It happens every winter. At some point after enjoying really nice weather reality sets in and we experience our winter. Our reality check is about to begin.
Temperatures today and tomorrow will be near normal or a bit below…in the 40’s. Northwest winds, however, will kick up today and tomorrow before we settle into daytime highs in the upper 30’s toward week’s end.
We are facing the possibility of our first bout of frozen precipitation over the weekend. Currently there are two storm systems brewing. One will be dipping down from Canada, over the Great Lakes, towards the mid Atlantic and the northeast. The other is developing over the southern plains and is expected to track up the coast from the south.
If the storms remain separate from each other most of the east coast will experience rather light precipitation. If the storms merge then a strong low pressure system will form off the mid Atlantic coast. If you’ve lived here for any length of time you know what that can possibly mean.
I have been observing several of my usual sources in an attempt to sort this out. I must tell you, however, that due to the partial shutdown of the US government that several of my reliable sources are not being updated.
Luckily, I can rely on my European friends and their ECMWF model. It has been fairly bullish on this storm for a couple of days. As you may be aware, none of us should put a lot of credence in a weather model that is close to 4 days out, as this one currently is. The link below will take you to an animated model of the storm track.
If the late Thursday ECMWF model run still has a strong probability of wintry precipitation then I believe we can begin to take it seriously. In that case it almost becomes a certainty that we may need our shovels and/or ice scrapers late Saturday night and Sunday.