A 500 mb synoptic climatology of pacific north-west coast winters in relation to climatic variability, 1948–1949 to 1977–1978


  • Brent Yarnal

    1. Department of Geography, The Pennsylvania Stale University, University Park, Pennsylvania 16802, U.S.A.
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    • 1984-1985 affiliation: Cooperative Institute for Research in Environmental Sciences (CIRES), University of Colorado, Boulder Colorado 80309, U.S.A.


Within the context of a 500 mb synoptic climatology, relationships between synoptic types and Pacific north-west coast climatological regimes are investigated. Distinct fluctuations in thermal and moisture trends are identified for the winters of 1948-1949 to 1977-1978. Within any one of these climatological regimes, interannual variability in temperature and precipitation is related to the frequency of occurrence of synoptic types associated with warm and wet conditions, respectively. However, the analysis suggests that mixing of data from differing regimes may contribute to within-type variation, often identified as a major methodological problem in synoptic climatological research.