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January 29, 2010

Real snow stays south

NOAA

Looks like the worst of the wintry weather will stay well to the south of the Baltimore area, though we will likely see some flakes, and maybe enough to whiten the ground.

Steve Zubrick, the science and operations officer at the NWS forecast office in Sterling, Va., sent along the map above, which shows the geography of all the watches and warnings posted today for the storm that is moving east after slicking down portions of Texas and Oklahoma.

Here's his note:

"Frank,

"I found this image impressive...showing the east-west swath of winter storm warnings/watches for the southern track storm system moving east currently. Haven't seen that wide and consistent a swath in a long time. Thanks El Nino!

"The heaviest precip associated w/ this storm will stay to the south of the Balt area...but still some snow possible but amounts will be on the light side.

"A strong confluence zone over the Mid-Atlantic aloft.

"That's why this one is staying south...and limiting the northward push of moisture. - Steve Z."

The morning discussion continues to keep the worst of the weather well to our south, although Southern Maryland could see 3 to 5 inches by Sterling's way of thinking. On the Eastern Shore, Berlin could see 1 to 3 inches, and  Snow Hill could see 2 to 4. Those lower counties are under a Winter Storm Watch Saturday through Sunday morning.

Even so, Mr. Foot and his students see some hints of some northward creep in the forecast. Here's their take on the prospects for snow in the Baltimore area. 

Posted by Frank Roylance at 8:01 AM | | Comments (2)
Categories: Forecasts
        

Comments

Capital Weather Gang at the WaPo and Accuweather.com seem to be inching the storm north. What do you think? Any chance we're going to get dumped on after all?

FR: Several forecasters have been inching it north. I guess we'll find out tomorrow.

I turned the TV on tonight and checked the Weather Channel, and knew immediately the forecast was changing. I checked Foot to confirm. There's no way we're getting a "dusting". Right now, it looks like were in the bullseye for the northern 1/3 to 1/2 of the snow band. And there's a lot more moisture moving up from the Southwest.

I think we're gonna get at least 6" tomorrow. Possibly more. We could get smoked. I hope the snow plows are prepped, or traffic's gonna suck. Good thing it's a Saturday.

Foot kept talking about the Northern Oscillation being weaker than the models were projecting, but then he finally blinked yesterday and toned his forecast down significantly for our area. But now it looks like the High over Eastern Canada and the Lakes is, in fact, weakening. That, plus all the moisture coming up from the Gulf seems to have caught everyone off guard.

This is gonna get interesting. I may be wrong, but I think there's going to be egg on some faces with some of the hotshot forecasters, come next week's wrap-ups.

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About Frank Roylance
This site is the Maryland Weather archive. The current Maryland Weather blog can be found here.
Frank Roylance is a reporter for The Baltimore Sun. He came to Baltimore from New Bedford, Mass. in 1980 to join the old Evening Sun. He moved to the morning Sun when the papers merged in 1992, and has spent most of his time since covering science, including astronomy and the weather. One of The Baltimore Sun's first online Web logs, the Weather Blog debuted in October 2004. In June 2006 Frank also began writing comments on local weather and stargazing for The Baltimore Sun's print Weather Page. Frank also answers readers’ weather queries for the newspaper and the blog. Frank Roylance retired in October 2011. Maryland Weather is now being updated by members of The Baltimore Sun staff
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