January 3 2018

The warnings and advisories are expanding inland as expected. The storm in the southeast will be hugging the coast a little tighter and will be spreading snow our way overnight to make for a rough Thursday morning commute. This will be a full out blizzard along the beaches. A Blizzard Warning is in place for Virginia Beach. Winter Storm Warnings in place for much of Delmarva. The addition here is the Winter Weather Advisory that confirms the snow west of the Bay through Frederick and Montgomery Counties in Maryland. Also added in are York and Lancaster in PA

This will be a morning event that will last through the afternoon on Delmarva. More on the snow amounts below.

Near Blizzard Conditions

Before we get to snow amounts, I can not ignore the winds with this monster storm. It will be so strong, that measuring snow may be a fruitless effort. Blowing and drifting snow will make for cleared roads after the snow stops, get snow covered again.

A Blizzard by definition is when there is 1 inch of snow per hour with 35 mph winds for 3 consecutive hours. It appears the closest approach of the Low will be around 9 AM, at which point the winds will grow to a problems.  The snow rates may not be that high and the winds will be ‘gusting’ into the range, but these maps confirm that blizzard ‘like’ conditions will hit central Maryland and southern PA. But it will be worse along the coast.

Winds: Steady 20 mph or higher in green shading… 30 to 50 mph winds south of the Bay Bridge and along the coast.


Wind Gusts 30 to 50 mph

Snow Timeline

Arrival between Midnight and 3 AM

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Daybreak Pivot

By daybreak the Low will be passing Virginia Beach and Ocean City. This is when the ‘pivot’ will occur. That is where the wrap around snow will swing down from the NW around the back side of the Low Pressure influence. This is when the back side of the snow will hold nearly steady for a few hours, but send bands from the north. That back edge is where the cut off will be and it appear to be between Frederick and Westminster…


Wrap Around Snow and showers may linger until noon… This map may not be exact, so it could cut off sooner near Washington and Baltimore. Remember that snow blowing and drifting will be an issue when the accumulation cuts off.

Snow Amounts

East Gets The Beast, Less West

Here is my updated snowcast.

Please note that a shift of 50 miles west could double your snow totals, while a 50 mile shift east can cut them in half or off all together.

  • A: Dusting to 2 Inches
  • B: 2 to 4 Inches
  • C: 3 to 6 inches
  • D: 6 to 12 inches

Model Maps

NAM 3 Km May be Too Aggressive

Notice the sharp cut-off between Westminster, Frederick, and west of Washington.


Canadian Model

This Is More Conservative.


National Weather Service Maps





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Also See:

My Winter Outlook 2017-2018 for more snow

Maryland Winters

La Nina Formed: What it could mean to our winter

NOAA Winter Outlook: Not The Best But Not The Worst For Snow

Two Farmers Almanacs Winter 2018 Outlooks

Winter Weather Folkore: Suggestions from Animals and Crops

First Frost and Freeze Dates For Maryland (southern PA and northern VA)

My Preliminary Winter Outlook Notes

Low Snow Winters In Baltimore: To Repeat Or Not Repeat

NOAA Ranks Blizzard 2016 4th Worst Snowstorm On Record

Blizzard 2016 Record Top Snowstorm: Area Totals

Extreme Weather of 2015 balanced out on both ends