Nice satellite image
There is a very interesting pattern in the ConUS at the moment. I have attached an enhanced satellite image which shows the cloud formations across the middle third of the continent.
First of all you will note the technicolor popcorn piled up over the Southeast. This is a classic Fall cold front that is producing much needed rain from Florida up into the Northeast. While the back edge of the moisture is not a perfectly sharp line, the edge between the dry air west of the applachains and the moist air to the east is evident. This whole mess will be moving north during the weekend to make a damp and breezy weekend in New England - if the leaves aren't off the trees yet - they will be by Monday.
A more unusual feature rests over Memphis. This is a closed-off low pressure that has made for a raw few days in the Mississippi Valley. At one point it was associated with the messier weather on the East Coast, but they have technically separated from each other. This closed off low has been spinning for days and drifting west and north slowly as the associated weather on its east side has drifted east on its own. It has little significant precipitation associated with the closed low - just showers and low clouds. The closed lwo will actually move north today and bring fog and drizzle to the Upper Midwest (including the DSM which has had SPECTACULAR fall weather this week).
Neither of these low pressures (the east coast mess or the closed off low in the Mississippi Valley) are in any hurry to go anywhere east or west. This is a bit unusual for Fall because most weather tends to move briskly along a west to east axis.
This is likely part of the La Nina effect setting up in the Pacific. This phenomenon brings cooler waters to the eastern Pacific which leads to a shifting in the jet stream across the ConUS. La Nina tends to shift the brunt of the moisture hitting the Pacific Coast northward and tends to make for warmer and dryer conditions across much of the US in the winter. You can definitely see a nice streak of moisture across the Pacific Northwest which is a powerful jet stream bring moisture across Oregon and into Montana and up into Canada. This shunting of the jet well to the north leaves much of the rest of the country without a driver to move the weather.
The pattern does not appear to shift dramatically in the near future...the trend is for the two lows to move gradually north and east leaving the rest of the country relatively dry and warm. Some arctic air may slip into the Great Lakes and Northeast in the early period of next week which will create the first lake effect snows of the season - particularly in the Upper Peninsula of MI and around Erie PA.
I don't mind the stagnant pattern one bit - we will have highs in the mid to upper 60s in the DSM this weekend and bright blue skies.
Maybe I can find a lawnmower to replace the one that mysteriously disappeared from our garage. Everything else is in place but I went to mow the lawn on Sunday and the mower was gone. Oh well....I just watched football the rest of the day!!!