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Trent

Northern Ohio Obs/Discussion Part 2

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4.0" from the little event today. Slowly creeping upward for the season, but I certainly am missing any bigger snowfalls thus far. This winter is totally lacking in that department imby, relative to what I have experienced the other 14 winters living here.

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Will wait until the 12z models roll in before waving the white flag. Northern Ohio will definitely be riding a fine line. Definitely a mid-Winter feel outside with snow still flying this morning.

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2 hours ago, NEOH said:

Will wait until the 12z models roll in before waving the white flag. Northern Ohio will definitely be riding a fine line. Definitely a mid-Winter feel outside with snow still flying this morning.

GFS and rgem aren't terrible,  Cmc is very close and the nam is flat out terrible.   So close.....  

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7 minutes ago, dta1984 said:

GFS and rgem aren't terrible,  Cmc is very close and the nam is flat out terrible.   So close.....  

Its going to be very close... but it appears we'll have a 5-6 hour period of light snow. The location of boundary will be everything. Wonder if the boundary will continue to get pushed further south following each wave.

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The 12z WRF-NMM is about the best case scenario for Northern Ohio. After the 1st wave passes the boundary pushes just south of the first row of counties. RGEM and GFS show this to a degree as well.

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Looks like some areas did see 1-3" of lake effect fluff last night into this morning...best was north of me and I saw 0.5". 

At a minimum, a quick hitting 1-3" of snow again during the commute looks likely tomorrow.  A lot of model disagreement still...the warm surge always does well in winter so my guess is this whiffs us to the north, perhaps still hitting Toledo and Erie, but some models still suggest otherwise so I suppose more snow can't be ruled out. 

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1 hour ago, OHweather said:

Looks like some areas did see 1-3" of lake effect fluff last night into this morning...best was north of me and I saw 0.5". 

At a minimum, a quick hitting 1-3" of snow again during the commute looks likely tomorrow.  A lot of model disagreement still...the warm surge always does well in winter so my guess is this whiffs us to the north, perhaps still hitting Toledo and Erie, but some models still suggest otherwise so I suppose more snow can't be ruled out. 

My expectations are very low... anything more than an inch or two would be a bonus. If anything, it will be interesting to watch things unfold. Its a messy set-up with the various waves.

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.NEAR TERM /THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT/...
No changes have been made to the previous forecast as of now.
Some hi-res guidance sets up the heavy snow band a bit farther
south than what the current forecast suggests, however, we are
talking a matter of 10 to 30 miles. This is something we will
have to wait and see how the band sets up initially and adjust
the forecast as necessary from there. If the band does set up a
bit farther south then the winter storm warning would need to be
expanded and advisories would have to be added surrounding the
warning, as well as potentially east along the lakeshore into
northwest Pennsylvania. However, there is not enough confidence
on where this band will set up at this time, so will make no
changes.

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Definitely an unusual temperature setup on Saturday.  KCLE reported freezing rain most of the day while it got up to around 40° further east, around Middlefield.  Here in Chagrin Falls I was socked in with clouds and fog most of the day and just above freezing, but it is now getting slowly colder and the wind has shifted to the north.

 

Sitting under this baroclinic zone has gotten me in a foul mood.  Today is the 8th straight day with precipitation.  It doesn't look like the pattern will change much until the end of next week.  February in Northeast Ohio.  

Temp.PNG

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Cleveland just cannot catch a break when it comes to decent synoptic events. It’s been years of miss after miss with perpetual 1-3” snowfalls instead. The airport is still running a 7” deficit on the season. Truly takes a miracle pattern to have normal snowfall these days.

March 2008 was a decade ago already, and it seems the credit card it was put on still has lots more payments to be made. 

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Temps shot up to 45 with heavy rain right now.... with temps on the low 30’s on the west side. We’ve been on the wrong side of the boundary two days in a row. 

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64" so far here.  Winter is quickly winding down it seems. While we routinely get snow in march and April,  it's hard to imagine we finish much above the past few years (80" ish..).

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20 hours ago, dta1984 said:

64" so far here.  Winter is quickly winding down it seems. While we routinely get snow in march and April,  it's hard to imagine we finish much above the past few years (80" ish..).

Once mid-Feb comes around I'm ready to close the books on Winter. It is nice to have the longer daylight. The sun angle is that of late October at this point. We've had some big Spring snows but I'm about ready to move on. The pattern looks bad for snow over the next couple of weeks so I'm guessing we will finish around or slightly below normal. One big storm could swing things but you know our luck with "big" storms.

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Messy forecast.  I think the Cleveland area will get a decent hit of qpf (not as much as the NAM has) with all four p-types occurring with temps between 30-34 through the event.  May not be a ton of any one precip type but could create a nice slushy on the roads for the morning rush. 

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1 hour ago, OHweather said:

Messy forecast.  I think the Cleveland area will get a decent hit of qpf (not as much as the NAM has) with all four p-types occurring with temps between 30-34 through the event.  May not be a ton of any one precip type but could create a nice slushy on the roads for the morning rush. 

Definitely a tricky forecast for the immediate lakeshore counties. The WRF (ARW) is onboard.

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13 minutes ago, NEOH said:

Definitely a tricky forecast for the immediate lakeshore counties. The WRF (ARW) is onboard.

If there's some sort of "consensus" forming it's that sleet very well may be involved for us.  Given the 1040mb high perfectly positioned just to our north forcing cold/dry low-level air in I'm leaning towards the colder models such as the 3km NAM and ARW for their surface temps, but there will be a strong warm-layer aloft trying to advect in.  Many models support snow (barely) right along the lakeshore in Cuyahoga County and are more of a sleet/snow mix (probably more sleet) for the rest of Cuyahoga and Geauga Counties and rain/freezing rain south of that.  My guess is the warmer layer aloft will make it harder to see all snow, but if it comes down hard it may dynamically cool it just enough that locations along the lake could see a quick 2-4" type snow.  There is potential for a corridor of like 1" of sleet if the higher QPF verifies and it is mainly sleet as the models are trying to suggest.  Some models are running warmer with their surface temps and don't have as much of a freezing rain threat, though given the favorable high positioning to our north and quick shot of decent precip, that's a very fine line and I could see a narrow corridor still seeing a relatively substantial amount of freezing rain. 

Of course, the Euro came down a good bit in its QPF on the 12z run.  The shorter range models are locked in on a more amped solution so we'll see if that's correct.  I'm more worried about a lack of precip than seeing temps cold enough for something wintry. 

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2 hours ago, OHweather said:

If there's some sort of "consensus" forming it's that sleet very well may be involved for us.  Given the 1040mb high perfectly positioned just to our north forcing cold/dry low-level air in I'm leaning towards the colder models such as the 3km NAM and ARW for their surface temps, but there will be a strong warm-layer aloft trying to advect in.  Many models support snow (barely) right along the lakeshore in Cuyahoga County and are more of a sleet/snow mix (probably more sleet) for the rest of Cuyahoga and Geauga Counties and rain/freezing rain south of that.  My guess is the warmer layer aloft will make it harder to see all snow, but if it comes down hard it may dynamically cool it just enough that locations along the lake could see a quick 2-4" type snow.  There is potential for a corridor of like 1" of sleet if the higher QPF verifies and it is mainly sleet as the models are trying to suggest.  Some models are running warmer with their surface temps and don't have as much of a freezing rain threat, though given the favorable high positioning to our north and quick shot of decent precip, that's a very fine line and I could see a narrow corridor still seeing a relatively substantial amount of freezing rain. 

Of course, the Euro came down a good bit in its QPF on the 12z run.  The shorter range models are locked in on a more amped solution so we'll see if that's correct.  I'm more worried about a lack of precip than seeing temps cold enough for something wintry. 

CLE issued a WWA. Mentioned the warm layer aloft as well. Looks like the 18z NAM slipped south with the heaviest precip.

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So the winters of 15/16, 16/17, and 17/18 will have all had a 70+ temperature in met winter in Cleveland. A 70 degree temp in winter in Cleveland is pretty rare by itself, let alone to string 3 consecutive winters with one. It’s funny how it’s now more common to see 70 degree days than it is to get a 6” snowstorm. This winter was so close to being good, but it ended up being another Detroit special.

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February will likely end up tied as 7th or 8th warmest on record for Cleveland depending on how warm it gets tomorrow. 

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3 hours ago, Trent said:

February will likely end up tied as 7th or 8th warmest on record for Cleveland depending on how warm it gets tomorrow. 

Literally the exact opposite of how I thought the second half of the month would play out.  Could be some wet accumulating snow Thursday night into Friday on the backside of that storm. 

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17 hours ago, OHweather said:

Literally the exact opposite of how I thought the second half of the month would play out.  Could be some wet accumulating snow Thursday night into Friday on the backside of that storm. 

DJF temperatures at CLE will end up right at the 30 year normals, it's too bad snowfall wasn't anywhere close to normal. 

If the late week storm follows seasonal trends, you can bank on there being 2-3" across northern Ohio with significantly more snow just 25-50 miles to the north.

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3 hours ago, Trent said:

DJF temperatures at CLE will end up right at the 30 year normals, it's too bad snowfall wasn't anywhere close to normal. 

If the late week storm follows seasonal trends, you can bank on there being 2-3" across northern Ohio with significantly more snow just 25-50 miles to the north.

I'm pretty close to 65" so far in Bedford Heights...probably only a smidge below normal for here through this point, I'm guessing the seasonal average is about 80-85" here.  Given how it looks coming up, another 15-20" to hit normal may be tough to do, but it only takes one freak storm wrapping up just to our east in later March or April to give me a shot.  There have not been any good true lake effect snow events that favor Cuyahoga County or the lakeshore near Cleveland this winter, so that has really hurt snow totals at CLE.  We've (again) lacked big synoptic snows.  Contrast that to farther up the lake, where a number of events hugged the shore and gave Erie a record snowy winter.  There have been 3 NW to NNW lake enhanced events that my area has done well on, and probably accounts for at least 15" more snow here than the airport just in those few events. 

The system tomorrow night into Friday doesn't look outstanding, but should produce some accumulating snow.  The trend for the last few runs has been a bit slower with the phase, which allows for a slightly farther south track and quicker change to snow in far northern Ohio.  The best synoptic snow still looks to be just to our north into western NY (and perhaps extreme northern PA), but I think a couple inches of synoptic snow area-wide in the Cleveland metro is reasonable.  With the 500mb low closing off to our east and keeping us in a moist NNW flow through the rest of the night, and 850mb to lake temp differentials of 9-10C, I do expect some lake/terrain enhancement to allow for an extended period of moderate snow in the higher terrain from southern Cuyahoga/northern Medina County points east that lingers until around sunrise Friday before ending pretty quickly during the early to mid-morning.  This isn't a good setup for the lakeshore so I only think 2" give or take a little bit for there, but do think our higher terrain sees 3-6" with 4-8" in PA.  Given the wind that will accompany the snow and the very wet nature, potential for some tree damage will be there if anyone can see several inches.  Erie County PA may eventually need a WSW from CLE for this.  It's a give and take because the somewhat slower phase may increase the potential for a quick couple inches of wet synoptic snow along the lake, but also causes the storm to move east a little bit quicker, diminishing the lake enhancement window in the higher terrain.  At the moment I think there's still decent enough agreement in the higher terrain focused snow lasting for several hours, and rates right after the change to snow may push 1"/hour for a time, so I think 3-6" is a reasonable call...but there's a little bust potential either way.  Over the last couple winters or so the terrain/lake enhanced snow on the backside of closing off 500mb lows to our east is the one "storm type" I've consistently been too low on, so I don't mind being near the higher end of guidance for that aspect, but am not too enthused in the lower terrain and also expect amounts to quickly drop off farther south to maybe an inch by the time you hit route 30. 

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Looks like this has the potential to be our largest synoptic storm of the year. I guess we'll know tomorrow. The warm, wet ground with marginal temps may hurt accums somewhat.

I noticed that CLE mentioned cracks and openings in the ice allowing for lake enhancement the other day in the AFD. I flew into CLE yesterday afternoon and had a nice view of the lake. Outside of a few icy patches in the western basin there was no ice at all east of there -- 100% open water. I wonder if they even check the visible satellite?!

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14 minutes ago, NEOH said:

Looks like this has the potential to be our largest synoptic storm of the year. I guess we'll know tomorrow. The warm, wet ground with marginal temps may hurt accums somewhat.

I noticed that CLE mentioned cracks and openings in the ice allowing for lake enhancement the other day in the AFD. I flew into CLE yesterday afternoon and had a nice view of the lake. Outside of a few icy patches in the western basin there was no ice at all east of there -- 100% open water. I wonder if they even check the visible satellite?!

Definitely doesn't happen too often when things look better the closer you get to the event.  The nam 3k was bonkers.  Others are definitely trending favorably. 

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