Driest November on Record?

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By Quincy Vagell on November 19, 2012, 2:20pm Last modified: November 26, 2012, 2:31pm

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An unusually quiet pattern could mean one of the driest Novembers on record.

Aside from the nor'easter on November 7th and 8th, the month has been impressively dry across much of the Northeast, including Connecticut.

Precipitation so far:
Although we should expect about 2 inches of precipitation month-to-date (MTD), most areas have seen much less than that.
Bradley Airport: 0.27" of precipitation MTD
Sikorsky Airport: 0.75" of precipitation MTD
Assuming today stays dry, that would be six dry days in a row. That's something you don't expect to see very often in November...

Inland driest Novembers on record: (Windsor Locks/Bradley Airport)
1. 0.52" in 1956
2. 0.86" in 2001
3. 0.87" in 1933
4. 0.89" in 1922
5. 0.92" in 1908
6. 0.95" in 1931 and 2000 
?? 0.27" in 2012 (through November 18) 

Shoreline* driest Novembers on record: (Bridgeport 1893-1947, Sikorsky 1948-2012)
1. 0.36" in 1976
2. 0.79" in 2001
3. 0.81" in 1933
4. 0.85" in 1931
5. 1.01" in 1908
?? 0.75" in 2012 (through November 18)

Are we slipping back into a drought?
Well, in some cases, we are well below average in terms of precipitation for the year.
***Bradley Airport is now more than 7 inches below normal year-to-date. (-7.05")
***Sikorsky Airport has fared a bit better, they are only -1.76" to date.
(both locations have updated information through November 18) 

What does a dry November mean for the winter?
Well, after digging some data up, the results are inconclusive.
When looking at the eight (8) seasons above that made the "dry" lists, five (5) had above normal snowfall for Bradley Airport and three (3) had below normal snowfall. But don't stop there...
Two of those winters were extremely snowless...
1931-32 only recorded 17.3" for the season (30.9" below average)
2001-02 only recorded 14.1" for the season (least snowy on record) 
However, some of those winters had excessive snowfall...
1933-34 recorded 65.8" and was the 2nd snowiest on record for Bridgeport (71.3")
1955-56 recorded 76.3" for the season (28.1" above average) 

What's to expect as we finish off November?
Well, the pattern looks dry for now, but there are some signals that there could be a storm brewing for the very end of the month.
The GFS only forecasts 0.09" of precipitation through November 27th, but then the forecast jumps up. An additional 0.77" is projected from the 28th to the 30th.

It's really tough to say how the month ends up, but the current trend looks pretty dry for at least the next week...that is, unless something major changes...

Stay tuned to WXedge.com for all the latest forecasts and analyses.

*Note that data for the shoreline is at Bridgeport, Conn. from 1893 to 1947 and data is from nearby Stratford, Conn. (Sikorsky Airport) from 1948 to 2012.

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Quincy Vagell

Town: Marlborough, CT  

Reporting for WXedge since January 2012.

Articles: 875

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