Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Rage against the (Lake Effect) machine

5:45 PM EST 1/3/12 | Forecaster Jason Warren of our Northeast Ohio page and our regionally focused Winter Stormcast | Ohio Valley page reports that several intense bands of heavy snow gripped the region throughout the day. Snow amounts of 6 to 8" fell in a few hours in some locations, as noted in the latest Cleveland, OH NWS Snow Reports. 

Forecaster Jason W. said earlier today, 
"Arctic air continues to pour southeastward across the area. Lake effect bands increased in intensity through the morning. Two very intense bands impacted northeastern OH. The eastern band has a strong connection to Lake Huron, and impacted eastern Lake and Ashtabula county with intense snow squalls. The western band extends from the eastern suburbs of Cleveland, SSE to the Ravenna area. This band is also producing some intense snowfall and appears to have a connection to the upper lakes as well. The western band has been oscillating east to west over the past few hours."

This has extended the NWS Lake Effect Snow Warnings in that area until at least 7:00 PM Eastern Time. If you are traveling to or near Ohio, consider adding our pages in that region to your like list on Facebook to stay in the know with all things snow.  

Elsewhere in the Mid-Atlantic, snow squalls from the Lake Effect machine raged all the way the I-95 corridor of Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington as reported by numerous reader observations in our Central Maryland page on facebook. It was wild but "not wonderful"in West Virginia today with treacherous travel as reported by Forecast Advisor Forrest Palmer in Beckley, WV.

POST YOUR PICS! All readers are welcome to post their imagery anytime in the comments or on the facebook page of their region.

Someone finally gets snow

‎8:05 AM EST 1/3/12 | HEAVY SNOW SQUALLS in WESTERN PARTS OF MD, PA AND WV CONTINUE | Heavy snow over 6" was reported in western Maryland Monday afternoon, and will continue intermittently into Tuesday for Garrett County. Winter Storm Warnings remain in effect until 4 PM Tuesday for up to 8" all of Garrett, western Cumberland county in Maryland and northern West Virginia. Some isolated areas above 1200' may receive up to 10" by daybreak in heavier snow bands that are able to cross the Alleghenies. A link to the current NWS Pittsburgh Watch/Warning Map (http://www.erh.noaa.gov/pbz/)

Our Three Rivers Team from Southwest Pennsylvania is covering the storm's impacts on metro Pittsburgh and that region on their facebook forecast page.

This fluffy powder is the combined work of a strong lake effect snow machine along with several upper level short-waves of low pressure. The result is moisture from the lakes, upon reaching the Allegheny and Blue Ridge Mountains, is forced upward and enhanced by the upper-level energy passing overhead. This interaction of moisture and energy is producing intermittent but heavy snow squalls. Additional winds of 25 mph or greater have caused visibility and passability issues on many roadways in this region. Current snow reports from NWS Spotters on the Pittsburgh NWS Public Information Statement

But, it's welcome news for Wisp Ski Resort, which is plenty pleased to see snow finally make it's way to the slopes! An Arctic Air mass behind Monday's cold front passage will help increase snow making ahead of the weekend, so Wisp Powderhounds should be able to finally enjoy shredding some fresh pow!

(Forecasters Greg "Winterman" Jackson, Foot and the Three Rivers Team)


Andy, Southern York County Pa said...

1/2 inch of fresh snow this morning.

hocoKtchr said...

White knuckle driving this morning on the Mount Airy overpass on 70 as I was on my way to work towards HoCo from Frederick!  Just that little bit of snow made it very slippery!  My car slid a little, but I saw about 10 cars that slid a lot more- off the road in fact! 

It was beautiful though, and the snow showers throughout the day had my kindergarteners very excited all day!  Now we just need a little bit more..... c'mon man!!!  :-D

Andy, Southern York County, PA said...

We had a solid 1/2 inch this morning in about 20 minutes.  Looked like a real snowstorm for a change.  Another 40 events like this I may reach my normal season total!  THis was taken at 7:45 am near the school bus stop in the hinterlands. 

NeedaSnowday said...

Lots of slow travel this PM due to slippery roadways ... fortunately I got home before all the slippin and slidin!

Haha Andy on the 40+events to get season total... is there still talk of some snow at end of month?

Andy, Southern York County, PA said...

Why not?  January is not always our best snow month but anything is possible.  Think back to the winter of 09-10.  3 BLIZZARDS, great winter etc.  Snow in January that year? almost none!

Anything is possible and I like to see a lot of volitility as it can open the door to a large storm.  If anyone tells you we are getting a large storm, or major snow this January, then they are wrong.  If they tell you we are not, they are wrong!  No one knows for certain.  The pattern is not great, but I can point to winters where the pattern was great and we never cashed in.  You can find winters where the pattern was terrible and boom, thread the needle and jackpot!

I do not live and die by every model run and scream about terrible teleconnections eg MJO out of our ideal phase, NAO too positive, EPO needs to change, PNA etc.  Those are important but not always 100% dispositive as their relationships are complex.  We are in a terrible pattern but snow is still possible. 

I am more of a climo junkie, with the always up for a good thread the needle threat when the pattern is lousy.  Climo dictates that February is our snowiest month, so the closer we move toward that month the better our chances,  Right now I think that the chances for a major storm before mid month are slim, but I never turn my back to the ever changing lying models.  In any given year most of our snow will fall in that 6 week period between 1/15-3/1.  This year will likely not be an exception.