SE LA - Nonc da Nutria says Winter over here... sort of.

By: DocNDswamp , 9:43 PM GMT on February 03, 2014

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Mon February 3 2014 -
SE LA - Nonc da Nutria says Winter over here... sort of.
Caveats abound with ratty outlook!

Nonc da Nutria awoke Sunday morning, February 2nd Groundhog Day to dense fog / passing shwrs with temps in the 60's... shook the water off his coat and confidently pronounced Winter as "Game Over" for SE LA... Hmmmm, okay, granted it was a warm wet overcast day but I wondered which prediction he meant with the sports analogy, rest of Winter or the SuperBowl score at halftime... or maybe his gruff answer just indicated his irritated mood, after all Feb 2nd is known among hibernating N American rat clans (supported by 97% consensus of rodent scientists studying the event) as the much-dreaded BAD (Baseless Anthropogenic Disturbance) Day, disrupting their peaceful late-Winter slumber... even to those of SE LA still semi-active in the cold season, chomping on roots and tree bark.

Nonc replied "both" but as for who was gonna get routed in SB, hinted sumthin' bout "defense wins championships"... As for rest-of-Winter, like all experienced forecasters, he offered caveats while scratching waterfleas off his fur - "Sure, we'll still get some cold weather, could even average a little cooler than normal dis month, as did Dec-Jan" with a few more frosty morns, another light-mod freeze or two but as for truly severe arctic intrusions icing over his swampwater and pondering why the rain is coming down white and fluffy or mixed with ice pellets, Nonc says "there's higher probability it's a thing of the past"... "esp once past February 15th or so". He was expecting the cold water temps, while minimizing his gator risk, to steadily rise over next few weeks.

Nonc predicted our current brown vegetation will recover, rise from the dead back to it's healthy green state as it typically does thru February-March. Although "not as quick as such a dedicated vegetarian would hope", said a hungry Nonc, picking willow bark out his 2 front teeth while eyeing my leafy cauliflower with criminal intent... Reminded LDWF still offers a bounty on swamprat tails, he resumed the weather discussion of SE LA Winter 2013-14.

Nonc was quick to quote ancient nutria-lore which spoke of harsher winters endured by his furry forebears who walked atop great frozen swamp lakes back in the 1980's, saying it "got close, but ain't been dat bad"...
He figured this January was maybe coldest he's felt in his lifetime but similar to 2010 yet had skepticism Feb-March would continue quite as cold... He was quick to point how unpredictable weather variability can be even among experts like himself with a host of influences affecting outcome. Nonc hoped Spring won't feel so downright frigid like last year after getting fooled by a mild Winter.. He highlighted the CPC's forecast "warm" Spring Outlook in 2013 verses actual temperature departure graphic for March-April-May as proof but oddly Spring (MAM) is currently missing from their site, rankling Nonc - "Why dey do dat? Other 3-month seasonal maps for 2013 are dere and I seen it a few weeks ago"... Hmmm, he had a point - last years DJF Winter, JJA Summer, SON Fall are shown but MAM has been removed (?). Probably just temporarily out for adjustments, lol... Though available monthly maps and station data show March featured coldest weather after DJF Winter was over, continued cool in April then dipped to record-setting cold in 1st week May. Nonc's tree rat relatives claimed that crucial period contributed to most pathetic pecan crop yield in years this recent Fall. I concur... we got nuthin' of nuts off our trees despite otherwise decent conditions, a typical mix of dry spells with rainy ones. AND worry-free of hurricanes or tropical storms usually destructive impact causing losses, a rarity! You'd think 2013's 78" rain sufficient... Summer was a tad less hot, May eventually warmed, had a warm June followed by cooler / typically wet July-August - warmest temp all summer a mere 96F - and while Sep-Oct was dry and touch warmer, then colder Nov-Dec. The most extreme temp deviation being that abnormally cold Spring, overruling DJF, June and Fall warmth for an annual temp mean below avg. 2012 was both warmer and wetter with 83.5" rain, plus had Hurricane Isaac blow thru, yet pecans were abundant for me and da squirrel-rats... so...

I catch Nonc yawning, half asleep as I stray off-topic. "Hey, you want my outlook or wanna live in da past?" Sure, sure Nonc... "It's like dis - Plan for day length getting longer each day, warm up to follow." And with that, he swam off into the swamp...

Darn rat... Never got to ask what he thought of the myriad influences on our weather / climate system with NAO / AO, polar vortex lobes, PNA, TNH, PDO / ENSO, the AMO, AMOC / thermohaline / ocean circulation, and... and...

Nonc, clearly has greater concerns.

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5. DocNDswamp
9:42 PM GMT on February 04, 2014
Checking in...

Dense fog an issue this morning lasting well late, temps up 60's as warm front lifted N... Noting rain shwrs over W LA / S Cen LA in 2 bands, likely tstms in heavier cluster approaching New Iberia / Lafayette now - keeping eye on via KLCH radar... Not out of question some could be strong and into overnight hrs as system crawls across LA...

Oh, before some take offense...
After me and Nonc had a little fun tossing rat scat at the CPC about the oddly missing MAM graphics, in fairness I'll point out within CPC's site all forecast outlooks and verification are indeed readily available for edification from - CPC Monthly & Seasonal Forecast Archive... and CPC Gridded Seasonal Verifications (and Heidke Skill scores)...

Here the mentioned Spring MAM 2013 forecast temps... and the observed Spring MAM 2013 temps in comparison. Tho I still like seeing the other graph shaded in degrees of departure extremes.

Similarly comparing current period Nov-Dec-Jan observed temp has been colder than outlook forecasted yielding another poor skill score, although did much better with precip...

Commentary -
IMO from examining a few, if there's a trend with CPC over past few years toward poor verification score, it's generally been colder temps blowing a repetitiously broad-brushed warm forecast. And more commonly occurs in the Fall Winter Spring monthly / seasonal forecasts... Summer forecasts have often scored better. Perhaps attempting too linear a continuity of warmth, expectations based on recent overall decadal trends... and too little acknowledgment that natural variability remains wide ranging involving a host of influences.

There are major issues to note, and that's the constant struggle, if you will, of connecting the complex teleconnections involved... with each individual tele pattern spanning periods of weeks to multi-decades (to centurial scales!) featuring high-variability and interweaving fluctuations. Observing the tele patterns offers guidance aspects with some, not much with some others that are short-term in their state, merely reflecting present conditions. We're still in the learning stage of such knowledge identifying their range / characteristics... from atmospheric to oceanic and multiple combinations thereof.

Member Since: September 21, 2005 Posts: 94 Comments: 4783
4. DocNDswamp
5:52 AM GMT on February 04, 2014
Hello Skye,
LOL, I value my fingers too much to try... ;)

Hey, got an update for ya - harvested several those cheddar cauliflower, excellent fare!
Hard to describe diff with snow crowns, other than to say full-flavored. Might have to cook both same time to get better comparison... The smaller surrounding leaves were quite good too.

Recommended, thumbs up!
(and letting 2 go to seed - used transplants originally)

Member Since: September 21, 2005 Posts: 94 Comments: 4783
3. Skyepony (Mod)
5:33 AM GMT on February 04, 2014
Nice to see someone asking the rodents on their terms..not gankin them out a hole & declaring some predetermined forecast:)
Member Since: August 10, 2005 Posts: 156 Comments: 36065
2. DocNDswamp
5:21 AM GMT on February 04, 2014
Howdy Miss Barefoot,
Glad you enjoyed Nonc's outlook... ornery cuss he is to snag, heluva lot less docile than TV child star P-Phil!

Why yes... CPC musta figured that chilly preliminary Spring MAM temp data needed additional processing for consensual consumption... shoulda screen-shotted it - like I did the ever-changing versions Houma Temp Records WU Local Climate page presented over a 16 month period... It's a hoot... trust the data when ya pick the cherry ya like! ;)

Always welcome, pleased you posted!
Member Since: September 21, 2005 Posts: 94 Comments: 4783
1. Barefootontherocks
3:02 AM GMT on February 04, 2014
MAM has been removed (?). Probably just temporarily out for adjustments, lol...
LMAO here... and dere... and dere. Maybe NoncdaNutria will return as a featured blogger.

Though I have sworn off posting at wu, this was just too good to pass by without a word. Thank you for the laughs!
Member Since: April 29, 2006 Posts: 147 Comments: 17478

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