First Alert Weather: Looking out for Rochester

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ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) —Welcome to another rendition of "Looking out for Rochester" as we dive in a little deeper with the atmospheric pattern and tell you what we are watching out for and what to look forward to over the next two weeks.

Spoiler, if you’re a winter enthusiast you are not going to like the next two weeks, but if you want the warmth there is good news. As usual, let us begin with the current pattern across the United States. Currently, the jets stream is basically in the same location as it was this past Sunday. We have the jet stream entering North America just to the north of Seattle, WA and dipping down into the Great Lakes before it settles just south of us locally before heading over the Atlantic.

The lack of high latitude blocking as kept us on the "quiet" side over the last week as we have been missing out on big dips in the jet stream with all the storms strengthening out to sea. This pattern, which has brought us numerous weak clipper systems, likely continues through next week before warmer weather may try to move in locally. However, there are two opportunities in which we may be able to squeeze out some snow.

The first opportunity we have our eyes on is for Monday, Dec. 6. Although the jet stream will generally not budge and remain in the same location by then, we may be able to see it dip just enough to open the door for snow across Western NY. An area of low pressure will try to form over the Great Lakes late this weekend, and move into our region but the signs are not looking good.

The lack of blocking within the atmosphere is allowing this system to have free will in moving north with nothing in its path to hinder it, and after forming over the Central US, it will likely move east and cut through the Great Lakes and into Canada. this means we will be on the warmer side of things with rain showers and then snow showers on the backside with breezy conditions. Confidence is this outcome has increased and is all but certain at this point which makes us move onto the next opportunity, Wednesday, Dec. 7.

Models right now are showing a bit more juice in the jet stream with the setup for Wednesday’s possible storm. Models right now are showing a bit more bend in the jet stream right now which may open the door for some snow to fall locally. However, if you have been following along with us, we have been stressing that the 6-10 day time period on models has not been very accurate and snowstorms that show up 6-10 days out are smokescreens for milder and rainier systems.

Will this one be the same? Unfortunately, the answer is yes… Although the jet stream may have a bit more juice, there will be no high latitude blocking present and when the jet moves into the Northeast models are indicating it sits overhead.

Now, there is plenty of time for this to change, but even ensembles are not sniffing out a big storm for us. We could see some snow showers on the backside, but in terms of "big" snow these two opportunities are kind of bleak. How about the following weekend and into early next week?

Well if you like mild weather in the Winter, you’ll be happy.

Models are indicating the dreaded southeast ridge building towards the end of next week and into the following weekend. This means milder weather will move in across the Eastern US, and this would also mean an increased chance for drier weather locally. There remain questions though, depending on how strong this ridge builds will determine how far north the jet stream is lifted.

A stronger ridge will lift the jet stream further north, keep us drier, and keep us warmer. A flatter ridge will allow the jet to potentially setup over us which means although we will likely be milder, there will be a better chance for rain showers and unsettled weather to move across. In terms of snow chances will be limited with that pattern, even late effect.

I would like to stress the last "mild stretch" that was forecasted from models occurred two weeks ago for this week, and we have generally been on the cooler side so far so things may change. Our next update on the medium range will come this Sunday, December 5th.

Temperatures: Seasonable the next 7 days before turning above average next weekend

Precipitation: Near normal the next two weeks

Time Periods to Watch:

December 5th: Great Lakes cutter, rain shower, breezy conditions, snow showers on backside

December 7th: Great Lakes Cutter? No high latitude blocking which would allow the storm to cut north than along the East Coast. Rin showers, breezy conditions, and backside snow showers.

December 10th-12th: Another Great Lakes Cutter?? La Nina pattern signals for us to be on the warmer side, blocking remains missing for coastal storm.