Dave Murray’s 2018 long-range fall forecast

ST. LOUIS – This year, Summer really kicked into gear in early May. June and July were all about heat and humidity, resulting in a big jump in the cooling bills and the water bills. Nothing in the way of extreme heat, be we saw long lasting heat and that classic St. Louis humidity. So, where are we headed? It is time to call in a new el Niño pattern. So, let's get going with a look at the month of September in St. Louis

September 2018

The key will be questions about el Niño and a Summer pattern that started early, stayed strong, but relaxed for the end Of the season. Thinking this September will bring some big-time swings. The focus will be on the pleasant weather for the first two weeks of the month then will look for warmer weather to quickly take over for the last half of the month. That means no frost or freeze, which would be really weird in September anyway. Fall will struggle a little. Temps will be near average.

September is typically a very dry month. But we have to watch the developing el Niño. The first half of the month should mirror the temperatures and will be on the very dry side. Then we make up for lost time. When it's all done, the month will run a little bit above average for rain, but those are low amounts. Let's keep an eye on the tropics, but the core action will be along the east coast

Things to look for in September

  • Harmless black and yellow garden spiders are common around the house
  • Look for puffballs and other fall mushrooms
  • Listen for migrating birds during the evening hours.

The major points for September 2018

  • A 50-50 month for temperatures...cool to start...warmer to end
  • A 50-50 month for rainfall...dry times the first two weeks...then more in the way of rain
  • The tropics in the western Gulf of Mexico will not be a factor

October 2018

In my book, October is the heart of the Fall season and typically one of the best months of the year. It is known for its pleasant and dry weather. Winter is far from taking over. The catch? October 2009 was a soaker of a month with more than 12 inches of rain. And yes, 2009 was one of those years that came with a growing el Niño pattern.

El Niño continues to try to build this month. I think October will bring a little more of a warm up for much of the month and that when the month is wrapped up temperatures will be running above average. Of course, there will be a few cool spells but they will be limited. I think frost and freeze concerns will be tough to come by this October. As for the changing colors of the trees, the color will be fair with the peak occurring late month, think on the weekend before Halloween.

As for moisture, a growing el Niño has a trend of creating a wet month in October but I’m not overly excited about tons of rain. The el Niño will struggle to develop. There will be rain this October with the best shot mid to late month. That means some of the hayrides and pumpkin picking could be a little soggy. Overall October should be near average when it comes to rain. There is also what we call the second season for strong to severe thunderstorms with a history of that book getting opened in late October. There is a shot at one severe weather event in that time frame. Snow bunnies, don’t expect the season to hurry.

Things to look for in October

  • Persimmons start to ripen
  • Look for spiders ballooning on gossamers on clear, windy days
  • The juncos arrive from Canada

The major points for October 2018

  • Overall a rather quiet month… temperatures running above average for the month
  • Not concerned about a frost or freeze
  • Rainfall will be near average, expecting one severe weather event and no concerns about tropical action

November 2018

One thing is guaranteed, November tells us that we are living on borrowed time. Fall shuts down and winter comes knocking at the door. The changing of the fall colors is over and temperatures both day and night have a steady drop. Can it snow in November? Yes, but not much. Snow bunnies tend to get interest late in the month.

November is always a weird month and long range forecasting as weather patterns pick up speed. We will be watching active northern and southern jet streams and tracking which way el Niño. The southern jet has most of my interest this November. There will be the typical bouncing of temperatures but thinking this November will result in slightly below average temperatures.

How about moisture? he second season of severe weather should generate one severe weather even in the first eight days. But more interesting is a bit of a wet pattern for the month. Look for above average rainfall and some chilly November soaking rains

Snow bunnies, with some cooler than average temperatures and a bit of a wet month, we could see a little snow. I am thinking one or two events late in the month and mainly at night.

Things to look for in the month of November

  • Birds begin gathering at feeders
  • Scan the leafless trees for paper nest of the bald-faced hornets
  • Woodchucks are asleep in underground nests

The major points for November 2018

  • Temperatures will average or a little below for the month
  • Thinking rainfall will be above average
  • The combo of temps and moisture may lead to one or two nighttime fast snows

There will be a lot going on these next few months with activities and the weather as we step out of Fall and get into early Winter. The next long range forecast will be for the winter season, but that is a long way off. Until then let's enjoy Fall, football, and pumpkins.