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George BM

January Banter 2020

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Let's say we get one more fluke in January and it's a uniform 3-6" snow. Ending January with 4-10" region wide for seasonal totals heading into February screams average winter if you ax me

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1 hour ago, leesburg 04 said:

Let's say we get one more fluke in January and it's a uniform 3-6" snow. Ending January with 4-10" region wide for seasonal totals heading into February screams average winter if you ax me

Maybe its just my opinion but I think some just love to chase the perfect unicorn pattern when it seems like we fluke our way to chances more often than not in setups that aren't 100% perfect.  There'll be 5 pages of debate in the LR thread about why a setup on D15 isn't perfect when in fact that setup turns into a 2-4" storm 15 days later.  

I used to love the LR stuff but its kind of lame now tbh.  :frostymelt:

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1 hour ago, leesburg 04 said:

Let's say we get one more fluke in January and it's a uniform 3-6" snow. Ending January with 4-10" region wide for seasonal totals heading into February screams average winter if you ax me

Yes very possible. 

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Moving this over to banter to add-on as I don't want to interrupt (checks notes) yet another snow obs from areas that are (checks notes again) NOT where I currently am...
 

@H2O wrote...

Quote

 

For many people(myself included) that were in the DC S&E areas of I-95 this one wasn't as fun as other near miss snows.  Again, the concern some had yesterday morning about lack of clouds and sun was warranted.  I'm not sure there were as many model runs that had DC and other places absolutely torch prior to the onset of precip.  If it was a few hours faster like the people in SW VA benefited from then I bet all of us would be rejoicing.

I started the morning at 28F prior to sunrise.  By the time precip started it was 46 IMBY.  That was just too much 925s to overcome.  It didn't flip for me until after 2pm which for many it had been ripping for hours and mainly had the luxury of temps helping. 

I understand location and climo.  Probably more than most of you.  So when models had my area for 1" or so I always know the challenges.  What grinds most of the gears for the people who see less snow isn't that we don't know what the odds are.  We just don't need that one extra thing to make it that much harder to get snow.  Yesterday was soaring temps.  That clearly delayed the flip.  Once I did I still had temp issues of only getting to 33F.  So it was mostly white rain.  Despite that, if I wasn't battling 40s at the start I would have seen a few more hours of snow even if it melted.  Thats what most of us wanted.  Just to have snow falling.  

So I got .5" yesterday.  Not just because of location and elevation.  Those are constants.  Yesterday's lower total was due to clouds not getting in soon enough, temps soaring, and the column not being able to overcome it.  

 

I cannot agree with this enough. I've been in the Baltimore urban heat island area since 2009.  I work downtown (maybe no feet of elevation) and from 2009 - 2014 lived in the Hamilton neighborhood (maybe 300 feet of elevation) and from 2014 - present live in the Roland Park/Hopkins/Hampden juncture (about 458 feet of elevation).  Within my working memory, it has gotten REALLY hard to score anything of note in the city center in marginal temp set-ups and still difficult at the my current elevation to score like others do in marginal set-ups. Now, some of this is just the snow climate - there's a reason that Parkton averages more than Towson than averages more than downtown Baltimore and so forth. But my guess is that there is now a chipping away at the margins due to...more urban heat? climate shifting? dunno? than there used to be.  I know that the March snows that have made many so very happy the last few years have been frustrating inside 695 - hard to get going, hard to sustain rates.  Like yesterday - which was hard to get going.  There is no question that inside 495 and 695 can and do very well in legit storms. But I have decided that much of the board tension (to the extent there is tension) with respect to snow climate, expectations, and the like, comes down to what kind of storms that people need to really see snow fall and accumulate well. For those of us inside 495 and 695 in particular, we really have to become default big game hunters. The "big ones", with good arctic air in place, copious moisture, and forecasts of 6+ inches give us the wiggle room to deal with all the temp, boundary layer, dew point, UHI and other issues we need to overcome to really accumulate. When I big game hunt, it is because I need to see those kinds of ingredients available for a storm to know that we have a better than even chance of overcoming the handicaps of living in the UHI areas.

Now, again, I know (and agree!) that historically it is going to be slightly harder to score events in these areas (even pre-UHI) - but my working thesis is that it is even harder now on the margins and that a lot of marginal events are really too marginal for inside the beltways for whatever reason than they used to be. It is why the "we can score in March" isn't necessarily that comforting for some of us (particularly as we cross past March 10th or so).

In any event, just wanted to high five h20's observation. And note that temp, sun, and other worries can be legit for many of us depending on the set-up. I'm not gonna worry about sun with an arctic high near-by, a storm approaching and temps at 35. But in events like yesterday? Where every degree matters and there isn't an obvious cold air source around? Morning sun was not so good for my zip code(s)...

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2 hours ago, nj2va said:

Maybe its just my opinion but I think some just love to chase the perfect unicorn pattern when it seems like we fluke our way to chances more often than not in setups that aren't 100% perfect.  There'll be 5 pages of debate in the LR thread about why a setup on D15 isn't perfect when in fact that setup turns into a 2-4" storm 15 days later.  

I used to love the LR stuff but its kind of lame now tbh.  :frostymelt:

Small discreet events can pop up in a meh look, but don’t confuse what just happened for that. This was a transient period where we had a legit shot at some snow between patterns as everything was in flux. And this short window of opportunity was forecasted at very long range. At day 15 when it showed up and we couldn’t see past it some were hopeful it was a more permanent pattern shift and not just a transient window between suck fest shutout patterns. 

What I took some crap for was saying it looked like a transient cold shot as the pattern transitioned from a -NAM AK vortex pac puke pattern to a pac ridge +NAM puke pattern.  Ironically the ridge that is progressing to the east and will lock in here for a while created a brief window as it traversed the pna domain, and we timed up a system perfectly for some of the area to get a good snow. 

But you are 100% that we can luck our way to small fluke snows in flawed patterns. But on the other hand if we want to get to a normal or above winter almost all of those feature a period with a really good pattern look.  You won’t find many years where we luck our way above climo without one of those canonical snowy pattern looks I posted. Either a perfect epo or pna or NAM look. So if we just want to get to our “typical” crappy 8-15” winter across the region then yes we can do that with any pattern look with some luck. And when I say it doesn’t look good I don’t mean “no snow at all” just that the odds of getting any appreciable snow in that pattern are below normal. Likewise a great pattern doesn’t guarantee a ton of snow either, just that the odds are higher than normal. 

Sorry just wanted to explain how I analyze long range patterns wrt climo. 

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2 minutes ago, psuhoffman said:

Small discreet events can pop up in a meh look, but don’t confuse what just happened for that.

I can't believe you got 5.1 inches of snow from yesterday's event. I measured a semi dusting last night, your location is great!  And, I loved your photo yesterday with the kids and the the trees in the background  , I just saw it moments ago. 

Congrats on the snow ! 

 

 

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1 hour ago, leesburg 04 said:

I think what I am rooting for now is a temp bust for Saturday. I'm hoping enough clouds and rain keep the temps to 61 at best for my backyard. DC can hit 90 though

No! No rain on Saturday!!!

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Scared the crap out of my oldest this morning. Had a 2 hr. delay so that meant she would head to school at 9. Backed the car out of the garage and asked her to take the trash can out. Right as she came under the open door there is this huge !SPLAT! sound. Hit the top of the trash can and my windshield. The Solar panels had started melting and at just the right time a small avalanche occurred. She jumped back and I was like what the hell was that! I was glad she did not take a direct hit and we both busted into laughter. Way to get your morning going!

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1 minute ago, Mersky said:

Well it can’t get worse than the next 10 days. Lol 

for someone who was giving PSU a hard time for definitive talks about patterns, you sure do know how to call the kettle black

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I read a comment yesterday or the day before in which someone mentioned MDoT(?) is trying to change something with salting the roads I think, and that would benefit the environment etc. What exactly are they doing? Just managing it better? Using something else? I’m interested...

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4 hours ago, mappy said:

for someone who was giving PSU a hard time for definitive talks about patterns, you sure do know how to call the kettle black

Giving him a hard time? How so??? 

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Took a couple shots while my son was sledding on the hill behind Ebb Valley Elementary north of Manchester. 

This is looking north along 30 towards PA with Dug Hill in the background. 

5C4FF8A6-14E4-44DB-B22D-F9868FCD6F5E.thumb.jpeg.75e80d8508c744f6d510ec5104b8804e.jpeg

My house is on top of the ridge in the background. 

62E5CF05-97D3-40BF-99E5-781306BCAF73.thumb.jpeg.8e2fe01ea1daed2dea26de2b997f5269.jpeg

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31 minutes ago, Bob Chill said:

Looks like we won't be getting much sleep beginning in about a week. Anyone who's insane like us and stays up for the euro when things are ripe needs to plan accordingly 

Whens the radio shows start?? Lol   Im ready!!  

:weenie::weenie:

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12 hours ago, RevWarReenactor said:

Fair enough on your area's climo.

But its still doesn't make sense to me. Another thing I stumbled upon while thinking about this. If DC was to get 10 winters in a row and each winter got between 10 inches and 12 inches....by your median, that would be a normal to above normal 10 year period. But the truth is; that would be below what is normal. Because during a normal 10 year period DC usually gets 2 winters above 18 inches.

So do you see what I am getting at? Do you see why average is a more accurate indicator?

Why do I use DC? Can't find reliable information on my area and where I live is pretty much in lock step with what DC gets. Its been that way every winter. Especially with Miller A's. Which I find fascinating. Somehow I can be 100 miles closer to the action than DC with the same result. Yet, you can be an hour drive from my house and have triple my climo. Its horrible.

 

Moving this here before they come with pitchforks for both of us!  

Your scenario would be accurate except you forgot the 2 years in 10 that DC gets almost no snow.  Those years offset the higher ones somewhat. But again you keep calling average normal. But if DC only gets an average winter 20% of the time is that normal?   Those 2 big years skew the average higher than what DC gets the majority of the time.  Like I said DC gets between about 7-15” half the time. 25% of the time more and 25% less.  To me that makes that 7-15 range normal. You can call whatever you want normal but it won’t change the frequency or probabilities. 

Wrt your climo, the rain snow line often runs SW to NE in our region due to the fall line and coast.  Your north is offset by your east.  Your closed to the coast.  My elevation is a big benefit.  Without it I would only avg a little more than you.  Your meso climate is also influenced by the Chesapeake bay to your southwest. That really doesn’t help. 

Again if you tell me what ball park # and under what conditions you need snow in a season to feel ok with it I could use the local coop data to tell you how often that happens. I could also tell you how far NW you would need to go for that to  be a more normal occurrence. 

12 hours ago, RevWarReenactor said:

Excuse my rant.

I live in a piece of **** area for snow. Why is it, that fate landed me in this piece of **** area when I love snow so much and it can be the difference between a good mood and a bad one? A dusting on a mailbox and an hour away 5 inches. What kind of Bull**** is that?

I am so sick and tired of this nonsense. Might as well live in Florida. At least then there is no expectations. Here there is just enough expectation of something only to generally get nothing.

I need to be on the watch list. Hanging my hat on a turn around after the next 10 days, when it doesn't come, ill go full tilt.

I don’t know your personal situation but if you moved only 20 miles to your northwest and to a spot with some decent elevation you could go from about 19” a year to 30, maybe even a little more. Your exact location is pretty bad for snow. And it seems very important to you.  So why don’t you move 30 mins NW where a lot of these marginal events would break your way?

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8 hours ago, psuhoffman said:

Small discreet events can pop up in a meh look, but don’t confuse what just happened for that. This was a transient period where we had a legit shot at some snow between patterns as everything was in flux. And this short window of opportunity was forecasted at very long range. At day 15 when it showed up and we couldn’t see past it some were hopeful it was a more permanent pattern shift and not just a transient window between suck fest shutout patterns. 

What I took some crap for was saying it looked like a transient cold shot as the pattern transitioned from a -NAM AK vortex pac puke pattern to a pac ridge +NAM puke pattern.  Ironically the ridge that is progressing to the east and will lock in here for a while created a brief window as it traversed the pna domain, and we timed up a system perfectly for some of the area to get a good snow. 

But you are 100% that we can luck our way to small fluke snows in flawed patterns. But on the other hand if we want to get to a normal or above winter almost all of those feature a period with a really good pattern look.  You won’t find many years where we luck our way above climo without one of those canonical snowy pattern looks I posted. Either a perfect epo or pna or NAM look. So if we just want to get to our “typical” crappy 8-15” winter across the region then yes we can do that with any pattern look with some luck. And when I say it doesn’t look good I don’t mean “no snow at all” just that the odds of getting any appreciable snow in that pattern are below normal. Likewise a great pattern doesn’t guarantee a ton of snow either, just that the odds are higher than normal. 

Sorry just wanted to explain how I analyze long range patterns wrt climo. 

Oh I totally understand your analysis, especially since you repeat it 50 times.  (Kidding). But in all seriousness, if we want a biggie or above average winter, likely need at least a good pattern.  

Now, back to analyzing the D45 look.  :)

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Just now, losetoa6 said:

Latest Euro has Northern Va at 70 degrees and DC - upper 60s at 7am on Sunday morning :o. Pretty nuts . That would be near record territory I'd think .

Perfect weather to be sleeping in the front yard after a long night of celebrating a Ravens win.

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3 minutes ago, nw baltimore wx said:

Anyone else watching the Caps?

Jensen really does suck. Give me Djoos any day. 

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1 minute ago, nw baltimore wx said:

And that PING off the post.

As good as they are my biggest concern for them to make a deep playoff run would be there defense. Its not stanley cup championship defense at this point.  It could be by the spring but its not now. 

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