Saturday 1-23-10

Jan 23, 2010

Very Early Report

Greetings and welcome!

I have myself worked up a little bit about the pending storm. I am going to go out on a limb and say that it is being very understated at the moment. I am seeing this as a lot like the Christmas storm, which had headlines well in advance. It also brought us 3 weeks of good trails and an A-1 base.

Anyway.. I see this storm turning out to be a very strong one, with plenty of rain, and yes a dandy blanket of snow on the back.

What the scenario brings is two low pressure systems coming together to make a very significant storm. The northern low pressure area is way too far north and will bring rain initially.

As it progresses into colder air,  the counterclockwise circulation of the low will start feeding cold air from the cold side of the storm into the southern low pressure area, cooling it and and changing part of it over to snow. The southern low takes a slightly west of perfect path as it passes the area.

The models are in pretty good agreement with this scenario, except they are showing it a little warmer than my prediction.

The storm eventually grows into a very strong low pressure area. The central pressure is projected to reach 984MB over our area, and 980 as it moves east. That magnitude of low only happens around here a few times a year, if that.

The images are from the 06UTC (Midnight) NAM, and are for noon, 6pm and midnight Sunday.

With high pressure fairly close reading in the 1012-1024 range, there will be a sharp pressure gradient between that and the 984mb central pressure. That means a lot of wind and a very strong storm.

As the storm moves east it continues to pick up energy from subsequent systems, and it is shown turning into a very powerful storm. It will then affect our weather by bringing a flood of cold air right out of the Arctic next week.

If it goes as expected the snow will start about noon on Sunday. Before that, a good bit of rain is likely.

How much snow? Anyone’s guess. I am looking for results similar to the Christmas storm and 4-8 on the conservative side. If it takes longer to switch over, totals will fall, but I am looking the other way for an earlier than expected switch and more snow.

Maybe I am getting all worked up over a forecast, but I think that this will turn out to be a pretty big storm. We will know soon.

*The above was written overnight. It verified well again with the 6am model run. BTW, it looks like a nasty day outside. As of  10am it is just over freezing and there is mist and fog. It is not an ideal morning for snowmobiling.

Have a good weekend and thank you for visiting!

RJB