Monday, January 2, 2017

Monday Morning Weather Discussion: Still Eyeing Late This Week

Happy New Year everyone! Will the first week of 2017 feature snow? Still too soon to know for sure, but as I discussed in my last video I am watching the evolution of the weather pattern at the end of this week for a chance. 

Here is a summary:

  • Peroids of cold rain today and tomorrow with temperatures in the low 40's
  • Weather clears out by Wednesday with cooler conditions
  • Very cold air moves in for Thursday into the weekend with highs in the 20's for many areas and lows in the teens
  • We then have to watch for potential winter storm development over the weekend
    • This is still speculation as many factors need to come together
  • Over the next few days we should start to get more clarity on if this becomes a real threat
  • No sustained warm ups on the horizon, winter is here

Rain today and tomorrow as low pressure moves through the area. The track of this low allows some warm air to filter in..

We see clearing on Wednesday as very cold air approaches from the northwest towards the end of the week..

This is ingredient # 1 for storm development- cold air in place. 

We then have a few pieces of energy to track which would need to come together properly for storm development. These pieces are labeled below..

A storm developing will depend on if that northern energy can dive sharp enough into that pacific energy ejecting from the west. If these two pieces come together perfectly then we can see a big storm. However, if that northern energy comes in too flat or that pacific energy ejects slower then we have nothing. The models right now are wobbling all over the place on how all these ingredients come together. These rapid swings should continue for the next 48 hours at least.

The one thing that has been more consistent in this set up is the -NAO (high pressure over Greenland) and a vortex of low pressure in eastern Canada as seen labled above. This is a major factor in helping that cold air stay locked in ahead of the storm and this alone makes it worth discussing this threat.

So lets get to surface projections. Right now most models show a storm developing offshore due to a flatter interaction between the northern and southern energy..

There have been a few model runs however that have blown up a storm due to the factors being in sync. The next image shows the GFS model from last night valid for Saturday night..

You can see the aggressive output here with a major winter storm. I show this as an example of what can happen of all the factors come together property. There is absolutely potential on the table here.

So where do we go from here? It will be critical to study model trends over the next 48 hours and see what direction they go. If by say Wednesday we still see the hint that the bigger storm can develop then you will start to see me take things more seriously and start to forecast.   At this time however all we can do is just sit back and watch. There is simply just too much margin for error in the models this far out to make a prediction. 

More to come.


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  2. I did not think I would see what I call the Rubik's cube snow effect (zillions of conditions in winter that inhibit snowfall in a specific region of the Country) again this winter. The I95 corridor had the effect pause (not break)last year with one snowstorm. Overall the effect is as current as it can be in most of Mid Atlantic-I am not sure about New England. Going forward I am afraid it will continue. I would not bet my last dollar against it breaking to allow any decent snowfalls. I will stay tuned to see if W.W. posts a cube effect buster that actually materializes.