Watching A Potential Snowmaker

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All is now quiet across the plains as colder air has swept into the region as expected…and highs today, factoring in the winds and the wind chills are feeling some 30-40° cooler than yesterday.

Clouds were an issue earlier today, especially on the MO side, but those are now eroding/moving off towards the east and moving away from the region.

No real changes are needed to my thoughts from yesterday. I’m now tracking the next storm that is moving through CA as I type this. it will drop down towards the CA/Mexico border and start rotating around in one place for a couple of days beginning tomorrow before slowly ejecting out later SUN or early MON. You can clearly see the storm with this satellite loop from the western part of the country.

This will probably be a mostly rain event for us, however depending on the exact track it takes, the potential will be there for the atmosphere to start cooling down enough to promote a mixture then an outright changeover to snow (wet) that potentially may stick. Again the storm would have to really take a favorable track for this to happen. The models right now are mostly bullish on this occurring, which again so rarely works out perfectly from this far out. Here is a look at the GFS…

Panel 1 is Monday @ 6AM…you’re looking at the storm at about 18K feet up…or what we call the 500 mb map…the storm is in southern NM…

Panel 2 shows the storm 24 hours later…about the time we may start seeing the transition to snowfall here (if it even happens)

Here is a close up look at the surface map for 6AM Tuesday…again this will(!) change a lot, but since there is nothing else to talk about as far as our weather goes…why not?

Click on the graphic above…the 540 dashed blue line is an approximate rain/snow changeover line. The darker blue line represents the 32°F line @ 5000’…we need to get that line through the metro for us to see the mix/changeover and to the west of here the snow would be falling and sticking. This should progress through the region as the AM wears along but potentially weaken as well. The other factor is that the surface temperatures should be overly cold…somewhere in the 32-35° area during the potential snow…this too may play into any potential accumulations. Based on the GFS timing, we’d be looking at a changeover sometime after daybreak on TUE AM…with snow lasting until mid PM TUE. Here is the GFS precip type map for 10AM TUE…

Again far too early to speculate, but in a late fall/early winter season where flakes of snow have been pretty hard to come by…it’s something to talk about.

Should this thing come out farther north, and the Canadian model is more in that camp…then we’d get little or no snow at all. There isn’t any cold air for this storm to work with, so it’s going to have to generate the cold air on it’s own…which certainly can be done, especially in mid-late DEC…

Have a great Thursday!

Joe

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