BACK FROM THE DEAD… UPDATE ON LOWER MID ATLANTIC SNOWSTORM
BACK FROM DEAD ---
Since the system is delayed somewhat I thought I would take the extra time to catch up on sleep so I do not pose during the wee morning hours about this event like I have over the past few days. That being said it should not be taken that somehow... because I have not posted in the last 12 hrs ...something has gone wrong and that I am changing my forecasted any significant way.
That certainly is not the case.
The model data during the overnight hours into Saturday morning continues to show that a moderate to significant snowstorm for the middle of March is coming for a good portions of Virginia as well as southern or eastern portions of West Virginia ...eastern Kentucky and perhaps the northwest 25% of North Carolina. There IS still some uncertainty as to whether not accumulating snow will make it into Washington, DC and north Virginia ... (North of Fredericksburg). Some model suggests that it will ...some model data suggests that it won't.
Briefly this is the 0z Saturday GFS model IMAGE #1 and as you can see it has some pretty decent snow over much of western and central Virginia up to Washington, DC area Sunday night into Monday morning.
Notice however that the model then takes the LOW in a ENE direction off the North Carolina Coast and out to sea. Some snow might get into Southern NJ and perhaps far southeastern Mass but again as I have stated before MANY times... this is essentially MISS for the northern middle Atlantic and New England areas.
Here we can see the GFS snowfall map from the 0z run and the 6z run. What is important to notice here is the shape of the snow shield which I have highlighted in red. 2
Let's take a look at the British model which again shows excellent development of a moderate size coastal storm. Here we can see the LOW pressure on the Carolina Coast Monday morning and it tracks over Hatteras in a ENE direction and out to sea. SEE IMAGE 3
The precipitation shield again shows up to 0.50" of liquid over entire southern half of Virginia into the lower Delmarva and southern New Jersey. If this is all snow this could be anywhere from 3 to 6 inches of snow. Over the northern third of Virginia notice that there are gaps and precipitation but some areas still see 0.25" liquid over portions of northern Virginia Washington, DC and Baltimore up into the Philadelphia metro area. This is the most aggressive of the models with regard to the northern end of the shield into these areas but the British model is pretty good and it has to be taken into consideration. SEE IMNAGE
Most important of the overnight model data is the 0z SATURDAY European model which continues to trend stronger with the system in terms of more precipitation showing up from the LOW pressure area and the continues to push the moderate snow close or just into the Washington, DC metro area but not any further north.
The European ensemble is an excellent agreement with the operation model which is a very good sign and increases forecaster confidence. Ideally you want to see the operational model and the ensemble in very close agreement with each other. That is exactly what we are seeing here on the European model early on Saturday morning.
These two images show the European model snowfall. The first image is from the operational or regular European. What is striking here is the similarity in the snowfall numbers and shape of the snow shield across much of Virginia. Again this is reflective of the fact that the operational model and the European ensemble are very similar.
SUMMARY - despite what kooks and crackpots like Joe Bustardi keep telling Northeast US snow weenies this Low is NOT coming north and it is essentially a miss. ( After his disastrous super cold FEB 2018 forecast you would think some folks would learn). The area on a line from Charlottesville to Fredericksburg into southern Delaware will see the most SNOW Or best accumulating snow. It is likely a lot of schools south of that line will be either delayed or closed on Monday March 12. Over the northwest 25% of North Carolina there could be a least a few inches of snow there as well. The best snow will fall over the southern end of the Shenandoah Valley and this probably includes the areas such as Roanoke and Christiansburg. In the Virginia Piedmont areas such as Farmville Lynchburg and Lovingston could also do well. In Hampton roads this is going to be primarily a rain event although on Monday morning the rain could change to snow and drop 1 to 2 inches over portions of Williamsburg and perhaps portions of Suffolk. For the Middle Peninsula and the Northern neck this looks like a least a few inches of snow. If this was December January or February this would be a significant snowstorm with much heavier amounts for this these areas. But for the middle of March getting 3-4-5 inches snow in Virginia is fairly significant