Thursday January 10

Calm week ahead

School Forecast through:
Friday January 11th
Last Updated: 6:00PM Thursday January 10, 2019
Delay No School Early Dismissal
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(Nope)

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(Nope)
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(Nope)

6PM Thursday

Overall, there has been little change regarding Sunday's storm. The storm is still anticipated to pass to our south, spreading a swath of snow from Virginia to Jew Jersey. We are still keeping an eye on any northward shifts that may bring snow into our area. Over the past 24 hours, the trend has been for a small roughly 50 mile shift northward. This shift would suggest that it is possible for a brief period of light snow to graze the lower Hudson Valley early Sunday morning. Under this latest scenario the snow-line is likely to stop somewhere between NYC and Orange County, still remaining to our south. At this time, Kingstonsnows is still forecasting clouds on Sunday here in Kingston and still acknowledges the potential for some degree of snow if the storm continues shifts northward. It is worth noting that no computer models currently bring accumulating snow into our area.

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I know many of you are hoping for "real" winter to begin - myself included. The long term trend through about the end of January seems to at least suggest the potential for this. So far, January has been averaging a very warm 8.5 degrees above normal - our warmest start to January since 2007. The outlook for the last week or two of January seems to suggest a return to more seasonal temperatures. This will be accompanied by a weather pattern that has the potential to produce an additional 2 to 4 notable storms across the northeast this month, possibly interspaced with a few smaller events. It is too early to say exactly when, how, or even IF any of these potential future systems may evolve, but there is a better chance of seeing snow later this month than we have seen so far this winter. We'll see what happens.

Next Update:
Friday Night


5PM Wednesday

The up coming days will feature generally calm and benign weather. The potential exception to this will be a coastal storm that will need to be monitored heading into Sunday.

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The storm that brought us snow and even some thunder on Wednesday is currently moving away from the region. The storm's broad circulation, however, will keep clouds and cold air in place through Friday. By Friday night, the storm fully departs and high pressure will allow for mostly clear skies into Saturday. Clouds increase late in the day on Saturday. Attention then turns to a storm system that will pass to our south on Sunday. This storm is very likely to produce a swath of snow across parts of the Mid-Atlantic states from Virginia through New Jersey. The main uncertainty at this time is exactly how far north the snow progresses - that is, how close to us it comes.

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Image Caption: Wednesday's storm (#1) will depart our region. The circulation behind this storm will usher in low clouds and colder air (#2). As this happens energy over the Pacific Ocean (#3) will push onshore and develop into a storm system that will move across the Mid-Atlantic.

Overall, trends have been pretty consistent in keeping snow just south of New York State, possibly brushing NYC/Long Island. Of the four main medium-range computer models that are used to develop forecasts, three have been consistent in keeping snow south of our area, while the fourth has generally suggested the potential for up to 6 inches of snow on Sunday. It is worth noting that the computer model suggesting snow has had somewhat of a tendency to over forecast snow events this winter. The energy that will trigger this storm is currently located over the Pacific - this is an area where we are not able to collect much direct weather data. But by Thursday afternoon the storm will be moving into the West Coast. This will allow more data to be collected on the atmosphere in the storm via weather balloons and surface observations, which should allow for more reliable computer model calculations by tomorrow night.

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At this time, Kingstonsnows is simply forecasting cloudy skies on Sunday which is in line with most trends, but will acknowledge the potential for some degree of snow if the storm shifts northward. Because the storm is still several days out, a "shift zone" from Albany and NYC to Boston will need to monitor for potential shifts northward.

Next Update:
Thursday Night

School Impact Probability
Updated: January 5, 2019
For January 14th through 18th

Day Snow/Ice Delay Cancellation Early Dismissal
Monday (14) Very Low
Very Low
Very Low Very Low
Tuesday (15)
Very Low
Very Low
Very Low
Very Low
Wednesday (16)
Very Low
Very Low Very Low Very Low
Thursday (17)
Very Low
Very Low
Very Low
Very Low
Friday (18)
Very Low
Very Low
Very Low
Very Low
School impact probabilities offer a general sense of upcoming conditions, but are not specific forecasts.


Season Forecast
5:00AM Wednesday January 2nd

Last year, Kingstosnows issued its first seasonal snow forecast [Link]. The forecast called for 48 inches of snow throughout the season with a likely range of 35 to 61 inches. The forecast was made on December 12th, and by winter's end a total of 51.3 inches had fallen. Issued over four months before the last snow of the season, last year's season forecast was just 3.3 inches below the actual season total.

Last year's forecast was based what I'm calling the "Second Snow Rule". This is an observation in Kingstonsnows data since 2004 that there is a fairly strong correlation between the date of the second snowfall of the season and the total snowfall for the season. As was pointed out after our November snowstorm, there is really no appreciable correlation between the date of the first snowfall and the season total [Link]. If one were to use the date of the first snowfall to estimate the season total, the forecast would off by an average of 42 inches - that is a very significant error. However, if one were to use the date of either the second or third snowfall to estimate the season total, the forecast would be off by a more acceptable average of 12 inches. So far this winter, we have had three measurable snowfalls: November 16th, December 24th, and December 30th. Using the correlation of the 1st snowfalls, a season total of 73.3 inches +/- 42 inches would be expected. However, using both the more accurate 2nd or 3rd snowfall correlations, a season total of roughly 34 inches +/- 12.6 inches would be expected. Based on these numbers, Kingstonsnows is formally forecasting a total of 34 inches of snow this winter, with a likely range of 22 to 46 inches. This forecast is below the average seasonal total of 44.8 inches.

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Although the forecast anticipates a likely range of 22 to 46 inches, there is about a 25% chance of less than 22 inches of snow, and a 25% chance of more than 46 inches of snow. It is important to remember that it only takes one well placed nor'easter to dump significant snowfall.

We'll see how the forecast holds up by April!
-Ethan

KingstonSnows ♦ Kingston, NY
139666 Visiting Snowflakes
Since January 2009
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