 and May 14. Maps and radar are updated. Perhaps some thunderstorms in Potential #1 and a cool and damp spell in Potential #2 ??? We shall see.

originally posted on Mar 19, 2012
These systems are on track and on schedule for the Midwest. This is another example of how the LRC provides a greater confidence factor in the long range models forecast.  In particular the GFS.  I have included the forecast 500mb maps for each potential. They are the first map in each sequence and are labeled as such.  As the time creeps closer I will be updating the forecast maps...

originally posted on Feb 14, 2012
The two events below will return during the last ten days of March. With the jet beginning the annual northward retreat around this time it will be interesting to see how much cold air comes down from Canada after Potential #2 moves out. This cold air could leave us with daily maximum temperatures in the 30's if it transpires. I would assume many spring activities will already be in full swing by this time and it will be a kind reminder that the winter of 2011-12 never really happened.

Potential #1 - May 8-9, 2012
Here at OSNW3 we recorded an inch of rain with this system back in early November, since that occurrence though, each counterpart has lacked the precipitation element as the system keeps ejecting east rather than northeast leaving Northeast WI out of the action. Colorado, Kansas, and Missouri on the other hand, have seen great energy released with this recurring storm system.

(Nov 3, 2011 - 500mb)
(Dec 21, 2011 - 500mb)
(Feb 5, 2012 - 500mb)
(Mar 23, 2012 - 500mb) 
(May 9, 2012 - 500mb)

Nov 2-11, 2011 - Radar
Dec 19-27, 2011 - Radar
Feb 3-11, 2012 - Radar
Mar 21-30, 2012 - Radar

Potential #2 - May 13-14, 2012
This storm initially created the case to be labeled the 'signature' storm for this years LRC in our area. It was our first good snowfall of the year. It is the 'notable event' in the OSNW3-Oshkosh Winter Forecast labeled 'Snowstorm/Cold' in each cycle. Here at OSNW3 we recorded over 3 inches of precip and over 2 inches of snow in a 3 day period in the first cycle. Without phasing of the jet stream the split flow has kept this system screaming further south and east each time through the cycle. While it gives the area a chance at precip and a sudden drop in temperature it certainly lacks 'signature storm' criteria.

(Nov 9, 2011 - 500mb)
(Dec 27, 2011 - 500mb)
(Feb 11, 2012 - 500mb)
(Mar 28, 2012 - 500mb)
(May 13, 2012 - 500mb)

If there are any questions or thoughts on my research and analysis of the LRC or how I presented the material just let me know in the comments section of the blog. To follow the cycling patterns please click on the 500mb maps and navigate back and forth from each of dates paying close attention to the overall flow.


  1. Hey Josh,

    How’s this for a ‘scary’ scenario? I did a bit more checking with regards to a mid Feb major storm, previously referred to by me as a ‘biggie’.
    Last week in Sept, cut-off retro motion storm that dumped considerable moisture over an extended period. Approx 50 days later (Nov 8-10), another event with considerable moisture. Another 50 days (Dec 28 or so), another storm, with that one missing to the south & east. Add another 50 days (approx Feb 14-15) and then perhaps.... repeat of last week of Sept with much colder temps and what do you have??
    Granted that I’m talking about my backyard rather than yours. Any thoughts?

    Tony (Pl. Prairie)

  2. Tony, I believe you are referring to the days shortly after Sep-22. My thoughts are... THAT WOULD BE SWEET! I want to commend you on bringing this idea forth. I've been otherwise caught up in other aspects of the LRC... I completely forgot about the "morphing days" of the cycle.

    I got over an inch of rain with the cut-off low, my backyard wasn't left out!


    It's a very exciting thought and with all the cut-offs this year I suppose we can't rule anything out! Again, thanks for bringing this LRC fantasy to attention!

  3. Josh,

    Glad to hear my previous comment might be worth you taking a look at and considering. If it turns out that it was useful to mention, you’re more than welcome. I’ll be keeping in touch.

    Tony (Pl. Prairie)

  4. Tony, I much more enjoy LRC fantasy land than computer model fantasy land. There is absolutely no flip flop involved and all aspects are even-keeled. Mostly.

  5. Hey Josh,

    Hope you don’t mind me adding a bit more here. Did yet some more ‘checking’ and here’s what I’ve come up with. Sept 24-30, 2011, Kenosha airport rainfall total of 3.75 inches. My rainfall measurements (approx 3.5 miles SE of the airport) was 4.40 inches! Sept 24 plus (144 days) is Feb 15. 144 divided by 48 is 3.0
    As mentioned earlier, the prospect of these kind of ‘numbers’ as snow rather than liquid could be considered ‘scary’.
    No reply needed. Just passing this along as FYI.

    Tony (Pl. Prairie)

  6. Tony, I truly enjoy thoughts of the 'potential #2' being a weather maker in our area. My intuition tells me we'll get some weather from it unlike the Dec (xmas-ish) version.

    I am happy that you've added your thoughts to the entry. It gives this stuff sustenance.

  7. Josh,
    You picking up on anything yet with regards to an ‘event’ in the Feb 15-18 time frame for SE Wisc?

    Tony (Pl. Prairie)

  8. Tony, Feb 17-ish will be the 'birth date' of this years LRC in my mind. The significant part of the event will be the northwest winds that usher in some cold air. Looking very much forward to it! I would expect some good waves on the Lakes.

    The 2011-12 Lezak's Recurring Cycle

  9. Hi Josh,

    I’ve been watching the ‘Forecast Graphics’ section of the winter weather page that’s part of NWS at Sullivan. On the 8th, the ‘day 7' forecast map for Feb 14 showed a low right on the TX/OK panhandle! Naturally I rushed to judgement that ‘there it is, our mid-Feb storm’! A classic ‘panhandle hook’! Of course, I’m pretty much clueless with regards to the probability of that storm actually being there on the 14th as well as where it might actually go and when will it get there! So, I decided to ask you if you were ‘picking up’ on anything without mentioning all of the above.
    By the way, the Kenosha area did get in on some of the action from the Dec storm.... 0.66 inches of rain on the 30th. That’s the airports number; I didn’t have my gauge out due to the preceding cold. I mean, come on, who needs a rain gauge in Wisc during the winter! Anyway, as an ‘LRC’ watcher of sorts, I’m looking forward to seeing how this weeks weather plays out. I’m having a fun time (and hopefully learning a thing or two) following along. Thanks for putting up with me.

    Tony (Pl. Prairie)

  10. Tony, the LRC is exciting to follow along with and I am glad you are sharing your excitement of it with me.

    With that said, surface weather right now is lining up tightly with the previous cycle in the LRC. After the wed/thu systems moves out we should expect a drop in temperatures. This weekend signals what I am calling the 'birth date' of this years LRC. If you look at the radar loops for Dec 29 thru Jan 3 you'll see similarities in what happened Feb-12 (Dec 30-31) and what is forecast to happen wed/thu (Jan 1-2). To see the radar loops follow the links below.

    Radar 20111229-03

    I really enjoy watching the LES wave over the Great Lakes in the loop! SWEET!

  11. Hi Josh,

    While not the hoped for path and intensity, the mid-Feb storm did show up right on schedule as far as I’m concerned. As was the case with the Dec 30 storm, I was close enough to get something out of it. Based on this ‘storm’ now being history, I would have to say the LRC certainly seems to be working even when ‘skewed’ by other factor(s) such as the ‘AO’ that I really know even less about than the LRC itself. So given the dates I’ve mentioned and the weather on them, I’m now looking forward to what shows up on or near April 5!
    I realize the following is ‘speculation’ outside the premise and rules of the LRC, but I do find it interesting to consider. Dates and ‘weather’ for my location: June (8-10), 2011 1.10" precip
    Aug 8, 2011 .36" precip
    These events fall so neatly in line to the others I’ve already mentioned, and consequentially an LRC of 49-50 days, it’s hard to ignore but I’m not sure what to make of it since it involves my ‘thinking outside the box’. Just passing this along as FYI for you to embrace or scorn (politely please) as you desire.

    Tony (Pl. Prairie)

  12. It is really helpful to have a weather forecast online, if you can't watch over the television news, you can read it through the net.