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Posted at 1:10 PM ET, 01/19/2011

Another glancing snow blow Friday morning

By Wes Junker

We've been on the edge of almost every snowstorm this winter, struggling to accumulate an inch from any given event. Here we go again.

We're on the southern fringe of a storm system in the works for late Thursday night through Friday's rush hour. In Jason's post yesterday, I mentioned that the storm looked like the type that might produce a dusting to three inches.

Next accumulating snow chance: Thursday night & Friday morning
Probability of more than 1" of snow: 45-50%
Probability of more than 4": 5-10%

If anything, the system's potential to produce amounts in the higher end of our range has gone down as the models have trended a little drier. From the city eastward, the surface temperature is forecast to be right or a little above freezing which could also limit accumulations.

Thus, we've toned down our thoughts on the most likely snowfall accumulations to a dusting to an inch or two over most of the area but with up to 3 inches possible in north central and northeast Maryland (especially in the higher terrain). The lightest amounts probably will stretch from the city south and southwest where the dry slot will be most pronounced. Tomorrow we'll post a zone map with specific accumulation outlooks.

Keep reading for technical discussion...


A weak low pressure system will be tracking eastward just to our south at the same time a rather vigorous upper level trough digs southward across the region setting the stage for snow. However, the upper level systems track is farther north than we'd typically like to see for D.C. to get a significant snowstorm as we will not get into the comma head and again will be relying on the northern end of the tail associated with the comma which is always a risky proposition when it is the prime mechanism for producing a snowstorm. Sometimes it fails to deliver as the dreaded dry slot can sometimes kill the deal. Remember the last storm that had this type scenario and produced its heaviest snow north of the city and had a dearth of snow to the south because of the dry slot.

The models have trended toward lighter precipitation amounts with the mornings NAM run now forecasting about 2 inches of snow assuming a 10-1 snow to liquid ratio. Last night's and this morning's GFS have also trended toward lighter amounts and would indicate less than 2 inches of snow. The latest European model is pretty dry and would suggest less than 1 inch.

As we look at temperatures, this morning's NAM suggested that the air from the surface through cloud level would be plenty cold enough for snow. The GFS has the surface temperature at Reagan National (and by proxy the District) being right at freezing as the snow begins but then falling during the event. On the other hand, the Short Range Ensemble Forecast System (SREF) guidance from this morning suggests the possibility of some warmer air which would cut back the already light snow amounts. Remember that the SREF are a number of model runs in which the initial conditions or physics have been tweaked slightly to get a feel for uncertainty of the forecast. You can also use them to get a crude estimate of the likelihood of the surface temperature being at some threshold at a given time.

SREF model probability of temperatures being at or below freezing at 7 a.m. Friday morning.

The map to the right is the probability of the surface temperature being below freezing across the area at 7 a.m. Friday morning. Note north and west of the city, the probability is high that temperatures will support accumulations. The probability that D.C. proper will be below freezing is the same as a coin flip. South and east of D.C., most of the SREF ensemble members are predicting that surface temperatures will be above freezing at onset. However, as the precipitation falls the temperatures will cool, making it hard to completely rule out the possibility of minor accumulations.

As noted earlier, the models seem to have come into agreement concerning precipitation - with simulations pretty light across the board. The 24 hour accumulated precipitation forecasts from the NAM (left) and GFS (right) are presented below. Each shows the snow lovers' dreaded dry slot to the southwest. Each also indicates that the heavier precipitation will be either north or east of D.C. The precipitation pattern forecast are very similar to several others this year. The track of the upper level system and the fact that the cyclonic circulation center at 850 mb (5000 ft) is north of us, will make it hard to get more than a minor nuisance type snowstorm.

Total liquid equivalent precipitation from this morning's NAM (left) and GFS (right).

Finally, let's look at the SREF product below to see how it agrees in principal with today's NAM and GFS. This product is called a plume diagram and it lets you look at the precipitation amount forecasts for Reagan National (DCA) or BWI for each SREF member and even tell you the form of the precipitation falling at various times during the storm.

Plume diagram for Reagan National of all SREF members during the storm.

Note: despite the growing consensus toward a light snow event on the operational models, the SREF guidance still shows some uncertainly about precipitation type. Its mean precipitation for all the runs in .21" or about 2 inches of snow assuming all the precipitation fell as snow. However, it does have one very wet member that starts as rain and ends as snow. The rain events (green lines) are primarily due to warm surface temperatures that we discussed earlier. For those interested in looking at the product during other storms, here's the link: SREF plumes. To use the site just click on the latest model run and go to the state and city you want to see. While we're favoring an all-snow event, the SREFS are suggesting that it is not a certainty.

In summary, the storm looks like a another of the nuisance variety. Not a major event but one in which snow will be falling or concluding around rush hour which could make the commute rough especially for those living in some of the colder locations in the north and northeast suburbs. Right now we're thinking accumulations will be in the dusting to 2 inch range with the heaviest amounts falling north of the city and the lightest to the south. Sounds familiar doesn't it?

By Wes Junker  | January 19, 2011; 1:10 PM ET
Categories:  Latest, Snow Lover's Crystal Ball  
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Whatever happened to the storms that used to produce more to the north and WEST. The last couple years this largely not been the case. Now that I understand the weather a little better I realize it must be because there was less changeover out west than to the east, not because the total precipitation was higher out west. The Shenandoah Valley really is a dry spot for the East Coast. My coworker who moved out there because of all the people crowding into our area jokes that he bought desert property.

Posted by: rocotten | January 19, 2011 1:27 PM | Report abuse


It's all about the prevailing storm track and pattern this year which has the storms developing off the mid-Atlantic coast. That favors more snow northeast. Philly, New York and Boston look to cash in again with this storm with totals from 2-4" south and 3-6" north.

Posted by: Jason-CapitalWeatherGang | January 19, 2011 1:32 PM | Report abuse

Hi rocotten - I am looking at the National Drought Monitor and am curious if this isn't telling the whole story. No major drought reported in the Valley. But perhaps there are isolated spots/counties that have it worse off? Yes this Winter is much different than even last winter. It is a winter-by-winer basis, for how storms behave, in our region. And even storm-to-storm :) that is what makes forecasting so difficult for many winters in DC. But interesting as well because it can come right down to the wire on where the rain/mix/snow line will form!

Posted by: Camden-CapitalWeatherGang | January 19, 2011 1:32 PM | Report abuse

If the upper level low drops south a bit, would 3-6" make more sense?

Posted by: formerwxman1 | January 19, 2011 1:42 PM | Report abuse

Since it's not a closed circulation I think even with the upper system passing to our south that 6" would be hard to come by and it's very unlikely that the upper system will dig that far south.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 1:55 PM | Report abuse


Yes, but that's just not looking likely with models coming into consensus less than 48 hours out. This is pretty much the same situation as last Tuesday except I would say - correct me if I'm wrong gang - that the track is a bit more favorable this time. Only problem is there is no phasing and a significantly weaker storm. So basically a storm will trek quickly off to our north and places like Ellicott City, where I am, will probably get 1-2 inches and D.C. itself will most likely get

Posted by: bbirnbau | January 19, 2011 1:59 PM | Report abuse

D.C. will likely get

Posted by: bbirnbau | January 19, 2011 2:01 PM | Report abuse

@Cam and @rocotten: the Valley itself is just dry compared to areas around it. It averages 4-5" less precipitation than the Piedmont to the east and the highlands to the west.

I found this article from WHSV in Harrisonburg fascinating:

Posted by: Registration1982 | January 19, 2011 2:11 PM | Report abuse

Darn, I was really hoping for a pretty snowfall Friday.

I live out in Philomont:

And haven't gotten to see a daylight snow shower yet. It would be so gorgeous. Humor me, nature! I beg you!

Posted by: celt1 | January 19, 2011 2:13 PM | Report abuse


Thanks for that article--apparently, being on the eastern slopes of the Blue Ridge, I get 10-22" more snow than the Shenandoah.

Interesting stuff!

Posted by: celt1 | January 19, 2011 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I'm pointing a finger at the sky right now.

Posted by: FIREDRAGON47 | January 19, 2011 2:17 PM | Report abuse

I am curious to know what are the fundamental difference is in the pattern between this year to last. Last winter the mid Atlantic was in the bull’s-eye for a lot of major events. This year it has been just slightly off to the Northeast... only about 200 miles. In geographical terms this is a very small distance. But it seems that the pattern and origination/ development of the storms have been very different this year. From a laymen's perspective it seems that last year the moisture source and direction of the moisture has been from the southwest with an amplified subtropical jet... whereas this year, the areas that are getting slammed are getting it from the Atlantic with coastal lows situated perfectly so that the big cities in NE are in the NW quadrant of the storms. In meteorological terms, what is so different this year about the pattern? Is it that there is a week subtropical jet? Is it La Nina? Is it just the storm track?

Posted by: jac8949 | January 19, 2011 2:30 PM | Report abuse

Yeah it looks like places to the north and east have done better w/snowfall over the past 15 years. Looking at long term average snowfall IAD averages more annual snowfall than both BWI and Philly, but both of those sites have done better than Dulles with respect to their long term average snowfall since the mid 90s. You can make a similar case when comparing DCA and Atlantic City. Seems like places out west of DC Metro don't get hit like they used to anymore. CWG, would u think this is gonna be the norm going forward?

Posted by: lobp | January 19, 2011 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Wes said: "the surface temperature at Reagan National (and by proxy the District)." Wes, you don't really mean that, do you? After 30 years living in NW DC, I've realized that the only place for which DCA is a temperature or snowfall proxy is the Alexandria waterfront, or maybe parts of SW DC across the Potomac. Okay, I'm exaggerating a little, but we all know that DCA is not representative of the District as a whole. Where I live, temps and snowfall are usually closer to Silver Spring or Bethesda than DCA.

Posted by: petworthlad | January 19, 2011 2:31 PM | Report abuse

Hey CWG,
I am looking for an are travel forecast--planning on driving from DC to Luray, VA this Friday after evening rush. Should I prepare for bad conditions? I planned a last minute trip to VA Tech this weekend and already have hotels booked. Just wondering how the drive out will be. Thanks for all your great work, as usual!

Posted by: amandap2986 | January 19, 2011 2:38 PM | Report abuse

jac8949 a comparison between the two years would be interesting. Part of the difference is in the strength of the subtropical stream which was much stronger last year so we tended to have pure gulf coast lows moving off the NC coast. This year the northern stream has been stronger so we've had more or a miller b look to some of the storms and one storm we just plain were unlucky.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 2:54 PM | Report abuse


Posted by: Snowlover2 | January 19, 2011 3:00 PM | Report abuse we in the falls church dry slot are left to hope for an inch or so...maybe 2 if everything goes right... sigh...

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 19, 2011 3:03 PM | Report abuse

petworthlad, I used DCA as a proxy because the sounding was was isothermal from the surface to almost 925mb and was right at or slightly above freezing so even if you moved away from the river, you'd probably have a similar sounding and temperatures in this case. the algorithm for precipitation type from the GFS actually yielded rain again emphasizing that an all snow event is not a given in the dc area. I still think it is the more likely possibility but only time will tell.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 3:08 PM | Report abuse

i second that snowlover2.. AAAAAAAAAAAARRRRRRRRRRGGGGGHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by: SnowDreamer | January 19, 2011 3:10 PM | Report abuse

oops, isothermal means the temperature stays the same with height as you are moving up in the atmosphere. in this case there was such a layer suggesting constant temps with height so there clould be temp issues away from dca.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 3:11 PM | Report abuse

We could still get 4+inches. I mean, theres always that 5-10%. NWS is predicting only 1 to 3 inches though. Does that sound about right?

Posted by: cubscapsfan | January 19, 2011 3:14 PM | Report abuse

Thanks Wes, if I had thought about it, I would have also realized that the GFS doesn't really care whether the airport or the Potomac is near the spot it's modeling anyway! (does it?)

Posted by: petworthlad | January 19, 2011 3:16 PM | Report abuse

Snowlovers: I have come over to your side after my younger co-worker stayed home yesterday because she was afraid to cross the icy sidewalk on crutches. I had to handle the calls for two busy offices, mine and hers. So now I want LOTS of snow so I can stay home because our offices close. One inch of snow means I deal with double workload while she sleeps all day.

Posted by: GreybirdK1 | January 19, 2011 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Ok, I'm starting to feel a little bitter.

Posted by: BadMommy1 | January 19, 2011 3:31 PM | Report abuse

Interesting, the latest NWS forecast for where I live, Montgomery Village just came out and they predict 2-4". That seems a bit high based on Wes' column and models. Any thoughts?

Posted by: Formerwxman | January 19, 2011 3:34 PM | Report abuse

petworthlad, you comment is correct. The model really cannot resolve features that small so a sounding for dca is a good proxy for other places nearby. That's a better answer than my first one.

The nam cam in quite a bit drier than it's previous run and now only gives dca a little over an inch of snow. Right now I'd lean towards the lower end of the range we've given but there is enough uncertainty to hold the forecast as it at this time.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Will this be a storm where we get the very tail end of the storm like last week and get two heavy bands or will this hang further south and give more continuous snow fall if temps hold
I'll throw my prediction of 1.6-2.5inches for my area under a 1-4" range
Also, there is supposed to be a very cold wave after this=more snow chances?

Posted by: redskins-95 | January 19, 2011 3:55 PM | Report abuse

so there is chance of mixing then, inside the beltway? particularly east of dc.

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 3:56 PM | Report abuse

BadMommy1 - LOVE that name. I have this picture of you furiously scanning the weather models and CWG comments while your children are screaming for dinner in the background... :)

Posted by: ToBeBlunt | January 19, 2011 4:09 PM | Report abuse

The "Miller B" effect....I'm pretty sure you've discussed this before, but could you please refer me to a definition or explain what it is exactly?
The consistency is fascinating this winter as many of these storms have looked so similar to each other in where they develop before heading up the coast.

Posted by: bodyiq | January 19, 2011 4:38 PM | Report abuse

Kruz, I think there is the possibility of mixing east of the city as the surface temperatures are likely to be marginal for snow. The nam would still suggest an all snow event albeit a light one.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 4:39 PM | Report abuse to petworthlad, wes said "Right now I'd lean towards the lower end of the range we've given..."

well, the given range is 45-50% chance of over an inch. i.e., 50-55% chance of under an inch. how much lower than under an inch can we go?

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 19, 2011 4:43 PM | Report abuse

Kruz, I just looked at the soundings for the gfs and for dc and points east in northern calvert it now suggests all snow so snow looks more likely than rain.

Walter, I was not talking about probabilities as much as saying I think the snowfall will probably be closer to 1 inch than 2. The good news is the gfs still shows about 1.5" of snow. The original forecast of dusting to 2 inches still holds. Next time I'll be more hesitant to talk about trends based on one run.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 5:04 PM | Report abuse

@walter in f/c--how pathetic is it that, at this point, in this year, I'm actually excited about even 1.5" of snow?

Posted by: petworthlad | January 19, 2011 5:14 PM | Report abuse

If we keep getting an inch or so every week, we will be at about average by the end of winter---16" to 18."

Posted by: weatherdude | January 19, 2011 5:27 PM | Report abuse

pretty pathetic, but i'm right there with ya. i believe right now is just about the coldest day of the year, on average, and that the jan 24th is the snowiest day of the year, on average. so, yeah, this is prime snowtime.

bring on that 1.5"!!

Posted by: walter-in-fallschurch | January 19, 2011 5:39 PM | Report abuse

I'm so tired of looking at pictures of Snowmageddon (sp?) ... sigh

Posted by: luvhh | January 19, 2011 6:45 PM | Report abuse

I dont know about everyone else but there is no way snow is sticking down here after the crazy conditions we had down in Stafford Airport today according to NWS:

145 degrees at 12:20pm with a heat index of 607 deg F


Posted by: panthersny | January 19, 2011 6:57 PM | Report abuse

did anyone see Topper Shutt's forecast at 720pm?....

he sais 1-2 inches is a bit much and he showed us in pink at the start then green the rest of the storm, it was right over the entire metro area within the beltway. He really believes this will be a mix storm.

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 7:25 PM | Report abuse

I'm not very bullish on the event tomorrow night. Very little warm advection, flat trough. Basically a cold frontal passage.
I'd be pleasantly surprised if anywhere in the DC area gets more than an inch.

Better hopes for early next week, especially if we can get that big, cold high pressure area set up north of us. Models are all over the board. A few inches possible, maybe more if we get any cooperation from the upper air.

Posted by: frontieradjust | January 19, 2011 7:53 PM | Report abuse

frontieradjust.. you just bursted my happy bubble.. still hopeing for the 1-3!

Posted by: teebyrd86 | January 19, 2011 8:17 PM | Report abuse

The 00z Nam has backed off to a dusting suggesting that the lower end is definitely more likely than the upper end of the range. I'm with frontieradjust. This storm never looked like a big one and the 500h vort is looking worse each run.

Posted by: wjunker | January 19, 2011 9:19 PM | Report abuse

New NAM continues the dry slot trend. Little to no accumulation is projected.

Posted by: bdeco | January 19, 2011 9:20 PM | Report abuse

Looks another miss, I'll predicting 1/2" or less here in NW Spotsy. Next week is also looking like mostly a mixed bag. The rest of the month is looking rather snowless.
Had a decent day striper fishing at 301 Bridge, caught 15, 3 between 25-27 lbs & a 36 pounder.

Posted by: VaTechBob | January 19, 2011 9:40 PM | Report abuse

any chance the models do a huge flip at this time tomorrow night and give us 3-6 or more?... you know how these models have been changing in the last few hours.

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 10:01 PM | Report abuse

Is the NOAA website completely wrong? Updated a few minutes ago.

Thursday Night: Snow, mainly after 9pm. Low around 27. East wind 5 to 9 mph becoming southwest. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible.

This was for Germantown, MD

Posted by: PoorTeacher | January 19, 2011 10:17 PM | Report abuse


No chance the models flip do your homework.

Posted by: inthemiddle2 | January 19, 2011 10:24 PM | Report abuse


lol thx for the tip. actually though, the snow would be my homework, im rooting against the snow... always rooting against it!

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 10:29 PM | Report abuse

So, now I'm getting confused..... it seems like some of the Area close to DC will see 2-4 Inches, while the rest 1-3 Inches, but I see the NWS predict the DC Metro Area will received 3 Inches of snow, what about this dry slot??

I know NWS always predict the higher end then eventually lower the accumulation when the storm is about to hit....

I wonder when CWG will give us a latest update??

Posted by: MNguyen6551 | January 19, 2011 10:29 PM | Report abuse


riiiiiiiiiiiight.........thats why you are dreaming of 3-6

Posted by: inthemiddle2 | January 19, 2011 10:48 PM | Report abuse

I was just curious. When the forecast is for DC what does that actually cover? How big of an area? I live in Woodbridge so do i fall into the DC prediction? Im still learning the area. My neighbor is from Woodbridge and he said in the the past he has seen 5 iches in Woodbridge and a dusting in DC and vice versa? Is the snow depth line that fine a line in this region? I guess 10 to 20 miles can make a big difference up here huh?

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 10:55 PM | Report abuse


actually im dreaming of spring!!!!

i just dont want any last minute model surprises. if im dreaming of the numbers 3-6 its actually 63 degrees and up that im dreaming of ;)

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 11:00 PM | Report abuse

I can relate to those fine lines being from upstate SC. I have seen it pour down rain at my house....while 20 miles..just 20 up the road near the Mountains they get a foot..its very frustating. From what i have seen this year..NORTH AND EAST of DC seem to have been the lucky ones..from looking at the geology of the area it would seem NORTH and WEST would be the prime areas but that doesnt seem to be the case this year. We have a guy at FT Belvoir who is temporay helping us at the airfeild and he lives in northern Delaware and he claims he has been slammed this year with snow..when he drives soon as he hits the north east part of 495 the snow tapers off thats a fine snow line IMHO.

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:00 PM | Report abuse


If you were rooting against the snow you would ask questions like "any chance this turns into a rain shower instead of a dusting"....not questions like " any chance this dusting turns into 3-6 inches" hahahaha...

Do your homework tomorrow...

Posted by: inthemiddle2 | January 19, 2011 11:07 PM | Report abuse

there predicting a possible 5-6 inch snow again for SC and GA next tuesday( 30%) according to models. My wife said we cant drive down again this so jealous of them down there this year.

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:10 PM | Report abuse

@ inthemiddle2
Does your user name by chance refer to where you've got your head??

KRUZ has made it clear many times that part of his job involves plowing and otherwise removing snow and ice from the roads

Do your homework before going after posters on this blog LOL

Posted by: kolya02 | January 19, 2011 11:17 PM | Report abuse

Just watched Fox 5 and ABC said around 1 inch to maby 2 with some sleet ending around 8 am..

ABC said dusting to 1/2 inch.

TWC says 3-4 inch.

what a difference.

and to Quote that dude on ABC..this storm will be NO BIG DEAL!!

ill remember that when im slippin and sliding with just a dusting..


Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:22 PM | Report abuse

If KRUZ is in the snow removal business that would be like a surfer praying for no surf!!!! ha dont snowplowers root for snow? No way he is a snowplower and rooting against snow.......

He is pretending he doesnt like snow because he is dissapointed in the lackluster foreast. I kinda find that funny that people cant even be real on a blog....sorry this is just good people watching (reading)...

And yes my head is up my arse...

Posted by: inthemiddle2 | January 19, 2011 11:29 PM | Report abuse


TWC just said 1-2 inches for DC, maybe its saying 3-4 for VA?

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 11:31 PM | Report abuse

im not in the snow plowing business its just a part of my job and also happens to be the least favorite part of it.

dont waste your time on it kolya, pretty hard to argue with someone who doesnt know me, when youve known me my entire life :) Say hi to kat for me!

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 11:35 PM | Report abuse


I was going by there little colored areas they post on the areas.. i could have gotten it wrong. still is very confusing with the depth lines they have.

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:37 PM | Report abuse


they definetly have you at 1-2 inches....

TWC: "Scattered snow showers early with a steadier snow developing late at night. Low 31F. Winds SE at 5 to 10 mph. Chance of snow 90%. Snow accumulating 1 to 2 inches."

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 11:42 PM | Report abuse

The guys who who plow the airfeild at FT Belvoir ALWAYS predict that will be miss or a no snow deal..cause they have to work overtime if it does...there on a salary so i see why they dont want no mechanics get paid even if the airfeild is closed thanks to the union..the GOV guys hate it when we dont show cause of one

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:42 PM | Report abuse

My wife is a teacher up in Arlington..the reason I feel sorry for her with the small storms is that prince william..Fairfax ..etc ..will close with an inch..but Arlignton will NOT close for less than 3 -5 inches..however Arlington goes by the Goverment scedual..its a small county( my teaches senators kids and what not) and the complain about school closing over just and inch of snow due to baby siitters and unlees its a good storm she has to go...

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:48 PM | Report abuse


I make OT pay from it but yeah i just dont enjoy it, at all. id rather not make the OT pay to be totally honest and them let someone else do it. too many crazy ppl out on the road, too many things go wrong and most importantly though i like spending the evening with my wife and son since my wife works some nights and weekends.

not to mention the municipality that i work for, its only me and another guy and mostly just me LOL. its beneficial because the pay is better with only 2 guys but its also 10 times harder than what other local municipalities have to deal with.

Posted by: KRUZ | January 19, 2011 11:50 PM | Report abuse


I feeel ya..I think that its alot easier on everyone if we get a big snow 6-8 inches...this piddley stuff just causes everyone a bunch of heart include insurance aunt works for state farm..she has more cases from 1-3 inches than she does for a big

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 19, 2011 11:56 PM | Report abuse

So to say..back home in SC..a good 3-5 inch snow shuts EVEYTHING down about a few much would you say it take up here to shut it down( Im talking walmart..schools..Govt..etc.) to shut down?? I knw last year that 18 incher around FEB 22 shut it

Posted by: BradFinWoodbridgeVA | January 20, 2011 12:08 AM | Report abuse

@BradF -- I dunno, I think we're getting soft around here these days; after the Presidents Day storm in I think 1978, I remember having to report to work at my first job, cashier at a convenience store. Had to walk, couldn't drive on the roads in my small town, I guess back then the town didn't have the funds or equipment to take care of everything. Walked uphill both ways, barefoot -- lol ;-)

Posted by: natsncats | January 20, 2011 12:37 AM | Report abuse

is the timing of the storm still the same (11pm)?.... its looking awfully close already... and massive.

how much affect will the mountains have on this snow for us, im hearing a trace to an inch now and am hopeful for that trace amount or even nothing! Patiently awaiting CWG update.

Pre treated bridges and hills in town, wondering how much more salt will be needed tonight, will this be a fluffy snow or a wet snow?

Posted by: KRUZ | January 20, 2011 12:04 PM | Report abuse

Northern Virginia and Washington, D.C. can expect a foot or two of snow tonight, beginning at about Rush hour Friday and lasting for a few days, according to the National Weather Service. The snow should conclude sometime Monday morning at about rush hour.
The freezing rain and extremely slippery conditions we saw from the previous Monday night storm will add insult to injury, however most would be able to avoid injury with a few days off from school and work and enjoying some good old common sense; dig in because it only happens once a season. It's wishful thinking on the part of the National Weather Service to think we could escape winters snowy blanket totally. Travel will be tricky with freezing rain packing in the snow and accumulations expected to increase as the weeks go by.
Have you ever imagined what it would be like to see the effects of 5 days of 24/7 snow fall at about 3 to 4 inches per hour? Practice Patients, Plan Properly, Perfect the art of Shoveling and grow some muscles or be ready to dol out some cash for the army of snow-trepenures on the prowl.
On the other hand imagining it makes my mind wander and wonder what I would do stuck in the house for a week with absolutely nothing to do and nowhere to go. Perhaps it would be a good time to focus and get the taxes done to perfection and plan for the spring.

Posted by: AndreaBatz | January 21, 2011 1:41 AM | Report abuse

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