Friday, July 25, 2014
Inquirer Daily News

First Snow threat

Cold rain or big snow? A major storm on the horizon.

First Snow threat

Our First Law of Weather is this: What might happen is almost always more interesting than what is happening.

The ever-increasing sophistication of computer models and their abilities to see storms that are barely a gleam in the eye of the atmosphere has been a boon to the speculation business, not to mention your local supermarkets.

And against the background of genuine winter chill this week, the region may be in for a speculation fest.

The respected European model sees a major storm setting up along the East Coast that would affect the region perhaps Sunday into Monday.

So far, the U.S. model evidently hasn't been quite as bullish, but it has the same general idea.

It's only Monday, and we can predict only that the scenarios and buzz are going to change from model run to model run.

As always, even if the models end up having essentially the right concept, ultimately any snow amounts are going to hinge on the exact track of the storm and the cold-air supply.

Those are variables that don't come out of hiding until the big day approaches, sometimes not until after the precipitation actually starts.

For now, the possibilities range from a soaking, cold rain to several inches of snow.

Expect the drumbeat to get louder. If you want to keep up with the expert and not-so-expert speculation, check out the new American Weather Forums discussion board.

And remember our Second Law of Weather: Never get between a computer-model snow forecast and the dairy counter of your local supermarket.

 

  

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
About this blog

Everyone talks about the weather, and here we write about it.

When we’re around and conditions warrant, we’ll keep you updated about what’s coming, but we will do our best always to discuss weather and climate developments in context and remind you that nothing in the atmosphere happens in a vacuum.

Tony Wood has been writing about the atmosphere for The Inquirer for 26 years.

Reach Tony at twood@phillynews.com.

Tony Wood Inquirer Weather Columnist
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