Anticipation. Waiting for the latest computer model guidance to pop up on the screen just hours before a big winter storm comes knocking on your door can be a bit nerve-racking. There is nervousness. Excitement. Lots of second-guessing. Will my last forecast still be good? Or will I have to tweak those snow totals again?
It's that whole Christmas Story-Red-Rider-B-B-Gun thing. Did I get what I wanted? Or is it just a big Pink Bunny Suit? You know what I'm talking about.
Last night's computer models runs were a big deal. These were the first guidance products to be issued since the storm had formed on the satellite maps. We have an actual storm to measure! So, finally, we had REAL LIFE data from an REAL LIFE Storm going into the formulas. And the results were... Well. Let's just say I don't like pink and I don't like bunny suits.
It was a big change! Models showed a much weaker winter storm, farther south into Kentucky as its moved by on Saturday. And MUCH LESS SNOW for you. Oh, FUDGE! The storm was fizzling out as fast as the Bumpus's Dogs could eat your Christmas Feast! My forecasted snow totals would have to be cut back. At least for the time being.
I didn't chop them much. After all, I've seen these kind of storms before. Often veering away at the last second. And one crazy computer model run doesn't necessarily mean you're forecast is sunk.
But I've been cautious all week. Let the other "Social Media-ologists" jump on the 18-inch hype train. I was not going crazy on my snowfall forecast anyway, so slicing a couple of inches off didn't hurt much. I wasn't going to "shoot my eye out." After all, there's always the next computer model run and a little more time to adjust.
Fast forward to Friday morning. More anticipation for the 7 a.m. Computer Model runs. Storm is getting closer. These runs should be getting a real good handle on our storm, now just 24 hours away.
Today's computer guidance has come back around. The storm is bigger, stronger with snowfall totals once again, enough to get your attention and shake up your weekend plans. The Bottom line: It looks like snow-lovers get their B-B Gun! Here's where we are today:
1) WINTER STORM WARNINGS for Northern Ohio Saturday thru part of Sunday.
2) Heavy Snow can expected Saturday afternoon and Saturday night for a large part of the News 5 Viewing area, especially south of US Route 224.
3) The highest snow accumulations of 6 to 10+ inches can be expected along and south of a Mansfield to Ashland to Akron & Youngstown line.
4) Snowfall amounts farther north can be tricky. Abrupt drop-offs in snow totals are possible outside the heaviest snow band. So areas around Greater Cleveland east into Lake, Geauga, Ashtabula, Portage and Trumbull Counties can expect 4 to 8 inches of snow. Areas from Lorain County WEST to Norwalk and the Lake Erie Islands should expect 2-4 inches of snow...maybe 5 inches at the most.
5) Winds will gust above 30 mph Saturday afternoon through Sunday causing blowing and drifting snow.
6) Arctic air plus gusty winds will combine to produce wind chills Saturday night through Sunday night between -10 and -25 degrees.
7) Plan on dangerous driving conditions at times. Grab some extra supplies for the weekend.
8) Stay warm...maybe a big pink bunny suit would help!
The Weather Team and I will be here all weekend long for you giving you the latest updated weather information. Stay safe and stay connected, my friends.