Sunday, March 18, 2007

MARCH 16-17 STORM GRADE REPORT

Final Snow/Sleet Totals across the Northeast, as reported to PSU's Public and Spotter Page.

March 16-17 Snowfall Map

This storm report is based on a procedure we've established on the site since since 2005. The actual amount is graded by it's % deviation from the forecast, and then grades on a GPA scale. Now in fairness...we have not yet reached consensus on the discussion board here if the grade should be actual accumulation of just SNOW or can it be SNOW & SLEET or just SLEET. Obviously the 2 recent storms have retrained everyone as to what sleet is and can do to a forecast.

Also in fairness…please note I don’t just pick and choose among the best actual observations. Frequent long term readers know and can vouch for the fact that when I say “NYC / Boston / PHL ” I have used the same locations each storm… NYC = Central Park / Boston = Logan airport / PHL = airport. The other locations are from members of the discussion community based on their obs posted in the comments.

Just for a new reader to know there’s no sugar coating here. The numbers speak for themselves, good, bad or ugly.

The numbers are: Final GPA / City forecasted / amount forecasted / actual / %dev / grade

The GPA is determined by the standard 4.0 academic scale:
4.0 A / 3.67 A- / 3.33 B+ / 3.0 B / 2.67 B- / 2.33 C+ / 2.0 C / 1.0 D / 0.0 E

0.00 / Baltimore (BWI): 2.0 / .6?/ 70%/ 30% = E

3.33 / Dundalk, MD: .75 / .85 / 12% / 88%=B+

0.00 / Philly (PHL): 6.0 / 3.0 /50% / 50%=E

2.33 / New York (Central Park): 7.0 / 5.5 / 21% / 79%=C+

4.00 / Boston (Logan): 8.0 / 8.1 / 2% / 98%=A

0.00 / Greencastle, PA: 9.0 / 5.0 / 45% / 55%=E

2.00 / Martinsburg, WV: 10.0 / 7.0 / 30% / 70%=C

2.00 / Paoli, PA: 7.0 / 5.0 / 29% / 71% = C

0.00 / Bucks Co, PA (Doylestown, PA) : 11.0 / 5.7 / 49% / 51%=E

1.00 / Central NJ (New Brunswick): 6.0 / 4.0 / 34% / 66% = D

0.00 / Fallston, MD: 4.0 / 1.0? / 75% / 25%=miserable E--- sorry Terpguy

So despite your claims that “this guy is always right!” you can plainly see that is not true!

Storm Forecast GPA = Less than thrilling 1.33 / (some would say, it’s at least passing! But far less than the C average of the February 11-12, 2006 Storm or the January 2005 Blizzard.

WHITE FOR ST. PATRICK'S DAY,
THEN BACK TO GREEN, then white again?

So your 2 week forecast should have been something like this:

THIS WEEK: 80's then much colder with rain changing to snow and sleet.
Keep scrolling to see the forecast for next week and beyond.

St Patricks Day Morning 2007

Ice-encrusted backyard of "Fort Jackson" as we call it (named after our street)

Mid Atlantic Surface Temps Sat 3-17-07

Seems like I've posted this same map before, a couple times this winter.


NEXT WEEK: Chilly and a bit cloudy until mid-week, then sunny and becoming warmer by late in the workweek. Mid 70's by Saturday from southern PA south to Richmond, near 70 Philly to NYC, 60's from NYC north to Boston.

( I knocked out my claim to 90 because the clipper coming across Great Lakes Sun-Mon will reintroduce second High I theorized early last week, holding mid-week temps down a bit)

A Spring Fling

WEEK AFTER: Turning colder with snow possible by Palm Sunday Weekend?!?!?

Palm Sunday Weekend 2007

What part of this forecast is an early April Fool's Joke? Well, the snow part I hope. I found those maps on a weather discussion board called Eastern US WX, so I am not claiming to have discovered the info on my own. But I thought the extremes were so interesting you just had to see them. I can see how we COULD warm up into the 70's, if the Polar Vortex near Alaska goes to town strengthening onshore Pacific flow into the West while the Atlantic Ridge becomes the major influencing player for much of the Eastern U.S. Concurrently, if the North Atlantic Oscillation and Arctic Oscillation remain strongly positive the next 7-10 days, this would also allow warm air to surge across most of the country. These climatic features are a measure of how much the Icelandic Low and Atlantic Azores High "oscillate" back and forth across their portion of the Northern Hemisphere over a period of time. If the NAO goes positive, it means the Labrador-Icelandic Low would be retreating north, holding the Polar Jet in central/northern Canada. Thus the Azores-Bermuda High can take over and influence weather more along the East Coast.

As for the theorized Palm Sunday Weekend storm...well, sometimes long range (7 day+) model projections are to be taken with less than a grain of salt. In fact, you can't even use salt this time because Home Depot ran out weeks ago. I tell you about this storm purely for entertainment purposes only, because the GFS has shown on just one model run this morning, from Hour 324 to 372 (weekend of 30th) a possible snowstorm for the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast. The only shred of "future evidence" that could back up this outlandish claim is the NAO/OA are both forecasted to strongly tank negative by the 30th. Sometimes 14 day projection on the Climate Indices/Teleconnectors never pan out or even trend in the opposite direction, other times they are verify fairly well. So were the NAO/OA to go 2 deviations below normal like that, it is would indicate cold air might again invade the Northeast U.S. just in time to disrupt plans for Palm Sunday Weekend. This all sounds like a skipping CD I can't clean off, and I'm not buying that scenario anyway (that's analogous to a broken record for our more seasoned readers) so I'll stop there and revisit in 7 days.

27 comments:

terpguy said...

My rain gauge is sitting on the kitchen counter with over an inch of water....frozen solid.

My report to CoCoRaHS will just have to wait.

Looks like about 1.3" of frozen stuff here.

Frank said...

4" of sleet in cnj. Most sleet I have ever seen. It froze overnight. Thank god I live in a condo and they do the shoveling!

Mr. Foot said...

Everything rock solid frozen shut in Dundalk, about 1" of sleet which froze over completely last night. The sidewalk is way worse than VD storm. Sorry the snow did not pan out for you Frank.

I think my winter forecasts from now on will include:

Snow amounts seperate from sleet amounts! My parents in suburban Philly have 5" of sleet..most they have ever seen, and it is totally locked up as well.

Come on March sun! Melt this sucka away.

E.H. Boston said...

Final total here in Woburn was 9", then it rained and we are already down to 7".

However, final is 9".

That brings Woburn's seasonal snowfall to 22.5".

Boston picked up 8.1" bringing their seasonal total to 14.7".

Worcester picked up 17"!

Its all over and I have the feeling that was the last of winter we are going to see.

Adios Invierno 2006-2007

Mr. Foot said...

Hey Mr. B..

I'm thinking the YT/THC long range model ideas are starting to hold water with what happened in this storm.

The headline in this article is very telling don't you think based on your recent observations during our storm

http://www.nature.com/nature/journal/v386/n6625/abs/386592a0.html

Is it possible that slowing of the THC allowed for greater pooling of anomalous warm water along western Atlantic? Tapped by the storm provided influx of just the right density of moist air that is more prone to becoming SLEET than SNOW once it hits the cold air. Interesting Philly and burbs ended up with lotsa lotsa sleet as my parents and William observed.

Mr. Foot said...

Thanks E.H. for the report.

So my forecast for you was 8" and you received 9"

That's a 12% deviation from prediction, so my score is 88% B for Woburn/Boston. Dundalk was .85 of a .75 prediction, also a 12% deviation = 88%

Russ said...

Mr. Foot,
what does next Saturday look like? We are hosting the Baltimore County Relays. The forecast of near 90 looks good to me! Tried to shovel the sleet off the deck this morning---needed a jack hammer!

terpguy said...

Total liquid this storm: 2.64"

Mr. Foot said...

Sorry Russ, I backed off the claim to 90. Clipper Sun-Mon is going to reintroduce cold and keep it here until Thurs, so temps can't moderate so quickly. First day of Spring will feel downright January-ish. THEN things start to moderate heading into next weekend so either way I think you're looking dry weather by Sat the 24th.

From Palm Sunday forward to Easter..different story for another time.

Russ said...

Mr. Foot,
We will take dry and moderating temps for Saturday. Last year it was cold and very overcast!! Not fun when hosting a major track meet! Most likely I will be in touch by email sometime this week. Opening day for spring sports is on Wednesday, think Lax will play then, but baseball & softball fields may not be ready. I think this ice may be around through Monday!! Then drying has to take place--who knows!

TQ said...

There/s are problems...as far as snow is concerned...with the 850 temperature and 6-hr precipitation forecast (QPF) graphic retrieved from EUSWx.

The the temperature forecast is valid @ 12z (7 AM EDT) but the precipitation fell in the preceding 6 hours when the 850 temperature was above freezing AND the 2-meter temperature forecast is also above zero @ 12z.

E.H. Boston said...

Mr. Foot, I believe an 88 is a B+ and some good teachers would call that an A-.

Predicted Boston to get 8" and they got 8.1"

Thats an A+...

Overall you had an A average for SNE.

Nice job.

E.H. Boston said...

Here we go again.

Henry Marguarsity is calling for a Tuesday clipper and calling for a C-2" for much of the region. Except up to 4" along the I-90 corridor from NY into MA.

I am ready for spring....

Mr. Foot said...

tq..

I understand my timing was off in comparing the two maps. I stated that in the discussion, a difference of 12 hours. My point was to show the overall picture and compare placement of the high for today from 6 days ago. The 132 H GFS for 06Z 3-16 did not indicate snow for the Mid-Atlantic, nor the development of such a vigorous coastal Low in Georgia as what was observed. At 06Z on 3-16, there was snow throughout central PA Pennsylvania. Thus I am pointing out for my own sake and that of others how much changed in that 6 day period.

I continue to remind my readers when they get all bent out of shape over ever-changing local forecasts at AccuWx or TWC. Some love to tell me in school.."every time I turn on the TV, it's different!" (referring to 4-5-6 day forecasts) When I have them realize the 4cast changes about every 6 hours, and explain this is closely matched to the 0,6,12,18 Z runs of the GFS.. then they understand. It's not some person sitting behind a desk manipulating multiple times a day what you see on the TV, it's the tied to the computer model.

But thank you for bringing to light the temp and precip discrepancies.

Mr. Foot said...

Professor E.H.:

I am in gracious receipt of your kind words and generous assessment of the forecast. However, according to MD Dept of Education Scoring Standards, 88% can be no more than a B+. In fact at my home district of Tredyffrin-Easttown in Chester County, PA- at the high school the LOWEST A was actually 93%.

E.H. Boston said...

Oh, but there are those few teachers that could sway a B+ to an A-.

An introduction to all the great politics, favoritism, and bribery for the real world.

Last night, I had the cleanest driveway, out there cleaning every inch.

Then I saw it was about to changeover, so I went in.

We got another 2" of snow then sleet, then freezing rain and my driveway is frozen solid. Lets not even talk about the end of the driveway!

All spring sports start in earnest here Monday!

Yikes!!!

Julee said...

Here is what is important Mr. Foot

* that you and your thoroughly enjoyable site make weather forecasts fun and informative for us

* that you share your knowledge and unique view of the world willingly, with good humor and humility, to everyone who seeks out (or stumbles across) Foot's Forecast

* when you're right, you're right and when you're wrong, you admit it

* you are a great husband, dad and teacher

Temp and precip discrepancies? WHATeverrrrrrr.

Mr. Foot said...

Good morning everyone:

I noticed this blurb in Joe Bastardi's Blog from Accuweather:

He was comparing his forecast for the 3/16-17 storm to the email obs sent to him by readers. In the middle of his writeup,among the many other snow obs sent in was:

"6.5 20 south of Hagerstown MD / Foot in mystery site, ne pa ( no town given)"

I'm not paranoid if Joe reads this site, actually I would be honored. However does anyone know what this could be about...or did anyone send to Joe a forecast number from here? Just curious, not mad or looking to rat anyone out.

Am wondering...is this blurb referring to my call for Linda in Bucks Co? (11 inches, which may have busted..still checking on that. Can anyone lend insight to this?

I guess I can also post the storm grade based on the few places I predicted in next comment.

terpguy said...

If JB is reading your forecasts, maybe he'll get something right for a change...

Mr. Foot said...

STORM GRADE SUMMARY:

Based on a procedure we've established on the site since since 2005. The actual amount is graded by it's % deviation from the forecast, and then grades on a GPA scale. Now in fairness...we have not yet reached consensus on the discussion board here if the grade should be actual accumulation of just SNOW or can it be SNOW & SLEET or just SLEET. Obviously the 2 recent storms have retrained everyone as to what sleet is and can do to a forecast.

Also in fairness…please note I don’t just pick and choose among the best actual observations. Frequent long term readers know and can vouch for the fact that when I say “NYC / Boston / PHL ” I have used the same locations each storm… NYC = Central Park / Boston = Logan airport / PHL = airport. The other locations are from members of the discussion community based on their obs posted in the comments.

Just for a new reader to know there’s no sugar coating here. The numbers speak for themselves, good, bad or ugly.

These numbers were posted on Thursday night and then a few more Friday night. The tally is:

Final GPA / City forecasted / amount forecasted / actual / %dev / grade

The GPA is determined by Penn State’s scale of
4.0 A / 3.67 A- / 3.33 B+ / 3.0 B / 2.67 B- / 2.33 C+ / 2.0 C / 1.0 D / 0.0 E

0.00 / Baltimore (BWI): 2.0 / .6?/ 70%/ 30% = E

3.52 / Dundalk, MD: .75 / .85 / 12% / 88%=B+

0.00 / Philly (PHL): 6.0 / 3.0 /50% / 50%=E

2.33 / New York (Central Park): 7.0 / 5.5 / 21% / 79%=C+

3.92 / Boston (Logan): 8.0 / 8.1 / 2% / 98%=A

0.00 / Greencastle, PA: 9.0 / 5.0 / 45% / 55%=E

0.00 / Martinsburg, WV: 10.0 / was 2 NWS obs of 6.5 & 5.0 .. so took average of 5.75 / 42% / 58%=E

2.00 / Paoli, PA: 7.0 / 5.0 / 28% / 71% = C

0.00 / Bucks Co, PA (Doylestown, PA) : 11.0 / 5.7 / 49% / 51%=E

0.00 / Central NJ (New Brunswick): 6.0 / 3.0 / 50% / 50% = E

0.00 / Fallston, MD: 4.0 / 1.0? / 75% / 25%=miserable E--- sorry Terpguy

So despite your claims that “this guy is always right!” you can plainly see that is not true in this storm.

Storm Forecast GPA = Miserable 1.07 / (some would say, it’s at least passing! But far less than the C average of the February 11-12, 2006 Storm or the January 2005 Blizzard.

Will also post this on the main site for all to see.

wvmommyof4 said...

Mr. Foot I just wanted to let you know that Inwood, just a couple of miles south of Martinsburg had atleast 7 inches. I was in Richmond but my daughter measured 7"( I had her measure several places) at about 9:30 pm on Friday evening and she said that we rec. some light snow after that. I would say your score is a bit better than you thought.

Mr. Foot said...

Ok thanks mommyof4..

I also saw that I underscored frank in CNJ. Will revise those accordingly.

What many of us along I-95 would give to see 7" in our backyard. I know it's an obsession of mine, used to a lot of good snowstorms back in the day, hoping that my daughters will get to enjoy snow as they grow up like I did. The Littler Foot gets mad and cries when she cannot walk around outside on the icy sidewalks in the bitter cold wind.

terpguy said...

Mr. F-

1) Fallston received 1.3" of "Sneet"

2) You called this storm...when? New Year's Day?? Seriously...you were a week?? 10 days?? ahead of everyone??? Get real.

You're still better than anybody on the boob tube...

Thanks!

E.H. Boston said...

Mr. Foot and others...

After all this winter weather we can all go sun tanning outside this week.

I just noticed that the UV index is already at 5 for Boston this week, which is moderate.

For the MA, it gets to 6 this week, which is HIGH. Break out the sun lotion, its time for summer...for areas that got snow, just clear away the 10" of snow on our decks and put that beach chair out there and get the first rays of the season.

Amazing how quickly things can change.

Eric said...

Mr. Foot,
Snowbirds should always preemptively drop their predictions by 30% or so off the bat.

You have a tremendous amount of links on the side and I haven't been through all of them - do you have this one?
http://www.erh.noaa.gov/ndfd/graphical/sectors/lwx.php

I always have the damnedest time finding it when I lose it, but it's one of my favorites.

E.H. Boston said...

Major 'heat' is on the way to end off this week. Get ready for it.

Like I said in that longest post ever, we would get our winter storm this weekend, and then by the end of the week we would all warm up.

What I said was 60's to near 70 for the MA and 50's to around 60 for SNE.

I may have been a tad conservative. It now looks like SNE may be in the 60's to around 70 by Friday and the MA may be pushing the upper 70's to around 80 by Friday!

With a UV index of around 6, highs near 80...you can head to the beach in the MA after the winter storm. Only problem is that water temps are in the 40's and 50's.

Talk of another cooldown after this warm shot. GFS has been hinting at another MAJOR cooldown around the end of the month and early April. Could we be talking about an April '03 repeat for the East?

The winter that never started to the winter that wouldn't quit.

Linda said...

Hey everybody, Was called away on Friday during the storm, and was in a place with all rain and wind, so with great dissapointment I missed the one snow-ice storm of this winter season. But some things you just have to do. My husband and I came home today to about 7 inches of hard crusted snow and ice in our driveway, tried to remove it{what a joke} we got the first couple of layers, and hopefully the rain this evening will get most of the rest of it. My neighbors probably thought we died, because my husband is usually the first one to shovel. Any way I hope you all enjoyed the storm and stayed safe. Julee, I hope your feelig better. Maybe it will snow Palm Sunday, that would be a hoot, and I'll make sure that I don't have to go out of town.