Snow Brings In Dangerous Cold With Strong Winds

Snow Brings In Dangerous Cold With Strong Winds

Temps6AMFriFebruary 12 – It may be cold enough for you already, but it is going to get colder. We start with single digits and teens, but the core of the arctic air will arrive this evening and last all weekend. The York PA airport is the anomaly with a reading of -5°F. That is accurate, but very localized. This may be one of the coldest Valentiness Days on record. Beyond that Monday will bring accumulating snow. The big question will be the developing storm, which I discussed last night. The trend has been to transition to ice, and rain. But that storm track is still up for debate. The focus now is on the front end and the arrival of the new air mass with a clipper. So if you have plans tonight, consider snow. More snow showers will continue Saturday as the high temperature will be at midnight, then growing colder all day. The Polar Vortex may clip northern New England, but you will think it has come here.

Snow showers:

The arrival of the cold air, we will come with snow this evening. Here is a look at the spread of snow as shown by the HRRR Model. A steady band could drop an inch or two west. It will arrive in Baltimore around 8PM then reach Annapolis and the Eastern Shore tonight (beyond this slider –> timeframe)

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GFS Model View:

Once again we have a clipper to our north and a developing Low along the coast that will join forces offshore. But the trend has been to verify farther west… which would impact Delmarva. There will be some snow overnight, but it is possible they can get a little more. Plus, seeing how this plays out, might help shed insight into the Tuesday storm ahead. Needless to say, there will be strong winds and more snow streamers from Lake Erie reaching into central Maryland during the day Saturday.

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Weekend Temperatures And Wind Chill

Here are the plots for expected temperatures. Please note that strong wind gusts will make it feel colder and that could drop down to -10°F or lower.

Quick Notes:

Things to keep in mind:

  • Today: Afternoon in the 20s, Wind Chill In the teens
  • Saturday: The high temperature will be at midnight. Falling temps in the teens for the afternoon. Wind Chill between 0°F and -25°F


  1. Saturday Feb 13: Record Low = 1°F in 1983; Coldest Daily High 10°F in 1899 (but our high will be at midnight then falling all day)
  2. Sunday Feb 14: Record Low = -2°F in 1979; Coldest Daily High 18°F in 1916 (best chance to get this one)


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Screen Shot2016-02-12 05_44_04So what’s the deal?

  • This weekend: Near record cold (but not the purpose of this post)
  • Monday: Light snow
  • Tuesday: Faith in the Flakes or Freezing Rain. Snow and or icing. Rain, however a good best near and east of the Chesapeake Bay.
  • Personally I think we will see more fluctuation in the modeling. This track below will not be the final solution
  • Arctic air, especially with snow pack, will not retreat as quickly as shown below.
  • Atmospheric Memory:  There is a spot off of the set coast that many recent storms continue to pass. It has been on display with two explosive coastal storms that clipped the coastal areas. I believe the storm will trend back east, thus colder for us.
  • Ice: The ground will be frozen. Even if we have snow to rain transition shown below, there will be a period of freezing rain that will be tough to break on Tuesday morning.
  • Ice: Should the track not be far enough east, the cold air will likely hold longer and lead to freezing rain or sleet Tuesday morning
  • Wrap Around Snow:  We often miss out of much wrap around (the snow behind the storm as it passes northeast). This is due to downslope winds from the mountains drying out.  But this version on the GFS storm track shows plenty o energy to push a burst of snow with the return of freezing air Tuesday night.

See my last report on the storm potential here.

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