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Midwest/Ohio Valley/Great Lakes Snow January 24-26


Baum
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Yea I was unaware there was phasing with the northern stream with this system. With that the case, anyone from ord to Cleveland is in play. It looks like an earlier phase would mean a stronger system and less likely to transfer to the coast as fast, if at all. Even without a phase, there should still be a respectable snowstorm somewhere. Let's hope it all comes together for the first time in years.

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10 hours ago, Hoosier said:

You should've been on here for GHD.  To this day it is still my favorite event to track on here, even though the outcome at my then-location was not what I was looking for.  The level of excitement and enthusiasm was fun.    

That was such a heartbreaker for us.  It looked historic and then poof - pingers.

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3 hours ago, Cary67 said:

Next...

981779385_sfcwind_mslp-mean.conus(1).thumb.png.1173fb74a7e80d0a43387cf0ae5e4548.png

It's difficult to have any hope given how ***************** this winter has been...but I think there's a small glimmer on the map above.  Yes, the mean SLP is too far SE for here...but it's a 1008 mb mean.  Many of the stronger solutions have SLPs in the mid 990s...which in theory would pull it further NW if it ends up being a stronger storm. 

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1 hour ago, SchaumburgStormer said:

06z GFS about as classic of a look as you can get for a siggy Chicago hit. Probably will begin to fall apart at 12z until we end up with a DAB. 

it's not gone yet. 

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5 minutes ago, Malacka11 said:

GEM more like "Best model ever"

Believe it or not, I'd rather have that model on board with something than the GFS.  

Still too early to be too confident in any particular outcome though.

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3 minutes ago, Malacka11 said:

It's so nice when Alek not only posts but is also positive. Makes me feel all fuzzy inside

it's when the storm is on your doorstep he'll rain on your parade again with annie lenox. It's called build 'em up to tear 'em down. 

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3 minutes ago, Baum said:

it's when the storm is on your doorstep he'll rain on your parade again with annie lenox. It's called build 'em up to tear 'em down. 

You'd hope that just once he'll drop this Annie Lennox video instead. Probably not this year.

 

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Even IWX is jaded by this winter.

Not much to speak about here until the next weather system lurks
midweek. Seeing how winter has gone so far, and the models with it,
I`ll take the glass half-empty approach by saying that a notable
shift in storm track is still woefully possible. (Recall there will
be 16 model runs between now and Tuesday morning for those that are
run 4x/day). For now, given the blended forecast approach, I`ll keep
POPs a tame as possible as to not over promise on snow or rain at
this distance.
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34 minutes ago, sbnwx85 said:

Even IWX is jaded by this winter.

Not much to speak about here until the next weather system lurks
midweek. Seeing how winter has gone so far, and the models with it,
I`ll take the glass half-empty approach by saying that a notable
shift in storm track is still woefully possible. (Recall there will
be 16 model runs between now and Tuesday morning for those that are
run 4x/day). For now, given the blended forecast approach, I`ll keep
POPs a tame as possible as to not over promise on snow or rain at
this distance.

heads back outside to play jarts to nail it down

download (89).jpeg

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RC banging out a killer AFD on this one. 

 

This then turns us to the main period of interest. Meteorologically,
the key piece of the puzzle will be a vigorous mid-level wave
closed at 500 mb as it moves onto the Pacific northwest shore
Saturday evening. This wave will dive into the desert Southwest by
Monday evening and from there eject northeastward toward the
western Ohio Valley by Wednesday morning. It now appears that this
primary "southern stream" wave will remain separate from
noteworthy northern stream influence, as recent guidance has
slowed an incoming short-wave trough diving southward from central
Canada later in the week. That said, an intensifying upper jet
streak wrapping around the base of our wave of interest may help
intensify the burgeoning mid latitude cyclone Tuesday into early
Wednesday.

Will spare much more in depth complex meteorological analysis at
this still several days out time range in which good overall
guidance agreement (and a bit of a northward tick in the ensemble
means) in the big picture still entrails meaningfully large spread
that will determine our bottom line precip/snow and impacts wise.
Most importantly, a fairly classic southern Plains, lower MS
Valley low pressure should take shape, with the question being
exact track and strength from there toward the eastern Great Lakes.
Barring major changes in the evolution, this pattern supports
injection of plenty of Gulf moisture (well above normal PWATs to
tap into) for higher snow rates and several inches of snow where
strongest banding sets up.

Ultimately, the primary southern stream wave is now expected to
be the main player and the strength of the wave (tied to it
becoming negatively tilted or staying more positively tilted for
longer) will determine the all important surface low track. A
track farther north of the OH River of 1000 mb or less surface low
would bring the higher accumulation risk farther north and west,
while a weaker and farther south track would result in a sharp
cut-off northwest and higher accums southeast. Conceptually
speaking as well, fairly sharp cut-offs on the northwest side of
the precip shield are common in these synoptic set-ups even with
stronger surface lows.

While there is a scenario in which a much stronger system could
bring in enough warm air aloft for p-type concerns if not rain
into portions of the area, for now have broad brushed snow chances
in the forecast, with likely PoPs in our southeast half/near and
southeast of I-55 Wednesday reasonable at this juncture. The not
very cold antecedent air mass suggests climo to slightly below
normal snow ratios, so still not looking like a fluffy snow. Gusty
northerly winds would nonetheless serve to knock down visibility
further. Plenty of time to iron out all these details and
certainly a much weaker system with little/no impacts in much of
the area remains on the table (with a lower % but not insignificant
number of ensemble members showing this).

Beyond the possible snow storm, the earlier mentioned northern
stream trough will bring the coldest air mass of this exceptionally
mild January into the region. At the least, expect flurries in
this setup and the lake effect machine to get going, with
potential for light snow accums to be addressed later. The pattern
does look quite active current day 7 (Friday) and beyond, with
cold enough air for additional winter weather threats into early
February. Needless to say, stay tuned for forecast updates on the
mid week storm system as we start to hone in on the details.

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fairly sharp cut-offs on the northwest side of
the precip shield are common in these synoptic set-ups even with
stronger surface lows.
NW LOT shaft advisory in effect Wed-Fri next week.
 
 
 
 
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Are the ensembles moving west?
The ensembles have ticked northwest on the means if you go back several runs.

Re. the seasonal trend to be weaker and farther southeast with systems, I think it is a climatological issue. The reason much of this subforum can give exact dates of memorable snowstorms is that we're in a less favored area for everything to come together just right air mass, and storm track and strength wise. It's why in a typical season, a majority of our events feature light to moderate accumulations.

The recently concluded storm that nailed the upper MS Valley and northern Lakes didn't follow the seasonal trend after all. Big snowstorms are much more common with north and northwest extent in the Midwest, and of course are essentially a dime a dozen in the Northeast (though they're obviously having a terrible winter out there too).

Thinking back to last season, GHD III (if you want to call it that) left potential on the table and had an even sharper NW cutoff because phasing that some earlier guidance (especially GFS) showed did not happen. In a fast flow La Niña pattern absent downstream blocking, that gives reason to be skeptical of the stronger and farther northwest solutions. Even without phasing issues, that could shunt the main shortwave (and surface low) far enough east to keep areas farther northwest out of the game.

That being said, there are plausible reasons why this one can work out farther north and west related to the main wave likely being juiced, which can help with downstream height rises from latent heat release. It looks like upper jet dynamics should play a role as well. A lower likelihood of needing to rely on phasing means we're at the mercy of how much the main wave can do on its own.

As things stand now, the chance of a mostly non event for the entire subforum has decreased (though is certainly not zero), but for those in the LOT CWA, we're unfortunately firmly in the cone of higher uncertainty, with more wiggle room with southeast extent and less with north and northwest extent.


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