I do not like what I am seeing for the 2nd half of November and I know that's not a great way to start off an update for for mid-November snowmaking and openings. Pickings will probably be slimmer than usual come this holiday for both where the lifts will spin and how much terrain will be available. There's a chance of some more cold in just about another week, but it's an outside shot. I'll make some best guesses again of course based on the weather outlook and operational capabilities.
The problem is El Niño-type flow, which isn't a huge surprise because we have a strong El Niño raging in the Pacific that should peak in intensity sometime around the new year. The following two loops come from the 0z run of the GFS this morning looking down on the Northern Hemisphere with the jet stream winds first and then the 500 mb heights covering the next 10 days.
We have a split jet in the Pacific with an abnormally strong Subtropical Jet Stream, which is El Niño-ish. The northern part of the split jet is the demarcation of the Polar Jet Stream with cold air north of it. Both commonly combine into one over the Pacific, though splits are much more common under El Niño. Parts of the Northeast have just barely been hanging in the cold with the help of some southeast flow from the Arctic, but if you look at the 500 mb pressures, the circulation over the Hudson Bay is modeled to weaken and shift to Siberia so that positive cold influence will soon be gone. Then there are signs at the end of this loop of troughing forming over the West which generally means riding over the East, and ridges are warm. Not good for the start of the season. Our hopes ride on something buckling the jet stream about 10 days out, and that's not favored right now, though it is possible, otherwise we may warm up a bit to end the month. This is the dreaded strong El Niño pattern looking just like its damn mugshot.
The remainder of this article is only viewable by Premium Subscribers. Generally forecasting that is actionable in advance will be only be available to those who are supporting our work and we're going to show them to the pow, or in this case to the snowmaking and openings by Black Friday.