March wants to play winter!

After a winter that has produced well-below normal snowfall in the Mid-Atlantic (largely the DC-Baltimore area is in the snow-hole this year), March has decided to provide a rather unique situation.  Models are coming into better agreement on what looks to be a significant snowstorm from northern VA up through ME with the metros of DC, Baltimore, Philadelphia, New York City, and Boston possibly getting big numbers.  Prior to this event, here are some of the season snowfall totals:

BWI:  0.7″, DCA:  1.4″, IAD:  1.7″, ORF:  5.3″, RIC:  7.1″, ACY:  7.7″, PHL:  9.0″, NYC:  22.6″, BOS:  39.2″

Notice as you head north, the seasonal totals are much higher and closer to normal snowfall.  So, where do we go from here?

The Bottom Line:  A significant snowstorm looks to be taking shape from Monday evening through early Wednesday morning with snow starting south in the early evening Monday, then spreading north through the night.  There is the chance many areas along and west of the I-95 corridor may see snow rates approach 1″-3″ per hour, thundersnow, and increasing winds through the overnight period into Tuesday.  The main show should last about 12-15 hours, but the upper-low may produce another period of snow for mainly MD, VA, DE, southern PA, and southern NJ Tuesday night.  

My initial thoughts:

DC-Baltimore:  I am thinking a solid 10″-15″ from DC (lower side) to Baltimore (higher side), but there is the possibility of 18″+ mainly Baltimore area north and west.  

Coastal NJ:  10″-12″ is my first guess, but be prepared for high winds and coastal flooding as well.  There might even be a mix to rain/sleet.

Philadelphia/Trenton up through NYC:  15″-18″, but possibly as high as 24″ in spots.

Boston area:  15″-20″, again possibly up to 24″ in spots.

The 0000 UTC GFS and 0600 UTC NAM show generous amounts of snow for the I-95 corridor, though less on the NAM due to difference in storm location.  The notable shift overnight was colder and more southerly.  All of the energy that will come together for this storm is now being sampled well over the Pacific Northwest, so confidence is growing.  For comparison, the 0000 UTC ECMWF (can’t show) had 8-14″ from DC-Baltimore, then goes crazy around Philadelphia through northern NJ and into NYC with amounts topping 20″.  The UKMET and CMC models also show heavy snowfall, so model agreement has increased.  The questions are still on the southern end near DC.  (NOTE:  It’s wise to not keep paying attention to the snowfall or precipitation maps during events like this as they will waffle the most, so look for trends, especially with 500 mb and sfc feature placement.)

0000 UTC GFS Total Snowfall ending on 03/16/17 (courtesy of WxBell)
0600 UTC NAM total snowfall ending 03/15/17 (courtesy of WxBell)

The 0000 UTC GEFS spread from 11 March and 12 March show the shift in the low placement with a nice clustering  now being depicted off the Delmarva and in a great spot for big snows in the I-95 corridor.  The left image would show less snow for the I-95 corridor, while the right image is much better.

Finally, the snowfall maps from the various National Weather Service Forecast Offices are presented below for your convenience.


As always, thanks for reading!

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