Author

Joshua Feldman

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A clash between the arctic and the tropics is underway over much of the contiguous US this week. This is a fairly typical battle in autumn, especially in the northern US. Notable about this particular event, however, is that Texas is caught smack in the middle of the action. Typical fall weather for the Great Lakes or Northern New England has somehow managed to spill its way into Texas, quite literally overnight. For Texas, this week’s weather is more typical of January than of October. Long-standing climatological records are being shattered as a result. To say that it is cold in Texas would be an understatement. Temperatures in the mid-levels of the atmosphere were outside the range of NOAA’s Climate Forecasting System 1979 – 2009 Reanalysis period Monday afternoon in northwestern Texas. In northeastern Texas, temperatures near the surface were also outside the reanalysis range, but only for the afternoon.…

Massive changes are underway for the Southern Plains and Southwestern US. An uncanny weather pattern will soon bring weather conditions typical of December in New York City to the region,  spreading winter-weather as far south as the US – Mexico border! The culprits behind this bizarre weather are a series of three potent shortwave troughs spanning from Canada to Mexico. Each trough will help arctic air penetrate deeper into the continental subtropics. Threats from this winter blast include hard freeze, snow, sleet, freezing rain, and flash flooding. Three troughs are visible in the RAP upper air analysis that began early Sunday afternoon. One was centered over southern Manitoba, another over the Great Basin, and another over Arizona and the southern California coast. The shortwave over Manitoba is the strongest of the three and contains the core of the arctic air, but the jet stream is strongest rounding the shortwave over the…

Less than 36 hours remain before the first rain bands from Michael spin ashore the Florida panhandle. Just three days ago Michael was a non-threatening  cluster of thunderstorms fed through the rainforests of Central America. Now Michael is a massive and intensifying Category 1 hurricane barreling toward the Gulf Coast. The storm’s dramatic intensification has left the Gulf Coast scrambling to make preparations ahead of a direct landfall from what could soon be a major hurricane. Michael was an 80 mph Category 1 hurricane with minimum central pressure of 978 mbas of 5pm EDT October 8. The hurricane was located 30 mi northwest of the western tip of Cuba and was heading northward at 9 mph.  Incredibly, Michael’s growth occurred under the influence of modest wind shear. Wind shear is expected to lessen as Michael continues northward into the bathtub-like waters of the Gulf of Mexico, permitting Michael to undergo…