2008 Summer Outlook...

By: Zachary Labe , 12:30 AM GMT on April 20, 2008

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Summer Outlook (2008)...


(2007 Summer thunderstorm damage to my next-door neighbors)

First Thoughts...
Well it is hard to believe that summer is almost here. The winter seemed to fly by, and now already it is mid April with 80degree temperatures. Buds on trees are appearing, with tulips already at full bloom here in the southern half of Pennsylvania. Grass is green around the area even though the recent lack of rain. Vegetables gardens have all cool season crops in the ground. Mountains reappearing with color instead of the dull, brown which coats the mountains all winter. Already oriental trees have peaked and starting to bud back to normal leaves that stay all summer. And also already the first taste of severe weather has hit parts of Pennsylvania with some small hail and some minor wind damage. Thunderstorms have been pretty common across the state with many areas having already seen 3-5 thunderstorms. Local parks are busy during dusk with baseball games and other sports. It sure is looking like Spring. But already almost a month into Spring, Summer is right around the corner coupled with severe weather and extreme heat. With global warming activists causing all the stir about rising temperatures, many people fear another dangerously hot summer is looming. But in my outlook I do not really see another sweltering summer this year.

Revisiting typical summer time weather threats...
Well just a quick review on some of the dangers of weather that people face in the summer. The three main ones are heat, severe weather, and hurricanes. Now here in Pennsylvania we really do not see any direct hits from hurricanes, just the remnants. But severe weather and heat waves can be big threats here in Pennsylvania. First about heat... When high temperatures combined with high humidity dangerous heat indexes can be reached. In the winter it is wind chill and in the summer it is heat index. The heat index is not the actual temperature but it what an animal and human feel on the skin. When the heat index reaches certain standards then advisories may be posted. Below are the thresholds for the advisories.

(Courtesy of NOAA)
Below are the official definitions from NOAA of common advisories found when severe weather strikes in the summer time...
-SEVERE THUNDERSTORM or TORNADO WATCH Severe thunderstorms with large hail, damaging winds, and/or tornadoes are possible, but the exact time and location of storm development is still uncertain. A watch means be prepared for storms.
-SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING A severe thunderstorm is imminent or occurring; it is either detected by weather radar or reported by storm spotters. A severe thunderstorm is one that produces winds 58 mph or stronger and/or hail 3/4 inch in diameter or larger. A warning means to take shelter.
-TORNADO WARNING A tornado is imminent or occurring; it is either detected by weather radar or reported by storm spotters. A warning means to take shelter.
-FLOOD WATCH Conditions are favorable for flash flooding. A watch means to get prepared for possible flooding.
-FLASH FLOOD WARNING Life-threatening flooding is imminent or occurring; it is either detected by weather radar, indicated by stream gauges, or reported by storm spotters. A flash flood is a flood that occurs very quickly; it is caused by heavy rainfall over a short period of time or from a dam break. A warning means to leave low-lying or flood prone areas.

Discussion for outlook for Summer 2008...
The major key player in the summer forecasts is the La Nina. Here is an update on the La Nina. The La Nina has weakened from strong to moderate intensity. Here are the latest SST anomalies in the central Pacific...

(Courtesy of NOAA)
These anomalies have warmed significantly and now only a small area has anomalies 1degree below normal. The cooler waters of the central Pacific are what leads to La Nina patterns. In El Nino situations it is the opposite effect in which the central Pacific is warmer than normal. Based on the latest trends the La Nina is supposed to weaken, but still continue for the next three months. Here are the latest model forecasts for three-month periods...

Typical La Nina patterns have a great effect on wintertime climate in Pennsylvania. But they do also affect the weather in the summer time. Some climatologists indicate possible trends to a weak El Nina come next fall, which may indicate a colder and snowier winter. But lets first get a hold on the summer forecast. Here are the average effects of a moderate La Nina in the June, July, and August time period...

(Courtesy of NOAA)

(Courtesy of NOAA)
The only difference I believe we will see is we will have a weak La Nina and this will bring normal to cooler than normal temperatures with average precipitation. And I know many people are concerned about more drought conditions developing in Pennsylvania during the summer, but I do not think we need to be too concerned, expect for the northwest, which will see below normal precipitation. Here is the latest drought outlook...

(Courtesy of NOAA)
Here are the official outlooks from the Climate Prediction center; they indicate a pretty average summer here in Pennsylvania.

(Courtesy of NOAA)

(Courtesy of NOAA)

My forecasts for the 2008 Summer...
Temperature- As for temperatures I believe conditions will be slightly below normal in the northwest with normal conditions across the central third of Pennsylvania. In the far southeast I believe it will be warmer than normal, mostly thanks to the urban heat island affect the Philadelphia has.

The sun is also showing signs of going into a slower sun spot cycle, which leads to cooler conditions. Now I am not saying there will not be extreme heat. Because I do believe there will be one or two heat waves (3 days of 90degree temperatures). But I do not expect any 100degree temperature weather.

Precipitation- Now I know many people are concerned about drought conditions developing again this summer. As last summer most of Pennsylvania was under a drought watch. Last summer was an unusual year because not one tropical storms' remnants moved into the area. When the remnants move into a region typically a widespread soaking rain occurs. As for this year, precipitation will be normal to slightly below normal. With the only above normal precipitation in the Laural Highlands. This is due to the busy pulse thunderstorm season in the middle of the summer.

Overall though I do not expect any widespread dry conditions anywhere across the state of Pennsylvania.

Severe Weather- As for severe weather, I do expect another busy season. The jet stream appears it may be favorable for a west of the state storm track, putting us in the warm sector creating large outbreaks of severe weather. Tornadoes may also be common too this summer. As for tropical systems, leading hurricane experts believe it may be an active year for an east coast storm track. If storms do hit the east coast they typically affect the state of Pennsylvania is some way. So be aware of this come late summer into fall.

Final thoughts...
This is an experimental outlook, and by no means going to be a fully accurate account of what the summer will bring. I do specialize in long-term forecasts for seasonal outlooks, but I decided to look at some factors and come upon an outlook. This is more of a learning experience. Come the end of Summer I will reopen this blog and take a look at what went correct, and what went wrong. This will be a reflection and help me learn to make better outlooks for the future to come. I hope everyone has a wonderful and safe summer!

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26. sullivanweather
10:14 AM GMT on April 22, 2008


HAPPY EARTH DAY!
Member Since: March 8, 2007 Posts: 273 Comments: 12612
25. TheRasberryPatch
2:15 AM GMT on April 22, 2008
and the moon and stars are visible.
Member Since: January 26, 2007 Posts: 72 Comments: 6259
24. Zachary Labe
11:50 PM GMT on April 21, 2008
TheRasberryPatch- Two tornadoes were reported outside of Washington DC in the suburbs. I believe they were rated at an EF-0.


Beautiful evening here in southern Pennsylvania. Partly cloudy skies with a light southeasterly breeze with cool temperatures in the 60s.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
23. TheRasberryPatch
9:37 PM GMT on April 21, 2008
well, driving up 83 from Baltimore the clouds appeared to be primed for a tornado. i was very suprised in the heavy downpour i didn't see any hail. i was driving at the time of the warning. surprisingly, we got 0.98" of rain.
it wasn't a tournament, just a long weekend in Williamsburg. Great food and heavy ales. The wife and I golfed on Friday, a great temp day. The CAA tournament was been played there just after our tee time. It was neat playing from their tees and playing on college championship ready greens and rough. I played decent, just had too many 3 putts. Saturday, was another fantastic weather day walking through colonial williamsburg. got to love temps in the 80's with low humidity.
Member Since: January 26, 2007 Posts: 72 Comments: 6259
22. Zachary Labe
9:14 PM GMT on April 21, 2008
Major Earth Day Blog 2008 coming out tomorrow morning. Check it out! I had been working on this for most of the weekend.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
21. Zachary Labe
7:16 PM GMT on April 21, 2008
TheRasberryPatch- How did you golf in the tournament in Williamsburg? Anyway, I guess I should have rephrased my normal precipitation. You are correct it appears that another dry then quick heavy burst of rain type pattern is upon us, at least until June. If you are interested in some of the weather here in Pennsylvania during the weekend you can look through some of my past comments. Quite a thunderstorm went near your area. My final rainfall amount here was 1.19inches. But some areas saw up to 3inches. There also was a tornado warning in York County, PA but nothing was reported.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
20. lawntonlookers
5:45 PM GMT on April 21, 2008
I guess my rain dance I did yesterday helped. Like Raspberry said, havy rain and then several weeks with none. At leas what we received yesterday helps the plants that I have in.
Member Since: March 22, 2006 Posts: 9 Comments: 1570
19. TheRasberryPatch
12:52 PM GMT on April 21, 2008
As I was coming from Williamsburg I was on the Baltimore Beltway where 83 meets and the rain was so hard, the skies were a brownish gray. This was the time that the tornado warning was issued. I was very surprised not to see any hail. I was in that rain for 20 mins most of the way on 83 until approx. 5 miles from the md-pa line. It was very eery.
Great weather for at the end of last week.
So Blizz, you foresee normal precip for the summer. I wonder is that has to do with some dry conditions as well as some heavy rain to fill up the bucket. It seems like that is what we have been getting lately in the summer. A storm to dump 3" and then 3 weeks of dry.
Member Since: January 26, 2007 Posts: 72 Comments: 6259
18. JDinWPA
1:28 AM GMT on April 21, 2008
Wow. Sounds like you guys to the SE really got hit. We had next to nothing. .17" of rain that ended this morning, then clouds and sun the rest of the day. It was really humid even though the temps never got that warm.

Take care!
17. Zachary Labe
12:43 AM GMT on April 21, 2008
Signing out for the night. What a busy weather day. Looks like the heaviest of rain has fallen across Franklin County with 3-4inch amounts. That goes exactly with my flood map too! Have a great evening!!!
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
16. Zachary Labe
12:00 AM GMT on April 21, 2008
Interesting 24hr temperature changes over Pennsylvania...

(Courtesy of Penn State Meteorology)


***Another weakening severe thunderstorm will be moving into York County. Overall though just expect small hail if anything. Heavy rain will be the primary threat over central Pennsylvania.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
15. jthal57
11:41 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Hopefully all in the warning area are taking the necessary precautions.
Amazing difference of weather across the state. You have seen storms and rain, we have seen clouds and breaks of sun all day.
14. Zachary Labe
11:41 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Severe weather threat is diminishing across Pennsylvania. So far only minor severe weather reports have come in across the state (small hail).
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
13. Zachary Labe
10:46 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
TORNADO WARNING
PAC133-202315-
/O.NEW.KCTP.TO.W.0001.080420T2244Z-080420T2315Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
TORNADO WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE STATE COLLEGE PA
644 PM EDT SUN APR 20 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN STATE COLLEGE PA HAS ISSUED A

* TORNADO WARNING FOR...
WESTERN YORK COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA...


* UNTIL 715 PM EDT

* AT 642 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING A TORNADO NEAR CODORUS...
OR 10 MILES EAST OF PARKVILLE...MOVING NORTHWEST AT 27 MPH.

* THE TORNADO WILL BE NEAR...
CODORUS AROUND 650 PM EDT...
SPRING GROVE AROUND 705 PM EDT...
THOMASVILLE AROUND 710 PM EDT...

THIS WILL ALSO IMPACT THE FOLLOWING MAJOR ROADS.

WHEN A TORNADO WARNING IS ISSUED BASED ON DOPPLER RADAR...IT MEANS
THAT STRONG ROTATION HAS BEEN DETECTED IN THE STORM. A TORNADO MAY
ALREADY BE ON THE GROUND...OR IS EXPECTED TO DEVELOP SHORTLY.

THIS TORNADO WARNING REPLACES THE SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
PREVIOUSLY ISSUED FOR THE WARNED AREA.

IF YOU ARE IN THE PATH OF THIS STORM...MOVE INDOORS IMMEDIATELY.

THE SAFEST PLACE TO BE DURING A TORNADO IS IN A BASEMENT. GET UNDER A
WORKBENCH OR OTHER PIECE OF STURDY FURNITURE. IF NO BASEMENT IS
AVAILABLE...SEEK SHELTER ON THE LOWEST FLOOR OF THE BUILDING IN AN
INTERIOR HALLWAY OR ROOM SUCH AS A CLOSET. STAY AWAY FROM WINDOWS.


PLEASE REPORT HAIL...STRONG WINDS OR WIND DAMAGE TO THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE BY CALLING TOLL FREE...1 8 7 7 6 3 3 6 7 7 2.

LAT...LON 3974 7672 3972 7684 3990 7699 3994 7683
TIME...MOT...LOC 2244Z 151DEG 24KT 3976 7680

$$

FORECASTER: STEINBUGL
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
12. Zachary Labe
10:33 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
PAC001-133-202315-
/O.NEW.KCTP.SV.W.0009.080420T2232Z-080420T2315Z/

BULLETIN - EAS ACTIVATION REQUESTED
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE STATE COLLEGE PA
632 PM EDT SUN APR 20 2008

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN STATE COLLEGE PA HAS ISSUED A

* SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WARNING FOR...
WESTERN YORK COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA...
NORTHEASTERN ADAMS COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA...


* UNTIL 715 PM EDT

* AT 628 PM EDT...NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED A
SEVERE THUNDERSTORM CAPABLE OF PRODUCING PENNY SIZE HAIL...AND
DAMAGING WINDS IN EXCESS OF 60 MPH. THIS STORM WAS LOCATED NEAR
NEW FREEDOM...OR 14 MILES NORTHWEST OF COCKEYSVILLE...AND MOVING
NORTHWEST AT 26 MPH.

* THE SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WILL BE NEAR...
SHREWSBURY AROUND 640 PM EDT...
GLEN ROCK AROUND 645 PM EDT...
CODORUS AROUND 650 PM EDT...
SPRING GROVE AND HANOVER AROUND 705 PM EDT...
THOMASVILLE AROUND 710 PM EDT...
EAST BERLIN AND WEIGELSTOWN AROUND 715 PM EDT...

THIS WILL IMPACT THE FOLLOWING CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA INTERSTATES...
I-83 BETWEEN MILE MARKERS 1 AND 6.

THIS WILL ALSO IMPACT THE FOLLOWING MAJOR ROADS...ROUTE 30.

DOPPLER RADAR HAS INDICATED SOME WEAK ROTATION WITHIN THIS STORM.
WHILE NOT IMMEDIATELY LIKELY...A TORNADO MAY STILL DEVELOP. IF A
TORNADO IS SPOTTED...ACT QUICKLY AND MOVE TO A PLACE OF SAFETY IN A
STURDY STRUCTURE...SUCH AS A BASEMENT OR SMALL INTERIOR ROOM.


SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS CONTAIN DAMAGING WINDS 58 MPH OR STRONGER...OR
HAIL THREE QUARTERS OF AN INCH OR LARGER. SEEK SHELTER INSIDE A
STURDY LOCATION NOW.

PLEASE REPORT HAIL...STRONG WINDS OR WIND DAMAGE TO THE NATIONAL
WEATHER SERVICE BY CALLING TOLL FREE...1 8 7 7 6 3 3 6 7 7 2.

LAT...LON 3973 7663 3972 7671 3972 7672 3972 7673
3971 7689 3998 7712 4008 7686
TIME...MOT...LOC 2232Z 154DEG 22KT 3969 7675

$$

FORECASTER: STEINBUGL
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
11. Zachary Labe
10:19 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
cchamp6- It is only 57degrees here. Sea breeze is making a huge effect on your state's weather I see.


***Strong to severe thunderstorm moving into southern York County. Strong rotation is being indicated on the storm relative velocity radar. The storm will be moving into the York County in around 20minutes and will move just west of Thomasville. The cell shows signs of slight weakening but still has strong rotation indicated. In Maryland currently there is a tornado warning. If a warning is issued in York County please seek shelter immediantly.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
10. cchamp6
8:14 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Here is a link for southern new england temps. I dont think I posted this one for you. My location is hard to see. It is kind of blocked by two other locations. Its one of the few in northwest connecticut. If you put your cursor on the locations it tells you the town and other information. Bantam is my town. Link

Amazing how much cooler it is near the water.
Member Since: December 21, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 1641
9. cchamp6
8:07 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Hey Blizz,

I didnt realize there were any storms out there today. It is an aboslutely gorgeous day here. Up to 73 degrees, we were only expecting mid 60s at best.
Member Since: December 21, 2006 Posts: 5 Comments: 1641
8. Zachary Labe
7:59 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Wow, what a weather day. The core of the hail storm moved just to my east. But still I received very heavy rain with loud thunder and lightning. Currently right now it is heavy raining with light thunder. Daily rainfall is approaching 1.25inches.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
7. Zachary Labe
7:16 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Potential hail storm moving right towards my direction. Already in Maryland .75inch hail was reported at the Mason-Dixon line. And in York county pea sized hail was reported. And looking at the VIL radar 25-30kg's are in the center of the cell.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
6. Zachary Labe
6:51 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Training thunderstorms associated with the upper level low pressure are pinwheeling across southcentral Pennsylvania. With heavy rain and even isolated severe weather. Here is a flood risk map...

The heaviest rains currently are training up along the Susquehanna River with embedded thunderstorms. Some storms may even produce small hail, especially near the Mason-Dixon line. Here is a severe weather risk map...

Heavy rain has already fallen across many areas of the state, especially in the Laural Highlands where radar estimates 1.5-2inches of rain has already fallen. Convection will continue to ride over the same areas. In central Pennsylvania already over 1inch has fallen. With here north of Harrisburg I have already .75inches of rain. Here is an overall estimated precipitation total for the entire event.


***Currently a strong to severe thunderstorm is moving into southeastern York County and may be accompanied by penny size hail along with heavy rain and frequent lightning. Minor flooding may occur.

Here north of Harrisburg...
57degrees
moderate rain, 3mile vis.
Rain rate .55inches per hour
Total rainfall so far .93inches of rain
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
5. Zachary Labe
4:41 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Here north of Harrisburg...
60degrees
heavy rain with thunder, .5mile vis.
.66inches of rain so far
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
4. Zachary Labe
2:11 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
JDinWPA- That summer heat can be brutal so I hope it does stay below average.

jthal57- Thanks. I may get some heavy rain as flood watches are only a county to my west.

lawntonlookers- Maybe during the summer I will include a short section on gardening, which may include outlooks for gardening for the upcoming week. Good idea, thanks.
Member Since: December 14, 2007 Posts: 284 Comments: 15112
3. lawntonlookers
12:09 PM GMT on April 20, 2008
Thanks Bliz. Was hopping for more rain, but so far this growing season we haven't had much at all. Maybe you can but a table together showing the days we get rain and the total over a 6 day period. It helps those that need to water the garden.
Member Since: March 22, 2006 Posts: 9 Comments: 1570
2. jthal57
10:57 AM GMT on April 20, 2008
Great update Blizzard. Interesting morning temps. Most places in low to mid 50's for their overnight lows. Am a bit disappointed we will not get much rain. The garden needs it!
1. JDinWPA
3:49 AM GMT on April 20, 2008
Good evening Blizzard! Hope your enjoying the weekend. Today wasn't bad, although mostly cloudy and rain moved in this evening. Not complaining; we could use it.

Not a bad outlook. I could stand slightly cooler temps as long as the rainfall is around normal. Watering is such a pain. We'll see how it goes.

Have a good rest-of-your-weekend!!

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About Blizzard92

Cornell University- Atmospheric Sciences Undergrad; Research Assist.- Onset of Spring Indices Toolbox; Interests- Small spatial scale climatolology

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Linglestown, PA
Elevation: 520 ft
Temperature: 24.2 °F
Dew Point: 15.2 °F
Humidity: 68%
Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 9.0 mph
Updated: 10:37 AM EST on January 18, 2014

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