Friday, November 22, 2013

Mountain Snow, Chilled Rain...Sounds Like A Fun Travel Day

Next Wednesday's Turkey Travels have an likelihood of being impacted by a coastal storm system that will bring rain for most, snow for the mountains, and a general craptastic travel day for the East Coast. The coastal storm system will track just offshore of the East Coast, not the strongest storm system ever to impact us but it is a storm system on a high impact travel day.

Modeling is in general agreement at this point on track and detail -- timing varies a little on starting and end times but it generally centers around Wednesday for the Delaware Valley.

Both the GFS and Euro in last night's run show rain for much of the region...a cold rain nonetheless...but the snow line is solidly northwest of the city -- generally along Blue Mountain or just north of it depending on the model. It is possible that the snow/rain line shifts southeast in successive runs (it can also go northwest) as the track shifts around as we approach the storm system.  Just note that as of right now this is a rain system for I-95 and the burbs.

Don't be fooled by faulty snow maps -- one such map that tends to exaggerate snowfall is suggesting 6-12 inches of snow for the northwest burbs despite temperatures aloft being above freezing to 5000 feet and all "snow" indicators shoved to the northwest of the city. Kinda hard for it to snow when temperatures aloft are near 40 degrees...but some maps are trying to make it so.

Wunderground's snow algorithm is suggesting snowfall generally falls above Blue Mountain -- and some spots could see some decent snows on Wednesday. Notice how much farther northwest that snow line is -- and how closer to the models it is -- than the map with the blue, purple, and pink just above. Note to the snow enthusiast -- be careful with where you source your snow maps this winter!

At this point, the storm threat continues to be legit. Know that for the cities, as of now, it's rain and not snow. If the track shifts a bit east, storm intensifies a bit, snow chances could increase for us but the track is pretty close to the coast and the storm system is not that incredibly strong, hence a lower risk of snow locally and with a more western track the snow threat is shoved farther north and northwest at this point.