Well, it looks like we might finally see some snow this winter, and no, it's not in Canada, it appears it will be right here in the metro area. Whatever falls will be very light, but hey, it's snow! :-)
The models are showing cold air moving in over the weekend, and HPC's short term discussion said this today:
CYCLONIC FLOW AROUND THE LARGE CIRCULATION NEAR NEW ENGLAND WILL CAUSE COLDER TEMPERATURES TO FLOW INTO THE SOUTHERN U.S. WHERE DAYTIME HIGHS ARE FORECAST TO BE 10 TO 20 DEGREES BELOW AVERAGE IN AND AROUND THE CENTRAL AND LOWER MISSISSIPPI VALLEY OVER THE NEXT FEW DAYS. WITH THE PRIMARY ASSOCIATED COLD FRONT SINKING SOUTH INTO CUBA...TEMPERATURES WILL BE ROUGHLY 10 DEGREES COOLER THAN AVERAGE ACROSS THE FLORIDA PENINSULA.
Couple the cold air with a strong shortwave that will be diving south from the plains, and you have the ingredients for snow. Here's what the Atlanta NWS office said this morning:
LONG TERM /FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... FOCUS OF THE EXTENDED FORECAST PERIOD CONTINUES TO BE THE CHANCE FOR WINTRY PRECIPITATION ACROSS NORTH GEORGIA FRIDAY NIGHT THROUGH SATURDAY EVENING. MEDIUM RANGE MODELS HAVE BEEN CONSISTENT OVER THE PAST SEVERAL RUNS. GFS AND ECMWF ARE EVEN MORE IN LINE WITH EACH OTHER NOW CONCERNING THE EVOLUTION OF THE LARGE SCALE UPPER TROUGH ALTHOUGH THEY STILL CONTINUE TO SHOW SOME DIFFERENCES CONCERNING THE TRACK AND STRENGTH OF THE SMALL BUT VIGOROUS SHORT WAVE MOVING THROUGH THE MEAN FLOW ACROSS THE REGION SATURDAY.
EVEN SO BOTH MODELS ALONG WITH THE SREF CONTINUE TO GENERATE FAIRLY LOW QPF VALUES THROUGH THE EVENT...INCLUDING SATURDAY WHEN THE BEST UPPER FORCING IN IMPACTING NORTH GEORGIA. THIS IS LIKELY A REFLECTION OF THE LACK OF LOW LEVEL MOISTURE AVAILABLE AS THE SURFACE FLOW REMAINS NORTHWESTERLY AND VERY LITTLE SURFACE REFLECTION IS EVIDENT IN THE PRESSURE FIELD IN ASSOCIATION WITH THE SHORT WAVE.
RIGHT NOW IT APPEARS THAT THE ATMOSPHERE WILL BE COOL ENOUGH FOR A RAIN/SNOW MIXTURE ACROSS THE FAR NORTH WITH MOSTLY SNOW AT HIGHER ELEVATIONS AND A RAIN/SNOW MIX AT TIMES AT LEAST AS FAR SOUTH AS THE SOUTHERN ATLANTA SUBURBS AND SOUTH OF ATHENS. RIGHT NOW SNOW TOTALS ARE EXPECTED TO BE LIGHT WITH GENERALLY A HALF INCH OR LESS ACROSS THE FAR NORTH...WITH AN INCH OR SO POSSIBLE AT THE HIGHER ELEVATIONS... AND A MORNING/EVENING DUSTING POSSIBLE SATURDAY AS FAR SOUTH AS THE SOUTHERN ATLANTA METRO TO SOUTH OF ATHENS.
ALTHOUGH THE CHANCES FOR PRECIPITATION HAVE SHOWN AN INCREASE IN CONFIDENCE OVER THE PAST FEW DAYS...THE CONFIDENCE IN AMOUNTS HAS REMAINED A BIT MORE TENUOUS. THIS EVENT WILL NEED TO BE WATCH CLOSELY AS IT CONTINUES TO EVOLVE FOR ANY CHANGES IN EXPECTED AMOUNTS AND GEOGRAPHIC DISTRIBUTION.
Maybe the kid in all of us will get to see some snow falling this weekend! We'll continue to track this system and we'll keep you informed as to the timing and strength as it approaches.
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