Hello Hudson Valley! Buckle up, we’ve got a wild week of weather to come.
If you were hoping for a snow storm before Christmas, you’ll get your wish. If you were rooting for the mild conditions to continue, you’ll have to grin and bear with Mother Nature. It will warm up again.
Monday will have a little snow but above freezing temperatures should limit the impact. A much colder air mass will be in place prior to the main event, which is expected to arrive later Wednesday and last into Thursday.
I spoke about the potential on Saturday evening. Skip ahead to 6:30 for the scoop on the Wednesday-Thursday event.
Following Sunday’s warmth, a cold front will slide through the region overnight, seeing temperatures fall into the 30s. A swath of wet snow is expected to graze the region, starting between 7:00-10:00 am on Monday morning, as a coastal low passes to the south.
Near or just above freezing temperatures will limit the chance for snow to stick to main roads, although up to an inch or so could accumulate, mainly on non-paved surfaces.
We’re not talking a lot of snow here, but it doesn’t take much to create issues, so remember to drive to the conditions.
The snow is expected to fall at a light to moderate clip into the early afternoon before ending.
Given the mid-morning to early afternoon timing and the relatively small amounts of snow, the chance for school interruptions is low. I’ve given a 1-in-5 chance for closings in case of a snowier trend over the next 12-24 hours.
As I look at the weather maps for this event, I have flashbacks to the December snow storms of the early 2000s. Perhaps you remember 2002 and 2003 like me — the former featured over a foot of snow on Christmas Day!
This could be our best storm since at least March 2018 and dare I say, we might manage to do better than that…
The pieces are in place for a big snowstorm: cold Canadian high pressure to the north, coastal low pressure developing in a classical location, and a hemispheric pattern that is conducive to wintry weather in the Northeast.
Timing wise, we’re looking at Wednesday afternoon through Thursday morning with a peak in intensity overnight. The timing is good news overall with less folks on the road at night.
At this point, there is a very high chance (>90%, in red) for accumulations to exceed 6 inches.
There’s about a 60-70% chance for more than a foot.
If the stars align, the Hudson Valley could be in the “sweet spot” that receives even more.
Accumulations of this magnitude would cause significant travel impacts, starting Wednesday afternoon and lasting through Thursday morning.
With temperatures in the 20s on Wednesday night during the apex of the event, the snow consistency is likely to be quite powdery, which will allow it to pile up quicker. Snow blowers should handle it well come Thursday!
As for schools, early dismissals could be in order for Wednesday along with a closure on Thursday as a substantial cleanup is carried out. There is still some uncertainty as to how early the snow gets going on Wednesday and how early it ends on Thursday. These percentages will be fine tuned over the next several days, so stay tuned!
Here’s my first cut at school percentages (hope you like the new graphics!)…
As for the rest of the week, Tuesday will probably have the best weather. Thursday night will be very cold following the snow storm, but Friday night will be even colder as Canadian high pressure settles overhead a potentially deep snow pack.
The next stormy period looks to be Sunday-Monday.
Thereafter, some milder conditions still look probable prior to Christmas, although another chilly stretch is possible before the New Year.
Things have gotten interesting in a hurry!