From Snow To Icebox

January 30th, 2014 at 8:27 am by under Weather

I won’t lie.  It was actually great yesterday to take a walk in the snow.  I walked about a block and a half from the TV station to the hotel, and it made it feel like I was back home (Illinois).  Kids got to enjoy the snow, but it was difficult to build snowmen as the snow was very dry.  Last night we had clearing skies as expected.  However, the winds cut down to nothing.  With that and the snow/ice on the ground the temperatures this morning plummeted.  They went about 10 degrees colder than the computer models forecast.  So our low temperatures this morning were in the negatives in several cities.

Bitter Cold Temperatures

Bitter Cold Temperatures

In fact…we broke a record low in Norfolk.  The temperature there briefly dropped to 6 degrees.  This broke the old record of 10 set back in 1934.

Record Low In Norfolk

Record Low In Norfolk

I’m sure the models overdid the temperatures due to the difference in the wind.  I also mentioned that we had clear skies last night.  This aids in radiational cooling.  However, the clouds have been building back from the south since then.

Satellite/Radar

Satellite/Radar

Some of the models increase those clouds even more today.  In fact our Future  Trak model has tried to bring in a few flurries, sprinkles, and/or sleet pellets later today.

Future Trak (6pm)

Future Trak (6pm)

At this time I’m not expecting any accumulations.  It’s just some extra moisture/warmth trying to push back into the area in the mid-levels.  But this is something that we’ll have to watch carefully.  Even a few spots of light rain and sleet could create a real mess (locally).  Either way we are looking at dry weather for tomorrow.

Temperatures will struggle to reach the low 30s this afternoon with northeast winds at 5-10mph.  Tonight lows will kind of hold in the 20s in the metro with some teens in the inland locations where more clearing is forecast.  Finally tomorrow we’ll see high temperatures in the mid 40s.  Skies will be partly sunny with light southwest winds.

We are looking at warmer temperatures this weekend.  Highs will be in the 50s with a mix of sun and clouds.  Next week we are looking at some cold rain showers with highs in the 40s and lows in the 30s.  By next Wednesday we’ll see highs in the 60s. Rain is expected later in the day.  Some folks are asking about the next big storm.  Since some of the models had us dry 3 days before this last storm, I’m gonna wait a bit to focus on anything past 7 days.

Be careful on the roads today.  While many of the main roads have been cleared, there are many streets that were treated yesterday.  Those roads had some brief melting, and then they re-froze last night.  Also, many folks drove over the snowy streets yesterday.  This tamped down the snow and compressed it.  So those tracks will be icy this morning.  It may be difficult to tell the difference between ice, lighter dry spots, black ice, and asphalt.  Welcome to the ice-box….literally.

Icy Roads

Icy Roads

Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler

5 Responses to “From Snow To Icebox”

  1. Fay Stewart says:

    It was -6 here in Zuni this morning, brrrrr

  2. Carol Rood says:

    Hey Jeremy. I have heard rumors about another snow event headed our way for Feb 8-10 time-frame. Any word on that yet?

    Thanks so much!!

    1. Jeremy Wheeler says:

      There are talks about it Carol. Thanks for asking. I will say that I don’t like to do too much on systems that far out. For example the European model has us almost totally dry for this past Tuesday on Sunday. I will keep monitoring it though. Jeremy

  3. Terri Hayden says:

    Our temperature in Zuni this morning was -6 at 8:30 a.m. Much colder than anticipated – we were expecting 10. To me, the extremely frigid temperatures introduce risks that can be on par with (or worse than) the snow event that resulted in a high degree of preparatory news and weather coverage. Not sure how something as big as a 15 – 20 degree variance was missed. Can you comment on the extreme low temperatures seen in January and if this pattern is expected to continue. How does this compare to prior winters?

    1. Jeremy Wheeler says:

      Hi Terri. Thanks for your comment. Hopefully you saw in the blog the talk about the wind and the snow. The models likely didn’t handle it too well. Also, you are pretty far inland. While we did call for mid teens in the metro, you are usually 5 degrees cooler/colder out there in the overnight hours. Sometimes even more. So you were actually forecast more in the way of 7-10 degrees. You are right about the cold safety, but almost all schools were closed today as well as many businesses. Also, the wind was calm. We haven’t been this cold in a while. I’ve only seen 1 or 2 Winters with cold air like this in the 10 years that I’ve been here. Last year at this time we were in the 70s. Crazy! Jeremy

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