The calendar says that astronomical Spring starts on Tuesday, but the current weather seems to be saying otherwise. Despite the sunshine today, we are only seeing temps in the mid to upper 30s across the state, those highs are similar to what we’d expect at the end of January compared to the middle of March. Furthermore, we’ve got another chance at some snow in the forecast; while it’s not a sure thing by any means, the trends today have been towards at least getting some snow into the state and given our seasonal trend this winter to bring storms northwest in the short range, this system bears watching.
Monday – Tuesday
Calm and cool weather to start off your workweek as a leading wave of energy passes to our south and out to sea. Daytime highs will once again be only in the mid to upper 30s across the state, which is approximately 5-8 degrees below normal. Should see mostly sunny skies for Monday, but expect clouds to move in for Tuesday as the previously mentioned system passes to our south and out to sea. Could see some flurries make their way onto the immediate south coast, but no accumulation is expected.
Interesting setup with a “bowling ball” storm moving west to east across the country and then breaking up into two distinct systems when the storm reaches the east coast. While the first system scoots harmlessly out to sea (after bringing a major snowstorm to the mid Atlantic), there are some signs that the trailing wave will try to develop into its own coastal storm and bring snow up the coast into New York and New England. Over the last couple of days, the model guidance has generally agreed that the system will pass to our southeast and spare us from its precipitation shield, but various pieces of guidance have occasionally bucked the trend and brought a more significant event to the area. We’ve seen that accelerate a bit today, with all three of the major ensemble suites now suggesting at least some impact from the storm.
Let’s take a look at the two extremes on the guidance. Here’s a look at the 12z GFS for the period in question.
What’s causing the difference? One of the main variables in this system is the first system. If it remains weak, there is enough space for the followup wave to amplify and become the main event, keeping the low closer to the coast and resulting in a snowstorm for us. If the first event is stronger, it keeps the second event weaker, and so by the time it is finally able to intensify it is too far east to bring precipitation back to our area.
Here’s a look at the ensemble spread on the GEPS (Canadian ensembles). You can see that the biggest cluster of the ensemble members is to the west of the mean, suggesting that the mean may continue to move west in future cycles. This trend repeats itself on the other two ensembles as well.
Finally, some interesting statistics from todays Euro ensemble, which is the farthest northwest of the three ensembles. At Bridgeport Airport, 28/51(55%) of the members have at least 2” of snow, with 18/51(35%) having at least 6” of snow. At BDL, those numbers are 21/51(41%) and 12/51(23%) respectively, which makes sense given that this storm will likely favor coastal areas. To me, that suggests that while the chance of significant snow is present, it’s far from a lock by any means, and we need to keep an eye on future runs to see where this system ends up tracking. Stay tuned!
High pressure once again takes control for the end of the week into the upcoming weekend, leading to clear skies and seasonably cool temps. Expect highs in the mid 40s.
Monday: Mostly sunny, with highs in the mid to upper 30s.
Tuesday: A slight chance of snow showers, otherwise, mostly cloudy, with highs in the mid to upper 30s. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Wednesday: A chance of snow, otherwise, mostly cloudy, with highs in the mid 30s. Chance of precipitation is 50%.
Thursday: A chance of snow, otherwise, mostly cloudy, with highs in the mid 30s. Chance of precipitation is 50%.
Friday: Mostly sunny, with highs in the mid 40s.
Saturday: Mostly sunny, with highs in the mid 40s.
Have a great week and thank you for reading SCW!