Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Snow in the East, Another Stormy Period for the West

Surface map for 7:00 a.m. EST November 28.
It has been a cold but dry week across the middle of the U.S., while two storm systems book-ended the lower 48 states. On Tuesday a low pressure system with a trailing cold front brought precipitation to an area from Mississippi up through southern new England. Rainfall amounts were around an inch along the Gulf Coast, but less than half that up through the southeast U.S. The other area of significant precipitation was the mid-Atlantic coast, particularly New Jersey.  Two to four inches of snow covered the ground in the northwestern half of New Jersey and parts of southeastern Pennsylvania this morning.  Lighter snow amounts were reported north through New York and new England.

CoCoRaHS precipitation map for November 28.

Another stormy period is ahead for the Pacific Northeast this rest of this week. CoCoRaHS observers will get another good workout for their rain gauges, with perhaps as much as 6 to 12 inches of rain expected in the next several days, especially in northern California and Oregon. Heavy snow is expected for the next several days in the higher elevations of the Shasta, central and northern Sierra Nevada, and Sawtooth mountain ranges.

Left:  5-day Quantitative Precipitation Forecast.  Right: Probability of >8 inches of snow in 48 hours
Forecasts issued by the NWS Meteorological Prediction Center.

In the meantime, there will be significant warming across the central and eastern U.S. through the weekend. The snow currently on the ground in New Jersey will just be a memory by the weekend.

However, this could be the last period of mild weather for awhile for the eastern two thirds of the U.S. It appears that cold air will likely spread over the U.S. east of the Rockies by the middle of next week, and may be followed by several reinforcing pushes of cold air in the days to follow.

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