Think Snow, Tweet Snow !!!

Thursday, March 6, 2014

A little milder for Telefest but questions about a potential "massive storm" have my attention

Sub-zero temps continue to prevail across VT during the overnights, unusual to see so many in consecutive fashion in March. Friday morning should be the last of this and a nearly full day of sunshine should warm temperatures all the way to 35 (a 40 degree rise !). Much of the eastern half of the country will get a needed reprieve from the cold and a chance to thaw some ice and snow. The upper ridge responsible for this spring surge will creep into New England but will be battling it out with a strong polar jet for complete control of the weather in interior locations such as Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. Temperatures will approach the freezing mark again on Saturday but remain below freezing Sunday thanks to a reenforcing shot of chill. We could see a dusting to perhaps 2 inches of snow Saturday as a disturbance responsible for this chill brings its very limited moisture to the Green Mountains. Overall though Telefest weekend will free of significant storms. Sunshine should be the sunnier of the two days and relatively comfortable.

The upcoming week is a lot more interesting. A pair of smaller disturbances could bring light accumulations of snow both Sunday and Monday nights, perhaps refreshing the mountain a bit for the Monday and Tuesday ski days. A few inches is possible in both of these instances with the most snow occurring north of I89. Then the real fun begins, or so we hope. It is the magnificent merging of a strong southern branch storm with a dynamic influx of polar energy. The result is an all out proverbial fireworks display on the weather map with a storm exploding in the middle Mississippi Valley and advancing east or northeast. The European model and its ensembles have been all over this system for a couple of days with hints of it on some of the other medium range models and more than a hint on the recent Canadian model. There are multiple timing questions and obvious concern about the track of this storm but I am starting to sense the Euro model locking on to this event and I am inclined to believe it will happen, for someone. My concern is the track of this storm. We have talked a few times about how the personality of this winter has been characterized by overwhelming polar jet energy and storm systems that prefer to dump their goodies south of here. This could happen again and there have already been hints of it. Yesterday afternoon's run of the Euro, and the most recent run of the Euro and Canadian are suggesting a hit for Vermont so without getting too optimistic, lets just say we could have worse news. This storm would be the strongest of the year were it to happen, massive amounts of snow and potentially blizzard like conditions around the time frame of late Wednesday into Thursday the 12th and 13th. That's funny, the 21st anniversary of the great Blizzard of 1993 or my "perfect storm".

Cold weather prevails through the following weekend and into St Patrick's Day. After that there are some signs of a tightening jet in the Pacific, perhaps enough to produce some milder temperatures although ensembles have yet to suggest it and have yet to indicate any big thaw through the Spring equinox. I would imagine there is at least another significant weather system in there and maybe two if the stronger Pacific Jet begins to rapid-fire at North America

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