WeatherNation Blog

Heavy Snow & Blizzard Conditions in the Southern Plains

Hello and happy Monday everyone, hope all is well as we roll through this December. Hanukkah starts tomorrow, the first day of Astronomical Winter is later this week and Christmas is this weekend. I’m already tired of thinking about this week and to top it all off, we’re talking about a major winter storm across the Southern Plains, where as much as 20″ of snow could fall through Tuesday.  Roads are already being closed across New Mexico and could possibly extend into Colorado, Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas.

 

Latest New Mexico Road Closures HERE:

Snowfall Forecast

This is from our in house weather model… it is showing upwards of 15″ + for some local cities/towns in the area below. I could see isolated 20″ amounts here too!

Current Warnings

These are the current warning. All the red shaded counties are BLIZZARD WARNINGS. Again, some spots here could get close to 20″ of snow through Tuesday with winds gusting to near 50mph at times!

Severe Weather Potential

On the warmer and more unstable side of the storm, severe weather is possible. Hail and high winds are the main concern, but isolated tornadoes certainly can’t be ruled out!

Heavy Rain Potential

The 5 day rainfall forecast looks impressive for some of the same areas that have been getting hit hard already this year. An additional 1″ to 3″ of rain may fall from now until early Saturday.

Thanks for checking in on this Monday. Have a wonderful week!

Meteorologist Todd Nelson

Tracking the Storm

The main focus for the forecast this week will be tracking an area of low pressure as it moves from the southwest, towards the south central region,  and finally through the Ohio River Valley.

This storm is currently sitting over the Southwest and will be bringing rain and snow to Arizona and even the southern tip of Nevada today.

A shot from a soggy Las Vegas this Morning…

 

The low will be moving out of the Southwest today, picking up some colder air from the Rockies and some gulf moisture to generate blizzard conditions in the South Central region.

The NWS has issued several watches and warnings already:

Model projections showing areas under the blizzard watch could see as much as 16 inches of snow:

Northern Texas may also see similar high totals:

After this system passes, temperatures will be plummeting.  Locations across northern Texas and Oklahoma will see highs in the 50s and 60s today and only in the 20s and 30s by Tuesday:

 

Check back here from more updates!

 

Golf….In Minnesota? Snow…In Arizona?

Golf and snow should be reversed.  Folks usually flock to Arizona to golf in the winter and stay in Minnesota to enjoy the wonders of White Christmas.  This year we are flipping those two states around.  Snow for Arizona and weather that will be mild enough for golf in Minnesota.

SNOWY ARIZONA: Red cliffs covered in snow near the town of Whiteriver, Ariz. on Dec. 3. (Photo: squeaks2569/Flickr

From the Arizona Republic:

Residents in northern and central Arizona broke out their snow shovels for a second day, as trees shook off snow that had been weighing them down. The winter weather forced some school delays and closures, but the state’s major roadways were open. State Department of Transportation officials, however, urged residents to be cautious when encountering patches of snow and ice.

“It seems as though Flagstaff has seen the bulk of it already, but it could be pretty heavy on the rooftops for areas that got over a foot,” Outler said of the storm

A huge black cloud loomed over central Phoenix on Tuesday afternoon, giving the appearance of dusk. Puddles of water lingered on the sidewalks as forecasters called for a quarter-inch or more of rain on Tuesday.

Chris Kuhlman of the weather bureau in Phoenix said that should put the city over its December average for rainfall, which is 0.88 inches. But Phoenix still will be well below its yearly to-date average of 7.5 inches, he said.

“It seems like it’s a nice rainfall maker since the area technically still is in a drought,” he said. “We’ve had half the rainfall this year in the Phoenix area that we normally would have.”

Southeastern Arizona was dealing with a rare bout of prolonged rain, while the mountains saw heavy snow. The storm was expected to give Tucson more rain Tuesday than it typically gets all month, said meteorologist Craig Shoemaker.

 

Golf in Minnesota

On the opposite side of the country, Minnesotans are enjoy temperatures that are well above average for this time of the year.  In fact there are 8 golf course that are still open for business.

 

 

List of Golf Courses that are currently open or soon to be open:

Lynx National Golf Course18Sauk Centre
Parkview Golf Club18Eagan
Riverwood National Golf Course18Otsego
Oak Marsh Golf Club18Oakdale
Majestic Oaks Golf Club – Signature18Ham Lake
Daytona Golf Club 18Dayton
Majestic Oaks Golf Club – Executive 99Ham Lake
Mississippi National Golf Links – Tournament18Red Wing
Southbrook Golf Club18Annandale

Above average temperatures today for the Midwest and below average south and southwest:

The trend continues right through Christmas:

So if you are still hoping for a white christmas for the upper Midwest, I wouldn’t hold your breath.  Right now odd are stacked against a storm coming in with enough cold air for a decent covering before December 25.

Head to Arizona for the cooler weather!

 

Stormy Southwest

An area of low pressure is way down the coast of California from the Gulf of Alaska on this Sunday morning.  Up until now it has been a very quiet weekend for most of the country.  Two areas of high pressure have held off any stormy weather from developing in most places.

 

But now the pattern is changing and it will be more interesting heading into early next week.

First up: Southern California.  Rain moves tonight and continues into tomorrow as low slides just off the coast.

Undoubtedly, it will be a wet start to the day in Los Angeles and San Diego.  Snow will be falling in the higher elevations, generally above 5,000 ft.

Winter Storm Watch in effect for portions of California:

From the National Weather Service:

* ELEVATION: ABOVE 5000 FEET.

* SNOW LEVELS: SNOW LEVELS LOWERING TO AROUND 4000 FEET MONDAY THROUGH TUESDAY.

* LOCATION: THE GREATER POTENTIAL FOR LOCALLY HEAVY SNOWFALL IS IN THE SAN BERNARDINO MOUNTAINS ABOVE 6000 FEET WITH LESSER POTENTIAL ELSEWHERE IN MOUNTAIN AREAS ABOVE 5000 FEET.

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS: SNOWFALL OF 8 TO 12 INCHES IS POSSIBLE IN THE SAN BERNARDINO MOUNTAINS ABOVE 6000 FEET WITH AMOUNTS OF 4 TO 8 INCHES POSSIBLE FOR OTHER MOUNTAIN AREAS ABOVE 5000 FEET. LESSER ACCUMULATIONS ARE POSSIBLE DOWN TO AROUND 4000 FEET.

* TIMING: MODERATE TO HEAVY SNOW SHOWERS ARE EXPECTED TO DEVELOP MONDAY AFTERNOON AND INCREASE THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT…TAPERING TO SCATTERED SNOW SHOWERS TUESDAY.

* LOCATIONS INCLUDE: CUYAMACA…MOUNT LAGUNA…RANCHITA… IDYLLWILD…PINE COVE…ANGELUS OAKS…BALDWIN LAKE… BARTON FLATS…BIG BEAR CITY…BIG BEAR LAKE…FAWNSKIN… FOREST FALLS…LAKE ARROWHEAD…MOUNT BALDY… RUNNING SPRINGS…TWIN PEAKS…WRIGHTWOOD * VISIBILITY: MAY BE LOCALLY REDUCED TO ONE QUARTER MILE OR LESS IN HEAVY SNOW AND FOG. * IMPACTS: RESIDENTS AND TRAVELERS ENTERING THE MOUNTAINS SHOULD BE PREPARED FOR HAZARDOUS WINTER WEATHER CONDITIONS AND POSSIBLE ROAD CLOSURES. IF POSSIBLE…CARRY CHAINS AND TAKE EXTRA FOOD… WATER…AND CLOTHING.

 

On Monday, this system will move into the Arizona and New Mexico continuing to dump rain in the lower elevations and snow in the higher elevations.

Model estimates for precipitation totals through Wednesday morning (keep in mind, the mountains will see this moisture as snow instead of rain):

Winter Storm Watch in effect for portions of Arizona and New Mexico:

From the National Weather Service:

* SNOW ACCUMULATIONS…GREATER THAN 4 INCHES IS POSSIBLE BELOW 7500 FEET WITH 8 INCHES OR MORE ABOVE 7500 FEET. POTENTIAL FOR GREATER ACCUMULATIONS ALONG SOUTHWEST FACING SLOPES AND HIGHER PEAKS.

* TIMING…SNOW IS EXPECTED TO BEGIN MONDAY AND CONTINUE THROUGH WEDNESDAY MORNING. SNOW MAY BE HEAVY AT TIMES…PARTICULARLY OVER THE HIGHER TERRAIN.

* WINDS…NO WIDESPREAD SIGNIFICANT WINDS EXPECTED.

* SNOW LEVELS…BETWEEN 6500 AND 7500 FEET MONDAY AND TUESDAY THEN FALLING TO ALL LOCATIONS TUESDAY NIGHT.

* LOCAL IMPACTS…HAZARDOUS WINTER DRIVING CONDITIONS CAN BE EXPECTED…ALONG WITH REDUCED VISIBILITIES AT TIMES IN HEAVY SNOW. TRAVEL MAY BECOME DIFFICULT IF NOT IMPOSSIBLE…ESPECIALLY OVER THE HIGHER TERRAIN.

 

In other weather news…

 

Both Washington DC and NYC saw their first freeze this morning

 

Even with getting snow a month or so ago, this morning they saw their first freeze.

New York City has it’s coldest night since March 28.

DC’s coldest night since March 3 — much later than the average first freeze (November 13th), but tying the third latest freeze on record. The temperature gets moderated at Reagan National by the Potomac River. Meanwhile, you go to Dulles International, further away from the river, they they have seen 22 days at or below freezing so far this season.

 

Coldest Temperatures So Far This Season (From the NWS in Louisville, KY)

Central Kentucky woke up to the coldest air of the season on Sunday morning.  The official low at Louisville International Airport was 20 degrees, but most of the state saw temperatures in the teens. The coldest readings were observed in Corners, and at Taylorsville Lake, where the mercury dropped to 12 degrees.

However, this cold air will be short-lived. Expect a gradual warming trend for the first half of the week, with highs reaching 50 on Monday and approaching 60 Wednesday and Thursday.  Lows will recover into the 40s by Tuesday night.

 

Laredo Rainfall

Laredo, Texas received 1.94 inches of rain in the last 24 hours. They only saw 1.77 inches of rain between June and Friday.

 

Images From the Lunar Eclipse

@ChrisAstro

Near San Fran CA 2

From Spaceweather.com:  Today, Dec. 10th, the full Moon passed through the shadow of Earth, producing a total lunar eclipse visible across the Pacific hemisphere.

Images have been flooding in from Facebook and Twitter from across the nation. Here is a selection of some of the gorgeous shots the early morning moon:

@Ben270

Worthington, Indiana

@Tweetie_jc

Korea

@wavisque

Japan

Christy Patino

Minot ND

Dennis Conard

Sacramento CA

Marlo Lundy

Southern IA

Nancy Parker

Sioux Falls SD

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