Central Ohio

Accumulating Snow Possible Today/Tonight

By: Buckey2745, 11:55 AM GMT on March 29, 2014

I haven't talked much about it in the past couple days because honestly I didn't have much confidence that we would actually see any snow out of this system. If this were about 30-60 days ago, I would have been talking about this setup for a week. It's a classic southern low that usually dumps on us in the winter months. But the end of March? Usually not so much.

But here we are, first thing in the morning, talking about a snowy end to our Saturday.

The Setup
The best way to explain how we're going to get air cold enough at the end of March for us to have a changeover to snow is to show the 900mb wind from the latest NAM:



The colors on this map are wind speeds about a thousand feet above the surface. You'll notice a large area of wind circulating around the low pressure center in West Virginia, bringing northeasterly winds across Ohio. Those winds are pumping in the cold air this evening and starting our changeover.

The NWS has advisories and warnings out to our north already, and given their history of blanketing the area once an event starts, I wouldn't be surprised if they move those a county or two south by mid-afternoon:


Yesterday's high was in the 50's, and we've been relatively mild off and on for the past few days. That's left our ground temps far too warm to support an immediate accumulation. This is where I start to disagree with some model forecasts. Sure, we may have 2-3" fall from the sky, but our temps won't drop below freezing until after dark tonight, with us hanging in the mid to even upper 30's during daylight. Even behind the clouds, the March sun will be strong enough to keep us above freezing.

I think those areas north and west of Columbus may get up to 2" of snow. They're already fairly cold and they'll change over much sooner than us.

For the Columbus metro? I don't think we get quite that much. Tomorrow morning when you wake up the roads may be slushy to just plain wet, and we'll see 1" of snow accumulated on grassy surfaces and maybe sidewalks/driveways. Don't expect this to shut down your Sunday plans, and it'll all be gone by early afternoon tomorrow as we'll be sunny and in the 50's again.

UPDATE: March 30th
We ended up with 1" of snow last night, as the rain never changed to snow until after dark. We had a couple hours of decent snowfall before the precip stopped.

That left us with this to wake up to:


Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 4.1" (Predicted: 7")
Season: 40.85"

Updated: 1:31 PM GMT on March 30, 2014

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Red Flag Warning Today

By: Buckey2745, 1:15 PM GMT on March 27, 2014

Before I start on our fire weather threat for today, how about yesterday's Nor'Easter? While the effects were mainly felt out on the Cape, the storm itself was a beauty on satellite. Check out this picture from yesterday:


Parts of our area is under a Red Flag Warning today, one of the first Red Flag's I can remember in quite a while:


Humidity levels are hanging around 50% this morning with dewpoints in the high teens, but as temps rise and dewpoints don't this afternoon, expect things south of us to dry out. The latest NAM shows this pretty well at 4pm:


The last factor is wind, and southwest winds will gradually kick up to the 20mph range this afternoon. While that isn't very impressive, it's enough to kick around any embers that do get started. The worst part about this is the placement of the Red Flag warning... right over a heavily tree'd area.

Keep an eye out areas south and east of Columbus today.

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Huge Nor'Easter and Our Chill

By: Buckey2745, 1:52 PM GMT on March 25, 2014

The northeast will have the chance to see a historically powerful Nor'Easter tonight in to tomorrow. With pressures below 960mb, hurricane force winds, and heavy snows, I get the feeling this storm is winter's last stand. I am a strong believer that it takes a major event to finally change the pattern, and this one could be it.

Look at the offshore winds tomorrow afternoon and the tight pressure gradient. It should be an incredibly photographic storm from space:



While it's hundreds of miles away, that storm will actually affect our weather in keeping us cold for a couple more days. Canadian air will be drawn in on the backside of this beast keeping us well below normal today and tomorrow.

Along with the cold air today, expect some snow showers. No accumulation, but just a reminder that winter isn't ready to let go yet.

Hold out just a little longer, a warm up is in store next week!

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Big Chill, More Snow

By: Buckey2745, 3:57 PM GMT on March 22, 2014

Quoting 1. TheHermit43130:
Today sure was a nice day.


Yes. Yes it was. Yesterday it was 66.8° and beautiful outside.

Now it's back to the big chill.

We're approaching the last week of March. I remember when Spring Break actually felt like Spring. But for the past two years, it's been an extended Winter. While I hate to be so pessimistic, the reality is we're not going to see Spring at all this week.

Today's high in the low 50's will be warmest we'll see for at least 5 days. And... we could even see accumulating snow Tuesday in to Wednesday.

I'm sure everyone's heard about the potential Nor'Easter next week, and a shortwave in the upper atmosphere that passes over us Tuesday night will be some of the fuel for that storm.

It doesn't look like much on long range models right now, but this could bring us an inch of snow Tuesday in to Wednesday:


After that we may finally get the warm up and pattern change that puts us in to a Springtime pattern. If we're lucky.

I'll post more next week as the storm gets closer.

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 3" (Predicted: 6")
Season: 39.75"

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Trying to Spring

By: Buckey2745, 9:57 PM GMT on March 16, 2014

We're 16 days in to meteorological Spring, but official Spring starts in just a few days and I don't think anyone notices. Three of the past seven days have had highs in the 60's, but it's those dips back in to the 30's... like today... that makes everyone feel like we're still stuck in Winter.

Storms are starting to miss us now, where all winter they seemed to have at least clipped us. Wednesday's storm that early on looked like it could have been a moderate snow maker, turned in to a bust. We ended up with zero snow and our second rainiest day of the calendar year with 0.54".

If we're looking for Spring, we may want to think about April. This week will be right around average with some 50's, but look ahead to the temperature anomalies for the start of next week:



The easiest thing you can tell from this map is the eastern half of the US will be back under a large trough.

Get ready for more Winter. It's not going anywhere yet.

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Forecast: Tomorrow's Winter Weather

By: Buckey2745, 7:11 PM GMT on March 11, 2014

It is currently 65° outside. For the first time this year I have a window open. You can hear some birds. People are out and about like they've never seen sun before, kind of reminiscent of Friday's warmup.

And we'll be transitioning to snow by this time tomorrow.

This is Ohio's transition month. March. Snow. Tornadoes. We can see it all.

Tomorrow's storm has been trending further and further north, which means a much later transition over to snow. Before I was thinking maybe mid to late morning, and now it's looking like an early to mid afternoon switch. Even when we do switch I think we have a couple hours before it really sticks to roads... if it does at all, honestly.

I think the latest NAM does a good job depicting what the storm will look like tomorrow afternoon, with a decent wrap around snow on the backside with 4-6 hours of moderate snow:


Most models are going light on the snowfall accumulations, also. What I don't think they take in to consideration is ground temperatures. It's warm right now, and will be until the low starts to pull away from us and suck in the colder air. That means many many more hours above freezing. With quite a few days above freezing before the snow ever falls, I think it's going to have a hard time accumulating, even on grassy surfaces.

Places north of us could get a decent accumulation from this one, but I think we're missing out on total accumulation with this one since there will be plenty of melt early on in the changeover.

I say we see 1" of snow in and around Columbus, with less to almost nothing south of us.

Good thing this wasn't hyped more than it was, or this would be a grade A bust.

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 3" (Predicted: 6")
Season: 39.75"

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Wednesday Storm: Don't Hold Out Hope

By: Buckey2745, 10:20 PM GMT on March 10, 2014

I think this thing will be a bust before it even gets started. In my opinion the low is passing way too close to us, is taking too "flat" of a track, and will have way too much warm air out ahead of it.

Yet... there's that wrap around.

First, I think the latest Euro nails the track, I just have skepticism about how cold it gets on that backside:


The heaviest snow will be north of here where they'll have a much longer period of the cold stuff, and a Winter Storm Watch has already been posted. Expect people to get a little confused tomorrow when I think we'll see a Winter Weather Advisory posted for Columbus and points northward, and we'll be enjoying a 60° day like today.

I'll post an official forecast for this storm tomorrow, but for now just assume that this thing will bring us some snow, just not a big one.

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 3" (Predicted: 6")
Season: 39.75"

Updated: 10:21 PM GMT on March 10, 2014

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Sunday Update on Midweek Storm

By: Buckey2745, 12:40 AM GMT on March 10, 2014

The models are doing the opposite of what they did with our last storm. Instead of starting strong and ending weak, they're getting stronger as the time gets closer. It's not going nuts and showing two feet of snow, but if this holds true we could have one of the bigger snowfalls of the season.

The latest Euro shows almost 5":


As of now it's looking like we're going to start wet and end white. As the event gets closer I'm getting a little more skeptical than I usually am. Our high on Tuesday will be 60°, and the Euro does a strange thing with temps actually bottoming out before the low pressure passes to our east. First, I don't think that happens. And second, I feel like we're going to be so warm that even once temps drop it'll take quite a while for ground temps to drop far enough for snow to stick.

Then of course there's the storm track. This track isn't set in stone, and as we saw last weekend when our major storm dove 100 miles south and totally missed us, these storms have a mind of their own and any alteration in track can be a huge difference.

Now we watch as each model comes in.

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 3" (Predicted: 6")
Season: 39.75"

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Warming Up Before... Another Snow?!

By: Buckey2745, 2:37 PM GMT on March 08, 2014

Yesterday in Central Ohio could have been mistaken for a mid-Spring day. Everyone was outside, walking their dog, taking a jog, washing their cars (I'm guilty of this one), and acting like this is the warmest day they've seen in months. Well, probably because it was.

It's the 8th day in March and everyone is ready for Spring. We have had an absolutely brutal winter, with well over average snowfalls and historically cold temperatures. But usually by now it feels like we're warmer than we are, right? Believe it or not, this March hasn't been the coldest start to the month we've had since 2008:


Data taken from my personal weather station. 2008-2012 taken from Pickaway County, 2013-2014 from Franklin County.

Last year was actually colder than this year, thanks in part to a 40°+ day to start the month, and yesterday's super balmy 55°. But an interesting note is March 3rd's high of 19.1° is the coldest high temperature I could find in the entire dataset.

Another interesting note? In March 2008 we had a 60°+ high and 70°+ high all before March 7th. And then on March 8th, 6 years ago today, we had one of our most memorable blizzards in the last decade. Why do I mention this?

Look:



The models have been a little scattered on this storm, but it's possible we have one more snow storm left for the season. The track and the current weather pattern would be favorable for snow out of this one. It'll sneak up on us just like the March 2008 storm did because to start the week we will be warm, 50's to almost 60 and then... the bottom falls out just in time for this storm.

I'll write in much more detail about this soon, I just wanted to get it on everyone's radar. Enjoy the warmth!

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 3" (Predicted: 6")
Season: 39.75"

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Titanic Bust, Coldest March Night in Years

By: Buckey2745, 9:18 PM GMT on March 03, 2014

What a terrible name for this storm. Titan? That usually refers to something HUGE and powerful and impressive. This storm fizzled on us and dove 100 miles south.

TheHermit said it right, the models have been failing this year. It wasn't until Friday afternoon, when short range models picked up on the storm, that we had a inclination that this thing might miss us. For days and days we were thinking this could be one of our biggest March snows since 2008. In fact I remember after work Thursday seeing the latest GFS paint parts of Central Ohio with up to 20" of snow.

I should have known it was all too good to be true.

In the end we ended up with 3" of snow here in Canal Winchester, plenty of blowing snow last night, and a Winter Storm Warning that was cancelled early.

That puts us very close to 40" on the season (looking at you, terrible FAA contract observers at CMH). That's the most I've measured since I started keeping track in 2009.

One Last Big Chill
We are at 18.6° for the day so far which just goes a little above the March record for minimum high temperature of 14°. Tonight we'll have clear skies, calm winds and plenty of snow cover to try and make a run at a couple records.

Record low for March 4th is 1°
Record low for the month is -6°

I think one of those have a chance of being broken. The HRRR only goes out to 10pm as of this post, but it's already showing 4° at that time:


I think we make it to -1° here in Canal Winchester, but not quite breaking the all time monthly record.

And don't look for a warmup anytime soon. The temperature anomalies are on track to be well below normal from now until this weekend.

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 3
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
March: 3" (Predicted: 6")
Season: 39.75"

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LiveBlog: Central Ohio's Winter Storm Titan

By: Buckey2745, 4:50 PM GMT on March 02, 2014

11:43am
Some would say this storm could be a bust. But I'm still optimistic. As each new update has come out from the NWS they have lowered accumulations more and more. Now for Columbus we're down to 3-5", but I'm holding strong with my 6" prediction.

Why?

Multiple rounds of snow, that's why.

I think we could end up seeing four distinct rounds before this is all said and done tomorrow morning. We are near the end of round 1 right now, and without going outside with a ruler I think we may have gotten over an inch. Round 2 will roll through after dark. Then round 3, which should be the main event, will hit around 10pm, followed by the end of it with round 4 sometime before sunrise.

The latest HRRR depicts these rounds pretty well. This is the simulated radar at 7pm:


4:51pm
Maybe it's time I admit this is a bust. Round two fizzled out and round three has a chance of passing just south enough that Columbus doesn't even get hit.

We ended up with a good 2" out of round one, and we may not see much more than another inch or two for the rest of the day and night.

The NWS has revised their totals again and thinks no more than another 1-3" from now until daybreak, and it's almost time I admit that's about all we should expect.

There's still a good chance for some additional accumulation for the next 12 hours, but I don't see us reaching 6" total.

Winter Storm Titan is officially a bust.

Updated: 9:53 PM GMT on March 02, 2014

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Winter Storm Titan: Central Ohio Prediction

By: Buckey2745, 11:13 PM GMT on March 01, 2014

The models keep suggesting a southern track and I have trouble veering from what every single model has said for days, which puts some of the heaviest snow right through Central Ohio. But the Winter Storm Warnings are up and it seems for now that unless the storm takes another turn, we're in for a decent event, but not historic.

The storm is coming in faster than originally suspected, and we should have precip by morning, with a little sleet mixing in overnight before waking up to all snow. It's how many breaks we get in the snow and if the heaviest stays down south that'll determine how bad this gets.

I still think we get our biggest snow of the season here in Canal Winchester, and I'm calling for 6" here and all over the rest of Columbus, with totals getting incrementally higher as you head south:


I'll post a liveblog tomorrow with updates.

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Hyping the Monster: 1 Day Out

By: Buckey2745, 1:37 PM GMT on March 01, 2014

I haven't posted since my 4 day outlook for a good reason: the computer models never changed. And that is strange. Usually you see some wild variation between runs and specific models from 5 down to 2 days out, but if anything, each model run brought more and more snow in here until the numbers got ridiculous.

At one point the GFS was calling for upwards of 18-20" for parts of Central Ohio. Those kinds of numbers told me even the models were hyping this storm a little too much. I thought it would be best until the storm actually starts developing out west, allowing models to get on-land data, before really diving in to what we will get. And sure enough, once the models saw empirical data, the variations went wild.

Now it's truly up in the air I believe until the higher resolution models, like the HRRR, can start to determine if we're going to see sleet, freezing rain, snow, or if the whole thing dives too far south for it to be a major impact system.

Let's start with what we have now, which is a Winter Storm Watch, our fourth of the season. The NWS got way out ahead of this storm (unlike the severe weather 10 days ago) and issued the watch early yesterday morning. I can say with certainty that we will be upgraded to a Warning by the end of the day.

Let me show you some of the spread in current model runs just for snow amounts:

GFS: 5"
NAM: 8"
Euro: 5"

So the consensus has really come down since yesterday or even Thursday, where just about all long range models (GFS and Euro) were pushing 10-12" for us. What's changed? Ice.

Right now all models are predicting a period of sleet and some freezing rain before we transition over to all heavy snow. These models have been keeping us all snow for the last several days, so this switch to sleet is killing our totals.

History tells us that there will be an infiltration of warm air aloft that will kill our snow totals. It always happens. It happened with our other "big" one of the season back on February 5th where 1"+ of sleet during the peak really shunted totals.

So why am I leaning toward the NAM?

For some reason since it is the first high res model to get a grasp on this model, I feel like it has the best handle on our two rounds of precip we will get. The first one will be tomorrow afternoon, way out ahead of the main system. I feel like this is where our snow totals could get killed because this seems to be the most likely place for sleet to fall, near the warm sector of the storm where this very mature system will be pumping warm air in aloft.

The key is precipitation type:


As the storm passes off to our south and east, this is when the heavy snow portion of the event will start. The key here is how far south does the low pressure pass? If it's too far south, we're in the light snow sector and totals are minimal. If it comes too far north, we could actually get another mixed bag of precip with round two:


This is why these winter systems with different precipitation types are an absolute nightmare to forecast. In my opinion you have to go off of past experience, and it has been quite a while since we've had a system quite like this one. So for now I'll hold off on totals, instead I'll post something tomorrow with that. I can say for now I do feel confident we will get hit pretty good with this storm, it's just a matter of what it is that falls?

Oh... and welcome to Meteorological Spring.

Season Stats:
Winter Weather Advisories- 11
Winter Storm Warnings- 2
Ice Storm Warnings- 0
Blizzard Warnings- 0
Freezing Rain Advisories- 0
Winter Storm Watches- 4
Wind Chill Advisories- 4
Wind Chill Warnings- 2
Blowing Snow Advisory- 0

Snowfall Totals:
November: 3" (Predicted: 3")
December: 8.05" (Predicted: 7")
January: 15.1" (Predicted: 7")
February: 10.6" (Predicted: 4.35")
Season: 36.75"

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About Buckey2745

I'm a 29 year old weather enthusiast from Central Ohio. Certified SKYWARN storm spotter.

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Lehman Estates
Canal Winchester, OH
Elevation: 754 ft
Temperature: 68.7 °F
Dew Point: 67.2 °F
Humidity: 95%
Wind: 1.0 mph from the SSW
Wind Gust: 3.0 mph
Updated: 8:48 AM EDT on August 21, 2014

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