Snow .. Past and Future

Friday morning’s “snow event” was essentially just a dusting around the area. Most locations received less than a half inch of snow with only a few reports of around an inch coming from counties northeast of Baltimore.

From NWS, Sterling, VA

A new disturbance is expected to generate some measurable snow early Saturday and advisories and warnings are up for the region.

This particular storm may have a bit more of a kick than the Friday morning system with some slightly higher snow accumulations possible.

One computer model we use in the weather office (see above from WSI) indicates that most areas could receive at least 1-2 inches with some areas receiving more than 3 inches. Some shoveling or sweeping of a light, fluffy snow may be necessary Saturday.

This morning’s snowfall and the snow we expect early Saturday pale in comparison to what the area received on January 7-9 in 1996. That storm gave Baltimore its’ second largest snowfall in recorded history … 26.6 inches at BWI-Marshall and 29 inches on TV Hill.

That 1996 storm was a true nor’easter and there has been some buzz about a possible nor’easter or sizable storm early next week.

The evening Naval Research Laboratory satellite image shows the first elements of the storm coming together around southern California.

The storm is expected to head toward the northern Gulf Coast area over the weekend and then move northeast toward the Carolina coast.This path will allow the developing storm to pick up a lot of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico.

The computer models are not in full agreement on how close the storm will track near the Mid Atlantic coast but there is the potential for the storm to produce the biggest snow of the season so far, but that wouldn’t take much. The National Weather Service forecast maps for Tuesday and Wednesday show the storm at a reasonable distance from the shore but close enough to get our attention.

Forecast precipitation patterns and temperatures on as Tuesday afternoon computer forecast map below hint at a possible significant snow but not necessarily a record breaker. It just too early to tell.

A change of just a few tens of miles in the track of a storm like this can make a world of difference when it comes to snow so a couple of days of fine tuning will be necessary to see how things will turn out. Stay tuned.

John Collins

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