Feb 12, 2015

Harsh Winter Weather Heading Our Way this Weekend

As I mentioned in my most recent blog post very cold air will plunge down across the Northeast States during Sunday and last into Monday. Prior to the arrival of the arctic blast a strong "Clipper" system will move to New York State, spreading snow our way. This system is expected to redevelop off the Delaware/South Jersey Coast. This new low is forecast to intensify at a very rapid pace. This coastal storm will cause additional snow to fall over Eastern NY State into Central and Southern New England during Saturday through Saturday night. Snow accumulations are likely and they could be on the heavy side across the region, especially over New England.

As a matter of Fact BLIZZARD conditions are possible for Southern and Eastern New England and perhaps across Long Island during Saturday

I'll have more on this system later today after new data comes in. Please stay tuned to all the latest forecasts.

Feb 11, 2015

More on the February Shiver & Shovel

Today was relatively mild across the area many valley locations warmed into the mid to upper 20s. Thursday will start off mild(ish) but bitter cold air will once again return by Thursday night and stick around into Friday.

Fig.1 Surface Map 10 PM for 11 FEB 2015

The surface map above (Fig. 1) shows two cold fronts will pass across the region during Thursday. The second front back over the Central Great Lakes region is the one that separates the polar air from the arctic air. The two fronts will be responsible for producing some light snow or snow showers. Accumulations will be slight around an inch or less across the Hudson Valley and 2"-3" over the higher terrain (especially the west facing slopes) of Eastern NY State and Western New England. As the low moves across NY tomorrow it will redevelop off the East Coast into a moderately strong system but this new coastal low is expected to have no impact on our weather. However this low could throw some moderate snow back towards Cape Cod, the offshore Islands of Massachusetts, southeastern Rhode Island and perhaps the Twin Forks of Long Island Thursday night. For Boston it could bring a light snow accumulation. However this coastal low will also cause the winds to freshen up over the Northeast later tomorrow into Friday so not only will it be cold but wind chills will make feel even colder; wind chill advisories or warnings could be issued Thursday and Friday for parts of our area, especially for the higher terrain to the west through northwest of Albany. After Thursday's light snow Friday will be snow free but very cold.
As we head into the weekend, yep you guessed it, another snow threat. Yet another even stronger Clipper will approach from the northwest spreading some snow over us. Like many of the past several clippers this one too will redevelop off the coast. This new low development is likely to be of the explosive variety thanks to extremely cold arctic air being involved. The question regarding the weekend snow threat will hinge upon three critical factors relating to the coastal low -1) WHERE will it form 2) HOW quickly will it rapidly intensify and 3) Of course the precise track that it takes. Of course I'll continue to watch this one VERY closely. As of right now the Eastern half of New England could be looking at another crippling storm. With this storms passage away from the coast during Sunday some of the COLDEST air that we have seen in many years will pour down across the area and stick around into Sunday combine this tundra-like air with very strong winds and the potential for EXTREMELY low wind chills, perhaps in the -30° to -40° range are possible on Sunday and probably into Monday. As for the actual air temperatures highs on Sunday will be falling through the digits, dip below zero in most areas on Sunday night and be hard pressed to warm into the lower digits on Monday. (They'll probably stay below during the day on Monday over the higher terrain, especially for folks in the Adirondacks.


In Albany so far this month's average monthly temperature is 14.9° which is 11° BELOW normal. If the month were to end today this would be the 3rd coldest February on record. Temperature records in Albany go back to 1820.

So far the monthly average temperature is just outside of a TOP 10 coldest month ever BUT after this weekends arctic outbreak it could move in to a TOP 10 spot. Temperatures on Sunday and Monday will average at least 20° BELOW normal in most places and we could even be looking at departures from normal as low as 30°! Here is a chart of the Top 10 Coldest Months of all-time for Albany.

Feb 8, 2015

Update on Feb 8th thru 10th snowstorm

Fig. 1
It still looks like a long duration snowfall that will lead to a heavy snow accumulation for everyone. It won't be a textbook "storm" a la a Nor'easter or even a strong area of low pressure. Instead a combination of features surface and aloft will come together in both time (tonight through late Monday night) and place (over us!) to produce a heavy snow accumulation, even though the snowfall rates will only be briefly moderate to heavy at times in places during this snowfall. It is the expected duration of the snow that will cause it to pile up! The map in  (Fig. 1) is the surface map from 11 AM Sunday morning, 8 February 2015. To our north over Canada another arctic high pressure area and to our south a stalled front with "waves" of low pressure rippling along the front from west to east.

The front will remain stalled through Monday morning (Fig. 2) with an area of low pressure moving east along the front across the northern Mid-Atlantic States; extending north from the low will be an inverted trough (the dashed orange line) up across NY State. This trough will produce lift and result in a steady MOSTLY light snow to persist through much of Monday. Forecast data indicates that the temperatures from the surface to above the ground will be cold enough for ALL snow for everyone on Monday and once again with the temperature profile being VERY cold the snow should be powdery in nature.


By 7 AM Tuesday February 10th (Fig.3 ) both the front and lows will have nudged off the East Coast and the cold arctic high will prevail with gusty North or Northwest winds and more below normal temperatures.

With the snow ending late Monday night or very early Tuesday morning here is what I expect (Fig.4) to have fallen across the region. (Keep in mind this is NEW snowfall on top of what YOU may have received during  the snow that fell during Saturday night through this Sunday morning).

Fig. 4