Sunday, November 22, 2009

Cold Turkey?

We are getting to the time of year where everyone likes to ask me what it is going to be like for the holidays. Unfortunately, it is a little early to be talking about Christmas, New Years, etc., but I can talk about Thanksgiving.

Even though it is still 4 1/2 days away, I can show you some of the data we pour through in the StormTeam Weather Center. Below is a snapshot of what the NWS's global forecast model is suggesting. There is a lot on the graphic, but let me help you digest it.

To begin with time runs from right to left on this specific program (called BUFKIT). The red line is the temperature at the surface. The colored vertical bars are precipitation. (Green-rain | Blue-snow | Orange-sleet) The gray splotches are where the model predicts there will be clouds.

The first thing that probably jumps out at you is the green bars. That is indicating the chance of rain we have in the forecast for Tuesday. The rain will develop ahead/along a cold front that is going to clip the area. It isn't anything to be too concerned about. The model is putting out only 0.11" of rain through the day.

Take a closer look at the red line. Note how it is showing temperatures in the upper 40's for highs behind the cold front Wednesday.

Keep following the line to the left. It brings in high temperatures of only the lower 40's for Thursday (Thanksgiving). Just below the red line notice all the clouds it brings in with the system for Thursday. That is what will likely keep temperatures feeling cold that day. Last night the models were still indicating highs in the upper 40's to lower 50's. I figured we'd be colder than that with cloud cover so I went with a high of 45° with the idea I would probably be dropping the temps more for this evening's forecast. After seeing this, I will most likely be doing so.

With all the low level moisture in the form of clouds, notice how the model is trying to drop some snow flurries or some sleet to the area. There is very little moisture. When you add up with the model is spitting out, it comes to a whopping 0.008" of liquid. That would equate to a few flurries. I don't think it is entirely out of the question we could see a few flurries floating through the air that day. Typically with this type of system, the cold air in place, and all the low clouds we often do see some "snow flurry-age".

As I like to say, stay tuned...

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