A little snow, a little rain, a little snow on Dec. 5
UPDATE: The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory from the Western Shore to Allegany County. Expect 1 to 2 inches of snow Saturday in Baltimore. Points north and west of the urban corridor could see 2 to 4 inches; to the south and east, little to no accumulation. Earlier post below.
Another storm spinning up in the eastern Gulf of Mexico is expected to be off the Carolina coast by Saturday morning, raising the chances for some snow in Baltimore on Dec, 5. That would be the sixth time that's happened in the past eight years (or the seventh, if you factor in the Leap Year in 2008, when a trace of snow was noted at BWI on the 6th).
The forecast this morning calls for a "slight chance" for rain at BWI after 3 a.m. Saturday morning, changing to snow by dawn, then "rain and snow likely" between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m.
The precipitation would change back to all snow by late afternoon, continuing into the evening - if the forecast holds up. The chances, for now, are put at 80 percent.
AccuWeather.com, as we've come to expect, puts an edgier spin on the forecast, calling for 1 to 3 inches west of I-95, with travel delays, wet-to-slushy highways. (Map at left.) For a calmer analysis, check out Mr. Foot's forecast. He sees an inch. Maybe.
From there - Sunday through Tuesday - things look sunny, with highs in the 40s and lows near freezing.
Once again, precisely what happens Saturday, where it happens and when, will all depend on a delicate balance of timing, the storm track up the coast, and the interplay of temperatures aloft, where the snow will form, and near the surface.
Forecasters say it will "definitely" be cold enough to form the snow aloft as the counter-clockwise spin of winds around the storm draws cold air into our region from the north. But temperatures at the surface will range from the middle 30s in the western suburbs, to the lower 40s in Southern Maryland. On balance, expect flakes in the air west of the cities, and a rain/snow mix east of the urban corridor. For BWI, forecasters are predicting "less than one inch" of accumulation.
Nothing to worry about; just another Dec. 5 with flakes in the air, and perhaps a hint of snowier days to come.