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By: cws6196, 5:33 PM GMT on February 25, 2009
Monday morning update
Well, not as much as I predicted on Sunday, actually more in line with my earlier forecasts ... I should trust myself and not make last minute changes. The radar shows the snow ending from the West to the East. Once this is out that should be it for us apart form a stray shower or so.
I have about 2.5 inches of snow when I left this morning.
quick update Sunday 7:00pm
Quick update: the snow has started to fall and the Low is in the Carolina's moving NE. So far all is on schedule regarding the forecast. My only concern right now is the lack of temp drop. The temps throughout the area are well above freezing, bordering on 40 F. Until the temps drop to below freezing, accumulating snow will be less and the liquid to snow ratio will remain wide (an inch of liquid at 34 degrees equals 10 inches of snow, but that same amount at 25 degrees is equal to 15 inches of snow). Right now the models show a liquid amount of 0.5 to 0.75 inches (hence the 5 - 8 inches of snow forecast at these temps). If the overnight temps dip into the lower 20s as predicted, those amounts jump to 7 to 10 inches.
Ok, enough math. Suffice it to say, with the temps still above freezing I am wondering if the amounts will be less then what I stated earlier. I guess time will tell.
For Monday morning we should see a period of no snow, but later in the morning there could be another shot of an inch or so before it is all over.
Sunday Morning update
Well, there is a dusting on the ground and the precip has stopped. This is a coastal storm so those along the Bay and the coast will see more precip then those West of the Bay. Winds will be from the North and West. Those in Southern MD, Eastern Shore and Harford Co. will have the bulk of the precip.
So here is how I see it: late afternoon (4:00 or later) the precip will resume. Accumulations of 10 inches or so for those in Harford Co and 6 inches or so for the rest of us. Those along the MD/PA line could see more then 6 inches. Those West of Baltimore Co will see under 5 or so. My only hesitation with this forecast is the history of our Winter thus far, that is, storms not producing as indicated by the models. So part of me wants to stick to my previous forecast. But, given the current radar in the South and the amount of precip happening there, I am more comfortable with these new amounts as I am not only relying on the model data.
Accumulations will vary with the actual position of the Low off the coast as well as the forward speed of the system. Tonight expect gusting winds and therefore blowing snow. For those wondering if this would be considered a blizzard, here is the official definition: "A blizzard means that the following conditions are expected to prevail for a period of 3 hours or longer:
* Sustained wind or frequent gusts to 35 miles an hour or greater; and
* Considerable falling and/or blowing snow (i.e., reducing visibility frequently to less than ¼ mile)"
Saturday morning update
Ok, I have no idea what just happened. I sleep in this morning and wake to a Winter Storm watch indicating 5 inches!
Here is why I am confused: the meteorologist discussion from the NWS does not indicate or speak of 5 inches, yet they issue a watch for 5 inches; the NWS does not have an active snow map issued; Accuweather is only predicting 1 - 3 for us. So what is happening here?
It does appear the models are now intensifying the Low off of the coast as it moves northward. It also seems the Low will move a bit further off the coast which would bring more precip to the I-95 corridor versus Western MD. The temps will also be cooler then first thought so not as much a mixture of rain and snow.
Here is how I see it right now: Saturday precip will begin after dinner and should be mixed with rain / sleet before turning to snow. By Sunday morning we could see an inch of accumulation (this is in line with what I have been saying). Now for a modification to my previous forecast: Sunday afternoon another wave of precip with a couple inches of accumulation possible through Sunday night. I do not see this as 5 or more inches though.
"To snow or not to snow, that is the question." Actually, that "has" been the question all Winter. Well, here we are again with models indicating a snow event for this Sunday. Most, not all, depict the formation of a Low system off the coast moving up. "If" this scenario were to pan out, we would see snow Sunday afternoon into evening, accumulating a number of inches.
But, I want to temper this with two thoughts: 1. it is early in the week and models may fluctuate (although been stable on this for a few runs now); 2. I believe we need to inject history into the model data. In other words, this Winter, in our area, has shown that the storms tend to either move off the coast or ride along the mountains.
So, the way I see it, on Sunday there is a "chance" for us to see wet snow changing over to rain with a dusting to no accumulation.
Updated: 2:11 PM GMT on March 02, 2009
By: cws6196, 4:29 PM GMT on February 18, 2009
update Saturday morning
This is a quick update to my last post. No new changes except for timing. Most of us should see precip begin well after Midnight, closer to 6:00 am or so. The precip more then likely will start as snow especially for those North of Baltimore and along the MD/PA line. The snow could last over an hour before either changing to rain or ending all together. I don't really see any accumulation with this, but to be safe I will say no more than an inch. Cities such as Philly, NYC and Boston could see quite the storm Sunday. But not us.
The radar is indicating most of us should be seeing rain by now. The upper atmosphere is still cold but the surface temps for the area are above freezing. There has been mention of snow this weekend by the local media, but to be honest, I just don't see it. For about a week now there has been talk and model data indicating a major snow event for us for this Saturday. Given the way this Winter has been going I didn't comment on it until now. The models have been backing off of a storm and it appears the low will be further to our North. The storm was to be formed by a clipper, and generally speaking, clippers for us are not major storm producers.
So bottom line, today will remain rain; Saturday will be rain or a brief mixture with snow, but no accumulation.
Updated: 3:30 PM GMT on February 21, 2009
By: cws6196, 5:44 PM GMT on February 10, 2009
update Sunday evening
Since in my last post I made mention of a storm this week, here is an update. As has been true of this Winter, it appears the system will be all rain for us. Given some timing issues, there could be very light snow Wednesday morning, but basically an all rain event.
update Thursday evening
A look at the data for this weekend shows my previous forecast still on track. No changes to be made.
The next storm system I am beginning to watch will be mid next week. Again, given the trend of this Winter I am skeptical, but there has been some early model consistency as to a strong Low moving up the coast. Of course intensity, timing, and location will make all the difference. I will monitor just in case this becomes our snow maker.
update Wednesday afternoon
This is a quick update to my previous post. Tonight we can expect rain after 6:00pm (this is the same system that produced the deadly tornadoes). There is a slight chance for a thunderstorm, but more likely we could see very gusty winds, 30 mph or more embedded in the rain storms. These winds will continue into Thursday. I would not be surprised to see the NWS issue wind advisories or greater.
Saturday still looks the same since my last post, a snow rain mix with little to no accumulation (but this is February ...).
Just a reminder to everyone, it is still Winter around here. With that said, I am watching this weekend regarding possible snow. As it looks at the moment, we could see a rain / snow mix Saturday through Monday, but of course the model data is not in agreement (too far out). I have heard some "wild" predictions of six or more inches, but I honestly don't see it happening. At this time I am saying that if we do see snow it will be a dusting or so at best. The temps will be in the 30s but above freezing.
For tomorrow (Wednesday) we could see some rain and even a chance for some thunder. No severe weather for us (others in the country will have quite strong storms).
Updated: 5:34 AM GMT on February 16, 2009