From the observations of the indigenous people of the arctic, to comments made by Mark Serreze and all those made by the members of this forum, it is painfully clear that something has radically changed very recently, as in the last three to five years. The permanence of the changes, of course, is a "wait and see" question.
In particular, I am interested in the large influx of heat, both via the atmosphere and the ocean. The atmospheric heat seems to be explained by higher amplitude Rossby waves and the influx via the Bering Strait has been attributed to the PDO. That said, the most dramatic heating seems to be on the Atlantic side.
As I understand it, the THC brushes past Ireland and then heads westward towards Iceland where it interacts with the colder and fresher arctic water. It then subducts while releasing a lot of heat to the atmosphere. As the lower latitudes of the arctic warm, it would seem to me that the Gulf Stream would tend to continue north until it encounters colder water.
There is a very deep trench east of Iceland that would facilitate this, extending up through Nares Strait into the CAB. As the incoming current would be at the surface, this would conflict with the large ice export seen through the Nares, but if the current went further east, it could enter the CAB on either side of FJL and then subduct into the very deep CAB and exit via Nares Strait. It could also just loop westward between Svalbard and Norway, into the trench south of Svalbard.
This is all just my conjecture but I am having trouble finding any literature that discusses changes in the circulation path. I have found several articles about the NAMOC slowing down, but that's about it. The slowing down would fit, as there is a ridge from Iceland along a line dotted with the Faroe Is. and the Shetland Is.
Any relevant links are most welcome and well as any thoughts. Feel free to tell me why I am off my rocker :-)
This may be marginally on topic for this years freezing season, but I didn't see a topic that was a better fit. Apologies if I am OT.