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Western PA/Pittsburgh Winter 2021/22 Discussion


meatwad
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Just now, Rd9108 said:

Patience 

We've seen these things trend nw a lot of times even down to nowcasting. Let's see where we are at by tomorrow's runs. 

Agree. Though some of the models would need more than a little trend NW

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9 minutes ago, Rd9108 said:

Ehh 3k doesn't give us much. We need just a little help but as of now we are looking at 1-3.

Hopefully it’s just the NAM being stupid but we’ve heard this song before and we know how it ends.

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Winter Storm Watch

URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE
National Weather Service Pittsburgh PA
1246 PM EST Thu Mar 10 2022

OHZ050-059-068-069-PAZ008-009-014>016-020>023-029-031-073-075-
WVZ001>004-012-021-509-110215-
/O.EXA.KPBZ.WS.A.0003.220312T0600Z-220313T0600Z/
Jefferson OH-Belmont-Noble-Monroe-Venango-Forest-Butler-Clarion-
Jefferson PA-Beaver-Allegheny-Armstrong-Indiana-Washington-Greene-
Westmoreland-Fayette-Hancock-Brooke-Ohio-Marshall-Wetzel-Marion-
Monongalia-
Including the cities of Wheeling, Lower Burrell, Indiana, Martins
Ferry, Greensburg, Steubenville, Wellsburg, Washington, Tionesta,
Monaca, Canonsburg, Moundsville, Beaver Falls, Caldwell, Ford
City, Murrysville, New Kensington, Latrobe, Ambridge, Monessen,
Follansbee, St. Clairsville, Butler, Aliquippa, Uniontown,
Brookville, Franklin, Fairmont, Weirton, Woodsfield, New
Martinsville, Kittanning, Pittsburgh Metro Area, Clarion, Oil
City, Waynesburg, Morgantown, and Punxsutawney
1246 PM EST Thu Mar 10 2022

...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH LATE
SATURDAY NIGHT...

* WHAT...Heavy snow possible. Total snow accumulations between 5 and
  7 inches possible.

* WHERE...Portions of east central Ohio. Portions of northwest,
  southwest, and western Pennsylvania. Portions of northern and the
  northern panhandle of West Virginia.

* WHEN...From late Friday night through late Saturday night.

* IMPACTS...Visibilities may drop below 1/4 mile due to falling and
  blowing snow. The strong winds and weight of snow on tree limbs
  may down power lines and could cause sporadic power outages.
  Whiteout conditions are possible and may make travel treacherous.
  Gusty winds could bring down tree branches.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

Monitor the latest forecasts for updates on this situation.

&&

$$

 

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8 minutes ago, TimB said:

5-7”? This is looking more and more like just a frontal passage for us.

Yeah idk what they are seeing but this isn't looking really good for anybody. So they miss the 4 inches yesterday and now will bust way too high Saturday.

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1 minute ago, Rd9108 said:

Yeah idk what they are seeing but this isn't looking really good for anybody. So they miss the 4 inches yesterday and now will bust way too high Saturday.

Maybe they’re including yesterday’s total in the 5-7? :lol:

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15 minutes ago, Rd9108 said:

They are gonna bust I think but they are the experts...

I disagree. They need to keep everything on the table till the end. They can't drop everything back based on one model. A watch is a watch. It does not always have to upgrade to a warning. I am quite sure if the other models start dropping totals then the WWA will be issued tomorrow. If they come back then west with more precip then you will see a WSW. 

I agree they all blew yesterday's storm but they are just following protocol. Let's wait till tonight to see. This is a complex system. We could end up with a strong cold front with snow showers only on Saturday. 

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2 minutes ago, north pgh said:

I disagree. They need to keep everything on the table till the end. They can't drop everything back based on one model. A watch is a watch. It does not always have to upgrade to a warning. I am quite sure if the other models start dropping totals then the WWA will be issued tomorrow. If they come back then west with more precip then you will see a WSW. 

I agree they all blew yesterday's storm but they are just following protocol. Let's wait till tonight to see. This is a complex system. We could end up with a strong cold front with snow showers only on Saturday. 

It’s not the watch that is perplexing. It’s more the fact that the forecast snow map actually increased from 5.3” to 6.4” in Pittsburgh despite the fact that the models seem to have gone the other way in the time between the issuances of those two maps.

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3 minutes ago, TimB said:

It’s not the watch that is perplexing. It’s more the fact that the forecast snow map actually increased from 5.3” to 6.4” in Pittsburgh despite the fact that the models seem to have gone the other way in the time between the issuances of those two maps.

I get it but those map totals are not real time. I think they update them every 6 hours or so based on the information they have. If everything holds true then you will see them come down this evening. 

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Just now, north pgh said:

I get it but those map totals are not real time. I think they update them every 6 hours or so based on the information they have. If everything holds true then you will see them come down this evening. 

So basically the maps that were issued at 1:50 pm are based on 0z model runs?

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GFS has been pretty stable in placement, but right now that's the high end event and it's "only" 3-6" for most of the area.  CMC is similar.

The NAM came back a bit west from its highly progressive 6Z run, but the changes at 500H are quite subtle.  Really we just need that s/w to dig further west/south earlier.  The timing of that intensification is the only thing that's really going to matter in this fast flow.  I think the NWS went a little too high with their initial estimations, we've seen that before.  If I was the NWS, I probably wouldn't have issued a total yet at all.  The NAM is too jumpy right now to be reliable and a 5-7" call doesn't have much support at mid-day.

The issue is the best frontogenesis stays east of Pittsburgh from the beginning on current model runs.  If the best rates manage to slide east of us at the onset, that's when you know it's going to be a low-end event.  We gotta smell the rain.  It's such a progressive storm there's no room for error if you want to see a higher total.  But right now pretty much everything is on the table.  After yesterday, as well, we can't discount a surprise in either direction.

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Smelling the rain never works here because the warm tongue always wins out - if not at the surface, aloft. We do much better staying all snow and potentially exceeding forecasts when we're on the western fringe of a storm forecast to dump 12"+ in central PA. The precipitation shields often seem to expand further west or at least linger out this way longer than expected.

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10 minutes ago, TheClimateChanger said:

Smelling the rain never works here because the warm tongue always wins out - if not at the surface, aloft. We do much better staying all snow and potentially exceeding forecasts when we're on the western fringe of a storm forecast to dump 12"+ in central PA. The precipitation shields often seem to expand further west or at least linger out this way longer than expected.

Respectfully disagree somewhat, although I understand your point.  it all depends on the orientation of the baroclinic zone and the development of the low itself.  We smelled the rain yesterday and got to see some of the biggest snowflakes ever, which also led to the overperformance.  When storms are pushing in from our southwest or south and running due north or NNE it's one thing, but in a progressive flow, we'll only be borderline for a brief period with the cold pushing in quickly.  Thus there's no threat to changeover.  This isn't a case where the system continues to deepen as it gets too close to us.  In this case, the low deepens only as it gets further away.

You need to be close to that rain-snow line in such a fast moving system or you miss the best snowfall rates.  Granted, you'd be right if the low intensifies too quickly in the south and is then pulled too far west along the boundary, but for now that doesn't look like the issue we're facing.

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Not to bring people down but to me a lot of times it comes down to timing of the storm. For example: yesterday I received close to 4 inches of snow in a 4 to 5 hour period. We had 4 hours of moderate to heavy snow and I was able to see it and be in it. What if we get 5-7 inches of snow with the next storm and the majority of it falls from midnight to 8:00 am? Big deal I wake up to all that snow on the ground and the snow is is winding down to light stuff and is over. Then I get to shovel it. Not fun but we got a 7 inch snowfall. Big wow.

Question for everyone here.

1. Would you rather have 4 inches fall in 4 hours with big flakes during the day or

2. A foot of snow overnight while we sleep and is over when you wake up?

I go with 1. 

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29 minutes ago, north pgh said:

Not to bring people down but to me a lot of times it comes down to timing of the storm. For example: yesterday I received close to 4 inches of snow in a 4 to 5 hour period. We had 4 hours of moderate to heavy snow and I was able to see it and be in it. What if we get 5-7 inches of snow with the next storm and the majority of it falls from midnight to 8:00 am? Big deal I wake up to all that snow on the ground and the snow is is winding down to light stuff and is over. Then I get to shovel it. Not fun but we got a 7 inch snowfall. Big wow.

Question for everyone here.

1. Would you rather have 4 inches fall in 4 hours with big flakes during the day or

2. A foot of snow overnight while we sleep and is over when you wake up?

I go with 1. 

Depends on the month honestly. December I'm taking number 2. March number 1

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