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December 16, 2010

1 to 3 inches due, with rush hour headaches

It sure isn't a lot of snow, certainly not by last winter's standards. But the first measurable snowfall of the season is getting off to a quick start and seems poised to mess up a perfectly nice evening rush hour commute.

UPDATE, 11:20 a.m.: The snow has begun falling in downtown Baltimore. If you're out there driving around, let us know if road conditions begin to deteriorate, or if highway crews are staying ahead of it. Send us a comment and describe. Thanks!

UPDATE, 12:20 p.m.: Foot's Forecast is calling for 4 inches in Annapolis; 2.5 inches at BWI-Marshall; 2.5 inches at Bel Air; 2.8 inches in Dundalk; 2.75 inches in Reisterstown.

By 12:30 p.m. the snow was sticking - or "laying," as they say in Baltimore - to city streets, and traffic was slowing down. Starting to become a traffic issue.

UPDATE, 2:45 p.m.: The NWS says they may lift the Winter Weather Advisory early as the storm moves rapidly to the east. But even as the snow stops, the cold will remain. That means icy patches will remain a hazard into tomorrow. More snow is possible for the weekend, but the computer models disagree on that. More later. Earlier post resumes:

Forecasters at the National Weather Service are predicting "about an inch" of snow for the northern tier of counties farthest from the Virginia storm track. But places south of that, and on the Eastern Shore, could see as much as 3 inches before it all winds down this evening. Temperatures are  forecast to remain in the upper 20s, making this an all-snow event for Maryland.

Snow BaltimoreSnow was already falling at 10 a.m. in Washington, D.C. Here are the Winter Weather Advisories. And here's how the forecasts break down:

1 inch: Frederick, Carroll, Baltimore, Harford counties, including the cities of Frederick, Westminster and Baltimore. Beginning around 11 a.m., contiuing through the evening rush and ending around  9 p.m. "Travel difficulties... Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities and use caution while driving."

1 to 2 inches: District of Columbia, Montgomery, Howard, Prince George's, Anne Arundel counties. Beginning in late morning, continuing into the early evening, and through the evening rush hour. "Travel difficulties ... Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities and use caution while driving."

1 to 3 inches: Charles, Calvert and St. Mary's counties. Schools are closed. Snow is falling, will continue through the early evening. "Travel difficulties ...Be prepared for slippery roads and limited visibilities and use caution while driving.

1 to 3 inches: Dorchester, Wicomico, Somerset counties, Maryland beaches. SNow beginning in late morning, continuing into early evening. "Travel difficulties... Be prepared for snow-covered roads and limited visibilities and use caution while driving."

1 to 3 inches:  Southern Delaware, Talbot and Caroline counties. "Largest impact should be during the evening commute from school and work. Snow will accumulate quickly on untreated roadways as the ground is cold. The first widespread snow of the season normally causes numerous accidents. Please be very careful driving later today."

Eric the Red is agreeing with one model that sets the storm's "peak intensity" between 1 and 4 p.m., "and it's pretty much done by 7. A quick-hitting 1-2 inches seems likely now in central MD, closer to an inch in northern MD, and perhaps 2-3 inches south of BWI. Northern and Central VA are still looking at 2-4 inches, perhaps more. I think this is reasonable."

Here's Foot's Forecast. And here's the storm-total radar loop.

(SUN PHOTO: Clarksville, Md., Kim Hairston, Dec. 16, 2010)

Posted by Frank Roylance at 10:21 AM | | Comments (11)
Categories: Winter weather


It started snowing about 10:30 in Columbia (I-95 and MD 175). The main streets seem to be fine, and people are taking it easy. The salt trucks are out in Howard County, hitting the roads (and passing vehicles). The only place I had any trouble was pulling into my driveway, where the snow was undisturbed. I skidded a couple feet, and had to back up to turn in. :-)

Let it snow!

Snow for Christmas Party tonite, NO DRINKING!

Question: Why does it seem quiet with snow falling? Cloud cover alone seems to accent noise, but add snow and it gets quiet? Imagination, or does the snow absorb sound? Or does everyone actually stop what they are doing, so no noise (smile)

The good folks over at Foots Forecast are predicting 4 inches in the Annapolis area by 9 pm.!/photo.php?fbid=181296661895949&set=a.177554638936818.47068.166030800089202&pid=609096&id=166030800089202

Wheeeeeeeeeee! I'm as giddy as a schoolkid!

FR: How quickly we forget...


She & her best-friend-neighbor doggie are running around like spirits possessed.

Are the good times FINALLY coming back? coming back? COMING BACK???

Doggies want to know -- know --know!!!

East Fort Avenue was slick under the snow layer around 1 p.m., with nary a salt truck in sight.

Frank, while I am not "giddy as a schoolkid," I am quite content, watching the snow fall and enjoying it. I haven't forgotten a thing about last year's snow, and the massive disruption it caused, but...

Snow is just magical! Especially right before Christmas!

Once again the kids and people of Foot completely outdo the so-called professionals. Just like last year.

I drove down Loch Raven near Good Sam about an hour ago and it was solid ice under the snow. Cars going skewiff!

Yay! At home making Christmas cookies and watching it snow and throwing more logs on the fire.

I must say snow is more of a special event here than in my hometown of Chicago. It's more fun here!

Don: how did Foot's Forecast "completely outdo" the professions? The pros nailed it; as usual the kiddies went for the max.

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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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