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BUCKLEY'S BLOG: Sun is back; any flurry chances?
Submitted by Tim Buckley on Thu, 02/14/2013 - 10:04am.
We've finally kicked our bad habit of clouds and showers, but as cupid brings us some sunshine our focus shifts toward cold weather concerns for the weekend. The big question as I mentioned earlier this week is can it produce anything frozen in the sky? It's one of those 1 in a million "Dumb and Dumber" chances. (see graphic)
Cold Fronts Cometh
The first cold front will cross the area overnight Friday. This one will be dry, with hardly any clouds and no rain or snow chances. What it will do is lower temperatures from the 60's Friday afternoon to the 50's Saturday afternoon. That's step 1 of our cool down process.
Step 2 comes Saturday night. A second, stronger cold front will be the leading edge to some really cold air that we haven't seen in a while. In fact, the last time our area was in the mid 20's was back on the 1st and 2nd of the month. What it has in cold air and strength, it lacks in moisture.
All week long there's been a question amongst the computer models about IF there will be enough moisture to produce any rain or snow across North Carolina. Earlier in the week the models had been suggesting that was a good possibility -- lately they've been backing off that significantly, but there's still some reason not to rule out a flurry in the sky.
Here's what Futurecast has to say about things.
Saturday @ 5pm
Sunday at 1am
While Futurecast suggests it's a pipe dream to see anything but a light rain shower Saturday - Saturday night, some other computer models continue to suggest otherwise. The SREF ensembles, which you can think of as some closer range probability based models demonstrate the odds of this situation quite well. Here are two graphics that tell a big story.
SREF Precip Chances
Looking at the precip chances you can see that 1) There's very little chance of ANY precip in Wilmington Saturday / Saturday night. 2) During the daylight hours anything that falls would likely be as drizzle. 3) IF there's enough moisture left overnight, there is a small chance for a few flurries across SE NC. Important to remember this is just a computer generated forecast.
SREF Snow Accumulation
This graphic shows potential for any snow to stick overnight Saturday, with about half a dozen different computer models. The top model can be dismissed as an outlier; there is no way we see an inch of snow from this little system. Several models suggest a modest flurry spray resulting in less than ONE TENTH of an inch of snow. This is really nothing -- but it means that if that system is able to spit some flurries out of the sky, they'll stick for a few hours with the lightest of coatings possibe.
My Overall Thoughts
I'm not buying the snow chances in general. It seems that it will be just too dry to get any moisture into the area Saturday night. Having said that I'm including a 10% precip chance in my Saturday/Saturday night forecast to account for any daylight drizzle or overnight flurry.
In the end, we MAY be able to squeeze out a flurry that you could stick out your tongue and catch a snowflake overnight Sat. If you're a snow lover, do a little snow dance and see if that works. We'll see.
By: Tim Buckley