A Wintry Turn Later in the Week, but HOW Wintry?

January 9th, 2012 at 8:59 pm by under 4 Warn Weather

Temperatures will remain above average into Thursday, peaking on Wednesday. But in the wake of an area of low pressure, colder weather will be returning Thursday night into the weekend, with a change from rain to some snow. There are indications of some Lake Effect Snow before Friday morning into Friday. As of this posting, it’s too soon to focus in on lake snow intensity and/or location. Some computer guidance points to a more prolonged period of southwest winds for Friday, which would bring measurable lake snow close to the metro area, while other guidance suggests a brief period of SWly winds, veering more quickly to westerly. In that event, any lake snow would be steered from possibly near the metro area into ski country more quickly.

While this will be something of a wintry outbreak and pattern, there are still no signs of a more fundamental pattern shift to truly wintry conditions of any real duration. Without a blocking ridge of high pressure setting up near Greenland, the northern branch of the jetstream can only “buckle” southward (allowing true arctic air to move south) for relatively short timespans, rather than the lengthier cold periods we’re more accustomed to in the Great Lakes and NE. Buffalo’s official snow total for the season is at 5.5″, while normally we would have had more than 43″ by this date. And, Lake Erie is at 39 degrees, an impressive 5 degrees above average. That would mean if we had a lengthier period of SW winds on Friday with modified arctic air crossing those warm waters, snow totals could be more impressive. The Meteorologists of WeatherWatch 4 will keep you updated on this potential.

428 Responses to “A Wintry Turn Later in the Week, but HOW Wintry?”

  1. Don Paul says:

    Juju, the depicted Positive Vorticity Advection is nothing new.

  2. Lisa says:

    I give…the weather channel is saying an inch tonight 2-4 tomorrow and 1 to 3 tomorrow night a total of 5 to 8 inches in the next 36 hours….earlier it was 3 to 6 in 36 hours.


  3. Lisa says:

    Winter Weather Advisory
    from Fri, 4am until Fri, 7pm EST
    5-8 in of snow over the next 36 hours

  4. Dave from Roc says:

    Don – I think you mentioned last night that models have backed off a bit on the stronger winds. I know it will still be windy regardless, but how strong do you expect them to be on the Niagara Frontier?

  5. Juju the cat says:

    Don yeah I didn’t look at that until I started looking at everything to find something that would equate to more snow for tomorrow because the winds may be strong and there some important things missing for this to be a good storm, but with the possibility of lake enhancement and multiple lows arounds us I figure we might be surprised, but the models just aren’t showing it. However, the 12z gfs shows 850 temps to -8 or -9 range during friday, so could this be promising for decent lake enhancement don?

  6. Nick2 says:

    Joe Lundberg from AccuWx has a great blog today about the difficulties making long-term forecasts and why this year is so difficult to analog to other years. This winter is really making some Mets hit the books again so to speak. With that said the longer range looks mild once again toward the end of the month

  7. Don Paul says:

    The 850 temps aren’t as directly related to lake enhancement as they are to lake effect, although there is still some relationship.


  8. art michalski says:

    Why do you have a Jan 9th date on the forecast? Is this forecast current or did you give up on keeping this site updated.

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