1.12.2018 -- Starting From Scratch
Good evening. We start from scratch, as, for the most part, our snow pack is a memory.
Numerous flood warnings remain posted, those are on the FB page.
Here is a graphic illustrating the winter storm warnings and winter weather advisories.
Round #2 is beginning as this report is being written. A very strong cold front is in the process of moving across western New York, with temperatures ranging from around 60 in eastern and central NY to the mid 30s to the west. Temperatures will continue to fall from west to east, and precipitation will transition from rain to freezing rain/sleet, and then snow.
VERY SLICK TRAVEL CONDITIONS EXPECTED THIS EVENING AND TONIGHT as a "flash freeze" is expected to occur. All that water everywhere will freeze, creating extremely dangerous conditions if you have any travel plans. Actually... if you don't have to go anywhere tonight... don't.
Heavy snow will fall for northern NY, the Fingerlakes, and western New York. We're sticking with our 8-12 call for the vast majority of this area. The models are honing in on a "deformation zone," which typically occurs with these types of storm systems as a very energetic upper-level jet moves overhead. This will enhance the snow accumulation rate, and we're going with 10-15 (locally higher) within this zone.
**Note -- this zone might not set up precisely where it's shown on the map. It's highly dependent on where the upper level jet moves and where the storm center moves. It could set up farther west/south or east/north or east right on the snow/ice line... there are some variables at play there.
Speaking of ice... that's where the forecast confidence takes a dip. A large swath of central New York will see significant ice accmulations -- a quarter to as much as a third of an inch. Similar to the deformation zone referenced a minute ago, precisely where this heaviest freezing rain falls is dependent on the actual storm track; this could shift a little west or east. Ice amounts drop off either side east and west. Of course, this area of mixed precipitation holding on longer will mean less overall snow accumulation, but even these areas will go to all snow for at least several hours Saturday morning.
Here is a look at the future radar models. This model worked extremely well with the rainfall and placement, so there's no reason to think they won't perform admirably on this one as well.
Ok, as you can see, this is all a memory by Saturday afternoon. We know you'll want to ride, but we can't stress enough to call ahead to make sure whatever trail you want is open. Also, watch out for whatever water may still be flowing in spite of the hard freeze.
Looking ahead, our next system should arrive sometime later Monday / Monday night in the form of a rather weak clipper system. This should bring a fairly widespread LIGHT snowfall across much of the state. Beyond that, models want to hint at a pretty decent coastal storm next week, but at this point, not even going to give it much thought.