November 2016 Summary Met Central - Record Precipitation for November

The first big story of November was the monster storm event at the
beginning of the month. See the previous November's Met Central Report and other details below.
Things did dry out following this 4- day onslaught. A storm on the 21st mostly
hit northern NM but added to the inputs on the refuge as well. This pushed the
refuge-wide average total to 45.1 mm - over 4 times the expected
November. This also made it the wettest month of the 2016 calendar year.
And this is a La Nina year?

The second November story, that is probably just as notable, was the
lateness of the first freeze on the Sevilleta. For the LTER period of
record the average day of the first sub-freezing temperature is Oct
21. It must be noted that there is considerable range of first freeze
dates for our various weather stations. So while the temperature
reached subfreezing on Oct 21st at our coldest station at South Gate,
the next station to reach freezing was not until November 9th and none
of the west side stations reached freezing until Nov. 18. Thus the
average freeze date for the refuge was Nov 11th. This surpasses the
2nd latest average freeze date (last year - Nov 3) by over a week.

Overall the November temperatures
were about what would be expected
for a La Nina November. After a warm early start daily highs dropped
down into a near normal range for about 10 days. This was followed by
a about a week-long warm trend with a near record daily high on Nov
15th. The rest of the month had mostly near-normal daily highs. It
was the daily lows that were remarkable. Refuge-wide daily average
lows for November almost always run a little below freezing - average
-0.9 C. There have been only 4 years in the past 28 that the average
daily low ran above freezing. This November was the highest at +1.7 C

    November Record Temperatures - High 28.0 (82.8 F), Low -17.8 (5.4 F)
    November '16 Record Temperatures - High 23.1 (73.6 F), Low -12.2 (10.0 F)

November Meteorological Summary

                  November      November '16      November '16
Variable             Long-term* Mean    Mean           Mean Range
Mean Max Temp (C)         15.24           15.5         12.8 - 16.5
Mean Min Temp (C)         -0.92           1.7          -0.5 - 3.2
Mean Average Temp (C)      7.16           8.6           7.3 - 9.8
Mean R.H. (%)             45.5           53.1          51.7 - 55.3
Mean Vap Press. (mb)       4.36           5.88         5,49 - 6.08
Mean Max Wind (m/sec)      8.5            8.9           8.2 - 9.6
Mean Solar Rad. (kWh/m2)   3.77           3.60         3.31 - 3.91
Precip.(mm)               11.1           45.1          25.0 - 65.5
*Long-term refers to all of the Sevilleta met stations for 1989-2015

Albuquerque - Sevilleta Comparison

While Albuquerque did not keep up with the Sev for November it still
came in with almost 2 times it s expect normal precipitation. For the
year to date, the Sevilleta pulled much further ahead of Albuquerque.
While the Sevilleta might reach normal with a second record month,
there is really no chance of that for Albuquerque.

Albuquerque came in tied as the 11th warmest Nov in its 1893-present record.

               Loc         Precip          Normal         % of Normal
November	ABQ	   26.2 mm	   14.5 mm	     180 % 
		SEV 	   45.1 mm 	   11.1 mm 	     403 %

Year to Date    ABQ       156.6 mm        227.3 mm            69 %
                SEV       191.3 mm        225.8 mm            85 %
Remember to check National Weather Service Monthly highlights at:

Water-year Precipitation

This big November put the water-year back on the plus side. Actually
this is more than the expected total for the Oct-Dec period

    Water Year Precipitation (mm)

Month           Mean            2016-2017    
Oct             22.2               5.1       
Nov             11.2              45.1
                33.4		  50.2      


The wet November had a positive effect on the NM drought situation
although maybe a bit less than I expected.

The U.S. Drought Monitor
still shows about 5% of NM as
being under moderate drought which is unchanged from last month. However the
percentage of the state not under any drier than normal conditions
rose from about 37% to about 46%

The Palmer Drought Index gives a little different take on drought
conditions around the state.

El Nino

La Nina conditions continue but indicators are still fairly weak The
predictions now say that we will be in a weak La Nina during the
remainder of this year.

The Sea Surface Temperature anomaly for the key 3.4 Nino zone was -0.4
at the end of the month but the Ocean Nino Index (ONI) crept down another
tenth of a degree from -0.7 for the Aug/Sep/Oct period to -0.8 for
Sep/Oct/Nov. The cut off for La Nina is -0.5.

The Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) for November remained on the El
Nino side of neutral with a reading of -0.1. The 5-month running mean
dropped back into the neutral zone at +0.38.

Notables from on and off the Sev

Below is a table showing the dynamics of the November precipitation, especially
the storm in early November. Of particular note is the difference in precipitation
amounts on the 4th. This was the day with the strongest east canyon winds which
reduced preciitation on much of the east side of the refuge.

				Precipitation per day (mm)								
		East Stations							West Stations			
Nov Day	40	41	42	48	49	50	East	1	43	44	45	West
2	5.0	3.3	5.1	4.1	9.3	4.7	5.3	1.7	0.0	1.6	1.7	1.3
3	2.3	4.2	0.1	1.6	7.2	0.1	2.6	9.4	7.6	10.3	12.7	10.0
4	10.1	23.7	10.1	8.1	16.8	9.3	13.0	34.7	53.8	36.5	37.7	40.7
5	2.6	0.4	15.9	13.8	0.7	4.6	6.3	0.0	0.5	0.3	1.1	0.5
6	0.1		0.2	1.4	0.1	0.1	0.4	0.0	0.0	0.0	0.0	0.0
21	4.9	1.1	7.7	10.3	6.3	5.3	5.9	1.7	3.6	0.0	0.3	1.4
Total	25.0	32.7	39.1	39.3	40.4	24.1	33.4	47.5	65.5	48.7	53.5	53.8

Very strong winds through the Albuquerque area on the 17th, clocked at
94 mph on Sandia Crest. Maximum wind gust at Albuquerque airport only
hit 56 mph.


While it seemed like the hurricane season had ended as it often does
in late October to early November one more anomalous tropical storm
popped up in late November. Hurricane Otto developed on Nov 21st. Not
only is this late but Otto also developed very far south in the
Caribbean. It came ashore as a Category 2 hurricane on Nov 24th in
Nicaragua and proceeded to cross Central America and re-emerge in the
Pacific at slightly less than hurricane strength. This makes it the
strongest storm to make landfall this late in the season.

December Forecast

NOAA is predicting better than average chances that December will be
warmer than normal but are giving equal chances of drier or wetter
than normal.


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