An amplified pattern in the jet stream created some pretty crazy weather across the United States this past weekend. We experienced everything from snow to record breaking warmth to flooding. The Pacific Northwest continued to get slammed with one storm after another. Spokane, Washington currently has17 inches of snow, but that’s nothing compared to the total snow accumulations they received during December as a whole. 51.1 inches of snow was recorded in Spokane on Sunday for the month of December. That’s the snowiest December they’ve ever seen and the second snowiest month on record.
While Spokane was receiving record amounts of snow, the Northeast was experiencing record breaking warmth. Temperatures were 15-30 degrees above average this past weekend as a strong ridge developed and transported mild air into the Northeast. 26 record highs occurred along the east coast through NY, PA, NJ, VA, NC, and CT. This record breaking warmth caused the snowpack to melt and resulted in flooding throughout the Great Lakes.
A cold front came through Sunday afternoon and not only put an end to the warmth but it caused widespread destruction. On Saturday tornadoes were recorded in Missouri and Illinois. On Sunday when the warm front moved through Western NY, winds gusted up to 75 mph in Buffalo. 35,000 people were left without power as trees and utility poles got slammed down. 75 mph winds are equal to a weak category 1 hurricane and/or a F1 tornado.
The jet stream pattern has now turned into a zonal flow (west to east). Weather will become more winter-like this week with only a few light snow showers until a potential storm comes our way on Friday.