I'll get right to it.
Nor'easter. Snow begins Monday night between 10pm and midnight. Snow is heaviest between 4am and 2pm on Tuesday, beginning to taper by 3-4pm. We'll see snow showers Tuesday evening and overnight (and a nominal bit of additional accumulation) and maybe even some flurries on Wednesday morning.
Berks, Lancaster, Lebanon, Lehigh, Montgomery Counties (as well as north Jersey and NYC), 14-18"
Philadelphia, Chester County, south Jersey, northern Delaware, 8-12"
Delaware, extreme south Jersey, 4-8" with mixed precipitation
Is this a blizzard?
Strictly speaking, a blizzard is a severe winter storm that has sustained winds of 35mph or more and visibility of under 1/4 mile for three hours or more. We'll have winds of 15-25 mph on Tuesday morning and afternoon with gusts as high as 35-40mph, but expect visibility to be 1/4 mile or less for much of Tuesday morning and afternoon. So it's really just semantics--whatever you call it, we'll have a sucky, cold, snowy, wind-driven hellscape that will have the following impacts:
Power outages - Since it's a heavy, wet, wind-driven snow, we'll see widespread downed trees and power lines.
Travel snafus - Don't even think about trying to drive on Tuesday morning and afternoon. When people try anyway, there will be bad results. And cancelled flights up and down the eastern seaboard.
School closings - A snow day is all but guaranteed for Tuesday across the region, but the good news (at least the silver lining to this bad news, which I've become an expert at finding lately) is that because of the sun angle (it's mid-March) and the end time, we might just see delays on Wednesday. (This would change if there are widespread outages in an area or we hit - or exceed - the upper limit of those snow totals.)
Speaking of which:
Chance of delay Tuesday, 0.77%
Chance of early dismissal Tuesday, 4.22%
Chance of cancellation Tuesday, 95.01%
[Note: yes, the percentages for Tuesday add up to 100%. You're welcome, math teachers!]
Chance of delay Wednesday, 46.13%
Chance of cancellation Wednesday, 19.12%
Windy on Wednesday; Wed and Thu are still below normal (highs in the mid 30s). Highs slowly climb through the 40s over the weekend (when we may have some snow showers but no big) and into early next week.
So it snowed. Most places in the area got about 4-6 inches, which you may recall as my forecasted snow total, but WHATEVS.
It'll get down to 14 degrees on Friday morning (2/10) so we may see some refreezing.
Chance of at least a delay on Friday: 41.212%
Chance of cancellation on Friday: 4.889%
It will be a little milder this weekend - highs in the mid 40s and lows in the mid 30s. Foggy with a shower or two on Sunday 2/12.
Two main messages I received today:
Is there a chance of more snow? I kind of liked this snow day thing.
Is there a chance of more snow? I hate it and never want it again.
Answer: Maybe next Thursday - February 16th (snow) and February 22nd-23rd (freezing rain and sleet). And then something in March, but that's a long way off.....
It's going to snow.
Tomorrow (Wednesday 2/8) will be partly sunny with an unseasonably mild temperature getting into the upper 50s (around noon).
But then the temperature falls precipitously: 40s by 5pm, 30s by 11pm, and through the 20s all day Thursday. (Thursday's high of 31 will actually occur just after midnight.)
Snow will fall thick and fast between about 2am and 11am, tapering to snow showers in the afternoon.
4-6 inches in most areas, with isolated areas approaching 10!
Chance that we'll have at least a delay: 82.1%
Chance that we'll go to school and have an early D: 40%
Chance of a snow day: 71.889%
October 30, 2011 - high of 39. A freak snowstorm downs leaf-laden limbs. Mass hysteria.
October 30, 2016 - mostly sunny, high of 82. Rain and thunderstorms late afternoon and evening.
And October 31, 2016 - cooler and a bit breezy; mostly sunny with a high of 56.
The first day of November will be partly cloudy with a high in the low 60s, and then the second and third days of November will see highs in the low 70s again (and maybe a shower or thunderstorm on Friday as a cold front moves through).
Sunny with highs in the upper 50s for the 4th, 5th, 6th, and 7th. And no rain forecast for Election Day (until later in the evening), which is fortunate, because if there's one thing we Americans lead the world in, it's finding any possible excuse not to vote.
And now, on to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ):
When will we have a hard frost to end the misery of seasonal allergy sufferers? First hard frost will probably be around the 18th of November.
When will it snow? The 2nd half of November is setting up in a pretty wintry pattern, so I think we'll see the first measurable snow of the season by the end of November.
Will we have a white Christmas? So racist, and no, at this point, it doesn't look like it.
Will it be a cold winter? Not especially. I mean, it's cold in winter. But the only really frigid period I can foresee is the 2nd half of January, when temperatures will dip into the teens.
Will it be a snowy winter? I see more mixed events than snow at this point given the dominance of La Nina. But this far out, nobody really knows. Anyone who claims to is selling something. (To paraphrase Cary Elwes' character in The Princess Bride.)