Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Wednesday Morning: Things Just Got Interesting for Early Next Week


  • Light snow for NNJ into S. New England Friday morning
  • Very cold air moves in for the weekend
  • Long range models showing strong signal for potential larger storm early next week

Good morning. The next 7 days have continued to become more interesting as new data comes in. Areas in NNJ into southern New England see a light snow event Friday morning, a storm misses to our south Sunday, and then a potential big ticket item is on the boards for Tuesday. For what its worth, this is winters last stand no matter what happens.

Cold air arrives tomorrow and a wave of low pressure comes along into the area Friday on its heals...

I mentioned yesterday how I thought the snow line was too far south with this and latest model data confirms my suspicion. The most recent nam model (seen above) makes the most sense to me. Areas of NNJ/PA into S. New England see 2 to 4 inches with this mostly falling Friday morning.

Very very cold air then moves in for the weekend. Temperatures will not get above 30 for many areas for highs and lows in the teens...

The cold is so strong that it suppresses a developing storm to our south seen below..

However, the suspense does not end there, all  major model groups are now indicating we can see a potential bigger storm develop for early next week. Of course they vary in exact placement and intensity, but the general idea is there. 

Here is what the GFS model is showing..

This if verified would be a major, powerful winter storm. However, this is a week away! We know that things are going to change. So given that fact, where do we go from here? Few things that concern me about this threat...

  • It is on the heals of an arctic outbreak, a signature of major storms
  • All major model groups and there ensembles look similar overall
    • many bigger storms over the years tend to give this strong signal 7 days out
  • There is evidence of persistent ridging along the west coast, a key variable of winter storms

This does not mean over a foot of snow is going to fall in your backyard. If this thing actually forms, which by no means is a lock, its a matter of the track and intensity. The only thing we know now is the signal the models and the pattern are giving. If by Friday this signal does not weaken then it will be time to get concerned. 

So lets look at the projected pattern which all the major model groups are showing to be very similar...

The key to all of this is the pattern slowing down. What I mean by that is that big ridge of high pressure seen above in the west causing energy to consolidate along the east. Think of this as a stream of water trying to move around a big bend. The water piles up as it tries to make the turn. Same happens with our weather if we see the waves of the jet stream amplify as seen above. Also, the pattern supports the cold air to stay locked in due to air coming together aloft (confluence) which triggers high pressure at the surface. 

Like I said, the strong signal is there now its just a matter of does this signal change much as we get through the next 3 or 4 days. Time will tell. Stay tuned for updates!

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