The GFS Superensemble!

Thursday, October 13, 2011
1:17 P.M.

When there is a period of pleasant but boring weather like there is right now, I generally look at the GFS Superensemble model for insight into the future. It has the designation of being a “Superensemble” not because it is the most accurate model (it isn’t) but because it goes far into the future. It provides charts 384 hours (16 days) out! Although the charts at the end are generally widely inaccurate, a consistent pattern of similar conditions the models super far out may indicate a general pattern that could be developing.

Let’s face it. The weather outside right now is nice, but it is far from interesting. Tuesday was incredible. Wednesday was fairly humdrum. And today, there are just some high clouds, with most morning fog burnt off by now. I took a look at the GFS Superensemble model to look into what we could expect the next couple weeks.

10/13/11 12UTC 009HR Fcst Valid Thu 10/13/11 21UTC (NCEP/NWS/NOAA)
300 mb heights, isotachs, and wind (knots)

Sorry if that description seems verbose, I am just trying to get into the habit of specifically citing all the data I get. Basically, this picture represents the jet stream over us right now. You can see a weak ridge over our area that is nudging the jet stream further north, protecting us from any significant rainfall.

10/13/11 12UTC 120HR Fcst Valid Tue 10/18/11 12UTC (NCEP/NWS/NOAA)
300 mb heights, isotachs, and wind (knots)

By next week, the ridge has gotten even bigger! We should see partly cloudy conditions with highs in the 60s early next week.

Models diverge after that. The GFS continues to show this ridge, but the European Model, which is generally more accurate, shows a pretty wet system entering our region.

Ten days later, the GFS shows a zonal flow.

10/13/11 12UTC 240HR Fcst Valid Sun 10/23/11 12UTC (NCEP/NWS/NOAA)
300 mb heights, isotachs, and wind (knots)

At this point, beyond 10 days is completely up for grabs. However, I believe we will see the ridge that the GFS is promising, and then a good soaker like the ECMWF shows in the middle of next week. In other words, I’m following the NWS and tv stations on this one, and you should too!

Have a good one!
Charlie

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