Central MD Weather Conditions

wintry mess in Maryland Friday

By: cws6196, 1:34 PM GMT on February 21, 2013

I waited to send this update to look at the latest data. It still appears that tomorrow will be a mess of precip. The cold air tries to get into the area, but for most of us (except far western MD) we will be just above freezing most of the day.

TIMING: The precip will start from the SW and move NNE, so judge the timing on your location. By the morning commute there could be some light freezing rain, primarily in the SW, later turning to all rain. Late afternoon into the evening we will see a change to snow and possible sleet. Saturday we will return to rain.

ACCUMULATION: Not much accumulation due to the warm ground and the mix of rain and freezing rain. Some areas could see a dusting of snow, and luckily there won't be much ice accumulation. But, any ice is dangerous, so drive with caution in the morning and late afternoon.

FUTURE: It appears there is a chance for light snow late Monday evening into Tuesday morning, and another chance for snow next Friday. But, both are too far away for me to have details. I will say though, if we don't have snow next Friday our Winter, snow-wise, is all but over. True, it has snowed in late March in MD, but statistically not frequent enough to give me hope.

I will have another update as warranted. Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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ice coming to Maryland

By: cws6196, 4:27 PM GMT on February 18, 2013

For us snow lovers this has been a disappointing Winter. Are we done with snow this year? Not yet, but it's getting close. Historically, February is our snowiest month, and we have had major snow storms in March, although rare.

As February moves into March the issues we have to contend with are longer days (more sunlight), warmer ground temps and the angle of the sun is more conducive to warming, not cooling. So, for us to have a large snow event we would need the storm system to be a coastal storm with a strong Low.

Tomorrow morning we are looking at the chance for ice early in the morning before the precip changes over to rain. Be careful during the morning commute. Those in S MD should only see rain.

I am still watching a system at the end of the week. Currently it looks like there could be periods of ice and snow, but nothing major. That could change, but I am not getting my hopes up just yet.

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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UPDATE Saturday morning snow in Maryland

By: cws6196, 5:22 PM GMT on February 16, 2013

This Winter has definitely been a challenge to forecast. The model data has been skewed and most of the snow chances have skirted the Baltimore area. It is as if there is a dome over the area preventing the snow to fall here, but allowing it to fall all around Baltimore. Of course that's not true, but most of the snow chances that have gone bust for us have exceeded the forecast just to our north and west. Yesterday most of us didn't get snow accumulation, but those west of Baltimore saw up to 4 inches while those in S PA saw a couple inches. This morning those in VA and NC are seeing accumulating snow. But not us.

Today, the coastal Low does appear to be too far out to sea to effect central MD, although S MD could see a dusting to an inch later this afternoon. A Low, just S of the Great Lakes is moving E and so those in N Baltimore Co and S PA could see a dusting to an inch of snow later today.

Tomorrow there is a slight chance for some in MD to see a dusting of snow. Other than that, those who don't like snow are in luck.

In the long range there is a chance for snow the end of the week, but of course it is too far away for any certainty, and given the trend this Winter, I'm not sure I will believe the data until I see the snowflakes.

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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UPDATE Friday afternoon snow in Maryland

By: cws6196, 9:01 PM GMT on February 15, 2013

My previous forecast still stands. I have been looking at the current satellite and radar images and it appears the Low will track in such a way that we will not see much snow overnight. My average of 1-3 inches stands.

But, there are hints that the coastal Low may develop Saturday wherein we may have a opportunity for a "surprise". Not yet saying it will happen (hence the surprise). Minus any surprises we could see another inch accumulate Saturday afternoon.

For what it's worth, the models are hinting at a snow storm mext weekend. Way too far into the future for me to say more.

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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UPDATE Thurs re snow Maryland

By: cws6196, 3:49 AM GMT on February 15, 2013

Well, this weekend's storm is not what I originally thought it would be, but at least there is snow in the forecast. We have a cold front coming from the west, and a Low does form off of the Atlantic coast, but the model data does not have the Low in the path it needs to be for us to have lots of snow.

TIMING: Rain should start to fall late Friday, turning to all snow around midnight, ending mid Saturday.

ACCUMULATIONS: At this time it appears the area will have an average of 1 - 3 inches, with the lower amounts in S MD and higher end N of Baltimore with those along the MD/PA line maybe seeing a bit more.

CONCERN: There is a slight chance for the Low to actually move into a position wherein we get a large amount of snow. If that were to happen it would not be a blizzard but would be more than the 3 inches I mentioned above. As the Low forms tomorrow I will be able to track it's progress and know where it is actually travelling.

I will have an update later Friday as needed. Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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UPDATE Tues evening for snow in Maryland

By: cws6196, 5:16 AM GMT on February 13, 2013

This has not been a good day for snow lovers in terms of the model data. As I have previously noted, when I speak of "model data" I am referring to computers programmed with algorithms to predict how the weather will react in the future based upon the input of current data analyzed in reference to historical outcomes. The various models are programmed differently and current data is input to each at various times throughout the day. So, within a day, as more current data is fed into the system, differing outputs occur.

I mention this as the models are continuing to shift things around for us. You know I have been mentioning Wednesday's snow potential for some time now since the models have been very consistent in keeping the storm. Well, on Tuesday the models either took it away or greatly reduced it. Why? I'm not too sure, but I do believe that part of the answer lies in their inability to cope with the temperature issues in the varying layers of the atmosphere. As I mentioned in my previous post, the upper atmosphere is cold enough for snow, but the surface is a bit too warm. Here is how I see Wednesday.

TIMING: Precip beginning in the afternoon lasting through Thursday morning.

PRECIP TYPE: For those in S MD I believe it will be primarily rain, although a few snow flakes could filter in, if you look closely. For the rest of central and N MD the rain will eventually change over to all snow.

ACCUMULATIONS: I will slightly cut down my numbers from my previous post, saying those around Baltimore could see a dusting to 1" while those closer to the MD/PA line and W could see on average 3".

PROBLEMS: The main issue is the ground temp and the rain. My numbers are based on the rain changing to snow late in the evening. The longer the rain holds out the shorter time frame for snow and so less snow accumulation. Also, more rain means a warmer and wet ground. Therefore, the first batch of snow will melt, cutting down on the accumulation totals. So, if the change over happens earlier and the snow falls heavy, we could see more snow than I am saying. What are the odds? I don't think the odds are great. I do believe that the ground temp is working against us this time, so I am sticking with my numbers.

SATURDAY: Referring to my discussion above on the models, the major models, on Tuesday, took away the Saturday coastal storm. But, not to fear, this is typical behavior for models this far away from the actual event. Keep in mind that the models work off of current data, and the system that will help produce Saturday's storm is still in the Pacific Ocean. For many reasons I do feel Saturday is still good for snow for us. Currently the local NWS has us at a 20% chance for snow, but in their discussion to the forecasters they talked about it being too warm for snow on Saturday. I respectfully disagree since all the model data, even taking away the snow, keeps us in temps below freezing just above the surface. So, I will keep an eye on Saturday and see how it shapes up.

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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3 more Maryland snow chances

By: cws6196, 2:37 AM GMT on February 12, 2013

What a tricky Winter this continues to be. So much depends on the strength and path of the Low, and where the freezing temp line will finally fall. Right now I am watching snow potential for Wednesday and Saturday. I have been talking about the Wednesday snow for some time now, but the Saturday snow looks to be our strongest yet. And .... Potential for another snow event again next week. I will know more about the Wednesday snow later tomorrow, but here is how I see things.

TIMING: Wednesday late morning into Thursday morning.

PRECIP TYPE: The precip should start as rain, changing to all snow. Ice should not be a factor.

ACCUMULATION: This is tricky for a host of reasons, one of which is the length of the rain event. The models can predict precip amount, but doesn't distinquish between rain or snow. Right now it looks like S MD will be all rain, with the rain changing to snow north of Annapolis. Those south of Baltimore could see an inch, while those N and NE of Baltimore could have 3-5 inches.

PROBLEMS: The stronger the Low and the quicker the turn over to all snow will impact the snow amount. At this time I don't see the Low strengthening much, but I do wonder if it will be colder sooner than forecast. I think that sccenerio is likely. If so, the snow accumulations would be higher.

SATURDAY: Too early for details, but it appears this will be a coastal storm and an all snow event for Maryland. Preliminary model data shows well over 6 inches of accumulations, with more possible. If this verifies (models prove to be true), this will be a big one for us.

NEXT WEEK: Potential is there but let's stick with this week.

I will have another update late Tuesday. Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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more Maryland snow possible this week

By: cws6196, 5:03 PM GMT on February 10, 2013

New England is still digging out, and three years ago today we were in the midst of our second blizzard in only a couple days. Unfortunately, since 2010 many people in Maryland are judging subsequent Winters from the 2010 perspective. That year was not at all normal for us. For perspective, thus far this year we have received snow earlier than we had for the past 10 years (Christmas Eve) and have received more snow than we have in the previous couple Winters, with S MD picking up more than expected. Yes, we are below our Winter norm of around 20 inches, but Winter isn't over yet.

As I have been mentioning for a number of days now, it appears we will have another shot of snow this coming week. Of course it is too far out for details, and things can change, but what I like about this chance is that the storm is a coastal and not a clipper, and the models have had this potential for a number of days now. Coastal storms bring us the heavier snow storms since the Low moves along the coast drawing in the Atlantic moisture and drawing down the cold arctic air. What just hit New England was a strong coastal Low.

TIMING: Thus far the general time frame is Wed afternoon into Thursday morning, and then "another" potential on Saturday.

ACCUMULATION: Way too early to say, although a general consensus would have a spread of a couple inches in S MD to 6 or more inches in Central and Eastern MD.

COMPLICATIONS: What can get in the way of this potential storm? The biggest issue is the exact path of the Low. Too far out to sea and too far inland would hamper our snow chances. Currently different models are showing differing scenarios, but what is comforting is that the models at least are all showing the Low. We have many days for the data to be refined.

I will keep you posted. In the meantime, follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and info.

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UPDATE snow Maryland

By: cws6196, 1:40 AM GMT on February 08, 2013

UPDATE Fri afternoon

At this time the southern Low is near the mouth of the Chesapeake Bay as it moves toward New England while the OH Low is still in the OH area. It appears that Low is not advancing as quickly as originally thought, and if that track continues at this pace the result could be a bit less snow in MD later this evening. Since any deviation from the path and timing makes a difference to us, I am sticking to my previous forecast, although, if the OH Low keeps doing what it's doing then S MD may not see any snow and northern MD might only see an inch. Either way, New England still takes the hit.

Original Post
This is not an easy forecast for as I mentioned in my previous post, any shift in the path, intensity or phasing of the Lows will drastically change this forecast. But as of this writting, I am as confident as can be with my forecast.

TIMING: After midnight Friday into Friday morning those west and north of Baltimore should see mixed wintry precip of ice and snow. S MD will see rain. Later Friday the wrap around flow could bring snow into the area through Saturday morning.

ACCUMULATION: Friday morning there could be up to an inch of accumulated mixed precip N and W of Baltimore. Snow accumulations Friday evening could be a couple inches mainly in N Baltimore, N Harford and Cecil Co. It is possible that S MD could see a dusting of snow by Saturday morning.

FUTURE: Still watching chance for our own coastal storm mid next week.

Keep in mind that any deviation in the behavior of the Lows will change this forecast. If that appears to be happening I will keep you posted. Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

Updated: 6:19 PM GMT on February 08, 2013

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Snow potential continues for Maryland

By: cws6196, 5:05 AM GMT on February 07, 2013

Ok, if you feel you are missing out on snow then head up to New England later Thursday, but don't plan on coming back anytime soon. It appears they are in for a large snowstorm/blizzard with some areas possibly seeing 3 feet of snow! Not for us though.

But, there is a concern I and the local NWS share. The set up for the New England storm is a phasing, or combining, of two Low pressure systems. One coming from the OH valley and one from the SE. As the two move toward and along the coast, respectively, the OH Low's energy will be absorbed and combined into the SE Low's energy, thus creating a massively large Low pressure system off the Atlantic coast. It is this newly combined Low that will be responsible for the snowy mess in New England.

So, what's the issue? In the imperfect science of forecasting, there are nuances of climatology we can predict fairly well, and there are nuances out of our realm of prediction. It's the latter that concerns me. "IF" the Lows phase early, or the timing and/or track of the Lows divert from the current forecast, we would potentially see a significant amount of snow. I am not saying it will happen. But, it is something of which we need to be aware. This is what the local NWS recently wrote to the area forecasters: "ALTHOUGH THE TRACK OF THE COASTAL LOW WOULD BE CLIMATOLOGICALLY FAVORABLE FOR A DC SNOW STORM...PHASING IS FCST TO OCCUR TOO LATE FOR THIS TO HAPPEN." The odds of this happening are slim. Officially I am calling for mixed precip Friday morning to include snow and ice, with the possibility of an inch of snow accumulation near the MD/PA line Friday morning; maybe later Friday afternoon. The rest of MD will see rain on Friday. But be aware of a potential "surprise." This is how the local NWS ended their recent forecast discussion to the area forecasters: "REGARDLESS...THIS SYSTEM STILL NEEDS TO BE MONITORED CLOSELY DUE ITS HIGH COMPLEXITY."

I am still watching the potential for a coastal storm for us mid-next week. I have been talking about this for a few days now, but it is still too far out for any details or guarantees it will actually happen. But worth keeping an eye on. If you want snow, don't yet fret. Maryland typically sees it's sahre of snow in February and early March. We still have plenty of time for more of the white stuff.

I will have another update later Thursday evening. Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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snow in the future in Maryland

By: cws6196, 9:16 PM GMT on February 05, 2013

Today is National Weatherpersons Day!! A shout out to all my forecaster friends! Also, where were you 3 years ago today? I was without power, huddled with the family by our fireplace as almost 3 feet of snow lay on the ground. Yes, today was the start of our back-to-back blizzards. Rest assured, nothing like that is in the forecast, at least not for us.

it appears the clipper train is over, although as I write this radar indicates light snow falling over northern MD. This Friday New England looks to be hit with a massive snow storm, and recently the models have trended the storm system further south. I am not saying we will get the storm, but it is worth watching since this is a large coastal storm, and any shift in the Low could dramatically change things. But I repeat, I am not forecasting a snow storm for us Friday. Just keeping an eye on things ...

For the past number of days I have been mentioning to you about the possibility of a coastal storm in MD next week. Although it is too far out for details, the potential still exists on the model data. The time frame is anywhere from the 13th to the 18th. I know that is not precise, but this far out that is the best we can do. I am continuing to monitor it and will keep you posted.

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits. Since not much is happening in weather around here, if you are bored check out my professional blog: www.lifesjourneyblog.com and if you enjoy it, go over to the official Facebook page and "like" and "share" it with your friends: https://www.facebook.com/lifesjourneyblog

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clippers rest of week in Maryland

By: cws6196, 5:04 AM GMT on February 04, 2013

The clippers continue to come ... First though, Yay Ravens!!!!

In previous posts I mentioned a clipper coming through Tues night as being a bit more potent than what we had previously seen. Well, it appears another clipper has formed just before it, arriving Monday evening. This one will have the potential for a bit more snow as there will be a southerly wind flow allowing for more moisture in the air. Here is how things are shaping up:

MONDAY / TUESDAY: Late Monday snow showers could begin, continuing through the overnight hours. Accumulations of an inch or so for those north and west of Baltimore. S MD may not get much out of this, but those along the MD/PA border and Carroll Co could see 2 or so inches from this.

TUESDAY NIGHT: Not too sure on this one yet, but there could be some snow, although iffy.

FRIDAY: This is a bit too far out to say too much, but there is a chance for snow during the day, primarily in central MD.

VALENTINES: Still watching this one ....

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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more Maryland clippers

By: cws6196, 3:14 PM GMT on February 03, 2013

From the reports I have seen it appears most of us saw up to an inch of snow with some areas receiving around 2 inches. Some areas in southern S MD had barely a dusting. The accumulations were on the low end of my forecast due, once again, to the dry air. The dewpoints just weren't getting up there enough to allow the snow to make it to the ground. It was frustrating to watch the snow on radar move east, only to die out. But, that is typical for clippers here in Maryland. For us to see high accumulations we need (must) to have a coastal Low which brings in the Atlantic and Bay moisture. These storms from the west and NW just don't typically have the moisture content we need (with the exception of far western MD).

Over the next few days we have a few more clippers moving into the area. Here's a summary:

TODAY: Snow should start after noon and last into the evening. It will be similar to yesterday, so most places should see an inch or less. Less in S MD.

MONDAY - TUESDAY: Same as above in terms of accumulation. Timing is late evening Monday into rush hour Tuesday morning.

TUESDAY - WEDNESDAY: Start late evening Tuesday lasting through most of Wednesday. No major accumulation, but should be more than just a dusting. Too early for details.

VALENTINE'S WEEK: I'm still watching the possibility for a coastal storm that week. Way too far away for details or confidence.

Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits.

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Maryland snow chances this weekend

By: cws6196, 5:33 PM GMT on February 02, 2013

My apology for the delay in an update, but I have been looking over the data all morning and there seem to be a lot of disagreement between the different models and what the NWS is saying. So I've been waiting to try to get you the most current information. The next few days we will see snow chances, although none of them will give us large amounts of snow. But snow nonetheless.

The current radar shows snow over Baltimore but none of it is yet reaching the ground as unfortunately the atmosphere is too dry right now. But, the cloud cover and upper level precip will help to moisten the column of air significantly to allow the snow to reach the ground. It's just a matter of time. The snow on the radar currently in WV is moving this way and should be here in time for it all to reach the ground. The current water vapor satellite image is encouraging.

This is how I see things for today:

TIMING: Most of the precip will start after 3:00pm with the heaviest bands after 6:00pm.

ACCUMULATION: This is the tough part of the forecast since there are many inconsistencies in the model data vs. current conditions. But I am forecasting 1 - 2 inches for central MD & S MD with localized 3 inches possible. The NWS is saying less than an inch but I feel the column of air will moisten enough for more snow to fall. They feel it will stay dry.

NEXT: Our next snow chance is Sunday afternoon, probably like today's snowfall. We then have another opportunity Tuesday into Wednesday, but for me, the opportunity for some decent snow accumulation could happen around Valentine's Day. Too far out for details, but at the moment the conditions and data support a decent coastal storm mid that week. I will keep you posted.

There is a chance the NWS will eventually issue a winter weather advisory, but thus far nothing. Follow me daily on Twitter (@wxmanmd) for weather updates and tidbits. I will keep my Weather Updated as needed: 443-470-9804

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more Maryland snow coming

By: cws6196, 10:32 PM GMT on February 01, 2013

You all didn't think Winter was over yet, did you? There are a few more chances for snow, which I will summarize below. Later Saturday morning I will have a complete update. But for now this is a teaser.

SATURDAY - SUNDAY: Another clipper but this time we could see up to 2 inches and those south could get more.

SUNDAY EVENING: More snow possible.

TUESDAY - WEDNESDAY: Another clipper, could be generous.

VALENTINE'S DAY: Long range modelling shows a fairly large storm system probable. Way too early to say, but looks nice at the moment.

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About cws6196

I provide a weather email service for people in MD. I am a storm chaser & Skywarn spotter. For daily weather tidbits follow me on Twitter: @wxmanMD.

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