January 10th on the calendar marks the first occasion the blog can get excited about an event. Not exactly the kind of winter I had hoped for as of yet but at least we DO have a storm that can deliver for us in time for MLK holiday. This winter storm is coming together as of the time of this update with moisture advancing up through the Ohio Valley and jet energy ready to plunge into the thick of things by Thursday. The initial thrust of "moisture" with this system will remain ahead of some of this jet energy but we talked about the importance of attaining some "over-the-top" cold from Quebec and we will get such assistance even if its just a little.
By the time precipitation starts early Thursday temperatures will be well below freezing and by the looks of things it will be snow. The snow could quickly become very heavy Thursday morning as some of the best upward motion should occur in the late morning hours. As this is occurring however we should see an above-freezing layer advance into the region above the surface, changing precipitation to a period of sleet. by later in the day we will likely see a "lull" in the precipitation as temperatures make a slow advance to 30. 4-8 inches of snow and sleet would be my guess for Thursday only. Best chance of skiing in powder will be the morning before the sleet begins in the afternoon.
It is likely to get really fun as we move toward Friday. The lower troposphere will cool in the Thursday night/Friday morning time frame and models are keying on a very interesting jet max as this is occurring. This feature will allow an area of precipitation to enhance across Pennsylvania and New York before moving into Vermont in the pre-dawn hours Friday. All of this should be snow by the time it reaches MRG and although it could be a little wet at first Friday morning, temperatures will trend colder throughout the day, and the powder should start to pile up. It should persist through much of the day with the heaviest in the morning. Snow showers and flurries however will continue into Friday night and into Saturday morning. The additional 6-12 inches we should see in this time frame put this storm in the 10-20 inch category. It is not impossible for us to do even better, a lot depends on how Friday evolves.
The rest of MLK weekend appears mainly dry. The one clipper on the weather map Sunday will pass well to our south. Temperatures will be chilly with teens expected Saturday along with well-below zero wind chills (nothing we can't handle), and sub zero temps Sunday in the morning and teens in the afternoon although less wind. MLK day should be similar to Sunday with even less wind.
The balance of next week continues to appear mainly cold with the exception of late Tuesday into early Wednesday. Milder temperatures will attempt to make a push into the region in this time frame and I am hoping this ends up being an excuse for us to pick up some overrunning snows. The end of the week should feature some of the coldest weather of the season so far with temperatures falling into the -10 F category. Again nothing we can't handle and this cold will abate by next weekend when I am hoping some light snow from a clipper system can provide some additional fresh powder.
I am not in any sort of mood to focus on the weather beyond this. Ensembles are showing the PNA winning out with the cold and snow focused on western North America and lower Alaska. I am giddy about the upcoming storm and will simply hope things start to look a bit different late in the month before I have to provide another update. For now lets just enjoy some winter, we have waited long enough for it.