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Thursday, January 19, 2012

Light snow Saturday, freezing rain to rain on Monday

The fast moving storm system slated to move from the Rockies Friday to the east coast Saturday will spread snow into Vermont Saturday morning. For the northern third of Vermont, it will be very close. The best snow from this storm appears to be across southern New England where 4-6 inches is expected. Farther north it will be difficult for some of this moisture to penetrate a very dry and very cold airmass. It is still reasonable to expect some light snow to begin early in the day and continue through early in the afternoon but accumulations will be on the lighter, 1-3 inch side. Still with the fresh snow from Thursday night into Friday morning it should be a pretty good day to ski. Sunday's temps will start below zero but moderate significantly by the afternoon rising into the 20's.

Temps will continue the moderation into Monday when a more potent storm system approaches and tracks directly north out of the southern plains to the eastern Great Lakes. The region will thus get flooded with warm air, initially just at the tropospheric mid-levels and ultimately everywhere. A period of freezing rain or drizzle is likely during the day Monday. By Monday night, the front associated with this storm system will arrive flushing out any lingering cold and bringing a period of rain along with a night of 40-plus temperatures.

Monday's system is a no-doubt-about-it loser and the airmass in the wake of Monday's system will be represented by relatively benign Pacific air. Such airmasses might feel nice but they are a direct product of that angry Pacific Jet out west. Much of the east including even Vermont will struggle to see temperatures well below freezing. The pattern will be conducive for another rain event later in the week but models have been a bit more capricious in this time frame. Some even engaging in a little bit of hope for MRG.

More on the long range this weekend after a few good nights of sleep. Stay warm this weekend and enjoy whatever snow we get.

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