Friday, September 26, 2014

Does A Mild End Of September Correlate To "Warmer" Winter?

...The short answer seems to be ...YES!

Ah. But wait. Before you start to jump for joy think that this delightful weather with cloudless days, temperatures in the 70s and cool nights means an easier winter ahead like we had in 2010-11,  2011-12 and 2012-13, let me explain what I mean when I say yes.

The operative word here is "correlation". Its like saying that when I cut my finger nails, the weather is cold. These two events might correlate very well but they are far from causal.

Our 8 day forecast calls for a streak of 70+ degree days through at least the 3rd and possibly the 4th of October. If this forecast verifies, the average temperature (day and night) from the start of the 70 degree streak (September 24th) to the projected end would be 65.6 degrees or 19th all-time.

So I checked the years that ranked higher than this projection. Here is the list. It's interesting to note that the end of September last year was a mirror image of this year!  Also notice that 2007, 2005 and 2002 were warmer than this year during the same period.

By blending the years after from 1900 through last year, we get a near normal to slightly above normal temperature pattern Ohio south.

If we remove the years before 1950, we get an even milder result.

However, when we examine the physical drivers of the overall pattern and plug in the years that match up, we get this analog:  (WINTER OUTLOOK SPOILER).  WHOA....HUGE DIFFERENCE!

While this beautiful weather is something to behold, be careful in tying this late September, early October warm period to future trends. More often than not, it doesn't work.