Thursday Night Update On Snow

Snow flurries are being spotted to our west tonight. When will we see some? Also, I talk more about the cold blast expected for next week!

If you enjoy watching the radar as much as I do, you may have noticed that the light snow band that developed in western Ohio last night dissipated rapidly as it pushed eastward. As a result, our Ohio and far northern Kentucky towns saw some flurries, but the rest of us stayed rather dry. That pattern occurred again around 5PM this evening. We saw light snow falling into areas of Ohio, but the band virtually disappeared as it entered far eastern Ohio. So, what's the deal?

Instead of falling to the ground, this moisture pushes into our region and works to moisten the relatively dry column of air which is sitting above us. It is not until the atmospheric column becomes sufficiently moist that snow can start to fall.

Another snow band is developing tonight, and we may see a flurry squeeze out of it as it passes through our area. Of more importance is the snow we are expecting to fall tomorrow afternoon. This snow will bring the potential for a coating to an inch in spots (still not much). Here is the most recent outlook...

The NAM shows the potential for flurries around 4 AM (upper left). That will quickly dissipate, leaving us in a short dry spell after dawn. It isn't long before another snow band redevelops for the early afternoon (upper right). This snow is looking to hang around into the evening (lower left).

The GFS outlook is somewhat similar to the NAM. For the 4 AM period, the snow isn't as extensive (upper left) and the event is expected to end several hours earlier (lower left).

 

Overall, both models show only a chance of flurries tonight, a period of dryness in the late morning, and a more widespread snowfall in the afternoon. I wouldn't be surprised if we saw some snow squalls in the afternoon because of the enhanced upper level support we will see. For instance, the below image shows vorticity tomorrow in the late morning/early afternoon...


The bright colors strung across Kentucky and West Virginia indicates higher vorticity levels. This is a very helpful parameter when it comes to snow development. Keep in mind, the vorticity is expected to be even stronger progressing into the Saturday PM/ Sunday system (as I showed in last night's blog).

 

Here is an updated look at the later weekend system...

A.

B.

The GFS (image B) expects the system to arrive earlier and leave earlier than the NAM (image A). Overall, it seems that the best extent of the snowfall will arrive late Saturday evening and before dawn Sunday morning. With temperatures that night dipping down well below freezing, we can expect some slick morning road conditions (something to keep in mind for you early church-goers).

 

Looking further out into the future, this is what the Canadian model expects we see for Wednesday...

Notice how the two ridges over the oceans are squeezing closer together; which in turn pushes that cold arctic air southward into our neck of the woods. It shouldn't be as cold as that last cold blast we saw but it will most certainly put a chill in your bones. Afternoon highs are expected to top out in the 20's!

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