Snow & Mixed For Texas & Ahead For TN – Mid Atl. States – Cooler Temps Ahead
The snow we’ve discussed for Texas over the last few days is beginning to come together as the NWS has finally issued a Winter Weather Advisory running from Lubbock south through Midland and into the Rio Grande valley.
To see how things have developed over our last few discussions, let’s begin with our short range (3.5 day) Precipitation Type Animation. Recall that this animation forecasts out through 84 hours, at three hour intervals. Each frame in the animation represents a 3 hour window prior to and ending at the valid time, represented by the timestamp on the bottom. It shows that if precipitation where to occur over that three hour window, what form might it take. Users often find that stopping the animation via the controls on the bottom, choosing “first image” and advancing one frame at a time via “forward one” to be the most useful implementation of the product.
Our first frame for our 12z run today is the F003hr forecast, valid 11am EDT this morning. Notice the remnants of our blizzard centered between the provinces of Ontario and Quebec. We wish them luck! Rains are forecast over the lower reaches of the northeastern states, with snow in Maine, verified by our Radar Center this morning. Rains are also forecast, and verified extending from southwest Texas, and running in a generally east northeast (ENE) direction through the Midwest.
Click the “forward one” button a few times until you reach 2am EDT tomorrow (Thursday) morning and watch what happens. Rains are forecast to continue for most of Texas, the monster ridge (1044mb) of high pressure remains centered over the northern Plains, and little specks of snow and mixed precipitation begin showing up over teh southern Panhandle and southwest Texas. Elsewhere things are generally quiet.
At 5am EDT a pocket of snow is shown from around Amarillo south to Big Spring Texas with blotches of mixed beginning to appear over central Oklahoma and Northern Arkansas as overrunning begins to occur with an impulse forecast to slide through. By 8am tomorrow morning we see the expected elongated swath of snow and mixed precipitation stretching from Amarillo ENE through Oklahoma, Northern Arkansas, and touching the western extent of Tennessee. This coincides with the Winter Storm Watch and Winter Weather Advisories issued by the NWS for the region.
Through 2pm EDT tomorrow, our band of precip is expected to extend from Oklahoma and beginning to touch the extreme western extent of Virginia so that by 2am on Friday morning it is finally forecast to reach the Atlantic coastline with a band of snow and mixed extending from just north of the bootheal of Missouri, through Kentucky, Western Virginia, and central and northern Virginia, through southern Maryland and out to sea.
By 8am on Friday morning, the morning commute will be unpleasant for most of the areas mentioned above, with the change being that the western extent of snow and mixed precipitation is forecast to run from Bowling Green, Kentucky ENE through southern Maryland again, with rains extending on the southern flanks of the system.
Notice on F051, 11am EDT Friday morning, that the snows from the Rockies of Colorado and New Mexico begin extending out into southeastern Colorado, eastern New Mexico, and extend into the Texas Panhandle again. Advance 1 more frame to 2pm EDT where most of southestern Colorado and into western Kansas, northeastern new Mexico (nearly to Roswell), and the panhandle have a wider swatch of snow forecast to fall.
By the time the commute home arrives 5pm EDT, snows are expected over from northern Virginia, eastern West Virginia, through most of Maryland and southern New Jersey, with the possibility of mixed in the elevated regions of western Virginia, and western North Carolina. And the Panhandle through northeastern New Mexico, and southeastern Colorado are under the gun for the possibility of snow again.
By 2am on Saturday, the last frame of snow for the Panhandle of Texas, with a blotch in the flatlands of New Mexico, and a blip in the mountains from Taos through Santa Fe show up so that by 8am we see some specks and spots show up in SW Texas and the Panhandle again.
For the Pacific Northwest things are generally quiet until F066 Valid 2am on Saturday morning where snows are showing up just north in British Columbia heading towards Vancouver, where by 8am Bellingham and Port Angeles Washington show chances of snow and by 11am Saturday precip begins moving in with snows in the Cascades and rains in the lower terrain.
For the last few frames of our animation at F081 & F084 valid 5 & 8pm EDT on Saturday snows continue for the PNW extending into the northern Rockies and elevated regions of Arizona and New Mexico are also under the gun. The balance of CONUS (Continental United States) is fairly quiet with general rains forecast to occur in the southeast.
So are there any major snow events forecast to occur after next Saturday? Well let’s look at our Medium Range Forecast Precipitation Type Animation to see. Start basically where we left off above at F090 Valid 2am EDT on Sunday morning. Here we see the snows we previously discussed showing up for the PNW, with a blip of snow in Colorado and New Mexico. For the rest of CONUS we see rains possible running from southern Texas through the Mid-Atlantic states.
By 8pm next Sunday we see the usual rains for the PNW with snows in elevated terrain, a 984mb Low over British Columbia with another “Dodge City” low trying to form at 1008mb (1008 isn’t much to speak of as mean sea-level pressure is 1013.2mb), with the big ridge of high pressure sitting betwen Ontario and Quebec.
It does become a little interesting at F156hr 8pm next Tuesday evening (March 18) with a low pressure beginning to descend from Canada towards the northeastern states, where by 8am snows are forecast to fall from New York State through Maine, and by our last frame F180hr Valid 8pm on Wednesday most of the Northeast shows snow, as well as the PNW.
Now we’ve talked about the cP airmass embedded in the middle of the nation, or the monster ridge of high pressure. So what does that mean for temperatures in our future. Well let’s take a look at our Medium Range Forecast Minimum Temperature Animation and see. Recall this product forecasts out through 180 hours or 7.5 days, at 6 hour intervals, and each frame represents a 6 hour window of time where the lowest temperature forecast to occur 6 hours prior to and ending at the valid time, represented by the timestamp on the bottom.
The first frame from our 12z run, F006hr is valid at 2pm EDT today. Notice the huge swatch of 0ºF and below in the northern tier, and the thin red line that represents 32ºF (Temperature of Interest = TOI) extending from the Panhandle of Texas to the northeast. The south does snow pockets of general warmth, but also notice that the thin blue line (TOI) that represents 72ºF is no where to be seen.
Advance all the way through 2pm EDT on Friday, and the vast majority of the nation is still below freezing, with only small pockets of warmth in Florida and other areas of the deep south. However, by Saturday F084 valid 8pm EDT things start to get a little better as the nasty cold starts moving out and seems to stay away all the way through until our last image F180hr valid 8pm EDT on next Wednesday, March 18th.
I don’t see any tornado outbreaks or massive thunderstorms in our immediate future, so the snow event discussed above for Texas through the Mid-Atlantic states, the snow coming into the PNW, the shorter term cooler temperatures turning into warmth over the weekend and through next week, and the upcoming snow for the northeast next week seem to be the main features of interest at the moment.
Of course the flooding we discussed yesterday will still be an issue for the midwest, view our Rivers & Lakes Center for constant updates and complete information.
As always stay tuned to your favorite weather outlet, stay informed, and stay safe!
p.s. as an FYI here are some warnings currently issued in Canada for our blizzard that moved into the country.
LG Quatre - Laforge and Fontanges 11:38 AM EDT Wednesday 11 March 2009 Blizzard warning for LG Quatre - Laforge and Fontanges continued Wind, snow, cold temperatures and blowing snow will combine today to create blizzard conditions over these areas. An intense low pressure system over James Bay this morning continues toward extreme northern Québec. As this low pressure system passes, high southwest winds are expected over the St Lawrence Valley this afternoon and over western regions, temperatures will drop and snowsqualls will occur. Closer to the low pressure system, blizzard conditions are occuring with high northwest winds and extreme wind chills. Over eastern Québec, strong east winds and snowfalls will reduce visibilities beginning on this afternoon. LG Quatre - Laforge and Fontanges 11:38 AM EDT Wednesday 11 March 2009 Severe wind warning for LG Quatre - Laforge and Fontanges continued Southwest winds will reach 90 km/h in the St Lawrence Valley beginning on this afternoon. Over northern Québec, northwest winds will reach 90 km/h beginning on this afternoon. An intense low pressure system over James Bay this morning continues toward extreme northern Québec. As this low pressure system passes, high southwest winds are expected over the St Lawrence Valley this afternoon and over western regions, temperatures will drop and snowsqualls will occur. Closer to the low pressure system, blizzard conditions are occuring with high northwest winds and extreme wind chills. Over eastern Québec, strong east winds and snowfalls will reduce visibilities beginning on this afternoon. LG Quatre - Laforge and Fontanges 11:38 AM EDT Wednesday 11 March 2009 Wind chill warning for LG Quatre - Laforge and Fontanges continued The arrival of Arctic air will cause extreme wind chill conditions over these areas beginning this evening.