Post by Andrew Freiden:
A new run of a shorter term model called the NAM is coming in COLDER than previous models... opening the door for the potential for Richmond to get significant amounts of ice (1/2") via freezing rain and sleet. If this happens, we would get power outages and icy ramps/bridges.
The black line on the map is the 32° line-- let's watch as it slides South and East early Sunday. Everything North and West of the gray line is BELOW freezing.
3am: Subfreezing air invades Richmond
9am: Temperatures below freezing. Sleet or freezing rain begins
1pm: Subfreezing air still in Richmond-- ice accumulating on bridges, power lines. Could be 1/2"
It's all about surface temperatures on this storm, and while some other models are showing temperatures rising above freezing quickly on Sunday morning, it's much more likely that warming will be painfully slow.
Still 72 hours to go on this one and much could change but it's looking icier as we get closer. We'll keep you up to date.
*Now is the time to make sure you are prepared for power outages and icy roads during the day Sunday*
Post by Andrew Freiden:
I briefly mentioned this on TV this morning but based on a nudge from twitter follower Rusty Tutton (@RJTutton) Let's talk a little about snow.
The big southern storm I've been talking about since Monday has been remarkably consistent on the computer models. And looks like it'll bring us a soaking rain Tuesday afternoon Through Wednesday.
As the storm departs, cold air rushes in behind it. It looks like the moisture will leave just in time for the storm to be rain and not snow. That said, a few hours of subfreezing air aloft could mean a brief changeover to snow as the rain leaves.
It doesn't look like much to worry about (only a tiny bit of moisture left over) but will be interesting to watch in the days ahead.
The graphic I've clipped below shows the forecasted vertical structure of the atmosphere Wednesday evening. This would be just cold enough to support snow 5,000 feet off the ground, which may makes its way to the surface.
*Keep in mind we are still 5 days away on this and a lot could change-- in fact, it's awfully early to dissect the models this closely anyway*
Sunny and cool sums it up for the next few days... then attention turns to what we in the weather office call "model chat." That's when it seems like the whole internet is obsessing over a potential storm on the models 5 or 6 days from now.
The computer models are showing a storm on the East Coast Wednesday. Problem is, there's NO consensus on the models. And as Jim said last night at 11pm-- could even be NO preciptation. And in Mid November all lot of things have to happen JUST right to get snow in Richmond. Still a long ways to go.
Still plenty of time for more "model chat" in the days to come.
Posted by Andrew Freiden
We have added the chance of snow in our forecast, but as always, it's not yet a guarantee. While we expect a shot of much colder air to move in sometime centered around Tuesday night and Wednesday, there's still a question of when and where the low will develop. It should be fairly warm Tuesday afternoon, which is usually why getting any measurable snow this time of year is very difficult. It's a forecast that is definitely worth watching, because there will be some changes along the way. Right now, it's too far out to determine if we'll get any accumulating snow.
I saw a few of our Facebook fans mention November 11, 1987 - when it did snow 4.5" - and it got me thinking...
Snow in Richmond goes back even earlier than that. The earliest snowfall (and we're talking about a trace) was October 10, 1979. Only 3 other times did Richmond see flakes in the air in October, all just a trace on the ground...
October 19, 1972
October 30, 1954
October 31, 1925
The earliest measurable snow is November 5, 1962 (0.9"). The most snow seen in November is November 6, 1953 (7.2")
So it's not unheard of for us to see flakes this early in the season, but it is tough for it to accumulate.
Oh, and by the way, it's still hurricane season for another 3 weeks.
UPDATE: The deadline has passed for entries. More than 750 people entered their best guess. Stay tuned to see who will win and watch for us to announce the winner on NBC12.
When do you think we'll get our first inch of snow here in Richmond?
It may seem too early to think about snow, but the time has come for our annual snow forecasting contest. Fill out the form below by Halloween, telling us the date and time when you think the Richmond Airport will record its first inch of snow.
If you have trouble with the form, you can drop us an email at email@example.com.
You won't be included in the contest unless you include the time and date.
The winner gets.... bragging rights, and an interview on NBC12.
It's been a rainy month. We've already had 4.39" of rain in June, and that's not including our rain this morning. Here's some numbers for comparison.
So far (2013) - 4.39"
June Average - 3.93"
June Record - 9.93" (2004)
10th wettest June - 6.49" (1894)
Record number of days with at least 0.01" of rain - 10
Number of days with 0.01" so far - 7 (including today)
The longer range forecast models suggest a pattern that would bring us at least a chance of rain just about every day next week. If that happens, it's possible we break the number of days in June with rain, and make the top 10 wettest Junes on record.
This is a 8-14 day precipitation outlook from the Climate Prediction Center. The "A" over the green area stands for "Above Average" - meaning all the areas in green have a higher probability of getting rain days 8 through 14 from when the map was issued (June 16th).
The good news is we're close to 4.5" above the average annual rainfall so far. Typically rain rates drop dramatically toward the middle of Summer through the Fall season, so having full water tables is a plus going into the next season. If we maintain this frequencey of rain into July, let's hope we don't get any tropical system to dump even more water on us and cause flooding.
This comes from the Climate Prediction Center, and the data is derived from a callaboration of departments to determine what our current drought status is. The entire eastern half of the country has had plenty of rain through the first half of 2013.
Last year, I made a big hubbub on TV and on the internet about the "Supermoon." This year...not so much. Last year's was historically close to earth.
First: what's a supermoon? It's a term used to describe a full moon coinciding with the moon's closest approach to earth during its orbit (perigee).
This evening's full moon will likely be big and gorgeous and will appear larger than average but it's not quite the astonomical event it was last year when the moon was a bit closer to earth (not that you could tell a difference between tonight's full moon and the 'famous' one from last year).
For tonight and tomorrow night, though, the weather should be perfect. The combination of clear skies and super low humidity for May will make this a wonderful evening for Moon-gazing.
"Supermoon" or not, take a few minutes to enjoy the view this evening. I think you'll enjoy it.
Post By Andrew Freiden
The Cicadas are showing up in force now but their appearance in the Greater Richmond area has been sparse at best. I continue to think that eastern Henrico and the Tri-Cities will be left out of the fun.
Here's the latest map of cicada reports from magicicada.org .
Click here to access the map directly (it's zoomable)