Thursday, March 3, 2016

Winter Storm Warning has been issued..

I like the folks at the NWS over in Blacksburg. I'm not sure how we went from nothing, (under a inch or half inch, to a warning for 3-5 inches in these counties.. Patrick, Bedford, Franklin, Campbell, Appomattox and Charlotte.

Totals are 2-4 in the Blue and 3-5 in the warned area. 

The threat has always been there.. I mentioned yesterday how this COULD become a 3-6 or 4-8 inch event. With that, I'm not TOTALLY sold on a 3-5 warning event in those locals, but then again some places could end up with higher totals. So, bold call upgrading to a warning that fast, but the notice is short. And, there could be some issues still.  So, yeah.. they could verify but this doesn't mean it was the right way to do this.

Where are the models?

Most model data has a general 1-3 over most of the region. A few high res models have a 1-3 inches band west of LYH, a dryer slot near LYH and then 2-6 just east and south of town.

The GFS has been the lead model bring the snow in faster, colder and bringing the wrap around moisture in fastest. New Version Para totals:

Very broad area of 4-6 inches from 460 south to the NC border. 

My call:

Call me whiskers because maybe I'm a worrier. My gut says stay at 1-3, with up to 5 east of the Blue Ridge. With that, My official call:

2-4 inches region wide. Up to 6 possible in about the same places as the warned area. 

IF the Band that forms from the coastal slides west any more, 6-8 possible in the Danville/Lynchburg/ Appomattox corridor.  The 6z GFS is really close to this..

**not all the data supports 2-4, so this is a HIGH BUST potential. Looking at Radar, the snowiest models get the snow in here sooner and radar tends to support that. Schools may end calling it sooner too today, especially out west. Temps got a little cooler than modeled and cloud cover should be racing in**

Timeline: Snow may start in the Highlands and NRV by early mid afternoon and spread east by 5 to 7 PM. Heaviest snows out west will be before 2 am and Eastern areas between midnight and 7PM. Some rain will mix early on areas below 1500 feet and then along the NC Border till late evening. Snow ends 3-5 West regions, 5-10 east regions tomorrow morning. 

**if this busts- wave one slides to our north along 64. A few short term models show this. Wave two from the coastal doesn't make it that far west** 25% chance something like this happens and most places see under 2 inches. 

This is a day for frequent twitter and FB updates. Twitter: LynchburgWx, Facebook Keith David Huffman (would need to add me I think) and VirginiaWx FB page. Keep up the clicks on the ads if you like the efforts and forecasts. Share this for me!

Wednesday, March 2, 2016

If you wanted ONE more snow event.. read this blog!

At noon yesterday, we about bottomed out with the no snow camp. Outside the GFS, the other models were moving the one piece to our north with snow, the other south with rain and showing very little precipitation in our region.

We may have a true trend emerging. The NAM, which showed the north trend in the January event and the first to show heavier totals on the Valentines day event, doesn't want it to snow. The Canadian is also not for this storm, so these are in the no snow camp. However, the Euro model shows 2-3 inches and the MIDNIGHT run of the GFS looked better and now 6z run is even more intense.

Initial thoughts- I think a 1-3, 2-4 type event is on tap.It's not crazy to say this becomes a 3/6 4/8 type event based on trends today.  Flurries break out Thursday afternoon and then Late evening overnight, steadier accumulating snow develops until Friday AM. Thursday afternoon will have a rain/snow mix, some rain could mix in when the precipitation slows down AND it could end as drizzle. Martinsville to Danville we see a much rainer solution, but may end as a burst of snow that could get them in range of our target snowfall.

Greatest fear- Models trend to a more snowier solution, only to be a smidge too warm and then we get mostly rain. Especially east of the Blue Ridge (Lynchburg) Elevation will have a role in this event. 

WHY ARE YOU LEANING GFS/EURO- the trend has been for a stronger solution and the model trends are always more north.

6z GFS model run..

Total liquid falling- about .5 or .6 , expect much more to our south and east. You can see that this storm is blowing up RIGHT near our area.  Now, the bad assumption is to 

Snowfall totals from Wxbell

Surface temps will be near 40 when the snow/rain starts Thursday afternoon and evening. When the precipitation is heaviest, it will be right near freezing. 

Even if surface temps are OK, we are already on the borderline with temps aloft..

At 7pm Thursday, temps aloft are cold enough all the way down into NC, our battle is at the Surface

At 1 am Friday, Temps aloft have surged and mostly rain is falling just south of Lynchburg.

 at 7 am, you see cold air working back in from the west.  My assumption is that at 1AM, that warmth is still moving north, but likely slowed and then at 7 Am MOST places are turning back to snow. 

For you snow haters-- Look, if this comes to fruition, most will be melted by late Friday. 

There is a lot to be resolved still, but I think a general 1-3/2-4 event is on tap. We've got some wiggle room either way for this to be a bit more or next to nothing. 

As usual, will FB/Tweet out updated information as the event unfolds today. Keep up with the ad clicks! I do appreciate it! . 

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Super Tuesday has no Super consensus.

The noon model runs yesterday looked promising in that we had a general idea of what the storm was going develop and general range of 2-6 inches. It wasn't perfect, but a general idea.

Then the Midnight model runs took place.

NAM and Canadian split the storm-- one piece to our north and one piece to our south.

Euro, which was the driest model at 1-2 inches in our area held serve, but it's parrallel model which takes over in ONE week looks like the NAM.

The GFS has decent liquid getting into our area but the storm is faster and most falls as rain.

There are off hour runs of GFS and NAM.

GFS is faster, wetter and snowless because of warmer temps (Not far off from the midnight run)

There is also a para GFS, which 2 runs yesterday showed 6-10 inches across all of our region.

2 options.

GFS- while warm doesn had the system bringing us precipitation. This is faster than the models and still could bring a 1-3 inch snow fall.

 NAM like solution where the northern energy is separate from the southern and snow falls to our north and rain falls to our south and we are basically dry...(Maps VIA Wxbell)

If the models had held server last night, I would have felt pretty good that we see a 2-4 inch event around here. The fact that even the Euro, which verifies best at 500 MB is split between it's current version and upgrade is even more confounding.

The official position is:

I'm going to punt until the next model cycle. Obviously, when a decent storm is on the way at 72 hours out we usually have a pretty good handle on it, so this doesn't bode well. Having said that, I think we could still squeeze 2-3 inches out of it if everything goes well.