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Sunday, March 2, 2008

Big time icing a real possibility Wednesday

And I know a lot of us in Vermont eye the first Tuesday in March as not only a way to honor the great tradition of Town Meeting Day but to also sneak out to MRG and enjoy a powder day. If memory serves, the last few Town Meeting Tuesday's have been of the powdery variety and it brings out the crowds. The one exception would be last year where it was -20 all day which proves to be a bit rough for even the most hardiest of us skiers. Give credit to Ben Hewitt however who did the great feature on the coop in Ski Magazine and was willing to make a few turns with me on that very cold day last year. This year will be quite different and certainly not powdery. After a cold start to the day Monday, temperatures will warm dramatically and should be several degrees above freezing during the afternoon. Tomorrow could be a great spring skiing afternoon so long as the area of clouds and even mixed precipitation which could prevail in the morning, move away during the afternoon. This is my expectation anyway and the morning clouds (and possible precipitation) should give way to sunshine which should fuel the snow softening.

Town Meeting Tuesday

The problem with Tuesday is not the mild weather but rather the rain which should begin falling in the early morning and continue through the early portion of the ski day. If we can somehow dodge the rain, which seems very unlikely right now, we would have an additional day of good spring skiing but at this point it is fair to expect at least a quarter of an inch of rain followed by a period of dry weather beginning in the afternoon.

Icing on Wednesday ?
The period of active weather continues into Wednesday as a moist system approaches from the Gulf States. I had mentioned in the previous post that we are in desperate need of some cold air to inject itself into this system. There is a minimal amount of arctic cold in interior Quebec and it will make a low level push southward late on Tuesday. As this is happening however, we will see conditions in some critical mid-layers of the troposphere warm. The set-up is thus very good for some significant icing on Wednesday. Precipitation will begin, perhaps as a little snow or sleet, very early in the day Wednesday and continue into the early afternoon mostly in the form of freezing rain.

The weekend of the 8th ad 9th

The pattern does take a turn for the more favorable later in the week in response to a deepening eastern U.S. trough. This turn however appears more gradual as opposed to abrupt and it may take a few days before we see new natural snow. There are series of impulses within this trough and the passage of each of these will bring colder weather to the region. The first such "post ice-storm event" arrives Thursday and precipitation from that will be of the rain or wet snow shower variety. Colder weather Friday and the arrival of yet another disturbance should at that point bring some snow although its difficult to envision amounts. Additional TIS type snow is possible Friday night into early Saturday and with the colder weather in place, it could set us up for a decent day of skiing.

Long Range
The ridge west/trough east regime should get one more re-enforcement early next week which offers the possibility of some additional new snow. The teleconnection indices are not favorable however and with no mechanism in place to keep existing cold in place or force new cold weather southward, we should see a trend toward significantly milder weather by the end of next week. Any system toward the middle or end of next week could still bring snow but it might be asking a lot to say that it looks good for powder since the snow could be wet in nature.

1 comment:

Mile_end said...

Josh,where's the update? Give us your best guess for the next storm, pleeeeeease.