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Saturday, February 20, 2016

More support for a big storm next week

The potential storm next week (Feb 24th-25th) is drawing more and more attention and delegating other weather forecast details as afterthoughts. We haven't had much in the way of big material changes with this storm. Model consensus did move the track of the storm farther east on February 18th but has since shifted the track back to the west. It seems more and more likely with each passing cycle of models, that the storm next week will be a major precipitation producer but questions remain about whether or not we can keep that precipitation in the form of snow.

The snow late Friday precedes a relatively mild weekend though the above freezing temperatures will not be excessive in nature or amount to a major thaw. A wave of low pressure associated with a push of colder weather will approach by later Sunday. Though this system could continue to strengthen as it moves out over the Atlantic Ocean, the precipitation will stay well south of most of Vermont and minimal if any snow is expected late Sunday into Monday.

The midweek system is being advertise in a variety of different forms. I am basically throwing out solutions from the American GFS model which has suggested about everything imaginable while exhibiting no consistency. The current solution suggests a consolidated system which undergoes a rapid maturation process and tracks in to the eastern Great Lakes bringing minimal snow and then mostly rain to all of New England. The European Ensemble package has exhibited the most consistency and is thus more believable to the likes of myself. It is currently indicating a moisture laden but somewhat broken weather system consisting of a preliminary wave of moisture and snow Wednesday following by a truckload of moisture Thursday. The eventual main area of low pressure is indicated to track just west of Boston with limited cold air support behind the storm. The result here is a snow to sleet/ice and back to snow evolution. Canadian mean ensemble projections are also somewhat supporting this while the operational model was farther east. So, although this would not be the grand slam home run we've been looking for, it's damn good with heavy snow leading to some hefty accumulations, some sleet or ice followed by more snow later Thursday into Friday as the system occludes over the maritimes. There will be plenty of additional updates regarding this storm and we will start narrowing down accumuations in future updates. For now it would be reasonable to expect at least 6-plus inches later Wednesday and several additional inches Thursday.

Still like the looks of the pattern beyond the storm which is anchored by the positive PNA and specifically the large ridge in western North America. This shoud provide at least one additional chance for snow before the end of the month. Furthermore, we expect the pattern of favorable ski weather to continue at least into early March for the same reasons. 

3 comments:

spunkie said...

0 for 4 heading into the 9th

Gene Marshall said...

I'm reading this is looking like a rain storm even at high elevation. What a nightmare!

Benedict Gomez said...

If this turns into a drenching rain inland cutter like some models show, I'm heading West.