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This is the worst bust I have ever experienced by far


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#1
zwyts

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makes 3/5/01, 12/26/10, 1/22/05 feel like winning a million dollars

 

this is a game changer...it is going to change everything...im not sure how...March 5th had a lasting effect for years....this isn't fading away quickly



#2
JMU2004

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Sucks for y'all. Total kick in the balls. Sorry it happened.

#3
Bob Chill

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The taste of vinegar soaked lemons dusted with tartar powder is unforgettable.

#4
Bob Chill

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Told you it would be a tight gradient!Sucks for y'all. Total kick in the balls. Sorry it happened.


No you're not. You said you were glad it happened in your sub sub forum. It's ok though. I'll have plenty of ops to troll you for years to come. To quote you. Karma is B

#5
JMU2004

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Told you it would be a tight gradient!Sucks for y'all. Total kick in the balls. Sorry it happened.

No you're not. You said you were glad it happened in your sub sub forum. It's ok though. I'll have plenty of ops to troll you for years to come. To quote you. Karma is B


Nope.... Genuinely sorry for 99% of you. A select few had it coming. Never had any animosity toward you or zwytz.

No need to be an ass, Bob.

#6
Skipper

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This is much worse than 2001, IMO. We knew it was falling apart a day before back then.

#7
Ian

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Guess general tendency will be for forecasters to say it wasn't a huge bust but prob about the biggest I've seen.

I mentioned it this morning but sometimes it's portrayed that we are nearing a post bust era. So to have one go down like this stings a bit. The progression of the bust might be as or more important than the bust itself IMO.

#8
SeanVA

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This is pathetic.



#9
Subtropics

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Worst bust in all my years. Stings.



#10
AlexD

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Doesn't hurt as much here, but we were never progged to get much more than 2".....I'm sure it hurts like hell expecting 8" and getting 1.5"

#11
Bob Chill

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Nope.... Genuinely sorry for 99% of you. A select few had it coming. Never had any animosity toward you or zwytz. No need to be an ass, Bob.


Wasn't being an ass. Didn't know it was a select few when i stumbled on your post. Rubbed me the wrong way though. I'm pretty laid back and not a pot stir'er. We're good.

#12
ORH_wxman

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Guess general tendency will be for forecasters to say it wasn't a huge bust but prob about the biggest I've seen.

I mentioned it this morning but sometimes it's portrayed that we are nearing a post bust era. So to have one go down like this stings a bit. The progression of the bust might be as or more important than the bust itself IMO.

 

They should if they are talking about DCA to BWI...it went as planned (or close) out west in the foothills of the Apps and down back SW in C VA...but for a massive population center it was an epic bust. I would have busted horribly had I been professionally forecasting for those cities. Even though the atmosphere doesn't care if there is a population under it, it matters to a meteorologist (or most who are genuine about preparing the public IMHO) when you don't get it right where everyone lives.



#13
Amped

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Sometimes I wonder if were all into meteorology because we're just a bunch of  retards.

 

 

 

 

But most times, I'm sure!!



#14
cast4

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They should if they are talking about DCA to BWI...it went as planned (or close) out west in the foothills of the Apps and down back SW in C VA...but for a massive population center it was an epic bust. I would have busted horribly had I been professionally forecasting for those cities. Even though the atmosphere doesn't care if there is a population under it, it matters to a meteorologist (or most who are genuine about preparing the public IMHO) when you don't get it right where everyone lives.

pretty big bust in southern pa as well. 0 inches here. Thank god winter is pretty much over for this area.

#15
Coach McGuirk

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So  you were expecting 6-10 and got nothing.  That's a bad one.  There was no real cold air with this storm to begin with, so I thought that was a really bad sign. 



#16
haudidoody

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I can't say I expected much living where I do... as I've got too much experience with borderline events here.

 

That said, for the entire area, I do believe this is the biggest bust I can remember, going all the way back to 1996 living in Baltimore.



#17
87storms

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Sometimes I wonder if were all into meteorology because we're just a bunch of  retards.

 

 

 

 

But most times, I'm sure!!

 

being interested is one thing, obsessively tracking models is another.  i have a feeling a lot of us are control freaks that need to be reassured that something is going to happen, hence why we click the ncep refresh page as if it's going to have any effect on the outcome.



#18
87storms

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i don't think this is the biggest bust for me.  yes, we didn't get 4-8" or even 2", but we received enough precip that with colder temps we should have been ok.  it was a fickle storm and we put too much stock in rates > temps.  a couple of degrees colder and less of a rain/snow mix last night would have made a big difference.  the march 2001 forecast was off by a lot more...i was playing basketball in shorts and a t-shirt the day before with temps climbing into the upper 50s/low 60s if i remember correctly.

 

that said, this was a disappointment and still a bust, but i'm not as frustrated as i thought i'd be.  i'm more like "whatever".  i grew up here, so even though this was a buzzkill, it doesn't surprise me all that much.



#19
Amped

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being interested is one thing, obsessively tracking models is another.  i have a feeling a lot of us are control freaks that need to be reassured that something is going to happen, hence why we click the ncep refresh page as if it's going to have any effect on the outcome.

Yeah walking outside and seeing that it was 50f was something  that might have been useful yesterday. But walking outside the house just isn't for me, I might miss the 19z HRRR.



#20
87storms

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Yeah walking outside and seeing that it was 50f was something  that might have been useful yesterday. But walking outside the house just isn't for me, I might miss the 19z HRRR.

 

when it's warmer the day before a storm than it was the few days prior, that's a yellow flag i guess.

 

sometimes i wonder if there's too much data for forecasters to access nowadays.



#21
ORH_wxman

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This bust still is making me sick to my stomach despite me not being there...but I'm going to post some Euro data here that may have been a red flag:

 

 

12z Euro on Mar 5th valid at 30 hours for Mar 6 18z:

 

315n62r.jpg

 

 

00z Euro on Mar 6th valid at 18 hours for Mar 6th 18z:

 

axi2gy.jpg

 

 

 

 

 

 

You can see how the 35F isotherm doesn't get that close to the I-95 corrider. I have found the sfc on these have biased warm...uusally when 35F isotherm is over a coastal area with good precip and <0C mid-levels, it means closer to 32F sfc...I assumed they were running a bit warm again (which they probably did to the west), but this was probably even warmer than they would normally show for a big snow event. You can see the maps are obviously a bit harsh but usally the 35F isotherm will encompess a larger region where heacy wet snow falls.

 

 

So with the obvious luxury of hindsight...this was a big red flag. I didn't believe it when I saw it...I figured a 33-34F paste bomb as 99% of mets would with the upper level data being shown by the models. The tucked cold in C VA may have been a clue in hindsight...but I'm not expert in that area's climo. Perhaps Wes will weigh in once he can. But I think if there was one red flag to take away when looking at guidance was the ECMWF sfc temps.



#22
Curlyq

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Those forecasts were plain wrong. “This was the biggest bust in the history of the Capital Weather Gang,” said The Washington Post’s chief meteorologist, Jason Samenow. He said the major mistake was to accept computer models that said the amount of moisture in the storm would make up for the warmth of the air below.



#23
J.Mike

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Topper apologized twice last night on WUSA. Made an effort to explain what went wrong. He frankly looked uncomfortable and admitted he's a big snow weenie,

#24
Amped

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The only thing that makes no sense to me is how we wound up with 20- 30" in March 29 1942.



#25
usedtobe

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Guess general tendency will be for forecasters to say it wasn't a huge bust but prob about the biggest I've seen.

I mentioned it this morning but sometimes it's portrayed that we are nearing a post bust era. So to have one go down like this stings a bit. The progression of the bust might be as or more important than the bust itself IMO.

I thinnk it was a big bust but certainly not the biggest.  The biggest was a winter storm warning that verified as sunny the next morning with no snow at all.  I don't remember the exact date but do remember the bust.  I think there are things to learn from the storm.  When a wound up storm develops so far west in Virginia,  look for the easterly winds to mess up stuff around DC as it brings in too much warm air.  secondly, don't trust the NAM surface temps when they show cold in March if the GFS is warmer. 



#26
winterymix

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... The progression of the bust might be as or more important than the bust itself IMO.

Yeah, everyone got a natural snow-expectation high off of the 0Z model run. Notably, Wes got a natural snow-expectation high at that time as well.   When I awoke Wed. morning, it was ripping snow in Reisterstown at 5 am but trended light by 8 am.  By 10 am it was melting faster than it was falling and toggled to rainy snow and then rain.  Forecasters caught up in the mid- morning.

 

 

I thinnk it was a big bust but certainly not the biggest.  The biggest was a winter storm warning that verified as sunny the next morning with no snow at all.  I don't remember the exact date but do remember the bust.  I think there are things to learn from the storm.  When a wound up storm develops so far west in Virginia,  look for the easterly winds to mess up stuff around DC as it brings in too much warm air.  secondly, don't trust the NAM surface temps when they show cold in March if the GFS is warmer. 

Wes:  You've got a lot of good rep saved up from an amazing career and even a generally bullet-proof winter.  Wishcasting gets to everyone unless they get real lean and mean.   I was texting to Fozz the day before that the gradient would be east to west because the storm would pull warmer marine air as a nose and that western Baltimore County would do better than eastern and that western Carroll County would do better than eastern.  At the same time, I watched all of the 2 meter temperature maps placing the 32 degree line up near the PA/NY border and thought balderdash!

 

I guess the wishcasting becomes irresistible after a historic snow drought.  Lurking in the back of the minds of even the most disciplined scientists is the idea of "regression to the mean".

 

Mother nature don't care!



#27
WxUSAF

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Will...those temps you showed DID verify too warm for most of the area.  The 35F isotherm was pretty near I-95 for much of the day.  I think the GFS had the surface temps the best, with DCA and BWI between 1-2C for most of the precip.  NAM was obviously too cold and WAY too wet.  It was just the heavy precip never got here.  NAM, GFS and Euro were all too wet.  DCA ended with 1.02", BWI with 0.75" and IAD with 0.92".  GFS and Euro were closest (NAM was about 2 times those numbers), but they were still too wet.  Whether the dynamic situation near RIC robbed us of moisture or the storm tracked and developed too differently, I think that was bigger issue.  We knew surface temps would be above freezing, but figured with heavy precip, the profile would go isothermal right near 32F (much as it did on 1/26/2011) and we'd get plastered.  That is in fact exactly what happened west of RIC to folks like Midlo.  



#28
NE Balti Zen

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I think its a good guess that the convection near Richmond was one of the culprits.  I know that mets and long-time observers are never overly comfortable seeing convection firing up way to the south toward the gulf in these kind of coastals since it robs energy further north, this was maybe a closer in example of that?

 

In any event, it appears SNE will get some out of this, making this another version of the Boxing Day disaster for the Balt/DC area.

 

This was the largest bust i have been around since it was progged to be big up to and even as gametime started. Worse than boxing day (which I cut short a Christmas trip to see family to get back ahead of). I wasn't around for March of 2001, so can't compare this to that.

 

I do think that March 2001 storm was one of the analogs for this one in the days ahead of time, no? That right there was a massive red flag it turns out.



#29
gymengineer

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Will...those temps you showed DID verify too warm for most of the area.  The 35F isotherm was pretty near I-95 for much of the day.  I think the GFS had the surface temps the best, with DCA and BWI between 1-2C for most of the precip.  NAM was obviously too cold and WAY too wet.  It was just the heavy precip never got here.  NAM, GFS and Euro were all too wet.  DCA ended with 1.02", BWI with 0.75" and IAD with 0.92".  GFS and Euro were closest (NAM was about 2 times those numbers), but they were still too wet.  Whether the dynamic situation near RIC robbed us of moisture or the storm tracked and developed too differently, I think that was bigger issue.  We knew surface temps would be above freezing, but figured with heavy precip, the profile would go isothermal right near 32F (much as it did on 1/26/2011) and we'd get plastered.  That is in fact exactly what happened west of RIC to folks like Midlo.  


I completely agree with this. What happened west of RIC was what we were expecting here. Their precip rates absolutely overcame the surface warmth.
And really, folks in mid/southwest Fairfax County as well as Prince William County, just as far east as Montgomery and Howard Counties in Maryland, experienced a pretty different storm. Their total precip was probably what the Euro/GFS were showing for DC proper and N/NW suburbs.

#30
WxUSAF

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I think this was a bigger bust than Boxing Day.  The model consensus was far poorer in advance of that storm and while things seemed to trend back in our favor, there were still some red flags.  Usually in big busts, the models catch on that something's about to go wrong in the 12-24 hours preceding the storm...they start trending away from big snows or something.  The fact that I went to bed at 10pm (2 hours before the snow started) and EVERY model had trended bigger and bigger with the snow right up until that time (including the short-range models which were going bonkers) was something I haven't experienced in recent memory. 

 

I don't remember details about March 2001...



#31
usedtobe

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Will...those temps you showed DID verify too warm for most of the area.  The 35F isotherm was pretty near I-95 for much of the day.  I think the GFS had the surface temps the best, with DCA and BWI between 1-2C for most of the precip.  NAM was obviously too cold and WAY too wet.  It was just the heavy precip never got here.  NAM, GFS and Euro were all too wet.  DCA ended with 1.02", BWI with 0.75" and IAD with 0.92".  GFS and Euro were closest (NAM was about 2 times those numbers), but they were still too wet.  Whether the dynamic situation near RIC robbed us of moisture or the storm tracked and developed too differently, I think that was bigger issue.  We knew surface temps would be above freezing, but figured with heavy precip, the profile would go isothermal right near 32F (much as it did on 1/26/2011) and we'd get plastered.  That is in fact exactly what happened west of RIC to folks like Midlo.  

 

The GFS had the best temp forecast but all the models were way too wet.  The GFS got up to 1.75 inches for DCA which was .75 heavier than forecast.  That also contributed to the temp model errors.  The NAM's QPF completely hosed its temps. 

 

Winterymix,  As for wish casting.  I don't think that was the problem. I think it was paying too much attention to the model forecasts. Lighter precip allowed the MArch sun to win big time. 



#32
WxUSAF

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I think it was paying too much attention to the model forecasts. Lighter precip allowed the MArch sun to win big time. 

Wes...that was certainly the case, but what frustrates me in this situation is that there were no apparent "red flags" that precip was going to be much lighter than forecast.  Euro was drier than the NAM for sure, and occasionally than the GFS (although I think they were pretty darn close as of 12z on Tuesday)...but nothing stood out to me as a potential red flag that we were going to get much less.  Not sure how much to believe the local Davis wx station near my house, but it only recorded 0.59".  It's plausible given BWI's 0.75".  If correct, that's much less than what even the Euro showed (0.8-0.9" IIRC).  Not to mention how crazy the short-range models were going with precip totals on the WAA part of the storm...



#33
flsch22

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not to digress too much but from discussion of yesterday's storm, but it reminds me of the Nov. 1987 storm where we managed to get heavy snow and high precip.rates overcoming marginal surface temperatures.  IMagine these were different set ups but any key differences that explain the differing outcomes?



#34
RodneyS

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I think it was a big bust but certainly not the biggest.

I agree -- those of us in the western suburbs got a good amount of snow (about six inches for me -- and one of the heaviest ever). There have been many prior times when the forecast for the entire DC metropolitan area was way off-base. What was unfortunate, however, was the National Weather Service clinging to its forecast for DC in the late morning. That reminded me of the old joke: "Who are you going to believe -- me or your lying eyes?"

#35
Bob Chill

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Temps were awful close to where they were supposed to be. I didn't hit 34 until mid afternoon. I was 33 at 9am when the only period of decent rates hit.

If you run the entire storm loop radar it becomes obvious that there were problems going on when the apparent super juiced waa slug fell to pieces over md. That messed with temps and also indicated that the deepening low near ric was trying to steal the show and it did. Had that slug produced the precip it was supposed to in md then temps wouldn't have been such a deal breaker.

The folks in nova that got the rates also got the accums. But it was such a small area. I stayed snow through mid afternoon but rates were never heavy enough and it was off and on the whole time.

I didn't expect to never go heavier than moderate snow and never expected to have occasional snow. We know how precip in these storms usually go. Solid shield of was that doesn't fall apart overhead. And when the low gets cranking the pivot happens and we get a decent period of mod-heavy precip with no breaks every 20 minutes.

Looking back now it's clear that the deepening of the surface low and convection over ric wasnt modeled perfectly. Those effects compounded the fact that we had temp issues and needed long duration heavy rates to come out a winner.

If it was cold enough it only would have been a snow total / precip total bust. I don't blame any forecasters. We all looked at the same stuff and it looked just right. When the waa moved through anf everybody flipped to snow right away it enforced the idea. Then things went awry. It won't be the last time.

I'm waiting for a massive reverse bust and I hope live long enough to see one.




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