Strong upper ridging is building north over CA and temps will rise to the low 60s in Mammoth this weekend, then mid to upper 60s later next week. Run off conditions once again will be brisk into next week.  Strong positive phase PNA pattern is developing as well; very El Nino like. Enjoy the warmer weather this weekend into next week, however, lots of build ups expected next week with the slight chance of showers.  Major snowcover over the upper elevations still keeping convection to a minium over our local mts.

As mentioned earlier, another cool spell is possible during the first half of June.


Here are comments from the CPC regarding ENSO:

Synopsis:  A transition from ENSO-neutral is expected in the next couple of months, with a greater than 90% chance of El Niño persisting into the Northern Hemisphere winter.

During April, above-average sea surface temperatures (SSTs) expanded slightly westward to the east-central equatorial Pacific Ocean [Fig. 1]. The latest weekly Niño-3.4 index value was +0.4°C, with the easternmost Niño-3 and Niño1+2 regions at +0.8°C and +2.7°C, respectively [Fig. 2]. Area-averaged subsurface temperatures anomalies continued to increase [Fig. 3], reflecting widespread positive temperature anomalies below the surface of the equatorial Pacific Ocean [Fig. 4]. Low-level wind anomalies were westerly during mid-April before switching back to easterly by the end of the month. Upper-level wind anomalies were westerly across most of the Pacific Ocean. Suppressed convection was observed over parts of Indonesia and anomalies weakened near the Date Line [Fig. 5]. While the warming near coastal South America remains striking, the basin-wide coupled ocean-atmosphere system remained consistent with ENSO-neutral.

The most recent IRI plume also indicates El Niño is likely to form during the May-July season and persist into the winter [Fig. 6]. The combination of a forecasted third westerly wind event in mid-late May, and high levels of above-average oceanic heat content, means that a potentially significant El Niño is on the horizon. While at least a weak El Niño is likely, the range of possibilities at the end of the year (November-January) include a 80% chance of at least a moderate El Niño (Niño-3.4 ≥ 1.0°C) to a ~55% chance of a strong El Niño (Niño-3.4 ≥ 1.5°C). It is still possible the tropical atmosphere does not couple with the ocean, and El Niño fails to materialize (5-10% chance). In summary, a transition from ENSO-neutral is expected in the next couple of months, with a greater than 90% chance of El Niño persisting into the Northern Hemisphere winter [Fig. 7].

This discussion is a consolidated effort of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), NOAA’s National Weather Service, and their funded institutions. Oceanic and atmospheric conditions are updated weekly on the Climate Prediction Center web site (El Niño/La Niña Current Conditions and Expert Discussions). Additional perspectives and analysis are also available in an ENSO blog. A probabilistic strength forecast is available here. The next ENSO Diagnostics Discussion is scheduled for 8 June 2023.

To receive an e-mail notification when the monthly ENSO Diagnostic Discussions are released, please send an e-mail message to: [email protected].

Screaming message is, no matter what you read or hear, no matter how strong an El Niño events gets, it has to be a full basin El Nino which gives it the highest odds of it coupling with the westerlies and bringing a big wet winter to CA.

Another thought is, do we really want another big wet winter in CA?

El Niño winters usually are associated with positive phase PNA pattern.  This pattern often brings higher snow levels than last winter which favored negative phase PNA pattern.
positive PNA often times bring heavy wet snow events and higher elevation rain.

Again a lot of this will be determined by whether EL Nino couples with the westerlies. No one knows that yet.

Dr Howard and the Dweebs….