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Sunday, January 17, 2016

6 or more inches of fluff Monday/Tuesday while we watch a potentialy massive storm for the upcoming weekend

We are in the midst of a decent little stretch of weather as the snow continues to slowly pile up . Snow, from a healthy looking polar jet disturbance will provide the fluff for Monday. The wind is likely to blow it around a bit on the summits as temperatures drop through the teens but 5-10 inches is still the range. Though the snow will become more occasional as we advance through MLK day, it should continue. A much weaker disturbance will help intensify the terrain enhanced snow Tuesday providing another 2-5 inches. Tuesday will be a cold one though with readings hovering between 5-15 most of the day along with wind chills well below zero. Flurries should continue into Tuesday night before tapering off entirely by Wednesday.

The end of the week including the aforementioned Wednesday appears dry and a touch on the chilly side of normal. All three days should feature relatively calm winds and terrific visibility. Most of the weather eyes will be watching what appears to one of the big winter weather events of the year which should strike the east coast on the 22nd and 23rd of the month or this upcoming Friday and Saturday. Now, lets give the American GFS some credit here. The model has endured quite a bit of bashing on the SCWB and much of it deserved, but it has shown hints of this system the last several days and other models are now climbing on board the train. A weak polar high pressure center will provide just enough cold air as a large and moist system in the southern branch of the jet makes a brisk march across the southern plains. The pattern will soften around this system which more or less provides a bit of "free play time" for east coast storms. Models are indicating a rapid intensification Friday night and a mammoth snowfall event for mostly coastal areas of the northeast or perhaps areas just off the coast. The lack of a stronger polar high pressure center opens the door for a few areas to see more of a rain event. Though the Canadian model is the only of the three major medium range simulations to indicate a big hit for Vermont, it is very possible that this northward trend in the expected track continues from the other two models. Again, there is no polar jet energy to suppress this system so it can do what it wants, so lets just see where we are in 2 days or so.

The last week of January will feature a clipper system and the possibility for a bigger more organized storm late in the week. It will not be especially cold but generally below freezing. There are some ominous signs as we head into February as the EPO is expected to flip to positive. This basically means that the jet stream will tighten in the Pacific forcing more unsettled weather out in the west while milder weather dominates eastern North America. There is a long way to go still and 2 weeks of generally favorable weather in front of it so lets not get too far ahead of ourselves. 

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