Blizzard of 2009

So Close, Yet So Far

What a wild weather weekend this is turning into. It has snowed as far south as Southern Georgia, Mississippi and even in the "Yellowhammer" state (Alabama), so this Sunday you might hum, "she comes from Alabama with a Banjo covered with snow on her knee".

At 2 o'clock, it is snowing at the rate of an inch an hour in Atlanta where a rare southern thunder snowstorm has all but shut down the Hartsfield International Airport. Delays are 2 hours and mounting.

Herd fans who recall the days of 2 dollar bills in Asheville will be interested to know by dusk a half a foot of snow will be on the ground in the Carolina Mountains. This includes Boone where the song, "don't worry just beat Appy" still rings proudly in the minds of MU football fans.

At Charlotte, rain is changing to sleet and snow and the trip along I-77 into the Queen City will be a mess this afternoon. By dawn, there may be snow on the beaches as far south as the Myrtle Beach Grand Strand. I expect the Douglas International airport to have airline cancellations and perhaps even be closed by late afternoon.

All said, the forecast of a wet snowstorm in Appalachia proved to be dead on. Indeed, parts of Appalachia are reeling!

But we live in a sort of donut here at home where our prospects for wet snow turned into a sleety, rainy mix on Saturday night with a small covering of ice or snow in parts of the region. That meant my forecast for several inches of wet snow went down the tubes.

Still the eastern one third of West Virginia including the Greenbrier and New Valleys may get in on some accumulating snow this afternoon and tonight.

Now for me comes the even more painful admission. My home town of Philadelphia, in fact all the Megapolitan towns from DC and Baltimore north to NYC and Boston, will get in on a red blooded North American Blizzard tonight. Wind driven heavy snows will pile up to a foot or more in many spots with 35 mile per hour winds whipping the snow into 3 foot drifts. Sections of I-95 from Richmond north will likely be closed at the height of the storm.

My blog on Thursday said it best; namely, the change in seasons sponsors the breeding time for big winter storms. This first day of March as the Lion roars onto the scene is a prime example.
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