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8th annual winter forecast contest (2017-18)

  • 27-11-2017 8:24am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    WELCOME to the 8th Annual Winter Forecast Contest. The rules will be similar to past years ...

    The deadline will give you a chance to peer into the first week of December with some idea what's going on as the season starts. In weather circles, winter is December, January and February, and that will be the basis of our contest. Read the rules carefully and feel free to enter any time before the deadline ...

    Entries accepted until 0300h Friday 8 December with a possible extension of no more than 48h depending on number of entries and how I assess the fairness of that extension. I will be away (moving) until almost then, so look for a table of entries after I close the contest to further entries.

    The top scores in past years were close to 75/100 to give you some idea of what the standard is. Here are the rules, look at the end of this post for a template that you can use to enter. I will make an effort to review all entries and contact anyone who has an incomplete entry. It's up to you to be familiar with the rules in each question.

    (1) For each month Dec Jan Feb, predict the "IMT" which is the Irish Mean Temperature, a statistic developed on this forum by Deep Easterly, and the average of five stations in central inland locations (Shannon, Oak Park, Mullingar, Casement, Claremorris). For newbies, this is the average of daily highs and lows. Over recent 30-year periods, the means have been around 5.4 in Dec, 5.3 in Jan and 5.2 in Feb. Very mild months would run around 8-9 C and very cold ones a little below freezing (Dec 2010 was -0.4). These forecasts generate 5 points each, and the seasonal average, which you don't need to calculate (I do that from your entries) counts for 15 points.

    (2) For each month Dec Jan Feb, predict the monthly precipitation as a percentage of normal values. This is calculated as in our monthly forecast contest, from records taken at eleven stations that report in the Met Eireann Monthly Summary. Those are the five mentioned above plus Valentia, Cork, Johnstown Castle, Belmullet, Ballyhaise and Malin Head. Note that Dublin is not included. Values under 50% are considered exceptionally dry and above 200% exceptionally wet (for your guidance). The scoring for these three forecasts and the seasonal average which again you don't need to enter, will also be 5,5,5 and 15 points.

    (3) For all the reporting stations of Met Eireann, as reported in their Monthly Summary, predict the seasonal highest and lowest temperatures. This will apply only to dates from 1 Dec to 28 Feb for the max, but can apply to dates both before and after the winter for the min (up to 15 April when the contest results are declared). The max in the past three winters has been close to 15 and the min during the first contest was about -16 but then more like -6 in the second contest, -8 winter of 2012-13, and similar values the past two winters. I would guess the long-term average for the winter minimum is around -8 to perhaps -10. These two predictions are worth ten points each.

    (4) Predict the seasonal snowfall (in cms) at Casement. This will run from the first measurable snowfall (your forecast should include anything already reported if it does snow in November, check this thread and elsewhere for updates on that) to 15 April (anything after that won't count as the contest is over on 15 April). These daily snowfall values (if they occur) are measured at hourly intervals and summed, which means the snow depth at any point might not be quite as much as the snowfall amount. However, amounts vary a lot from season to season. In the first contest winter 2010-11, there was about 50 or 60 cms but then we used a stat from Boards member "Danno" in Laois who had about 30 cms. In 2011-12, I believe there was almost zero accumulation and our lowest contest guess had the highest score. This was similar to the past four winters when most of the field guessed higher than what actually fell at Casement (something like 7 cm in 2012-13 and 3 cm in 2013-14 and 2 cm in 2014-15, 3 cm in 2015-16, almost nothing last winter). This part is worth ten points.

    (5) Finally, predict the highest wind gust in knots at any reporting station in Ireland as per the Met Eireann Monthly Summary, but note that in this case, the period is only the three winter months -- strong winds in November or March or early April won't count, the gust has to be between 1 Dec and 28 Feb. Knots are almost double km/hr and about 1.15 times mph. Values between 70 and 100 knots are most likely to verify from climatology, the extreme range would be about 50 to 120 for this statistic. This part is also worth ten points.

    Note: All scores are based on rank order, not absolute differences from prediction to actual values. This equalizes the various sections of the contest and distributes the scores evenly. Once we establish the number of entries, I will update this scoring system, but basically, 10% of the entries get top scores in each category and then on down, with any odd numbers left over getting the zero scores. Where it's 10 points, the gradations are 10,9,8,7,6,5,4,3,2,1,0 and where 5 points, half of those values, where 15 we will give equal numbers of scores, and let you know later how many will share each score (based on number of entries).

    So, here's the template, once you understand what to predict, just change all the letters here to number values and block copy, submit along with your comments etc. We're open for entries although you'd be smart to wait until near the end of November or the first of December. You can edit your post without notifying me at any time up to whenever you see the entries cut off announced and a table appearing in the thread. I don't work on that until the cut off, so edit at will, I won't know except for the forum software making a note of it.

    TEMPLATE FOR ENTRIES

    DEC-IMT
    JAN-IMT
    FEB-IMT

    DEC-PRC
    JAN-PRC
    FEB-PRC

    MAX TEMP C

    MIN TEMP C

    SNOW cms

    GUST kts

    (all temps can have one decimal place, prc % to nearest whole number, snow can also have one decimal place, gust to nearest whole number)

    Good luck and check back, also, if you are new to our contests, check out the December monthly contest when it's announced in the last few days of this month. We do those every month.

    (Use this template if at all possible)

    0.0 _ 0.0 _ 0.0 ___ 100 _ 100 _ 100 ___ 10.0 _ -10.0 __ 00.0 ___ 00

    This will be my entry unless I decide to edit it before the deadline:

    4.5 _ 4.2 _ 5.5 ___ 080 _ 120 _ 100 ____ 15.7 _ -11.5 _ 32.5 (cm) __ 80 (kts)

    Note -- I will take the consensus values of the entries, and report on that in the winter 2017-18 thread as the "Boards consensus forecast" so be a part of that.

    Defending champion is DOCARCH.


Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 12,560 ✭✭✭✭ sryanbruen


    5.0 _ 4.6 _ 5.9 ___ 070 _ 110 _ 120 ___ 15.0 _ -8.0 __ 2 (cm) ___ 70 (kts)

    Weather and climate site - https://www.ukandirelandclimate.com/ (advised to view on PC, not optimised for mobile)

    Photography site - https://www.sryanbruenphoto.com/



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,715 ✭✭✭ Bsal


    Bsal____4.9 _ 5.1 _ 5.3 ___ 095 _ 112 _ 105 ____ 14.8 _ -7.0 _ 5 (cm) __ 74 (kts)


  • Registered Users Posts: 5,852 ✭✭✭ pauldry


    pauldry___6.0 _ 6.1 _ 6.6 ___ 105 _100 _ 98 ____ 15.2 _ -7.2 _ 10 (cm) __ 85 (kts)


  • Registered Users Posts: 38 ✭✭✭ Doddles88


    4.9 _ 5.0 _ 6.3 __ 80 _ 105 _ 100 __ 13.8 _ -6.8 _ 4 (cm) __ 97 (kts)


  • Registered Users Posts: 118 ✭✭ cdev


    4.4 _ 4.3 _ 5.6 ___ 078 _ 122 _ 118 ____ 15.2 _ -10.5 _ 7.5 (cm) __ 82 (kts)


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  • Registered Users Posts: 4,997 ✭✭✭ John mac


    john mac___4.8 _ 5.8 _ 6.1 ___ 97 _ 94 _ 110 ___ 16.0 _ -9.9 __ 15.0 ___ 74


  • Registered Users Posts: 19,564 ✭✭✭✭ Rikand


    Rikand ___ 5.0 _ 4.0 _ 4.5 ___ 90 _ 100 _ 100 ___ 16.0 ___ -10.0 ___ 25.0 ___ 85


  • Registered Users Posts: 165 ✭✭ sunflower3


    Sunflower3 ___ 4.8 _ 4.4 _ 5.5 ___ 95 _ 90 _ 110 ___ 15.1 ___ -7.0 ___ 6.0cm ___ 78 knots


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    Thursday to 0300h Friday is the last day for entries, hurry scurry to be part of this fabulous event which has almost no parallel anywhere in the known universe (been watching too much of the Pres on TV methinks).


  • Registered Users Posts: 9,183 ✭✭✭ sdanseo


    sdanseo _____ 4.4 _ 2.9 _ 4.5 ___ 094 _ 085 _ 109 ___ 14.2 _ -7.5 __ 8cm ___ 79kt


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  • Registered Users Posts: 230 ✭✭ oterra


    Oterra: 5.5 _ 5.0 _ 6.0 ___ 90 _ 100 _ 110 ___ 13.0 _ -9.0 __ 8.5cm ___ 73kt


  • Registered Users Posts: 351 ✭✭ waterways


    waterways___5.6_ 5.7 _ 5.6 ___ 110 _100 _ 80 ____ 16.4 _ -9.7_ 18 (cm) __ 75 (kts)


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    Will extend the deadline 24h as I just publicized this in the monthly contest thread, anyone already entered above can edit to the new deadline which is 0300h Saturday, so all day Friday to enter, then we're going to a table of forecasts and a consensus for the edification of the readers of the 2017-18 winter thread.

    Our consensus around here is often very good. Last month Con Sensus scored 92 points, just about a perfect forecast for November. No actual person beat that (of our regulars, Dacogawa scored 81, and one-timer Western Storm had a dazzling 90).


  • Registered Users Posts: 360 ✭✭ mrskinner


    Skinner_____5.1___5.2___5.3_____91___92___93_____15.9°____-6.6°____23cm____70kts


  • Registered Users Posts: 1,894 ✭✭✭ BLIZZARD7


    3.8_ 2.7_ 4.9 ___120 _090 _120___ 15.1 _ -16.5 ___44(cm) ___ 81 (kts)

    *I realise I'm late, I meant to post in last night but forgot, throwing this in in the off chance you will accept, no problem if its too late though.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    Okay, will accept but contest is now closed to further entries ... table of forecasts being prepared. Anyone reading this and entered can edit to 0300h, that's when the finalized table will hit the internet.


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    Table of forecasts -- winter 2017-18 contest

    These forecasts are arranged in order of mean winter temperature (I have calculated those and mean winter precip from your monthly forecasts). See previous post, due to extended deadline and one slightly late entry, anyone has the option to edit any forecast to 0300h. Post or edit (I will check back for edits).


    FORECASTER__IMT (D,J,F and mean)__PRC (D,J,F and mean)__MAX _ MIN _ SNOW _ GUST

    Pauldry ______ 6.0_6.1_6.6_6.23___105_100_098_101.0 ___ 15.2_ --7.2__ 10.0 _ 85

    waterways ____5.6_5.7_5.6_5.63___110_100_080_096.7 ___ 16.4_ --9.7__ 18.0 _ 75

    john mac _____4.8_5.8_6.1_5.57___097_094_110_100.3 ___ 16.0_ --9.9__ 15.0 _ 74

    Oterra _______5.5_5.0_6.0_5.50___090_100_110_100.0 ___ 13.0_ --9.0 ___8.5 _ 73

    Doddles88 ____4.9_5.0_6.3_5.40___080_105_100_095.0 ___ 13.8_ --6.8 ___4.0 _ 97

    MrSkinner ____ 5.1_5.2_5.3_5.20___091_092_093_092.0 ___ 15.9_ --6.6__23.0 _ 70

    sryanbruen ___ 5.0_4.6_5.9_5.17___070_110_120_100.0 ___ 15.0_ --8.0___2.0 _ 70

    bsal _________4.9_5.1_5.3_5.10___095_112_105_104.0 ___ 14.8_ --7.0___5.0 _ 74

    Sunflower3 ___ 4.8_4.4_5.5_4.90___095_090_110_098.3 ___ 15.1_ --7.0___6.0 _ 78

    cdev _________4.4_4.3_5.6_4.77___078_122_118_106.0 ___ 15.2_-10.5___7.5 _ 82

    M.T.Cranium __ 4.5_4.2_5.5_4.73___080_120_100_100.0 ___ 15.7_-11.5__ 32.5 _ 80

    Rikand _______5.0_4.0_4.5_4.50___090_100_100_096.6 ___ 16.0_-10.0__ 25.0 _ 85

    sdanseo ______4.4_2.9_4.5_3.93___094_085_109_096.0 ___ 14.2_ --7.5___8.0 _ 79

    Blizzard7 _____ 3.8_2.7_4.9_3.80___120_090_120_110.0 ___ 15.1_-16.5__ 44.0 _ 81


    Consensus ____ 4.9_4.6_5.5_5.00___093_102_104_099.7 ___ 15.1_--9.1__ 15.0 _ 79


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    Scoring update for December

    IMT for December was 5.6, and PRC was 108%.

    MAX so far 14.5 and MIN so far --6.6

    Very little snow yet at Casement, and max gust of 84 knots on 2 January (Knock).

    Scores for each monthly temperature and precip are worth 5 points. These are the scores for December, plus a provisional score for the wind gust (10 points) which might well hold up through the rest of the winter. In any case, only one forecast was more than 1 kt above 84 knots, marked * in the scoring, and this one could improve but almost all the others would go down by a maximum of one point if higher values came in; if the higher value was 85 to 91 knots the two high scores would hold up, lower values in that range would allow some other scores to remain where they are.

    Everything else looks to be subject to change or unknown yet.

    FORECASTER__IMT Dec ___ PRC Dec ___ GUST ____ Total to date

    Pauldry ______ 4.0_______ 4.5 _______ 10 ________ 18.5

    Rikand _______3.0________2.0 _______ 10 ________15.0

    waterways ____5.0_______ 5.0 _______ 04 ________ 14.0

    Blizzard7 _____ 0.0_______ 4.0 _______ 08 ________12.0


    __Consensus __2.0________2.5 _______ 06 ________ 10.5


    Sunflower3 ___1.5________3.5 _______ 05 ________10.0

    cdev _________0.5_______ 0.5 _______ 09 ________10.0

    sdanseo ______0.5________3.0 _______ 06 ________ 9.5

    M.T.Cranium __ 1.0_______ 1.0 _______ 07 _________9.0

    John mac _____1.5_______ 4.0 _______ 03 _________8.5

    Oterra _______4.5________2.0 _______ 02 _________8.5

    bsal _________2.0________3.5 _______ 03 _________8.5

    MrSkinner ____ 3.5_______ 2.5 _______ 00 _________6.0

    Doddles88 ____2.0_______ 1.0 _______ 01* ________4.0

    sryanbruen ___ 3.0_______ 0.0 _______ 00 _________3.0


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    Scoring updates for January, 2018

    The January IMT was 5.4 and the PRC was 152% which was well above any of our forecasts. I have added provisional scores for two items, first being a colder February than any of our forecasts, which is hypothetical but seems possible, and a MAX of 14.5 as January (13.8) failed to beat December and February may also fail.

    These added scores should be treated as speculative. Snowfall to date at Casement is less than 2.0 cm but could increase by some unknown amount this month. The previously scored maximum gust has not changed since 2 January.

    The Feb precip is likely a bit more of an unknown, and the range of possible Feb IMT values that confirm my estimates (4.6 or lower) gives a range of outcomes for the winter mean temperature, if close to 4.6, then 5.1 will be the result, if say 3.0 then the mean will fall to 4.7, so no provisional scores there.

    MIN has fallen slightly to --6.8, but there's a good chance of this being lowered during February.

    These are the scores either confirmed or looking likely:


    FORECASTER__IMT D J F _______ PRC D J __ MAX __ GUST ____ Total to date


    Pauldry ______ 4.0_2.5_0.0_____ 4.5_2.5__ 07 ____ 10 ________ 30.5
    bsal _________ 2.0_4.5_3.5_____ 3.5_4.0__ 10 ____ 03 ________ 30.5

    Rikand _______3.0_0.5_5.0_____ 2.0_2.5__ 03 ____ 10 _________26.0


    __Consensus __2.0_2.0_2.5_____ 2.5_2.5__ 08 ____ 06 _________25.5


    cdev _________0.5_1.0_2.0_____ 0.5_5.0__ 07 ____ 09 ________ 25.0

    sdanseo ______0.5_0.0_5.0_____ 3.0_0.0___ 10 ___ 06 ________ 24.5

    Blizzard7 _____ 0.0_0.0_4.0_____ 4.0_0.5__ 08 ____ 08 ________24.5

    waterways ____5.0_4.5_2.0_____ 5.0_2.5__ 01 ____ 04 ________ 24.0

    Sunflower3 ___ 1.5_1.5_2.5______3.5_0.5__ 08 ____ 05 ________22.5

    M.T.Cranium __ 1.0_0.5_2.5_____ 1.0_4.5__ 05 ____ 07 ________21.5

    MrSkinner ____ 3.5_5.0_3.5_____ 2.5_1.0__ 04 ____ 00 ________19.5

    sryanbruen ___ 3.0_2.0_1.5_____ 0.0_3.5__ 09 ____ 00 ________19.0

    Doddles88 ____2.0_3.5_0.5_____ 1.0_3.0__ 07 ____ 01*_______ 18.0

    John mac _____1.5_3.5_1.0_____ 4.0_1.0__ 03 ____ 03 ________17.0

    Oterra _______4.5_3.5_1.0______2.0_0.5__ 03 ____ 02 ________16.5

    _____________________________________________________________

    * This score can improve if a stronger gust is recorded; all others for max gust cannot change by more than 1 pt


  • Registered Users Posts: 13,209 ✭✭✭✭ M.T. Cranium


    The February IMT was 3.6 (brr, our coldest forecast was 4.5 and the coldest for JAN was 2.7, would say half a dozen of us had some inkling of a cold month ahead) and that makes the winter mean (avg) 4.87 (5.6, 5.4, 3.6).

    The February PRC was 84% of normal (nice going waterways at 80%) and that makes the winter mean (avg) 114.7% (108, 152, 84).

    The contest MAX period is Dec to Feb only, so with the max in Feb being 14.3, the 14.5 from December is our max (Jan was 13.8).

    The contest MIN period is any day in autumn to 15th of April when the contest is declared, and that could still be determined, as the lowest at official recording sites appears to be the -7.0 at Cork on 1st of March. The coldest reading before that was --6.8 in January.

    The snow at Casement finally meant something in this contest after a series of very low totals. With the help of Gaoth Laidir I have determined that the total winter seasonal snowfall there so far is 36 cm (32 from this recent event). Total snow is the sum of daily snowfalls and therefore is not strictly speaking the maximum depths of various events added together, because falling snow is usually a greater total than just the maximum depth which was 26 cm as far as we know plus about 3 from small earlier events. This may not be a final figure (and this contest element also runs to mid-April) but there is only one forecast significantly higher and that already scores well so that the only two scores that could now change would be the two highest ones changing places. So I will score that as well.

    The max gust of 84 knots set early in January and scored already was never threatened in February and that element is closed in case you see a higher value in March. For the contest, we look only at Dec to Feb.

    Here are the scores that we can confirm with MIN based on current value of --7.0 C so that could change, all else is confirmed except for the two highest scores in SNOW which could change places:


    Current scoring in the winter forecast contest 2017-18

    FORECASTER __ IMT D J F __winter__ PRC D J F __winter__MAX_MIN _ SNOW _ GUST __ Total

    ___ max score _5.0_5.0_5.0 _15___5.0_5.0_5.0 _ 15 ___ 10.0_10.0__ 10.0 __ 10.0 ___100.0



    bsal _________ 2.0_4.5_3.5__12___3.5_4.0_3.0__13 ___ 10 __ 10 ___ 02 ___ 03 _____ 70.5

    Pauldry ______ 4.0_2.5_0.0__02___4.5_2.5_4.0__12 ___ 07 __ 09 ___ 05 ___ 10 _____ 62.5



    __Consensus __2.0_2.0_2.5__13___2.5_2.5_3.0__09 ___ 08 __ 06 ___ 06 ___ 06 ______62.5


    cdev _________0.5_1.0_2.0__14___0.5_5.0_1.5__14 ___ 07 __ 03 ___ 04 ___ 09 _____ 61.5

    M.T.Cranium __ 1.0_0.5_2.5__13___1.0_4.5_3.5__ 10 ___ 05 __ 02 ___ 10 ___ 07 _____60.0

    Sunflower3 ___ 1.5_1.5_2.5__15___3.5_0.5_2.0__ 07 ___ 08 __ 10 ___ 03 ___ 05 _____59.5

    Rikand _______3.0_0.5_5.0__09___2.0_2.5_3.5__ 06 ___ 03 __ 04 ___ 08 ___ 10 _____56.5

    BLIZZARD7 ___ 0.0_0.0_4.0__03___4.0_0.5_1.0__15 ___ 08 __ 01 ___ 09 ___ 08 _____ 53.0

    waterways ____5.0_4.5_2.0__05___5.0_2.5_5.0__ 06 ___ 01 __ 05 ___ 07 ___ 04 _____ 52.0

    MrSkinner ____ 3.5_5.0_3.5__10___2.5_1.0_4.5__ 02 ___ 04 __ 08 ___ 08 ___ 00 _____52.0

    sryanbruen ___ 3.0_2.0_1.5__11___0.0_3.5_1.0__ 10 ___ 09 __ 07 ___ 00 ___ 00 _____48.0

    sdanseo ______0.5_0.0_5.0__04___3.0_0.0_2.5__04 ___ 10 __ 08 ___ 04 ___ 06 _____ 47.0

    John mac _____1.5_3.5_1.0__06___4.0_1.0_2.0__ 11 ___ 03 __ 05 ___ 06 ___ 03 _____47.0

    Oterra _______4.5_3.5_1.0__07___2.0_0.5_2.0__ 10 ___ 03 __ 06 ___ 04 ___ 02 _____ 45.5

    Doddles88 ____2.0_3.5_0.5__08___1.0_3.0_3.5__ 03 ___ 07 __ 09 ___ 02 ___ 01 _____43.5

    _______________________________________________________________________________________

    The lead that bsal has over pauldry is safe since their MIN predictions are similar. If we get a much lower MIN then cdev, MTC and BLIZZARD7 will all move up but it would have to be a very low value for either MTC or BLIZZARD7 to pass cdev. BLIZZARD7 also has a potential to gain one point on MTC with more snow at Casement. He only needs about 2.5 cm.

    This table will be either amended or confirmed depending on what happens between now and mid-April.


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