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Thursday, November 29, 2012

Chillin' Out The Next Two Days

A reinforcing shot of cold air arrives tomorrow following an arctic front. Temperatures will get stuck in the 30s for most of the state! But relief is on the way.  An approaching warm front will trigger a few rain or snow showers Friday night into Saturday morning.  A fresh coating of snow is possible (maybe an inch for northern Connecticut).  Behind the front, temperatures will soar into the 50s for Sunday, Monday and Tuesday! For December, that’s practically a heat wave!

I Smell A Record!

Even with two early season snow storms, this November could go down as the driest on record!  Windsor Locks has reported .4” of precipitation.  The current record holder is November 1976 with .51”.  I am expecting a flurry or snow shower Friday night. But a spotty snow shower will likely not be enough to keep us from setting a new record. Today will be pleasant with highs in the 40s and a mix of sun and clouds.  Friday and Saturday are cooler and wintry, followed by a return to 50s next week.

Fun Football Promo!

Yeah, I throw like a girl.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Photoshoot In The Snow

Seriously...I think my iPhone takes better pictures than my expensive digital camera. Since temperatures were nice and "mild" for this storm, it was a pleasure to take a moment and snap a few pics of the second snowfall of the season....even if it wasn't much.

A Touch Of Snow...So What's Next?

Connecticut has picked up anywhere from a coating to 3” of snow. Snow is winding down in central and western Connecticut. But eastern Connecticut (Windham, Tolland and New London Counties) will continue to see steady snow through 9-11 PM. Otherwise, a few lingering flurries are possible through the overnight hours.

Temperatures were above freezing all day during the snow storm which is fantastic because that kept the roads wet (instead of white). But tonight any untreated roads and sidewalks can refreeze causing areas of black ice tonight into tomorrow morning.

Snow will continue tomorrow morning into southeastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island. Connecticut will be dry, but a winter chill remains. A gusty northwest wind will make temperatures feel like they’re stuck in the 20s and 30s all day. Partial sunshine is in the forecast the next two days with a renewed shot of cold air on Friday. A brief rain or snow shower is possible Saturday before a warm up! Temperatures will once again take a run at the 50 degree mark Sunday and Monday! There are no big storms in sight.

Coating to 2" For Most!

A coating to 2" has accumulated for most with the lower amounts in the CT river Valley and the shoreline. Some isolated higher amounts are still possible in eastern CT, closer to 3". The shoreline could still pick up a quick inch of snow.

 A winter weather advisory is in effect interior southern Connecticut. I'm not sure why they issued it so late in the day!  There are no changes to the forecast.

Temperatures will remain above freezing for the rest of the commute with most accumulation on non paved surfaces. Icy spots later tonight as temps drop into the 20s.

Monday, November 26, 2012

A Coating to 2"

At 11:38 PM: After looking at the american models tonight, I would like to add....some spots in eastern CT could pick up to 3" on the back side of the storm as it's pulling away.  Still 1"-2" for most.  I will need major therapy if there are any "surprises" from this storm. 

Tomorrow’s “storm” will be a fast mover with snow developing in the morning and tapering off around the evening commute.    As far as winter storms in New England go, this will be a low impact event. Snow will remain light to occasionally moderate with temperatures remaining above freezing for most of the day! Along the shoreline, temperatures might hit 40 degrees where snow could mix with rain at times. A coating to 2” of accumulation is possible with icy spots tomorrow night as temperatures dip below freezing.

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Unimpressed With Tuesday's Snow "Storm"

Right on cue, winter arrived the weekend after Thanksgiving and the chill will stick around all week.

Sunshine will start off the work week thanks to high pressure gliding by to the south.  Temperatures will climb into the low to mid 40s.  

Although there is a chance for snow on Tuesday, this looks like a low impact event with little or no accumulation.  A weak wave of low pressure will pass well to the south bringing the state a glancing blow. Light snow will develop Tuesday, mixing with rain in spots along the shoreline.  A coating to an inch is possible, mainly in southern Connecticut.  The northern half of the state might stay dry if the storm continues to trend away from the nutmeg state. Sunshine returns Wednesday.  But the day will be blustery and cold with temperatures fighting to hit the 40 degree mark.  

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving On My Mind....

Yeah this is a screen grab from the news at 10 tonight.  I have no shame!

One More Day In The 50s, Then BRRRRR

Early morning Black Friday shoppers (crazies) should dress for temperatures in the 30s with patchy fog.  Full sunshine will promote quick warming with mid 50s by the afternoon.  Friday will be the last semi-mild day before a pattern change.  A strong cold front tomorrow night will bring clouds and the chance for a shower in spots.  Behind the front, temperatures will get stuck in the 40s all the way through next week.

There is a lot of uncertainty regarding a storm slated for late Tuesday into Wednesday.  The computer models are all over the place with the track and intensity of the storm. It could bring mainly rain, a wintry mix, or a few flurries.  We should have a better handle on the forecast tomorrow.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Clouds Fade For The Big Feast

I love gravy. Now that we got that out of the way...

Parts of the state will wake up to low clouds and fog on Thanksgiving Day.  Not to fear. Any leftover moisture will burn away revealing mostly sunny skies.  Temperatures will continue their warming trend, climbing into the low to mid 50s on Thanksgiving and Black Friday. A cold front early Saturday will bring a few showers, followed by a winter chill for the remainder of the weekend. The next storm to watch could be a long duration event on Tuesday and Wednesday with a wintry mix possible.

Milder For Now...

Almost like flipping a light switch… On the Saturday after Thanksgiving, fall weather gets replaced by winter cold.  A strong cold front will approach Friday night into Saturday morning, accompanied by a brief rain or snow shower. Before then, our tranquil weather pattern will continue. Travelers will be thankful for dry roads today with a mix of sun and clouds. On Thanksgiving, morning clouds and fog will break for sunshine. Thursday and Friday are the last days in the 50s before the cool down.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Ski & Travel Expo In Cromwell!

Thanks to everyone who came to say hi at the Ski & Travel Expo this weekend!
Scaring people at the FOX booth.

No Big Storms In Sight...Just Lots Of Turkey

If you have a weather station at home, check out how high the barometric pressure is.  High pressure means nice, dry weather and that trend will continue through Friday. A series of minor disturbances will bring varying amounts of clouds and sun the next few days.  But look for a little warming trend with temperatures climbing into the mid 50s on Thanksgiving and Friday. A cold front will bring a chance for a brief rain or snow shower followed by blustery and cooler weather Saturday and beyond.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


M.O.T.S.  is not a complicated weather term.  It stands for More Of The Same.

The weather this week remains boring for a meteorologist but great for your Thanksgiving travel plans!  High pressure remains stuck in northern New England keeping the rain (and snow) away.  A storm system spinning off the coast of the Carolinas will stay well southeast of New England. Look for partly to mostly sunny skies through Thanksgiving. Temperatures will warm up a few degrees, peaking in the mid 50s Thursday and Friday.  A cold front approaches on Saturday bringing a brief rain or snow shower and a cool down.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Quiet Stretch In November

Leonids in Connecticut November, 2009
Pic courtesy of
After Sandy and November snow, we deserve a little peace and quiet in the weather department!

After a few days of filtered sun, the clouds are moving out!  Clear skies tonight will create ideal conditions to view the Leonid meteor shower. Under ideal conditions, one can watch 10-20 meteors per hour.

 The Leonid meteor shower occurs every year when the earth passes through debris from the comet Tempel Tuttle. Look to the eastern sky after midnight.  Meteors will appear to radiate out of the constellation Leo (hence the name Leo-nids).  As a bonus for viewing, the crescent moon will have set in the west before the peak.

Now onto the weekend forecast.  Trust me, you’re going to like it. Sunshine will be hard at work tomorrow boosting the temperature to 50 degrees in some towns (hey, we’ll take it). Sunday will be a carbon copy with blue skies. A few more puffy clouds will mix in with the sun on Monday, Tuesday Wednesday and Thursday.  Dry roads are in the forecast for Thanksgiving travel plans.  Even if you’re flying somewhere, most of the country will remain dry with little or no weather related travel days! 

12Z Euro looking at Wednesday morning.
Rain/snow in the Pacific NW but dry
EVERYWHERE ELSE? What are the chances of that?

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Thanksgiving Storm?

Last night's European computer model run shows a nor'easter with rain
and strong winds Wednesday and Thursday
There is already a lot of hype surrounding a storm around or after Thanksgiving.  Normally, I don't even mention storms 7-8 days out because the forecast can change dramatically in that amount of time. But since people are inquiring, I'm happy to give you my opinion.

Don't worry about it.

Sunday, yesterday and even early this morning (see above) the European model was showing a cut off low with a long duration nor'easter. Today both the Euro and the GFS show the same storm head well out to sea.  The only impact in this case would be some clouds and a light breeze.  

This doesn't mean we're completely out of the woods. When forecasting, I like to look for trends in the computer models.  If we see a storm wavering back and forth between a hit and a miss then our confidence is low.  We're looking for run to run consistency here.  And right now...we don't have any!  Either way, the storm never looked "snowy" to me. This was primarily a rain and wind event.

We're moving in the right direction.  Let's keep it that way!

The afternoon run of the GFS (18Z)

The morning run of the Euro (12Z)

Snow From Space

You're not looking at clouds over Connecticut, Long Island and New Jersey.

This is a picture of snow from space! The Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) got the shot on November 9 after our early season storm.  Some of the snow had already melted so you can really see which areas got hit the hardest!

For more head to the NASA website!

Another Prom Picture

Look for this to run as part of a new ad in Thursday's Courant!

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Happy Halloween...Two Weeks Later

Sandy zapped the fun out of Halloween.  But I eventually had the chance to celebrate by dressing up as Sookie Stackhouse from the HBO's series True Blood!!  I got the outfit direct from HBO along with a fresh bottle of synthetic blood.  It tastes like orange soda!

One More Mild Day!

You don't need a meteorologist to find the cold front
heading this way!
Great weather for the Veterans today with temperatures soaring through the 60s!  This felt especially mild after our early taste of winter. We get one more warm day to enjoy with before a cold front brings us back to reality.

Tonight temperatures will drop into the 40s with patchy fog and low clouds developing.

Low clouds and fog will burn away revealing partial sunshine tomorrow.  In some towns, the clouds may not break until the afternoon. Temperatures will climb into the low to mid 60s.  A cold front will bring clouds and scattered showers on Tuesday, followed by cooler weather for the middle and end of the week.  Temperatures will get stuck in the 40s Wednesday and Thursday.  But at least the weather will cooperate with lots of sun!

The ECMWF (European Center for Medium range Weather Forecasting) is one of the computer models we love right now in the weather center because it continues to out forecast our American models. Hear that NWS?  We have some catching up to do!  Anyway, the Euro is showing the potential for another nor'easter by the middle of next week.  Snow? Rain?Right now rain is more likely but it's too early to make that call. The storm could disappear entirely by then. But if the storm remains in the forecast for a week and a half, it could cause problems for travels around Thanksgiving.
The Euro for next Wednesday morning.

Record November Snow for Bridgeport

The storm last week set a record in Bridgeport as the snowiest November storm on record with 8.3" on November 7-8. This breaks the old record of 6.6" set back on November 22-23, 1989.

Can I go back to erasing this storm from my memory now? Thanks.

Flow State

This weekend I went to see "Warren Miller's Flow State" at the Bushnell.  I didn't understand the whole concept.  Why am I going to a movie theater to watch a video of people skiingand snowboarding?  I can do that all day on YouTube.

But for many across the country, Flow State serves as the unofficial kick start to the winter season!  You are not encouraged to remain quiet. People cheer, oooooooh and ahhhhh as world class athletes drop in on insane mountains in exotic locations . Witty dialogue, state of the art cinematography and perfect music combine to get you amped for winter!

This is my third season snowboarding and I can't wait to get on the mountain!


Wednesday, November 7, 2012

First Snow Storm

I think Sandy was an easier forecast than this nor’easter. I underestimated snowfall totals.   I was wrong. I’ll lament for weeks. No, really.  I know you make decisions about your day and your family based on my forecasts.  I take that responsibility seriously. I'm sorry some of you were unprepared for this storm.. But I guess this is how you get better as a forecaster. Analyze.  Figure out where the forecast went wrong, don't make the same mistake twice.

 Heavy bands of snow set up in southwest CT and refused to leave.

The first 1-2 hours of this storm brought a quick two inches of snow to central and western CT.  Sure, most of it was on grassy surfaces.  But when snow comes down heavy enough, it can stick to the ground even with temperatures above freezing!  With temperatures in the 20s tonight, more snow will have a chance to stick.  We are getting many reports of accidents and traffic delays.

A dry punch of air is working into western Connecticut. This isn’t the end but it’s the beginning of the end. Snow will wind down overnight. But winds will continue to blow the snow around.  After a few lingering rain or snow showers during the first half of the day, we should begin the drying process in the afternoon.  Highs: 40s.

Coastal Flooding:

As expected (ahem, we got some stuff right), flooding was not as bad as the NWS forecast. In Bridgeport the water levels peaked at 8.75'. That's a storm surge of 3.5' with minor flooding.  The next high tide is around 5:30 AM with minor flooding in the forecast once more.  This time water levels will only top 8.5'.


Winds were also lighter than forecast by the NWS.  Windsor Locks had the highest gust to 45 mph.  But the high wind warning along the shoreline never verified. "A HIGH WIND WARNING MEANS A HAZARDOUS HIGH WIND EVENT IS EXPECTED OR OCCURRING. SUSTAINED WIND SPEEDS OF AT LEAST 40 MPH OR GUSTS OF 58 MPH OR MORE CAN LEAD TO PROPERTY DAMAGE." I'm sure you're fine with that. 

I don't know about you but after the last two weeks...I'm exhausted!

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Bad Timing: First Flakes Of the Season

Tomorrow’s nor’easter looks less impressive for us here in Connecticut.  This is not a storm we will remember a year from now or even a month from now.  BUT…the timing will be bad for the areas still recovering from Sandy. Thousands remain in the dark on the shoreline!  Additionally, with arrival in the afternoon, roads could become slippery for the commute.

Forecast changes:

The forecast track for the storm has shifted east.  Here’s the good news:  the worst winds and the heaviest precipitation also shifted east.  Here’s the bad news: now Connecticut is in the coldest part of the storm with snow possible right down to the shoreline!


Slippery spots for the afternoon and evening commute tomorrow.  Widely scattered power outages caused by gusty winds.  Minor coastal flooding.

Tomorrow morning: Clouds thicken up.  No problems for the commute.

Tomorrow afternoon: Snow and rain developing from southeast to northwest. Winds pick up (out of the northeast…that’s why we call it a nor’easter).  Any snow that falls is not likely to stick for an extended period of time.  But roads could get snow covered and slick for a little while tomorrow afternoon/evening.   It’s possible that some schools have early dismissal. A slushy coating is possible with up to 2”-3” in areas that are hardest hit (hard to pinpoint with uncertainties in the storm's track). After the initial burst of rain and snow, the rest of the precipitation with this storm looks light. Winds gusts will reach up to 40 mph inland, 50 mph for the shoreline.

Tomorrow evening: Snow changes to light rain and freezing rain. 

Thursday morning: A few leftover showers, mostly cloudy. The snow is almost entirely melted with nothing to a small slushy compact coating on non paved surfaces.

Coastal Flooding: 
The forecast water level in Bridgeport during
the nor'easter on Wednesday/Thursday
With a persistent easterly wind, another bout of coastal flooding is in the forecast.  We (Bob Cox, Geoff Fox and I) happen to think the NWS storm tide forecast is a little high.  They are projecting Long Island Sound tides 4-5 feet  above normal for tomorrow afternoon and evening. The forecast water level in Bridgeport is 11.75-12.25’ with moderate flooding.  I think minor flooding is more likely with a lower monthly tide cycle and the strongest winds staying well offshore.  Either way, we are not expecting flooding to be even close to what occurred during Sandy. But this will add insult to injury and slow clean up efforts along the shore.
The National Weather Service in Taunton, MA
made this graphic to summarize the storm

Monday, November 5, 2012

Typical Fall Nor'easter, Bad Timing.

Sunny and chilly for election day!  Temperatures will start in the 20s…right down to the Connecticut shoreline with the coldest air we have seen so far this season. Afternoon highs will be trapped in the 40s.  That’s winter jacket weather for me!

Now for this nor’easter.  Ugh. This isn’t an incredibly damaging storm.  It should be on par with a normal fall nor’easter.  But the timing sucks (excuse my choice of words).  We’re still cleaning from Sandy!

Timing: Wednesday afternoon-Thursday.  When the storm first arrives, rain may mix in or change over to a brief burst of wet snow or sleet. The models seem colder today.  But I wouldn’t be surprised if they flip flopped back to a warmer solution tomorrow.  Either way, a small accumulation is possible for the hill towns or areas north of I-84 on the order of a coating to an inch or two.  Most of us get zero accumulation with a warm ground and a change back to rain. Even so…you may want to mentally prepare to see your first flakes of the season. Northeast winds increase during the afternoon and evening on Wednesday.  Rain and wind down on Thursday.

Coastal Flooding: 
A Coastal Flood Watch has been issued with minor to moderate coastal flooding possible.  Tidal departures are forecast by the National Weather Service at 3-4 feet.  That means, water can rise 3-4 feet higher than the normal high or low tide cycle.  The bad news: Beaches took a beating from Sandy, reducing, relocating or eliminating protective barriers like sand dunes.  This leaves the shoreline more vulnerable than usual. The good news: tides will be astronomically low (instead of high like they were in Sandy).  This nor’easter is not likely to cause additional flood damage.  But the storm will hamper clean up efforts and slow progress for some shoreline communities that were recently hit hard. Click here for town specific forecastwater levels.

A High Wind Watch is in effect for the southern half of the state: New London, Fairfield, Middlesex and New Haven counties. Sustained winds will be between 25-35 mph.  But higher gusts could top 50-60 mph on the shoreline.  Inland, gusts could get up to 40-45 mph in the higher elevations with sustained winds 20-30 mph. A few additional scattered outages are possible as loose tree limbs fall.  This will also slow restoration efforts for line crews who are unable to get into the bucket trucks in wind gusts that exceed 40 mph. 

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Coldest Air Of The Season!

This is another chilly evening for the 47,000+ (as of 7:30 PM) Connecticut households without power.   Temperatures will drop into the mid to upper 20s inland, low 30s for the shoreline. Here’s the icing on the cake…tomorrow looks even colder!

After a chilly start to the day, temperatures will rebound into the 40s and low 50s tomorrow with mostly sunny skies. Monday night will be the coldest evening of the season so far with temperatures sinking into the 20s statewide.  Tuesday remains cool and dry with abundant sunshine.

Clouds will increase Wednesday morning as a storm moves up the east coast. This is the nor’easter you keep hearing about on the news.  Every time I see a national story about Sandy’s aftermath, it is always followed by “and to top it all off…a winter nor’easter threatens by the middle of next week”.  It’s misleading.  Sure, accumulating snow is possible in upstate New York, northern New England and the higher terrain of western Massachusetts.  But New Jersey is not getting any snow.  Neither is New York City.

European model, 850 mb heights,
 vorticity & winds
For us here in Connecticut, this will primarily be a rain and wind event!  Not fun…even without the prospects snow.  Rain will develop in the afternoon or evening on Wednesday, continuing into Thursday.  Wind gusts on the shoreline could top 50 mph.  Some wet snow might mix in for the northwest hills.  But not enough to get nervous about.  Minor coastal flooding is possible depending on the duration of the event with a consistent easterly wind. We will fine tune the details to the forecast as we get a little closer.  In the meantime, have your umbrella ready.