Is it too early to talk winter weather?

Discussion in 'General Skiing' started by graham418, Aug 1, 2018.

  1. graham418

    graham418 Out on the slopes Skier

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    I just read that NOAA is predicting a 70% chance for an El Nino for the 2018/19 winter season. While it is rather early, and they will be updating in a months time, is it too early to start the conversation?
    Who here puts a lot of faith into these predictions? What are your experiences as to the accuracy? Would it affect your decision to purchase either the Ikon or the Epic pass based on resorts covered by each pass, or not. I would imagine everyone who was going to buy one has already committed to it.


    https://unofficialnetworks.com/2018/07/30/noaa-el-nino-forecast-outlook-for-winter-2018-2019/
     
  2. Ron

    Ron AKA Finndog Pugski Ski Tester

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    yes, its too early and there's about 3% chance of accuracy, now go ride your bike :).
     
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  3. cantunamunch

    cantunamunch Meh Skier

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    Well, ~September 15 is really when the forecasts start becoming more relevant.

    The essential point of the forecasts thus far has been that we will stay ENSO - neutral through December, so western early season snow should happen at all the usual high-altitude suspects (Utah, Colorado, Wyoming) without freaky shifts. Both the Ikon and the Epic have value amongst those resorts; there is no one who will be left out in the cold, so to speak.

    Late season weak El Nino is slightly advantage-Ikon, I think, with the California resorts on there.

    As far as eastern snow goes, I think it is waaaaaay too early especially since any ENSO effect can easily get negated by more direct mechanisms and phenomena like the North Atlantic Oscillation, for which predictions we will have to wait until at least Remembrance Day.
     
  4. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Instructor, newbie Subaru driver and winter lover Skier

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    I don't bother reading or getting excited about predictions because half the time it never happens. A few years ago the farmers almanac predicted the "best winter EVER" and in actuality it turned out to be our worst winter in years and years, not even cold enough to make snow half the time. Resorts closed early and I don't even want to think about all the revenue lost from smaller resorts and any retailer tied to the snow industry. It was after this winter that I stopped getting excited. I'm hopeful to be skiing by the end of October and most of the time that's a reality but I operate on the I believe it when I see it mentality. Basically let's see what happens in October/November and go from there. I ski in the northeast so I'll ski on about anything so I don't pray to the powder gods. All I ever really hope for is cold temperatures so that the resorts can blow snow. Anything above that is a bonus. If I start out the season with minimal expectations, I feel I'm a lot better off.
     
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  5. Thread Starter
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    graham418

    graham418 Out on the slopes Skier

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    I knew it! Just recovering from shoulder surgery, and can't ride my bike yet. Sure getting antsy though.. to do anything!!
     
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  6. UGASkiDawg

    UGASkiDawg AKA David Pugski Ski Tester

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    No it's never too early it's winter in South America..is it snowing yet?
     
  7. scott43

    scott43 Making fresh tracks Skier

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    He's just sick of the humidity here in Toronto.. :D
     
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  8. cantunamunch

    cantunamunch Meh Skier

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    I'll just put this here.

     
  9. Ron

    Ron AKA Finndog Pugski Ski Tester

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    Ohhhhh dude. Been there. I fell yer pain. (Literally)
     
  10. milkman

    milkman Booting up Skier

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    It's never too early to think about the next season! I find i make it about about one month into summer before i think about snow, then I realize I'm only one third of the way to the next ski season.
     
  11. scott43

    scott43 Making fresh tracks Skier

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    Well we just got 70mm of rain in 30 mins..that's awesome.. Watching basement for fountain of water... :nono: For those of you following along at home, that's about 2.75"...
     
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  12. Jilly

    Jilly Lead Cougar Skier

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    And just about 200km east of you, we got nada! North of 7 got hit pretty good as I was driving in it.

    On the wooly bear caterpillers...
     
  13. Andy Mink

    Andy Mink I am a half fast skier. Moderator

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    Considering the TV talking heads can't get what happened YESTERDAY right half the time, I don't put too much stock in long term predictions. That said, no, it's not too early to talk about winter!
     
  14. oldschoolskier

    oldschoolskier Out on the slopes Skier

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    Too cold, too hot, stop looking for what’s going to happen and enjoy the moment.

    Live this way and you always enjoy the best times and always seem to have the best ski days (and so on).

    BTW Toronto weather sucks year round. As to rain I’ve seen worse in Toronto.
     
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  15. Carolinacub

    Carolinacub Yes thats a Cubs hat I'm wearing Skier

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    Well the folk tales here the mountains of WNC say that for each morning of fog in Aug we have snow in the winter.

    Weather Lore:
    o what is all of this “weatherlore” about anyway? Weatherlore is based on observations of the environment and the effects that weather has on insects, animals, plant life, birds…and of course, people.

    For centuries…well before there were sophisticated weather apps…farmers and explorers planned their winters around how many snows there were in the month of August. If August mornings were clear, they’d plan their agricultural strategies to allow for a relatively snow-free winter. Well before TripAdvisor – explorers would gauge their travel plans the same way. If August mornings were blanketed with heavy fogs, they would postpone their excursions until Spring.

    WANT SOME OTHER WEATHERLORE???

    If ant hills are high in July, Winter will be snowy. (Hmmm…we don’t have no stinkin’ ants in the mountains.)

    When leaves fall early, Fall and Winter will be mild;
    When leaves fall late, Winter will be severe.

    Squirrels gathering nuts in a flurry, Will cause snow to gather in a hurry.

    As high as the weeds grow, So will the bank of snow.

    The severity of Winter is determined by how far down the feathers have grown on a partridge’s leg. (Anyone even KNOW what a damn partridge looks like. How long are their legs anyway? Feathers on legs??? Yuck!)

    The wider the brown (middle) band on a woolly bear caterpillar, the milder the Winter.
     
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  16. surfsnowgirl

    surfsnowgirl Instructor, newbie Subaru driver and winter lover Skier

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    We'll be up in the eastern townships of quebec the first weekend in September and I'd love it if this heat broke by then so we can have some lovely eastern canadian temperatures. Our office manager at work always talks about how she loves our hot weather, I stay silent. I feel like I'm a freak because most people I work aren't fans of the cold and it's never cold enough for me. I'd like a couple months each of spring and fall and then 8 months of winter.
     
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  17. Thread Starter
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    graham418

    graham418 Out on the slopes Skier

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    I believe all those farmer sayings and old sailor sayings especially ( I am a sailor) There is more than just a grain of truth to them
     
  18. Jellybeans1000

    Jellybeans1000 Resident Weatherman Industry Insider

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    Don't base pass purchase decisions on a Long Range Forecast.

    That said, I am processing the data as it comes in, and will post some sort of long range forecast myself. Probably next month sometime, and then October and November.
     
  19. Blue Streak

    Blue Streak Behind the Epic Curtain Skier

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    Excellent advice.
     
  20. geepers

    geepers Putting on skis Skier

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    A prediction based only on "is it El Nino or La Nina?" is unlikely to be be useful. A range of other factors influence snow fall.

    The forecaster called The Grasshopper on mountainwatch.com is issuing pre-season forecasts for Australia and New Zealand based on a range of factors including ENSO and various ocean temperatures. Then looking at the snow falls for years with similar conditions. There may be much more to it (which may or may not include goat entrails) but since I've been taking notice, those pre-season forecasts (made around April/May) have been a pretty good match with actual.

    Of course none of that helps much if the week ski holiday coincides with warm temps and gale force winds putting too many chairs on wind hold.

    As far as I can tell the best method of getting good snow for a ski vac is to find out which of your friends was favored at birth by the snow gods - there's always one who regularly gets nightly champagne pow dumps and blue bird days - and book same resort weeks as that person. But to keep it scientific and evidence based ask to see the vids and photos. Unbelievably some people fib about this stuff.;)
     
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