It just wouldn't be spring without another snow storm right? Snow on St. Patrick's Day, snow flurries on the first night of spring. Now a possible snow "storm" the first week of spring. Where was this in December and January you ask?
So far in Harrisonburg we've received 14" of snow in the month of March.
Many other areas have more, and now we may have some more to add to that total.
Take a look at some other big March years.
Spring snow is not that uncommon in the Valley.
Usually systems tend to provide more moisture into the area, and if the cold air is in place, well we have winter weather instead of rain.
Our developing system is going to be coming in from the southwest, looks to be a double surface low, notice the two L's.
Now there is a blocking system to the north that's going to help keep this system to the south, right over our area.
Notice in the image the kink, or dip where I have the arrow drawn.
Because of a strong area of high pressure over Canada, that is going to pump some cold air in from the northeast.
Anytime we see this kink, or dip, that's a red flag. Instantly that indicates cooler temperatures.
What we call a Cold Air Damming event, when the cold northeasterly air settles in the Valley and is trapped in between the mountains.
When you combine a cold air damming setup with moisture, that is a prime setup for snow.
Also the setup that brought us the big snow storm at the beginning of March.
With any spring snow, a big factor is ground temperature because that will help or prevent accumulation. Unfortunately for us, we've stayed pretty cold lately. The good news is, Friday and Saturday there will be plentiful sunshine, and a March sun has a higher sun angle, and more solar radiation. That can help warm up the ground.
But temperatures Sunday and Monday will be cold, and in the 30s. There may be a chance for a little rain mixing in on Sunday but with temperatures, and cooling, this looks to be mainly a snow event. Keep in mind we could see several hours of snowfall before this starts to accumulate. This will also be a pretty wet snow.
Friday we will put out our first call on potential snowfall amounts. However as we've been saying since Monday, plan on some minor accumulations. (Minor would be a couple inches). Inconvenient, absolutely. Monday morning doesn't look too pretty right now as far as commute or school. This system may stick around for a bit, we could see continuing snow bands, and flurries right through Tuesday.
Always drive with caution because anytime there is snow, there will be slick spots. Remember you can always watch or read our latest forecast on www.whsv.com if you happen to miss a broadcast.