Welcome to American Weather
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0
Ray8002

March 4-6, 2001

57 posts in this topic

I know a lot of people don't want me to bring this particular storm up but what really happen that made this storm one of the biggest forecast busts in recent memory?? Also, what happen if everything did come together.. Anyone care to chime in?

Thanks guys.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The storm developed/tracked farther north than the models predicted several days out. So instead of NY city getting 2 ft of snow these amounts fell over interior New England and areas farther south had lighter precip and/or rain. Sometimes the models just bust..I'm sure there have been other times the models have had a bust of similar magnitude but its just that in this case the impact of the bust was so great since the models had incorrectly forecast massive snow for New York City as opposed to a more remote area where it would not have affected nearly as many people or if it were in the spring and it had been a forecast of 2 inches of rain that never materialized.

I know a lot of people don't want me to bring this particular storm up but what really happen that made this storm one of the biggest forecast busts in recent memory?? Also, what happen if everything did come together.. Anyone care to chime in?

Thanks guys.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The storm developed/tracked farther north than the models predicted several days out. So instead of NY city getting 2 ft of snow these amounts fell over interior New England and areas farther south had lighter precip and/or rain. Sometimes the models just bust..I'm sure there have been other times the models have had a bust of similar magnitude but its just that in this case the impact of the bust was so great since the models had incorrectly forecast massive snow for New York City as opposed to a more remote area where it would not have affected nearly as many people or if it were in the spring and it had been a forecast of 2 inches of rain that never materialized.

The City closed all the schools because they thought that this storm was going to be big. The City was forecasted to get 2-3 feet. I only received 5 inches of snow after some sleet and rain.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I know a lot of people don't want me to bring this particular storm up but what really happen that made this storm one of the biggest forecast busts in recent memory?? Also, what happen if everything did come together.. Anyone care to chime in?

Thanks guys.

I think at one point, central NC was expected to get hit hard. Afterwards, it was supposed to be a HECS with 20-30"+ from DC to Boston, then it kept trending north over time, and until the very end NYC was expected to get a big hit.

Instead all the heavy snow was in the interior northeast, I believe.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We saw forecasts playing catchup on storms increasing accumulations late such as the 96 blizzard, the 12/09 storm, and most recently the 12/26/10 event...this was a case where the forecasts were desperately playing catchup the other direction...many meteorologists knew the morning the storm started when it was raining that it was going to be a bust but it was taking seemingly forever for that message to get through to the media.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

We saw forecasts playing catchup on storms increasing accumulations late such as the 96 blizzard, the 12/09 storm, and most recently the 12/26/10 event...this was a case where the forecasts were desperately playing catchup the other direction...many meteorologists knew the morning the storm started when it was raining that it was going to be a bust but it was taking seemingly forever for that message to get through to the media.

SG, it reminds me of the busts of old-- like back in the 80s (Im sure you remember the Dec 89 storm, when we were forecast to get a foot of snow and ended up with a quick changeover to rain..... this came on the heels of the infamous Feb 89 fiasco.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

SG, it reminds me of the busts of old-- like back in the 80s (Im sure you remember the Dec 89 storm, when we were forecast to get a foot of snow and ended up with a quick changeover to rain..... this came on the heels of the infamous Feb 89 fiasco.)

It comes down to what many people say here alot, especially Steve D...you have to be looking at the satellite/radar images with an unbiased eye 12-24 hours from the event, very often you will see things that tell you something is going differently...its less an issue now with the great models we have but 20+ years ago it was way more useful...The Dec 89 storm was a disaster because it was obvious by 2-3pm that afternoon if you looked at the satellite imagery that the low was going to develop way west....its remarkable to this day how badly that event was handled by the models and the forecasts....the warnings for 5-8 inches were not dropped til midnight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It comes down to what many people say here alot, especially Steve D...you have to be looking at the satellite/radar images with an unbiased eye 12-24 hours from the event, very often you will see things that tell you something is going differently...its less an issue now with the great models we have but 20+ years ago it was way more useful...The Dec 89 storm was a disaster because it was obvious by 2-3pm that afternoon if you looked at the satellite imagery that the low was going to develop way west....its remarkable to this day how badly that event was handled by the models and the forecasts....the warnings for 5-8 inches were not dropped til midnight.

I guess (non)"events" like that do become memorable (and historic in a sense) for the very reason that they were such big busts. The funny thing is that bust would have probably not been remembered very well had the actual storm happened, but the bust actually made it memorable and even historic. Was that in a remnant La Nina pattern? I remember you said that storms are harder to forecast in mod-strong la ninas (the storm from the previous Feb is another example of a famous la nina bust.)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here is my detailed recount of the March 4-6, 2001debacle.

There's a lot of "stories" behind it. First off, almost all guidance was going for a monster Mid-Atlantic HECS about 96-108 hours out. Back then the time range beyond 96h meant very little...but models actually did have it further out than that. Only a few model went further. The UKMET, ECMWF and the MRF (the extension of the AVN which is now the GFS all in one package) all called for it. By the time we got to 84 hours out, all models showed it still...basically 2-4 feet for DC-NYC with Boston getting fringed....except the old ETA-x....the old ETA went to 60 hours, but the "ETA-x" was the ETA to 84h which eventually became the NAM (run under the ETA) to 84 hours but is now run under the WRF and not the ETA anymore...ETA has been retired from operational use, only used in the SREF now. That run of the ETA-x had the storm much further north and crushing New England while limiting the snow in the Mid-Atlantic. I believe this was Friday at 12z. Nobody took it seriously as it was the ETA extended beyond its already 60h limit.

The next run at 00z Friday night, the ETA-x showed it again, but the other models held serve....the ECMWF didn't run at 00z back then...only at 12z, so its solution was non-existent. It was the best model back then too like recent years. We were now at 72h out or closer. The 12z runs came out on Saturday morning and they shifted north, limiting the snow for DC (probably from 2-3 feet to about 1-2 feet), but from Wilmington DE northward it was still monstrous except the UKMET shifted slightly north of that, to Philly and northward.

A little side note. The AVN had performed absolutely brilliantly in the other big east coast storm on December 30, 2000 and also on the December 3, 2000 North Carolina/Virginia bust. The ETA hadbeen way too bullish and far west in both events while the AVN schooled it. So a lot of attention and credence was being given the AVN. That was a big factor in the forecast IMHO.

After those Saturday morning runs at 12z (while the ETA showed a huge hit north again at 48-60h now in the operational run)...the forecast was still for a monster M.A. hit. The 12z ECMWF wouldn't come out until around 8pm that evening. It used to come around at that time back then. As 8pm rolled around, the ECMWF all of the sudden jumped way north and agreed with the ETA solution. But most forecasters disregarded it as it had been pretty steadfast before (maybe a burp run?) and the AVN was holding really steady and it had done so well on East Coast storms that winter. By Saturday night, the GGEM started to go north, the AVN held serve once again (having been the model of choice all winter), the ETA went north again taking Philly and nearly NYC out of the huge snow and hammering New England/Boston with a storm like Feb 1978. UKMET I don't recall what happened, but I know the forecast stuck close to the AVN.

Again there was no 00z ECMWF run back then. Only 12z.

By 12z Sunday morning just 24h before the event, the AVN once again gave a monster hit to the mid-atlantic except it shifted a bit north...it was mostly Philly northward. The ETA gave New England a huge HECS again, the GGEM finally went well north...and so did the UKMET. The ECMWF would have to wait until 8pm as usual. Most forecaster were trusting the AVN because it had served them well that winter after the obscene ETA busts and the AVN had nailed two major east coast storms.

When 8pm came in, the writing was on the wall if there was any doubt left. It was way north and took Philly and possibly even NYC out fo the big snows, though NYC was still on the line.

The forecasts started being revived when the 00z AVN came in late that Sunday night and it finally jumped north, but still not far enough....it still gave big snows to Philly (but not historic totals) and historic totals to NYC. I think this is when most operational forecasters knew something was terribly wrong. You have to remember it was so hard to trust any model that winter and the AVN was the best until that point.

That was the first storm that I recall Dave Tolleris (whether you like him or not) came up with the old "EE rule"...when the ETA and ECMWF (both start with "E") agree, you don't go against them. I was lurking on ne.weather back then. When the EC came north to agree with the ETA back on Saturday, he said the M.A. was cooked and got a lot of crap for it on the boards as you can imagine.

That's just my personal recollection of all of that storm. I don't claim for all of it to be 100% accurate, but I usually remember things very vividly, so I think at least most of it is right. There was a lot of controversy and talk amongst the weather people both on ne.weather and the NWS back then. It ended up being a huge interior New England and NY State HECS. Even the models at the last second kind of busted at Boston...only getting 10" while they were forecasted for double that...but the suburbs got all the snow.

Very incredible storm both from a forecasting standpoint and also as a student observer back then when I first learning a lot of the intricacies of forecasting and models.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great stuff, Will. This jibes with other posts I saw on this board... Everybody cracks jokes at the long range NAM (with some good reason), but it occasionally sees something nothing else sees...

Here is my detailed recount of the March 4-6, 2001debacle.

There's a lot of "stories" behind it. First off, almost all guidance was going for a monster Mid-Atlantic HECS about 96-108 hours out. Back then the time range beyond 96h meant very little...but models actually did have it further out than that. Only a few model went further. The UKMET, ECMWF and the MRF (the extension of the AVN which is now the GFS all in one package) all called for it. By the time we got to 84 hours out, all models showed it still...basically 2-4 feet for DC-NYC with Boston getting fringed....except the old ETA-x....the old ETA went to 60 hours, but the "ETA-x" was the ETA to 84h which eventually became the NAM (run under the ETA) to 84 hours but is now run under the WRF and not the ETA anymore...ETA has been retired from operational use, only used in the SREF now. That run of the ETA-x had the storm much further north and crushing New England while limiting the snow in the Mid-Atlantic. I believe this was Friday at 12z. Nobody took it seriously as it was the ETA extended beyond its already 60h limit.

The next run at 00z Friday night, the ETA-x showed it again, but the other models held serve....the ECMWF didn't run at 00z back then...only at 12z, so its solution was non-existent. It was the best model back then too like recent years. We were now at 72h out or closer. The 12z runs came out on Saturday morning and they shifted north, limiting the snow for DC (probably from 2-3 feet to about 1-2 feet), but from Wilmington DE northward it was still monstrous except the UKMET shifted slightly north of that, to Philly and northward.

A little side note. The AVN had performed absolutely brilliantly in the other big east coast storm on December 30, 2000 and also on the December 3, 2000 North Carolina/Virginia bust. The ETA hadbeen way too bullish and far west in both events while the AVN schooled it. So a lot of attention and credence was being given the AVN. That was a big factor in the forecast IMHO.

After those Saturday morning runs at 12z (while the ETA showed a huge hit north again at 48-60h now in the operational run)...the forecast was still for a monster M.A. hit. The 12z ECMWF wouldn't come out until around 8pm that evening. It used to come around at that time back then. As 8pm rolled around, the ECMWF all of the sudden jumped way north and agreed with the ETA solution. But most forecasters disregarded it as it had been pretty steadfast before (maybe a burp run?) and the AVN was holding really steady and it had done so well on East Coast storms that winter. By Saturday night, the GGEM started to go north, the AVN held serve once again (having been the model of choice all winter), the ETA went north again taking Philly and nearly NYC out of the huge snow and hammering New England/Boston with a storm like Feb 1978. UKMET I don't recall what happened, but I know the forecast stuck close to the AVN.

Again there was no 00z ECMWF run back then. Only 12z.

By 12z Sunday morning just 24h before the event, the AVN once again gave a monster hit to the mid-atlantic except it shifted a bit north...it was mostly Philly northward. The ETA gave New England a huge HECS again, the GGEM finally went well north...and so did the UKMET. The ECMWF would have to wait until 8pm as usual. Most forecaster were trusting the AVN because it had served them well that winter after the obscene ETA busts and the AVN had nailed two major east coast storms.

When 8pm came in, the writing was on the wall if there was any doubt left. It was way north and took Philly and possibly even NYC out fo the big snows, though NYC was still on the line.

The forecasts started being revived when the 00z AVN came in late that Sunday night and it finally jumped north, but still not far enough....it still gave big snows to Philly (but not historic totals) and historic totals to NYC. I think this is when most operational forecasters knew something was terribly wrong. You have to remember it was so hard to trust any model that winter and the AVN was the best until that point.

That was the first storm that I recall Dave Tolleris (whether you like him or not) came up with the old "EE rule"...when the ETA and ECMWF (both start with "E") agree, you don't go against them. I was lurking on ne.weather back then. When the EC came north to agree with the ETA back on Saturday, he said the M.A. was cooked and got a lot of crap for it on the boards as you can imagine.

That's just my personal recollection of all of that storm. I don't claim for all of it to be 100% accurate, but I usually remember things very vividly, so I think at least most of it is right. There was a lot of controversy and talk amongst the weather people both on ne.weather and the NWS back then. It ended up being a huge interior New England and NY State HECS. Even the models at the last second kind of busted at Boston...only getting 10" while they were forecasted for double that...but the suburbs got all the snow.

Very incredible storm both from a forecasting standpoint and also as a student observer back then when I first learning a lot of the intricacies of forecasting and models.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I'd love to see some old AVN and ETA runs from 3/2 and 3/3 for the 3/5-3/6 timeframe. Would be great to see the differences between reality and modeling.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Great writeup, Will.

It was a combination of several factors... overreliance on short-range models without real-time verification, perhaps some overconfidence based on some recent big coups (i.e. March '93), and creating a hype monster that couldn't be contained once it was released.

As for me, what happened on 3-5-01 was that a part of me died.... a part of me died. :(

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think at one point, central NC was expected to get hit hard. Afterwards, it was supposed to be a HECS with 20-30"+ from DC to Boston, then it kept trending north over time, and until the very end NYC was expected to get a big hit.

Instead all the heavy snow was in the interior northeast, I believe.

Eastern New England got hit hard, too.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Here is my detailed recount of the March 4-6, 2001debacle.

There's a lot of "stories" behind it. First off, almost all guidance was going for a monster Mid-Atlantic HECS about 96-108 hours out. Back then the time range beyond 96h meant very little...but models actually did have it further out than that. Only a few model went further. The UKMET, ECMWF and the MRF (the extension of the AVN which is now the GFS all in one package) all called for it. By the time we got to 84 hours out, all models showed it still...basically 2-4 feet for DC-NYC with Boston getting fringed....except the old ETA-x....the old ETA went to 60 hours, but the "ETA-x" was the ETA to 84h which eventually became the NAM (run under the ETA) to 84 hours but is now run under the WRF and not the ETA anymore...ETA has been retired from operational use, only used in the SREF now. That run of the ETA-x had the storm much further north and crushing New England while limiting the snow in the Mid-Atlantic. I believe this was Friday at 12z. Nobody took it seriously as it was the ETA extended beyond its already 60h limit.

The next run at 00z Friday night, the ETA-x showed it again, but the other models held serve....the ECMWF didn't run at 00z back then...only at 12z, so its solution was non-existent. It was the best model back then too like recent years. We were now at 72h out or closer. The 12z runs came out on Saturday morning and they shifted north, limiting the snow for DC (probably from 2-3 feet to about 1-2 feet), but from Wilmington DE northward it was still monstrous except the UKMET shifted slightly north of that, to Philly and northward.

A little side note. The AVN had performed absolutely brilliantly in the other big east coast storm on December 30, 2000 and also on the December 3, 2000 North Carolina/Virginia bust. The ETA hadbeen way too bullish and far west in both events while the AVN schooled it. So a lot of attention and credence was being given the AVN. That was a big factor in the forecast IMHO.

After those Saturday morning runs at 12z (while the ETA showed a huge hit north again at 48-60h now in the operational run)...the forecast was still for a monster M.A. hit. The 12z ECMWF wouldn't come out until around 8pm that evening. It used to come around at that time back then. As 8pm rolled around, the ECMWF all of the sudden jumped way north and agreed with the ETA solution. But most forecasters disregarded it as it had been pretty steadfast before (maybe a burp run?) and the AVN was holding really steady and it had done so well on East Coast storms that winter. By Saturday night, the GGEM started to go north, the AVN held serve once again (having been the model of choice all winter), the ETA went north again taking Philly and nearly NYC out of the huge snow and hammering New England/Boston with a storm like Feb 1978. UKMET I don't recall what happened, but I know the forecast stuck close to the AVN.

Again there was no 00z ECMWF run back then. Only 12z.

By 12z Sunday morning just 24h before the event, the AVN once again gave a monster hit to the mid-atlantic except it shifted a bit north...it was mostly Philly northward. The ETA gave New England a huge HECS again, the GGEM finally went well north...and so did the UKMET. The ECMWF would have to wait until 8pm as usual. Most forecaster were trusting the AVN because it had served them well that winter after the obscene ETA busts and the AVN had nailed two major east coast storms.

When 8pm came in, the writing was on the wall if there was any doubt left. It was way north and took Philly and possibly even NYC out fo the big snows, though NYC was still on the line.

The forecasts started being revived when the 00z AVN came in late that Sunday night and it finally jumped north, but still not far enough....it still gave big snows to Philly (but not historic totals) and historic totals to NYC. I think this is when most operational forecasters knew something was terribly wrong. You have to remember it was so hard to trust any model that winter and the AVN was the best until that point.

That was the first storm that I recall Dave Tolleris (whether you like him or not) came up with the old "EE rule"...when the ETA and ECMWF (both start with "E") agree, you don't go against them. I was lurking on ne.weather back then. When the EC came north to agree with the ETA back on Saturday, he said the M.A. was cooked and got a lot of crap for it on the boards as you can imagine.

That's just my personal recollection of all of that storm. I don't claim for all of it to be 100% accurate, but I usually remember things very vividly, so I think at least most of it is right. There was a lot of controversy and talk amongst the weather people both on ne.weather and the NWS back then. It ended up being a huge interior New England and NY State HECS. Even the models at the last second kind of busted at Boston...only getting 10" while they were forecasted for double that...but the suburbs got all the snow.

Very incredible storm both from a forecasting standpoint and also as a student observer back then when I first learning a lot of the intricacies of forecasting and models.

Will,

Your recollection of the AVN and ETA runs leading up to that storm within 96/60hrs respectively line up well with the data I got to look at for my case study on the storm I did about a year ago. Interesting to hear how the other global models performed though as I did not get to examine that data.

Looking at the gempak images i generated...

3/3/01 00z ETA

-48hr: 996mb over se NC, .5-.75 qpf across DC to Baltimore, .25 up to NYC

-60hr: 984mb well east of Delmarva, HECS ongoing Philly to NYC right to the coast with 1.5 qpf max over se NJ, another .5-.75 for DC-Baltimore

3/3/01 12z ETA

-36hr: 992mb over western NC, 996mb extention to the coast, .5-.75+ blob now from central Kentucky through to Garrett county Maryland, nw of dc-bmore

-48hr: 988mb over Salsbury MD, .75-1.00" from LI across all of northern NJ back to central PA down to nw DC/Bmore suburbs with those cities right on the .75 line. 850 0c line now inland across se NJ with only .25 qpf for them. Big nw shift.

-60hr: 984mb east of NJ, SNE getting blasted, the CCB extending south across with .5-.75 across northern NJ down eastern PA, dryslot along NYC and the coast

3/4/01 00z ETA

-24hr: 1000mb over western NC inverted extensions towards eastern NC and north into Ohio Valley. .5 qpf blob from philly back west to Ohio Valley, DC.Bmore on the fringe and also with the 850 0c line over them.

-36hr: 992mb over Salsbury, 850 0c line northwest of DC-Philly ands just south of NYC now. But qpf max now located over State College PA, with .5 extending east to northween NJ/NYC

-48hr: 988mb east of NJ , New England back into upstate NY now getting blasted with only .25-.75 NYC to Philly. 850 0c line across Cape Cod

3/4/01 12z ETA

-12hr: 1000mb over western NC, qpf max across western PA, .5-.75 across DC/Bmore to Philly, 850 0c line north of these cities

-24hr: broad 996mb from eastern NC to Delmarva, qpf max central PA up to Albany, all of NJ less then .5 qpf, less then .25 qpf Philly-DC, 850 line NYC to northwest of Philly/DC

-36hr: 984mb east of NJ, but dry area less than .25 over eastern NJ/NYC, New England through uopstate NY south to nw PA get heavier qpf

3/5/01 00z ETA

-12hr: broad 996mb on Delmarva, 850 line across the big cities with less than .25 qpf for everybody,heavy snow central PA through Binghampton/Albany

-24hr: 984mb just south of LI, southern New England back to upstate NY getting blasted

-36hr: 980mb along southern NE coast, epic hit for Boston north into SE Maine back to NH. SE Maine is suddenly forecasted to get 30" of snow.

Note how the surface low was almost 4mb weaker for an equivalent timestamp on each consecutive model run. It was result of the 500mb interaction between southern shortwave and northern monster bowling ball rotating down from Canada phasing later with every consecutive model run. This also caused the max precip shield to shift northwest towards the stronger northern stream wave that had better forcing associated with it

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites
<br />It comes down to what many people say here alot, especially Steve D...you have to be looking at the satellite/radar images with an unbiased eye 12-24 hours from the event, very often you will see things that tell you something is going differently...its less an issue now with the great models we have but 20+ years ago it was way more useful...The Dec 89 storm was a disaster because it was obvious by 2-3pm that afternoon if you looked at the satellite imagery that the low was going to develop way west....its remarkable to this day how badly that event was handled by the models and the forecasts....the warnings for 5-8 inches were not dropped til midnight.<br />
<br /><br /><br />

There were predictions that afternoon for a 12+ inch storm with near blizzard conditions.When the snow started around 530PM it came down hard for 3 minutes then changed to heavy rain with lightning and thunder and ended with the temp in the upper 30s.That was the greatest bust I have ever seen IN MY EYES!! March 2001 was bad,but we did get a borderline moderate snowfall though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Well I started following weather after Floyd hit and especially when the Millennium storm came. I was still pretty young though but I def remember, when I used to watch the weather channel lol, them showing 2-3' of snow. I remember the schools were closed the day of the storm and I remember waking up to about an inch or two of snow with the rest being slop. A big bust like that can really destroy a meteorologist's credibility especially after the big hype for days leading up to it.

I think meteorologists became much more conservative after 2001, I mean they were really conservative with the Dec 26, 2010 storm when the majority of models were giving us well over a foot of snow and they showed maybe 6-10/12" less than a day before it hit. That storm was kind of a bust in the other direction though.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

an unnamed met from accuwx was using the Ash Wednesday storm as an analog...At the time I was arguing 1962 was much colder and that analog was not happening...When the storm started as mixed precipitation I wasn't surprised...

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The first rule of winter is, you do not talk about March 2001

The second rule of winter is, you do not talk about March 2001

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I have a few news stories on the event I will dig up and post from PHL news papers.. I have the daily news cover with them asking the quesions what met busted and hyped the most. They provided a phone number for each met with a photo next to the number. Title was SnowJob with a radar shot on the cover Monday or Tuesday morning. Bolaris won by a huge margin. For being a weather man, Bolaris thought he was a rock star before the storm. Huge ego as some wather folks have for some unknown reason. He left town the following winter as he could not take the heat for a busted call, one of the worst possibly ever for TV weather people

Bolaris was going 24-36 inches for PHL area and was informing to cancel schools and no business will be open Monday or Tuesday on the 11:11:30 PM news that night. NBC 10 had a scroll on the tv for hours infomring the storm of the century was coming etc. Very unprofessional many people felt. I heard they caused a few accidents and possibly death as they scared people into thinking this was the storm to end all storms. Roads were jammed with people going to the stores in mass numbers etc.

we got like 2 inches at my home in Blue Bell, PA. Total disaster.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

At that time, TWC was my weather source. I started to join different weather boards in 2006. I was really clueless about what was going on with the storm.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I was living in Cleveland for the March 2001 bust, but I remember December 1989 really well. I was in Queens watching Lloyd Lindsay Young calling for close to a foot of snow just as the first raindrops were hitting the window. I couldn't believe my eyes. One of the most upsetting busts of my lifetime as I was really hoping for a day off from school.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Funny you mention this storm! I have a really goog memory and remember a storm that occurred on the night of Fri dec 15 into early Sat morning that year. I lived about 40 minutes north of Boston at the time near the NH border. Anyway - yes, I remember this was supposed to be a foot of snow with maybe some mixing on the outer cape. That was what the 6 pm news was saying. In the end about 8 inces of heavy wet snow fell in 4-5 hours from roughly 10 pm - 2am any then it changed to sleet and freezing rain. When I had gone to bed the evening it was in the mid teens and every time I woke up it was warmer and warmer. Yes, that storm was a bit dissapointing..We had about a 1 inch thick crust of ice on top of the 8 inches of snow and behind that storm the great cold wave of late Dec 89 was ushered in...

It comes down to what many people say here alot, especially Steve D...you have to be looking at the satellite/radar images with an unbiased eye 12-24 hours from the event, very often you will see things that tell you something is going differently...its less an issue now with the great models we have but 20+ years ago it was way more useful...The Dec 89 storm was a disaster because it was obvious by 2-3pm that afternoon if you looked at the satellite imagery that the low was going to develop way west....its remarkable to this day how badly that event was handled by the models and the forecasts....the warnings for 5-8 inches were not dropped til midnight.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

The '89 one was dec 15. Another classic bust (at least where I lived) was the early Feb '95 storm (4th and 5th I believe). This was supposed to track just off the outer Cape and give eastern Mass 12+ inches of all snow with mixing / rain confined mainly to the Cape. In the end the change to rain came all the way up at least to the NH border after 9 inches of snow fell. the 3-4 hours of rain and temps rising into the upper 30s near the storms end was, as per the usual, followed by a cold snap behind the storm which meant one big icy mess.

Can somebody provide me with the date of the December 1989 "bust"? I want to review it on the PSU NARR site.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!


Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.


Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  
Followers 0

  • Recently Browsing   0 members

    No registered users viewing this page.