CONTEST STATUS - Updated: TUE...04-NOV-14 @ 8:35 AM EST

Winter '14 / '15 - Snowfall Forecast Contests
Wx GO!

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16th Annual 'Regular Season'
Contest starts with the 1st contest-worthy storm

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14th Annual 'Season-total'
Call for Forecasts!
Details here
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Friday, February 29, 2008

Contest # 8 - The Forecasts


Forecasts for Contest # 8 have been posted to the web site.

11 forecasts
8 veterans
2 rookies
1 entry disqualified

Storm-total Precipitation
MIN: 44.9" (TQ)
MAX: 102.3" (ilibov)
AVG: 72.41"
Median: 70.8"

Click image to enlarge

Heavy snowfall axis expected by Consensus: CAR - BGR - PWM - CON - ORH - CAR

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Contest # 8 - Call for Forecasts


Deadline: 10:30 PM EST THU…28 FEB 2008
Forecast verification begins: 12:01 AM EST FRI…29 FEB 2008

Enter your forecast via the Contest/s web site
Follow the link to 'Enter Storm Forecast.'

Please enter 0.05 for trace amounts instead of a 'T.'

The Contest Administrator will post all forecasts to the NE_Wx Google Group within 30 minutes after the deadline and to the Contest web site the following day.

Contest subject to cancellation before the deadline…if forecast conditions warrant.

More information about the contest/s rules…forecast verification…and scoring can be found at the main web site.

Updates and announcement are posted on the Contest/s web log

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Forecasters need to register once before entering…even if they were registered last year.

Registration is simple… requiring only a username and password. If you provide a valid e-mail address…a copy of your forecast will be sent to you. Please ensure your browser is enabled to accept first-party cookies.

Each contest must have a minimum of seven (7) forecasters for the results to be included in the end-of-season standings.

The NE.Wx Snowfall Forecast Contest (NEWxSFC) is a multi-month event that continues into late March or early April. In general…contests are held whenever a decent…synoptic-scale storm rears its head and threatens at least a half-dozen forecast stations with more than nuisance snowfall amounts. Forecasters are called to post their 'storm total' snowfall predictions…on deadline…for 27 NWS / FAA observing stations scattered about New England and the Mid-Atlantic regions. The Contest Administrator determines the deadlines for entries…verifies all forecasts…and publishes the final results to the Contest/s web site.

Please be sure to read the rules before entering the contest b/c your entry constitutes agreement to abide by them.

You can find the Contest Rules and additional information about error scoring…current monthly snowfall climatology from NCDC…daily CPC teleconnection indices…daily NESDIS N-Hemi snow cover…and NWS Daily Climate Bulletins (CDUS41) by pointing your browser here.
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Synoptiscopic Breakdown


Missed a good one.

PNS Snow totals
ALB 5.5
BGM 5.4
ORH 2.6
BTV 8.8
CAR 7.2
BGR 5.8
PWM 4.3
CON ~9

A bit surprised CON and PWM got what they did given the forecast for strong SE low-level flow and the close proximity of the 2M 0°C line.

Monday, February 25, 2008

Interim Standings


Seven (7) Contests to date. Under the ‘two-thirds’ rule…forecasters who have entered at least five (5) forecasts are included in this interim summary.



Donsutherland1 retains his iron grip on 1st place with a best '5-out-of-7' average SUMSQ Error Z-score of -1.169. (delta: +0.045)

2nd Place: TQ (-0.833; delta: -0.102)
3rd Place: Shanabe (-0.826; delta: +0.094)



Complete data table @ the Contest web site.

SUMSQ errors for each contest snow storm are normalized with a 'Z-score'...then averaged to compute the standings. Forecasters who have entered at least 2/3 of all snow storm contests are included in the standings.

If a forecaster has participated in more than two-thirds of all snow storm contests...then Z-scores from their 'best two-thirds' forecasts are used to calculate interim and final standings. Same idea as dropping the lowest quiz score before the final grade is computed.

Click images to enlarge.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Contest # 7 - Results

Mitch Volk...having finished in 2nd place for Contest # 6...won this event with a SUMSQ Error of 55.9" (Z-Score = -1.411).

He placed 3rd for Total Absolute Error and Average Absolute Error. His 74.4% R-SQ score was highest of all entries.

Congratulations...Mitch Volk!

2nd Place: TQ (64.4"; -1.244)
3rd Place: Raven (80.2"; -0.713)

4th (herb@maws) and 5th (donsutherland1) places were decided by 0.2" error.

jackzig placed 1st for sum-total storm precipitation with his forecast of 92" (93.45" observed).

Full forecast verification and contest summary @ the web site.

Click image to enlarge.

Contest # 7 - Teleconnections

Five new daily snowfall records. PNA did its part. No help at all from the all important NAO during the run-up or day of event. AO apparently off vacationing in the Caymans @ +5 STD.

Saturday, February 23, 2008

Contest # 7 - Verification

Preliminary storm-total snowfalls from CDUS41...PNS...and CF6 bulletins for FRI.

CAR had a period of -SN overnight and BGR was observing -SN @ post time...but its intensity was light. TAFs forecast TEMPO -SNSH along the SNE coast this morning. Significant new accumulations are not expected...altho final verification will reflect any new amounts.

CAR/s CDUS41 report is suspect with 0.1" SN from 0.02" liquid for an odd 5:1. BTV and BGR SN:H2O were 20+.

New daily records (2/22)
BDL: 7.8"
BDR: 7" (1.6"; 1950)
EWR: 6.8" (5.5"; 2001)
JFK: 6.9" (4.7"; 2001)
ISP: 5.5"

Please report errors in Remarks.
Final results and storm summary SUN evening.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Contest # 7 - The Forecasts



Forecasts for Contest # 7 have been posted to the web site.

12 forecasts
3 rookies
9 veterans

Consensus heavy snowfall axis from ORH - BOS - BDL - ORH where 7 - 8" expected.

Storm-total Precipitation (STP)
MIN: 70.45" (WintersGrasp)
MAX: 122.09" (wxduff)
AVG: 87.89"
Median: 87.83"

Wednesday, February 20, 2008

Contest # 7 - Call for Forecasts

Latest forecast challenge features dueling streams and dynamic model solutions. Vertical temperature profiles expected to be complex...promising plenty of phase change complications.

Deadline: 10:30 PM EST THU…21 FEB 2008
Forecast verification begins: 12:01 AM EST FRI…22 FEB 2008

Enter your forecast via the Contest/s web site.
Follow the link to 'Enter Storm Forecast.'

Please enter 0.05 for trace amounts instead of a 'T.'

The Contest Administrator will post all forecasts to the NEWx Google Group within 30 minutes after the deadline and to the Contest web site the following day.

Contest subject to cancellation before the deadline…if forecast conditions warrant.

Updates and announcements are posted on the Contest/s web log.

<.boiler plate>
Forecasters need to register once before entering…even if they were registered last year.

Registration is simple…requiring only a username and password. If you provide a valid e-mail address…a copy of your forecast will be sent to you. Please ensure your browser is enabled to accept first-party cookies.

Each contest must have a minimum of seven (7) forecasters for the results to be included in the end-of-season standings.

The NE.Wx Snowfall Forecast Contest (NEWxSFC) is a multi-month event that continues into late March or early April. In general…contests are held whenever a decent…synoptic-scale storm rears its head and threatens at least a half-dozen forecast stations with more than nuisance snowfall amounts. Forecasters are called to post their 'storm total' snowfall predictions…on deadline…for 27 NWS / FAA observing stations scattered about New England and the Mid-Atlantic regions. The Contest Administrator determines the deadlines for entries…verifies all forecasts…and publishes the final results to the Contest/s web site.

Please be sure to read the rules before entering the contest b/c your entry constitutes agreement to abide by them.

You can find the Contest Rules and additional information about error scoring…current monthly snowfall climatology from NCDC…daily CPC teleconnection indices…daily NESDIS N-Hemi snow cover…and NWS Daily Climate Bulletins (CDUS41) by pointing your browser here.
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Monday, February 18, 2008

Steel Cage Grudge Match - GFS v. NAM / SREF


The screen capture is too dark in its reduced Blogger size. Click it for better resolution.



It/s a comparision of the 84-hour 5H and PMSL fields from today/s 09z SREF and the 12z runs of the NAM / GFS.

Notable 5H amplification differences in the GFS lead to significant differences in the HIGH/s placement prior to precipitation/s onset. The flatter GFS soln pushes the HIGH into the Atlantic Ocean.

The GFS HIGH is offshore directing SE wind into the mid-Atlantic; whereas...the NAM / SREF HIGH is farther west producing northerly wind flow.

The GFS 85H 0°C isotherm (not shown) is along the NC / VA border but it/s ~150 miles farther south along the NC / SC border in the NAM / SREF.

Contest # 7?


Global LR models are in close agreement in establishing favorable values of the North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) and Pacific North-American (PNA) toward week/s end.




Development of GFS-progged northern stream short-wave on the EC FRI and SAT appears inhibited from carving out a full-latitude trof by stubborn SE heat ridge. Could well be a case where teleconnection indices are loaded and pointed in the right direction but are insufficient to overcome other features.

Saturday, February 16, 2008

Interim Standings

There have been six Contests to date. Under the ‘two-thirds’ rule…forecasters who have entered at least four forecasts are included in this interim summary.



Donsutherland1 remains in 1st place with a best '4-out-of-6' average SUMSQ Error Z-score of -1.214.

2nd Place: Shanabe (-0.928)
3rd Place: TQ (-0.731)



Complete data table @ the Contest web site.

SUMSQ errors for each contest snow storm are normalized with a 'Z-score'...then averaged to compute the standings. Forecasters who have entered at least 2/3 of all snow storm contests are included in the standings.

If a forecaster has participated in more than two-thirds of all snow storm contests...then Z-scores from their 'best two-thirds' forecasts are used to calculate interim and final standings. Same idea as dropping the lowest quiz score before the final grade is computed.

Click images to enlarge.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Contest # 6 - Results

Donsutherland1 (aka WxMachine?) spanked us all AGAIN with a rousing SUMSQ error of 40.4"...a 60% improvement over the Consensus error of 102".

He hit the trifecta AGAIN placing 1st in Total Absolute Error (23.1")...Average Absolute Error (0.86").

His Storm Total Precipitation (STP) error of 2.1" was within 5% of the observed STP and 87 eye-popping percent better than Consensus.

Congratulations...Donsutherland1. Nicely done!

2nd Place: Mitch Volk
3rd Place: dmcguriman
HM: TQ

Full forecast verification and summary at the web site.

One entry was disqualified from ranking because the normalized SUMSQ Error was an extreme outlier (more than 3 standard deviations above the mean).

Thursday, February 14, 2008

Contest # 6 - Verification

(UPDATED 2/15 - record snowfall @ CAR)

Preliminary storm-total snowfalls from CDUS41...PNS...and CF6 bulletins for TUE and WED.

No suspect reports.

New daily records:
None
2/13
CAR: 8.1" (7"; 1994)

Final results and storm summary FRI.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

RDU - Winter '08



SPECI KRDU 140356Z 32009G15KT 290V350 6SM -SN BR FEW007 BKN014 OVC028 02/00 A2980 RMK AO2 RAE55SNB55 P0000

SPECI KRDU 140446Z VRB06KT 3SM -PLSN BR OVC007 01/M01 A2982 RMK AO2 RAE0355SNB0355PLB18 P0002

METAR KRDU 140451Z VRB05KT 3SM -PLSN BR OVC007 01/00 A2983 RMK AO2 SLP100 RAE0355SNB0355PLB18 P0002

Contest # 6 - Teleconnections


All three teleconnection indices assumed their favored positions for this event...altho the storm was more notable for its ice...rather than snow...making capability.

Tuesday, February 12, 2008

Contest # 6 - The Forecasts



Forecasts for Contest # 6 have been posted to the web site.

11 forecasters
2 rookies

Storm-total Precipitation (STP)
MIN: 43.05" (emoran)
MAX: 166" (defman27)
AVG: 79.34"
Median: 68.35"

Monday, February 11, 2008

Most Wonderful Time of the Year


JAN was a huge disappoint with above average temperature departures and below normal snow fall. Nor'easters affecting the coast have been all but non-existent with most storms...the abominable hybrids of mainly rain and snow on the north edge of the precipitation shield such as they were...going straight up St. Larry/s Waterway or saving their best dynamics for offshore interests.

All that misery will be forgotten quickly if FEB manages to get its act together.

The second and third week of FEB are the heart of snow season for many stations along the EC. An important event leading to a notable change for the better could have been caused by a relatively minor stratospheric warming around the 23rd of JAN. Now...almost three weeks later...the Arctic Oscillation has gone negative...which is often the result of these warmings...especially during winters when the QBO is negative. Forecasts from four LR models suggest the AO index will remain below zero the next six days.


Click to Animate

The Pacific-North American index has also come around. It...too is forecast to persist for about a week. The focus is often on the ridge-W aspect of a +PNA configuration which delivers cold air masses into the Lower 48...but of equal importance at the very least is the negative geo-potential height anomaly off the SE coast where conditions for cyclogenesis are most favorable.


Click to Animate

By and large...New England has had a good run so far this winter. No so much for the mid-Atlantic; however...the forecast combination of -AO and +PNA could change all of that in a hurry.

Contest # 6 - Call for Forecasts


Deadline: 10:30 PM EST MON…11 FEB 2008
Forecast verification begins: 12:01 AM EST TUE…12 FEB 2008

Enter your forecast via the Contest/s web site.
Follow the link to 'Enter Storm Forecast.'

Please enter 0.05 for trace amounts instead of a 'T.'

The Contest Administrator will post all forecasts to the NE_Wx Google Group within 30 minutes after the deadline and to the Contest web site the following day.

Contest subject to cancellation before the deadline…if forecast conditions warrant.

Updates and announcements are posted on the Contest/s web log.

<.boiler plate>
Forecasters need to register once before entering…even if they were registered last year.

Registration is simple…requiring only a username and password. If you provide a valid e-mail address…a copy of your forecast will be sent to you. Please ensure your browser is enabled to accept first-party cookies.

Each contest must have a minimum of seven (7) forecasters for the results to be included in the end-of-season standings.

The NE.Wx Snowfall Forecast Contest (NEWxSFC) is a multi-month event that continues into late March or early April. In general…contests are held whenever a decent…synoptic-scale storm rears its head and threatens at least a half-dozen forecast stations with more than nuisance snowfall amounts. Forecasters are called to post their 'storm total' snowfall predictions…on deadline…for 27 NWS / FAA observing stations scattered about New England and the Mid-Atlantic regions. The Contest Administrator determines the deadlines for entries…verifies all forecasts…and publishes the final results to the Contest/s web site.

Please be sure to read the rules before entering the contest b/c your entry constitutes agreement to abide by them.

You can find the Contest Rules and additional information about error scoring…current monthly snowfall climatology from NCDC…daily CPC teleconnection indices…daily NESDIS N-Hemi snow cover…and NWS Daily Climate Bulletins (CDUS41) by pointing your browser here.
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Thursday, February 7, 2008

Coastal Teaser - #2

Precious few flakes for folks south of northern New England the past several weeks. Mid-FEB is prime-time for many stations across the forecast area...so if not now...then when?

Hard to get too excited @ this point. None of the LR / MR models have performed very well this winter. All the best storms are just ten days away! Even so...it/s hard to ignore today/s D+6 prog from the ECMWF. Coastal cyclogenesis INVOF Hatteras and a buckling PAC jet.

One consistent antecedent element forecast by the LR models has been a strong arctic anticyclone flooding the eastern CONUS early next week...putting an end to the abominable warmth that has plagued the much of the area since the last week of JAN.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Reverse Engines


The polar vortex has been votexing fast and furious in recent weeks...evidenced by a painfully positive AO index and mild temperatures in the East.

All that may be about to change should the ECMWF forecast come to pass.



Note the negative values in blue above the Arctic Circle in the D+8 forecast indicating a zonal wind change from west to east. This is likely a depiction of the arctic jet...given the relative strongly negative values.

A strong polar vortex keeps arctic air bottled up over the pole; however...when if it weakens as forecast...the arctic air mass can escape to lower latitudes.