This is How Boring Storms Look

I’ve chuckled at some posts on Facebook tonight that are essentially “get a clue – there’s nothing on radar – we’re not getting anything.” That’s essentially correct! There’s a reason why I’m only expecting a coating to 1″ of snow and that’s because the storm is unimpressive!!

Still, a batch of moisture over the Appalachian Mountains is streaming northeast and over the next several hours light precipitation will break out over Connecticut. Initially the atmosphere will be sub-freezing but the question is WILL it be snow? Here’s the 7 p.m. weather balloon launch from Dulles Airport shows extremely dry air in mid levels of the atmosphere.

IAD

This dry air is advecting toward Connecticut and it’s so dry in fact the clouds may be free of ice (temperatures have to be below -8C to get ice in a cloud – see yesterday’s blog post for more). That raises the concern for freezing rain and freezing drizzle during the overnight hours and the morning commute.

Some of our high resolution super-short term models show a burgeoning area of light precipitation over Connecticut and adjacent parts of New York tomorrow morning. This makes sense given what we’re seeing upstream.

RAP_Z

While this will all be quite light the concern is cold air that will lock in thanks to a northerly drain of cold and dry air near the ground. The same model shows temperatures in the 20s by 7 a.m. Monday even close to the Connecticut shore – that is a very icy signal!

RAP_T

Bottom line is that we’re only talking about a small amount of precipitation – on the order of 0.1 to 0.2 inches. While snow amounts will be marginal at best the threat for freezing rain may muck up the morning commute. The good news is that this has been advertised for quite some time and it will begin BEFORE the commute begins so DOT and public works crews should have a nice head start on the ice. Easy does it tomorrow morning!

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