'Valley snow is a good bet': Rod Hill winter outlook 2020

if you are ready it is time for the rod

hill that's me

2020 winter outlook so let's think back

one year ago

my big fail was that i stood here with

high confidence and told you we would


at least one good snow event and as you

know we did not what did we have last

winter behind me march 14th

we had a measly one-half inch at the

airport while other spots around the


had one to three inches this was

actually up in vancouver but that was it

that was the only snow we had

so that was a big fail of one year ago

let's see if we can do better this year

now a year ago what we tracked la nina


el nino years was a borderline neutral

to week el nino year

this year around we're expected to be in

what's called a moderate

la nina season now what is la nina you


a strong jet stream arcing up over

alaska and then that goes up around us

and allows

pools of cold air to just surge out of

canada across the upper midwest and into

the great lakes

notice the secondary wet stream where it

says wet and cool though

that one is expected to be aimed fairly


right at the pacific northwest so during

an el nino for example the secondary jet

would be down here producing wet weather


the southern tier states but now the

projection is that would be dry this


and we would have somewhat of an active

weather flow coming in off the pacific

both in washington and oregon with the

majority of cold snaps

missing us but from time to time

spilling back into our area

so with that said here's my projection

for this winter

and this is a biggie no chance of a dry

winter i went back and looked at la

nina's all the way back to 1950.

it's practically unheard of to have a

dry winter this past water year was

about eight inches below normal

that would be unheard of to do again

could be a soaker and by that i mean a

water year that one year ago didn't make

it to 30 inches

but how about making it to 40 inches or

better this time around that would be

terrific news

and here we go valley snow which is

always a tough call because it's so


but in la nina seasons valley snow is at


a good bet so let me take you through

all the categories that we look at

coming up november there are signs

already that november will start off to

be a

wet week right out of the gate i'm

projecting at least six inches maybe

more of total rainfall that would be

most stage of the month getting

some precipitation december is the one

month that the data is kind of all over

the board so i don't have much

confidence there are signs that maybe we

get into

a dry stretch in the middle of the month

that would produce

a number of freezing temperatures at

night but then january comes and right

back to being active five to seven

inches of rainfall

february drier than normal but march

kicks us in to what could be a wet

spring season

so that's what to expect rainfall wise

now we look at temperatures

of course november warmer than normal

primarily because think about it if you

have a westerly flow and you have all

that rain coming and going

what are the overnight low temperatures

do they stay pretty mild right well up

into the 40s even some 50 degree nights

because of the active weather

december again i just don't have much

confidence but january back to normal to

above temps because of the active

westerly flow bringing in some rain

february is my one month

it looks like it would be colder than

normal by some two to four degrees

and our best bet to maybe have a good

classic arctic outbreak come down

and then march also not only active rain


but colder than normal and this will be

flip flop for march you'd be colder than

normal when it's really rainy

because the high temperatures that are

trying to get up into the 60s

maybe even a 70 degree spot just can't

do it because it's cloudy and it's

raining fairly often

here's the biggie so valley snow since


most six inch plus winters have in fact

been la nina so this is our best bet to

get some snow

you remember december of 2008 that was

that 19 inch december

that was the one that broke the record

on christmas day with 10 inches of snow

on the ground that was a winner that


two feet of snow now that was a weak la

nina this is a

moderate la nina and there is some

difference but still this year

some snow is absolutely likely and you

would have to say the odds

tilt in the positive chances of getting

at least one

you know big snowstorm six seven eight

inches so we'll see

so what about mount hood skiers borders

this is for you

la nina years since 2000 show the best

chance for a good year how about that

we've been racking up these snow years

where it's like 65

68 percent of normal it's been a while

since we've been up to 100 percent

snowpack if you look at all the la nina

years and you take them all the way back

through the decades

68 would be the worst case there's only

a few of them

most of the years are more like 100 of

normal and some of them go up to 145

normal so fingers crossed if you really

want to be

positive maybe it's one of those years

we can get some 200 inch bases going in

the month of february into march

and typically la ninas have cold enough

air that you have

good snow amounts all the way down to

government camp and of course that would

be skeebo

so the finale to wrap it all up here

no chance of a dry winter that's my most

confident call

could be a soaker with four to seven

inches above normal rainfall from the

months of november through january that

would be basically

a month to a month and a half of extra

rain and at least some snow two to four

inches possibly the big one

the most likelihood of snow would come

in the months of january

and february so if you want snow

if you want some action think la nina

la nina that's my winter outlook for

this year