Saturday, December 8, 2012

It's Post Time... ehrrr Snow Time: Final Forecasts!

This weekend's snowstorm appears to have a mind of its own. A more southerly track has caused a rapid change in most, though not all, forecasts from Minneapolis/St. Paul weather prognosticators.

With snow on the doorstep, here was the latest thinking from Twin Cities forecasters late this Saturday evening. KSTP, KMSP and Accuweather stand out on the low side (about 4.5 inches) while WCCO, MPR and the Star Tribune are more along the lines of 8 inches.

WCCO: 5-10
KSTP: 3-6 (most snow along Highway 23 storm)
KMSP: 4.6 per snow tracker on news
KARE: 6
Star Tribune: 6-10+ per tweet at 9:50
MPR: 5-10 as of 5:40 per blog
National Weather Service: 6-10
The Weather Channel: 4-8
Weather Underground BestForecast: 8
Accuweather: 4.2
Novak Weather: 6-10 per tweet at 10:30
RandyinChamplain: 10
DDwx (Minnesota met from Atlanta): 8



57 comments:

  1. Okay, if Accuweather is on the low side we KNOW we are not going to see the low side of the snow totals.

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  2. checking current radar with the short term models, it looks like the short term models have initialized reasonably well. However the short term models were showing higher DBZ's north west of the metro than what current conditions show. At this time most of the short range models showed around 20 DBZ's northwest of the metro, I am only seeing 16 to 18 DBZ on current radar. Could this be dropping further south yet?? Could my final forecast of 10" be to low?

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    1. Radar looks impressive with snow becoming heavy quickly,but also looking at radar the area of snow doesn't look so large,very scattered back towards SD,and not much falling in western MN.So how are we going to get 10" or 8" as many are saying.

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    2. Looking at current surface winds, I think the center of the surface low is located somewhere near Brookings SD. That is were this mornings run of GEM REG model showed it. That model was just upgraded big time and now a much higher resolution model than it was one month ago. That low could very well track just south of the metro putting us in the bullseye

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    3. The Gem regular model is a 48hr model only, and differs from the Gem Globel model which goes out to 240 hrs. And the Gem Regular model updates every 6hrs. It was showing the right solution I think, with this morning's run but of course I didn't buy it because I'm a Euro lover.

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  3. I currently like the Star Trib of 6-10+, if I had a bold option I would have bolded the 10+ option

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  4. Weather channel just made a comment...."its looking more and more likely that we will be naming Caesar"for the winter storm in the upper midwest by morning!
    Be afraid Caesar is coming,come on were Minnesotan's we can handle this!
    BTW,weather channel went down now calling 3-6.there are just so many numbers being thrown out there,its like a moving target....who do you believe?

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    1. it is a moving target, but I think the GEM REG is a huge winner with this.

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  5. From MPX with their 09/0Z TAF update... in others words their aviation update....take a LOOK at this.

    AVIATION
    WEATHER WARNING WILL ALSO BE ISSUED SHORTLY FOR ACCUMULATIONS
    EXCEEDING 3/4 OF AN INCH PER HOUR. AS FOR STORM TOTAL...WOULD PUT
    MSP ON THE HIGHER END OF THE SCALE WITH 8-10 INCHES LOOKING MORE
    AND MORE LIKELY.


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  6. Maybe a few inches so far and a big old clear radar in rosemount. I doubt we see 4". Another bust as usual?

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  7. Alright, for anybody up already, what's this big pouch of dry air punching in from the south going to do to decrease the snowfall totals? Just shy of an inch of snow here in Northfield this morning.

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  8. Plymouth Weather LoverDecember 9, 2012 at 7:40 AM

    It is coming. 4-8 more today, at least, according to NWS. Totals of 9-12. Heaviest intensity yet to come. Bring it.

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  9. Dry pouch is filling in with heavy snow southwest of metro swirling towards the metro,its far from over,NOT A BUST!.........and as always,as PWL says bring it,PWL how many times did you pee in your pants?

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  10. Very light snow in Faribault right now. We picked up about 1/4" last night.

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  11. Waconia area only has about 2-3 inches so far based on what I can see from my window. After looking at the NWS storm report, we are definitely on the lower side of what's been reported.

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  12. Oh, and The Weather Channel has officially named this storm Caesar. I read that and I laughed. Just seems so...pointless.

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  13. What is left of the dry slot is a tiny bubble in carver county. Looks on the verge of death. Radar depicts very slow storm. Let us watch.

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  14. Btw @randyinchamplain the model you were asking about yesterday that NWS used was RAP13.

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  15. In Red Wing I'd estimate about two inches. I say estimate because I can only go on what accumulated on metal surfaces like cars. The roads and grass has probably less than an inch on them. Snow didn't start to "stick" until about 3am.

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  16. 4.1 inches in Waite Park, NE Minneapolis at 0950

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  17. Estimating 4in, Stillwater,MN

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  18. 3.0 inches in St. Paul as of 8

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  19. Winter Storm is behaving as expected. 3"-6" common across MSP metro with another 4"-8" to come between now and 6pm. This will bring totals well over 6" for all of MSP metro with some locations measuring 12"+. Best guess for the bullseye is northern metro in Wright, Anoka & Washington counties. Axis of of heavy snow basically along the I-94 corridor from STC E/SE to EAU Wisconsin. Totals will gradually drop off as you head north of Pine City & south of Cannon Falls.

    In general, computer models performed quite well with this snowstorm. Granted, the swath of heaviest snow was about 50 to 100 miles too far north, but the models appropriately shifted that area south with time. Once again, the Europeans get a round of applause since it was the UKMET that caught onto the southern shift in energy before all other computer models. What sucks is that 50 miles doesn't sound like much, but when you are talking about the MSP metro, it makes a huge difference.



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  20. I believe we will find some of the heaviest totals in and around the Buffalo Ridge,been watching the radar trends and there has been heavy snow falling there for hours without much movement.

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    1. Here is a good graphic that depicts this:

      http://www.crh.noaa.gov/news/display_cmsstory.php?wfo=fsd&storyid=90132&source=0

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  21. NWS now calling for 8 to 15 inches. The heavy snow bands appear to be setting up over the metro like they were over the Buffalo Ridge. Moderate to heavy snow at this time here in Rosemount.

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  22. Plymouth Weather LoverDecember 9, 2012 at 10:32 AM

    Peeing my pants is almost constant now!! Bring it!!

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  23. 5.5 here in stillwater, MN

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  24. @Big Daddy... this storm ought to make your snowblowers sales happy for the season!

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  25. 8.5" in St. Paul at 1:20 p.m.

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  26. Despite the forecast it appears that the dry slot is quickly approaching from the southwest. The official forecast is for the dry slot to fill in before it makes it to the metro, but it doesn't appear that is going to be the case.

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  27. Maybe 2-3 in Rochester. Hard to tell with it being heavy and compact. Won't require the snow blower to clear the drive way though.

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  28. I don't know how much we have because it's weighing itself down. The NWS 10 miles east was reporting 9 inches a couple hours ago, but I don't think we have that much here. Still snowing. The dry slot is close, but showing the slightest hint of redevelopment.

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  29. Yeah here in Red Wing it looks like the end is near. :( I thought it was supposed to keep up throughout the evening and the NWS point forecast says through the overnight into the morning but that obviously isn't going to be the case with nothing coming on the radar

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  30. There will be the light wrap around snow through tomorrow morning Marc. It was never going to keep snowing like this until morning. We'd be talking about 16+ inches then.

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  31. Based on some of the totals I've seen just outside the metro, there may be some 16+ inch amounts!

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  32. 10 inches in Rosemount as of 2:51 PM. It's still snowing steadily

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  33. Looking at the radar loop, the dry slot area is beginning to fill back in somewhat. It should make it no further north than the Cannon Falls area. Snow will continue to pivot around the low, keeping those bands fairly stationary. Twin Cities could still see another 3-5 before all is said and done. I'm surprised that some forecasters went so low with their predictions after all the models showed the southern shift. I know it can be a bit nerve racking going so high with predictions but still. For the record, that dry punch was forecast, and the models showed it quite well. They also showed it filling which as I mentioned before is starting to fill back in. Stay safe everyone.

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  34. 2.75 inches in 75 minutes in Red Wing since I sent in a 6" report at 2. Might hit 10" afterall.

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  35. full foot here in stillwater

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  36. After some steadier and heavier snows this afternoon it now appears we probably got around 5-6 inches so far in Rochester.

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  37. 10.5 in Golden Valley........yeah Bill it has been a top notch sales day for snowblowers and shovels,at the end of the day we will be out of both,even though we got an emergency snowblower shipment yesterday morning when I made the call for more with the storm shifting south....this is awesome,this is what I'm talking about............can never lock in on a solution too early storms always shift at the last moment,best sales day since December of 2010.

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  38. 11 inches in St. Paul through 4:30 p.m.

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  39. 11.5 inches in Rosemount as of 6:18 PM. Snowing moderately.

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  40. 10.5" measured here in champlin, however that's total and it's the 1st measurement I was able to take, couldn't take 6 hr readings so there was a good deal of compaction. Best guess is around 12"

    @Big Daddy, thanks for the RAP 13, glad to see business thriving.

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  41. Ruler is hanging on for dear life. Looks like about 11.75 in St. Paul as of 6:30 p.m.

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  42. Can anyone link me to the snowfall depth local measurement page. I had it once tonight and now I can't seem to locate it. Great weather day!! Love the snow and my kids and hubby had a great time out in today...

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    1. http://www.crh.noaa.gov/mpx/?n=snowtotals

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  43. 14.8" at 2035 in Waite Park Neighborhood, NE Mpls

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  44. Plymouth Weather LoverDecember 9, 2012 at 10:26 PM

    Snow next weekend? Bring it!!

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  45. 14" in Falcon Heights as of 9:04 PM, based on the NWS' public information statement. As I don't own a car, I'll have to see how bus traffic fares tomorrow morning.

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  46. 13" in Golden Valley,this storm exceeded all expectations,from the pro's to the ones here.....I'm very curious to read your grading on this one,Bill.
    And as PWL eluded to yes snow is in the forecast next Saturday,could be significant again,so Bill your going to need a quick turnaround with your grades.

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    1. Yea, Big Daddy.... this grading stuff, I dunno. I'm in the process of putting something together, but I'll invite others to share their grading thoughts as well.

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  47. Hey @big daddy,you made it to the big time,your 15 minutes of fame so to speak,your above comment about the snowblowers was used in Paul Huttner's "updraft" blog this evening.Check it out!

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  48. This storm ended up performing beyond what most of the models showed. While they did have some areas near a foot of snow I don't think they had it as widespread as they did. As far as the grading goes, well I think Yuhas and whoever did the snow tracker thing on Fox (Steve, I think?) didn't do so hot. I will say the early stages of this storm showing on the models was very flip floppy and everyone was confused. Very common with a pattern change to see that much flip flopping going on. However 12 to 24 hours before the event they should have really locked in on much higher totals than they forecast. I'm not sure what model the snow tracker is (whether it is a version of RPM or what), but when that showed as low as it did, it should have been thrown out. Everything else was pointing at a much higher storm total. The general trend was a slight bump south with each and every run so their forecast totals should have gone up. I don't like when someone just runs one model, and whatever number pops up on the screen is what they go with. To me, that isn't forecasting. That is pushing a button, and just writing down whatever shows. I'm not trying to sound like a jerk here because I get it that these storms can be really tough to forecast. Lots of different factors come into play here. Also it isn't too common for forecasters to put such high predictions on their air, for fear of the bust potential. For me, an 8-12+ prediction would have covered things just fine 12 to 24 hours out, and then adjust those predictions as snow reports come in. I think the NWS did a fantastic job overall. They noticed the southern trend, adjusted the headlines accordingly, and adjusted totals accordingly. Their discussions were detailed, and they even wondered if their prediction last night would be high enough. Now our attention turns to next weekend, as potentially things could come together for another accumulating snow event. Zero model agreement so far so this one is far from a lock. Until next time!

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    1. Great analysis, Duane. I'll have you write the recap next time. :-) Will repost this comment under the just-issued forecaster analysis post.

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