Winter weather haters, thank your lucky stars… because roughly 50 to 75 miles makes all the difference between a nor’easter near miss… and a coastal storm clobbering.
– After 6pm : Scattered snow showers develop, especially in Catskills
– 10pm to 2am : Snow develops from south to north
– 11pm to 9am : Best chance for steady snow.
– 10am to 2pm : Snow or snow showers taper from west to east
– 2pm to 8pm : Scattered snow showers & squalls possible (especially in the Catskills)
– Catskills & Taconics (Zone 1, 2 & 4): 5 to 8 inches
– Majority of Hudson Valley (Zone 3, 5, 6, 7, 8 & 9) 2 to 5 inches
I apologize for the delay in the discussion being completed. Non weather related responsibilities delayed the post, but enough time lost already, lets dive in. The plus side of a delay, is that we have more information now than we had a couple hours ago. The storm is looking potentially snowier than initially expected, as the western edge of the snow shield tries to push its way back into the Hudson Valley.
So here’s where we are as of late night…
We’re going to go through simulated radars in a moment, but this radar image is the 1st sign that the eastern half of the Hudson Valley could end up doing a bit better than forecasted in terms of snow totals. Outlined in black is a healthy snow band, that has snowfall rates of 1/2 inch to 1 inch per hour within it. It’s early… but this looks likely to be the western edge of the heavier snow shield. As the storm continues, this band of snow will likely continue rotating westward… before stalling out somewhere over the Hudson Valley.
This first band of snow will moisten the atmosphere westward into the Hudson Valley, and then additional snow bands will rotate westward in behind it. This band will be important in terms of accumulations, because it will likely show us where the heaviest snow totals will be. From this band, and points east… are most likely to reach the forecasted snow amounts… and have the best chance to overachieve in terms of snow totals. Because as we look forward, you’ll see that as this storm progresses forward, the snow shield will pivot over the Hudson Valley, and so where this band reaches… it will snow steadily… and likely continue to snow steadily, through the morning on Thursday.
So as we approach sunrise on Tuesday, you’ll notice that the storm is a powerful 970mb, and if this storm was 50 miles further west, the Hudson Valley would be in for a major storm. With that said… the close up of the Hudson Valley shows moderate snows across the entire region, with the heaviest snows expected as you go further south and east. But as we mentioned at the beginning of this discussion, that first heavier snow band rotating through will add a bit of a wild card to where the heavier snows will be with this system. We’ll have to watch and see just where the heavier bands set up.
As we move through the morning, the snow will continue to fall light to moderately… possibly even heavy for short periods in the eastern Hudson Valley. This snow should be heavy enough to keep road conditions rather slick and snow covered in many cases. We’ll have to see how much snow cover we get on paved surfaces… with temperatures rather close to freezing. The AM commute could be a bit dicey as a result.
As the morning progresses, the sun will get higher in the sky… and the snow will begin to struggle to stick to the roads. In mid March, the snow needs to fall quite hard to stick to the roads during the daylight hours. We’re not sure that it will fall hard enough to keep the roads snow covered on Tuesday… but it’s best to play it safe, and expect snow covered roadways. Allow extra time for your travel on Tuesday morning… especially as you go further east (where it will snow harder), and also up in elevation (where it is colder).
The snow is likely to last into the afternoon, and as we mentioned… the location of the back edge of the snow is important, because it could lead to an extended period of light to moderate snow in the HV through the afternoon…
You’ll notice that while this storm really cranks up and moves out to sea… the snow potentially could linger in the Hudson Valley into mid Afternoon. Snow rates would be lighter most likely, and roads would likely be just wet by this point (but wait and see, we can’t assume it will be fine)… but snow could continue to accumulate on grass and unpaved surfaces.
When all is said and done… and the snow tapers off from SW to NE between 1pm and 6pm (you’ll notice it hangs on longer in the NE Hudson Valley)… snowfall amounts in the region should average 3 to 6 inches. However… the eastern Hudson Valley, especially east of the Hudson River and north of I-84… could see 5 to 8 inches. If the snow bands really wrap up around this storm… we could see some areas over-achieve on snow totals. But based on current data, a widespread 2 to 5… or 3 to 6 inches look good.
We’ll have to see if we have to tweak the snowfall amounts up an inch or two, based on how these snow bands perform… which is all part of now-casting, which we’ll continue to do through the storm on Tuesday.
Be safe… and thank you for your continued support!