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WxUSAF

December 16-17, 2020 Winter Storm Obs/Nowcasting

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2 minutes ago, MN Transplant said:

The exact position of the surface low didn’t end up mattering as much as the upper air features.  The 850 low, which is both broad and late developing, is basically over DC allowing the warm air to flood in.  We always want an 850 track to the south of DC by a fair margin.

9BA64448-8EF3-417B-B2CA-A6F88FD516C5.gif.d6d7e51c5e6cac7c48c4ff5d794db7f2.gif

By the way, look at the ridiculous lack of northerly wind barbs in this image.  Southerly 850s in Erie!

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4 minutes ago, jayyy said:

850 low never closed off, allowing warm air to scream north. It’s early winter, barely below freezing, with relatively warm ocean waters compared to deep winter. If we had a closed 850 low south of here, this was an easy 12+ area wide  

Exactly...ERS caught this early on and no one wanted to hear it but he was 100% right.  December coastal with super warm SST and no closed mid level circulation is a big problem...nothing to cut off the easterly fetch to the north of the low.  This could have worked in 2 ways...true arctic airmass, phased system.  In the end we got the perfect track...the blocking did its dirty work...but other parts didn't come together.  December is a HARD month to get a BIG snow here.  We are almost better off with progressive wave type systems that cant scorch the mid levels with screaming easterlies.  December is a good month to waste a good pattern unfortunately.  But give me this look again...anytime between xmas and March 10...and I will take my chances.  

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Just now, psuhoffman said:

Exactly...ERS caught this early on and no one wanted to hear it but he was 100% right.  December coastal with super warm SST and no closed mid level circulation is a big problem...nothing to cut off the easterly fetch to the north of the low.  This could have worked in 2 ways...true arctic airmass, phased system.  In the end we got the perfect track...the blocking did its dirty work...but other parts didn't come together.  December is a HARD month to get a BIG snow here.  We are almost better off with progressive wave type systems that cant scorch the mid levels with screaming easterlies.  December is a good month to waste a good pattern unfortunately.  But give me this look again...anytime between xmas and March 10...and I will take my chances.  

Don’t look now but there is a slight pivot to a more N/S Orientation on our radar, and snow is picking up here with occasional pingers mixed in. 

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4 minutes ago, ErinInTheSky said:

People are skidding all up and down Blunt Road near me and it's so unfortunate. That road is a car trap any time we have frozen precip.

Also: Am I the only one that is fine with sleet fests? Like, seeing sleet just filled my heart with joy after the last 3-4 hours of rain. Getting a lot of sleet seems to add some good staying power. One of my most memorable storms was... was it 2017? With the absolute epic sleet bomb 3.5" of sleet in Gaithersburg.

Nope I like it if it’s between choosing sleet or zrain because zrain practically never lives up to the hype. Also, one of my favorite all time storms was Valentine’s Day 2007 when we got 7 inches of sleet and froze solid the next day day and didn’t melt for weeks. 

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Pouring snow similar to earlier in the day...radar looks to be eroding on the back edge fairly quick tho.  We'll see if the lift N and eastward progress can slow like some of the mesos show.  

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Just now, poolz1 said:

Pouring snow similar to earlier in the day...radar looks to be eroding on the back edge fairly quick tho.  We'll see if the lift N and eastward progress can slow like some of the mesos show.  

Yep starting to pick up and changeover to a majority snow here. The back edge has slowed w of HGR, but it’s still moving NE a bit. Cue @psuhoffmanto tell us where the lagging ULL energy is to spark off some good banding if it shall come.

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1 minute ago, DDweatherman said:

Yep starting to pick up and changeover to a majority snow here. The back edge has slowed w of HGR, but it’s still moving NE a bit. Cue @psuhoffmanto tell us where the lagging ULL energy is to spark off some good banding if it shall come.

Certainly has transitioned to higher ratio type snow.  Hard to tell because it is dark out but these rates right now might rival earlier today.  

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