Feb 29, 2004
Rochester Hills, Michigan, United States of Americ
Figured I would start a thread for those of us interested in the synoptic aspect of this system (wind, snow, meteorological aspects), versus the pure severe weather threat.

Latest 18Z NAM has this thing down around 975MB, while the 18Z NCEP WRF is down to 970MB... The FSL RUC get's into the sub-980MB region, but all of the data isn't in yet. The 12Z GEM and ECMWF also gets us down to 980MB-ish (979MB).

Meanwhile, latest 18Z GFS, UKMET, and NGM (whatever value it has, LOL) are all around 988-990MB...

As of now, it appears the higher-resolution models are deepening this thing quite a bit... I guess only time and real SFC obs will tell... But given the expected track, I would expect a stronger storm system.

With the expected severe weather and high wind event, here are a few things of interest:

My Weather Station - 2 Minute Temporal Resolution

Webcam (it's choppy, I'm hosting it locally)
Precip is beginning to break out over central NE and will move east/ change to snow later tonight... were currently sitting at 38/ 33 here in Papillion will at SE breeze at around 15 mph. A tornado watch is in effect farther to the south across Eastern OK and Western AK... A fairly strong line of storms is breaking out in NW AK at this time with no severe warnings yet but initiation is occuring over many areas in OK and AK...
Even with this being the strongest storm of the 4 so far this nov, DTX says this "" SETUP IS MARGINAL FOR A HIGH WIND EVENT""

This will be a very interesting storm, it will be a game of "how low can it go" So far, it has seemed that the models, the NAM has been the worst, have not had deep enough lows with the past few systems up until about a day or less before the event.
It looks like the best setup for winds is going to be more to the northwest this time just like the past few...
Can you guys believe how amazingly consistant the models have been with each other with this system? Well at least relatively speaking anyway. I wish they were like this with every storm. Of course I guess that'd make it a little less fun lol.

Everything still looks to be in place for a nice little snowstorm for central IA up into SE MN and NW WI. Because this storm will move so fast it looks like amounts won't get too out of hand, especially with the warm ground. There should still be some impressive snowfall rates even with the warm ground however.

The new morning NAM shows 50-60kts at 850 over much of IA tonight so the high winds still look on target. It's quite possible that the areas hit by tornadoes Saturday will be amidst ground blizzard conditions later tonight, depending on just how much snow falls. I think even though the snow will be relatively wet in nature, with that much wind, I imagine it will be blown around quite a bit...
If this pans out, it could be the 3rd consecutive storm to give me >50MPH wind gusts (EDIT: Okay, NOT consecutive LOL).

The main threat appears to be on the eastern side of the state, where 950-925MB winds are in excess of 50-55KNTS through 15Z WED. Also, cross sections and time-heights show mixing layers getting up around 850MB, with a solid 55KNTS within that layer, and 60-65KNTS at the very top (and over) the inversion. The SFC pressure gradient magnitude actually isn't overly strong, but the 3HR pressure rise just behind the front (or squall line?) over southeastern lower MI is pretty impressive at 5MB (versus the 2-3MB over western MI). I'm actually quite surprised that the NAM SFC windfield is so low considering the parameters... Perhaps there is some nocturnal component in the model that "turns winds down" between 00Z and 12Z (just like the CAPE computation using 70-120M, rather than 2M or 10M based parcels).

I supposed the ultimate reason the NWS (DTX) didn't post a high-wind watch is probably because of the severe weather threat later to day, which should get main priority.
Very heavy snow falling right now here in Omaha... alot of it is melting on contact because of high surface temps right now but a fairly heavy band is sitting just to our west moving our way... Winds are starting to blow fairly strong out of the north around 20-30 mph... supercell with reported funnel cloud in IN
Very heavy snow falling right now here in Omaha... alot of it is melting on contact because of high surface temps right now but a fairly heavy band is sitting just to our west moving our way...

I was surprised when I saw OAX's snowfall tally earlier, with totals clustered around 1". Here in Bellevue, I have a good 3" on the ground. It seems a heavy band sat overhead for much of the morning... the snow was already accumulating well before sunrise.
Big snowflakes falling in between raindrops in KC now as well. Not expecting accumulation here, but it's fun to get our first taste of winter. An attorney just asked me why these dark clouds are trucking so fast from north to south today. Even the backside of this system looks dark and ominous ... it's one scary day out there.

EDIT - thundersnow coming down hard now ... haven't had it for quite a while here ... the looks on folks' faces is great -

EDIT 2 - Someone just emailed me: "I experienced it in Niagara Falls a few years ago. It’s just not natural. It’s like wrath of God kind of stuff, except that, there’s not even mention of it in the Bible. It’s just wrong. I’m scared."

GFS has low passing SE of me by about 100-120 miles while rapidly deeping this afternoon/evening. NWS has all rain in forecast for me. I won't be surprised, however, if there is a quick changeover to snow and I get some significant accumulations. Only inhibiting factor, however is 850 temps around 0c. Might be a tad too warm until about 0600z when temps drop to -5c at 850. We'll see I guess.

If this was December we'd be getting 12+ from this.
No problem. The radar is probably hitting mixed or frozen precip that is melting aloft, so it appears more intense than it actually is. Somewhat related to "bright banding" if you want to google it.
Yeah I didn't even think to look at sfc obs. Just knew it was snowing here and saw that reflectivity and assumed sleet.


Dang! Haven't seen them packed so tight around here for what seems like years. Seems like 1995 had several of these wind makers and not much since then. That is still 10.5 hours out and looks about the worst near the MO river valley here and up towards sc MN. So far there is only 2-3 inches here and it looks about done. The gust about 30 minutes ago had to be pushing severe criteria. Too bad this snow is so wet or it'd really look interesting out there later today.
It has been snowing steadily in Ames for around an hour and a half... Some slight accumulations on the grass, you can still barely see the green. Hardly any wind to speak of right now that i can see, although that is going to change in the next hours as we head towards nightfall. Many of those areas that got hit by tornadoes are likely experiencing some snowflakes...
Jeff - that video is awesome ... I love it! ... Looks like Omaha has met the arctic yet again ... even with that wet snow, the wind certainly doesn't seem to be having any trouble making it look almost like whiteout up there.
GRR upgraded the entire CWA to a high wind warning... Some locations along Lake Michigan already gusting to 70MPH, with 40-50MPH sustained (per GRR AFD). They also state that inland wind gusts could be in excess of 60MPH...

The NAM has the strongest low level flow lingering over the eastern part of the state, while wind speeds in the west are slightly weaker. This is verified pretty well with the VAD profile data from GRR and DTX... Models also indicate very strong subsidence and mixing heights up around 900MB-850MB - which taps into the 50-55KNTS available at 950-925MB. So, I would suspect that DTX might end up with a high wind warning as well.
After a foggy/rainy day here (about 3/4"), the rain has changed over to some light snow here. First flakes of the season. The winds are just now starting to pick up. So far my highest gust is only 33mph, but the stronger winds are still out in IA.

It's hard to believe a few nights ago I was sitting on my deck in a t-shirt.

Very interesting storm. Was fun to track.