Thursday, January 15, 2009


UPDATE: SAT JAN 17 - 6:45 PM. Unless you're nestled in the deep forests of central Pennsylvania where this picture was taken... then it might be a while. After the weekend cold punch, temperatures will moderate to seasonal levels: upper 30's to around 40... you know, traditional November weather, remember? The 500 mb Northern Hemispheric pattern over the next 10 days is not favorable for coastal snowstorm-type systems. Clippers will periodically cross the Mid-Atlantic, but will only produce scattered snow showers.

However, lest you become dismayed, keep in mind January is climatologically NOT the snowiest month for Maryland, that glorious honor is reserved for February. The atmosphere still has lots of time and low sun angle to get things lined up again for another go around in 2-3 weeks. The main culprit for our less-than-snowy winters is the current La Nina, confounding the hopes of Mid-Atlantic powderhounds for the past 3 years, and looks to remain moderately weak until Spring. For comparison, the 2005-06 winter did not produce significant snowfall in Maryland until February 11, 2006! So there is still time for a good storm, it's just going to take some time to get there.

SUMMARY: THU JAN 15 - 6:45 PM. As for Friday, I do not expect widespread school or business delays in central Maryland due to cold, but I'll bet the phone wires at some district offices will be spontaneously combusting from the circuit board power spike. If it helps you feel better (or worse) there are tons of cancellations already posted in surrounding metro areas. Go take a look! So if you're in a Maryland public high school tomorrow taking or proctoring an HSA.. just get in there and get it done, besides you've got a a three-day weekend with an historic Inauguration on the other side. As for snow before or during the swearing-in: not likely. It appears by Tuesday the upper level trough will be progressing eastward into the Atlantic and flattening. In the Mid-Atlantic, any clippers or coastals that try to swing through will not encounter an environment conducive to extensive snow development.

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