Weekend – More Precip, But More rain

Looking over the latest forecast data, and a few things are apparent:

1) The pcp will start sooner — and as rain — by early to mid-afternoon on Saturday
2) Saturday night, when we’d have the best chance of seeing snow thx to diurnal cooling, the pcp subsides as the first batch of moisture keeps pushing north
3) A new coastal low develops Sunday and reinvigorates the pcp, which could be heavy at times, but again, the fact that it’s during the day in late March means even if it’s snow, it won’t add to much.

A bit more info…

There are other factors at play, the most notable: We look at the movement of features aloft, typically honing in on temperatures and pressure at a level called “850mb”, which is about ~5,000 feet up in these parts. As an FYI, where the low is located at the surface is not necessarily where it is aloft… and in this case, despite a surface low to our east, the main upper-air low is to our west, over eastern Ohio. That will act to pull in warmer air aloft, and make it even more difficult to get snow, especially during the day on Sunday.

There’s enough against this that I think for most of us, this will be a cold rain and novelty wet nighttime snow event, with maybe a coating to perhaps an inch or two in the Piedmont, but even this only on grassy and elevated surfaces.

There are a few outlier models that show the precip intensifying earlier on Sunday, getting ramped back up during the pre-dawn hours. If this were to happen, then we’d be chatting about 2-4″ of snow on grassy/elevated surfaces before the daylight made snow accumulations virtually impossible. If this were January, I’d be all sorts of pumped; the liquid equivalent in the models is averaging a solid 0.5-1.0″, locally more,,, and that’d be a solid 5-10″ snow in the dead of winter. It’s March… and those snowfall ratios don’t apply.

I’ll keep you updated in case anything changes.


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