Monday, December 11, 2017

Winter Weather Advisory for Tuesday

As we thought it might, the National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for Berkshire County, effective from 1 AM Tuesday to 1 AM Wednesday.

Hill towns are looking really good for snow days tomorrow.
If this storm behaves the way forecasters think it will, we should see many snow days tomorrow. The timing still looks very good as the snow should be falling at 4 AM when school superintendents start to assess the situation in conjunction with their colleagues and Public Works superintendents.

As long as the forecast for 4-6 inches of snow throughout the day holds up, several--but not all--superintendents will be reluctant to hold school. We're not all in on this storm just yet. There's a lot that could go wrong with it.

We'll keep you updated throughout the day.

Sunday, December 10, 2017

Tuesday Storm

We have new intel on the Tuesday storm. We still haven't received a Winter Weather Advisory for the Berkshires, but it should be up by Monday morning. At least that's what we think will happen.

There is a Winter Storm Watch in effect for the Saratoga/Rutland areas, and the forecast there is for 8-12 inches of snow. Let's hope the storm takes a jog to the south.

And you're definitely going to like this map, which the NWS just released at 9:00 PM on Sunday.

Thanks, Albany NWS.
That's an encouraging sign for widespread delays and snow days for Tuesday.

Delays or Snow Days Possible For Tuesday

It's go time. We have our first school day-affecting snow situation coming our way on Tuesday. The models are coming into agreement, and it's looking a lot like yesterday's storm, except the heavier snow will be to our north.

A low pressure system will track across the Great Lakes region and then pick up strength on the coast. Because the coastal formation will be more northerly (compared to Saturday's storm), we'll see higher snow totals in Northern Berkshire County and South County will be at the low end.

Right now the timing of this storm looks really good. Snow should break out after midnight, and it all goes well, we'll have a few inches on the ground as Superintendents wake up and have to make a call to hold school or not. We should see the announcement of a Winter Weather Advisory later tonight or even tomorrow morning.

The big question will be the amount of snow. Is three inches enough to cancel school? Will the forecast for continued snow throughout the day spook Superintendents enough to cause them to cancel school? Are Superintendents still reeling from all of the snow days they had to call in last year, thus they will be reluctant if conditions just aren't that bad on Tuesday morning? These are the big questions we'll ponder over the next 36 hours.

This map predicts 3-6" for Berkshire County, south to north.
We do like the way this storm is trending. We need to see the Winter Weather Advisory first before we can get too excited, but the cold air is in place, the timing is great, and there should be enough moisture to force at least widespread delays.

Friday, December 8, 2017

Saturday Snow Details

Just a quick check in to let you know the NWS bumped up snow totals slightly for the Berkshires for Saturday. We're stilling looking at a 7 AM Saturday to 7 AM Sunday window for this potentially moderate storm, and right now the models are predicting 3 to 6 inches for the Berkshires. South County has a better chance to reach 6 inches; North County will be closer to 3.

If you're heading east, you should know that we are seeing a Winter Storm Warning for much of central Mass, and the Warning extends as far west as Southbridge and Ware.

As for timing, the snow will fill in from south to north starting in the late morning hours. We're guessing the first flakes will fall on the Mass/Conn border around 10 AM, Pittsfield around 11 AM, and Williamstown near 12 PM. These times are approximate and could be off by an hour either way. The snow should wrap up some time after midnight, but snow showers could persist all the way to daybreak Sunday.

As for next week, the jury is still out about Tuesday's storm. The last few model runs weren't encouraging, but that's what happened 72 hours in front of tomorrow's storm. The GSD Staff thinks we're in a good pattern for a few weeks, so we won't be surprised to see the models improve our snow chances again (for Tuesday) by Sunday night.

Snow This Weekend: Winter Weather Advisory for the Berkshires

Well, shiver me timbers. Looks like the Snow Gods have decided to shine their smiling faces toward the Berkshires this weekend. That coastal storm that we got excited about earlier in the week and then dismissed? It's apparently back on.

Image courtesy of the National Weather Service, Albany
The storm will move along the New England coast as cold air shoots in from Canada. These two ingredients--moisture and cold air--will combine over the Berkshires to produce 2 to 5 inches of snow. As a result, the NWS has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for our area, with more snow the farther south you go in the County.

The timing of this storm will impact travel, especially in the afternoon hours on Saturday.

The bad news is that forecasters are less bullish about the Tuesday storm we wrote about yesterday. We're still holding out hope for snow, but the timing does not look very good for a delay on Wednesday.

Break out the snow boots for the first snow of the new season!

Thursday, December 7, 2017

Shovels at the Ready...

It's beginning to look and feel like winter.

Snow flurries greeted the GSD Staff on the morning commute to the Home Office in Williamstown this morning, putting a bounce in the step of your fulltime winter weather brokers.

Good news...we have several chances for measurable snow over the next ten days or so. We'll see a few more flurries today, and then on Sunday we may see longer periods of snow showers that could bring a dusting to the Berkshires.

But the more delicious development is the potential for a coastal storm on Tuesday, perhaps extending into the wheelhouse hours of the morning commute on Wednesday. This storm has the chance to impact the length of the school day on Wednesday. Unfortunately, this is no blockbuster storm. If this storm were to arrive at the end of winter, we wouldn't be worked up about it at all. But because it could possibly be the first plowable snowstorm of the season, there's reason to get a just a smidge tingly all over because of it.

The most optimistic models indicate the potential for 6 inches. The least cooperative models don't quite bring the two energy systems together and we end up with snow showers and perhaps a dusting. It's always good to split the middle this far out in front of a storm, so the GSD Staff is going to (rather cautiously) forecast 3 inches of snow over the course of the day Tuesday, with the snow ending just after midnight. Alas, should this not-so-bold prediction come true, we will not have delays on Wednesday for Berkshire County schools. A near miss.

But we expect a lot more information on this storm, and we'll see what future runs of the storm models bring us in the next 72 hours.

Until then, think very snowy thoughts.

Monday, December 4, 2017

Measurable Snowfall for the Weekend?

What the GSD Staff does when winter refuses to start in a timely manner? Scrabble, crossword puzzles, read the news, twiddle thumbs, hunt for belly button lint. In other words, a lot of nothing.

But we actually have some winter weather news to report. Far on the horizon, we have officially heard the words "forecast" and "snow" used in the same sentences by meteorologists we respect. Eureka.

There is chatter about the possibility for a weekend storm. Unfortunately--[grumble, grumble, grumble]--it's on the weekend, and we're likely not to see a big snow event out of it. The deal is this: we have precipitation headed our way for Saturday. Some models are forecasting a coastal storm. The models we respect are taking it farther to our south; one model that is less reliable is bringing the storm farther north. As for snow, the worst case scenario is no snow at all. The best case scenario is 3 inches.

This is the best we can do for a forecast map for the weekend. The lighter green represents about a 20%-30% chance of a quarter inch of liquid precip, which equates to 3 inches of snow. Woo. Hoo.
So, you can see, there's not a lot to get excited about. Still, we're encouraged that the storm pattern appears to be shifting and colder air should take hold over our area for the next few weeks. A wise GSD Staffer once said, "You can't have snow without cold air in place."

We'll monitor this potential snow situation for you, but we wouldn't suggesting firing up the snowblower just yet.

Sunday, November 19, 2017

Turkey Week Travel Forecast

The only thing more important than the size of your bird for Thursday is the travel forecast for this week, the busiest travel time of the entire year. Whether you're heading to Grandma's house on Thursday or your oldest sibling is heading home from college or even if you're headed to the airport for a weeklong getaway to, say, Italy, you want to know what to expect on the roads this week.

And the good news is...a relatively quiet week is expected for the Berkshires. After a few stray flakes in the overnight hours tonight, the cold front that came in with all of this wind will settle in over us. We'll see plenty of sun Monday with high temps in the upper 30s.

Tuesday, when a lot of travel begins, will be a spectacular day--full sun and highs in the mid 50s. Outdoor sports are in order on Tuesday.

Wednesday, too, looks good but it will be cooler (40s). There is a chance of some showers in the early morning hours but roads will be fine all day.

Thursday will simply be pleasant for this time of year--highs in the low 40s and partly cloudy skies all day. Morning runs, soccer games, family football, and post-feast walks will all go on as scheduled.

There is a big storm coming into our region for the weekend, but worry not for it will track well to our north. With the arrival of the storm, we will see instability, which could kick up a few rain showers late Friday night and during the day on Saturday. Friday will be calm but cool with temps in the 30s; Saturday will be warmer (40s) but the slight chance of rain could curtail some outdoor activities.

And those returning to the Berkshires or heading back to school on Sunday, again you will have smooth sailing. Cloudy, cool (30s) and windy but the roads will be dry.

That's about the size of it. We still feel good about a full-on school-impacting weathermaker for the first half of December, but the next seven days look very manageable. Enjoy the holiday!

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

Snow Returns Thursday, Saturday Morning

Snow is headed our way for Thursday. While the real accumulating snow will fall just to our north and west, most of the Berkshires will see some flakes but little accumulation. Higher elevations might see an inch.

Temps will dip into the mid-30s tonight, and with rain expected to move into our area during the day tomorrow, there could be enough cold air in place for a period of snow during the late morning hours.
There is not a lot of moisture with this system, but don't be shocked if you see flakes during the day.

A similar situation sets up for Saturday morning. We could wake up that morning to see a few flakes on the ground and falling through the air. Again, there's not much moisture with this system, but enough moisture and cold air could be in place for a dusting to an inch.

The storm pattern is active right now. We will not see a snow day or delay before Thanksgiving, but the GSD staff is feeling good about a moderate snowstorm at some point in the first half of December.




Tuesday, November 7, 2017

First Flakes of the Season

The big news today in Berkshire County is not the number of characters you now have available to you for your tweets...

It's the first verified snowflakes of the 2017-18. Hooray for winter!

These flakes did sneak up on us. With a colder-than-expected day and a slightly stronger-than-anticipated low pressure system off of Long Island, enough moisture moved into our area and dropped a few flakes on us this afternoon and evening. We haven't had any accumulation at the GSD Home Office in Williamstown, but we won't be surprised to see a dusting in higher elevation towns.

Unfortunately, tonight's snow showers are no harbingers. While we do have some very cold temperatures headed our way for the long weekend--the thermometer will read in the mid-teens on Saturday morning (!)--we don't see snow storms in the two-week forecast. Temps will settle into the 40s next week with just a few chances for rain showers in that period.

It's nice to know we're making strides toward the first snow day of the season. And of course we'll let you know when you should really start to get excited.


Sunday, October 29, 2017

School Cancellation Alert for Monday, October 30

While it is unlikely we'll see widespread school closures, the High Wind Warning has our school cancellation antennae up and in alert mode.

The big concern for this storm would be downed branches and trees, which could lead to power outages. Wind gusts up to 50 MPH are possible for the Berkshires later tonight and into the early morning hours of Monday. While the NWS typically overreaches on these forecasts, we still have to take them seriously and monitor the power outage situation for Monday morning.

Graphic courtesy of the Washington Post.

Students should certainly do their homework for Monday, but a few isolated cancellations are possible, especially for schools in higher elevation locales.

We'll let you know if we hear anything positive in the way of cancellations or delays.

Monday, October 9, 2017

We're Back! The 2017-18 Winter Outlook

Hello Followers of the Flake! And welcome back to another exciting season of winter weather prediction fun at Greylock Snow Day. We are thrilled to bring to you the best and most accurate information about potential snow days for Berkshire County and beyond. Last season was a great year--six and seven snow days in most districts!--and we can only hope that our good fortune continues for this school year.

The GSD staff got together for a little barbecue over the Indigenous Peoples holiday weekend, and we couldn't stop talking about the Weather Channel's decision to name its first Winter Storm of the season for Colorado. Winter Storm Aiden is supposed to drop up to 8 inches on Denver by the end of today. Not bad for this time of year! Is it a sign of good things to come?

As we get ready to rake leaves and trim hedges and put the deck furniture away, what is going to happen this winter in the Berkshires? Are we going to have a similar type of snow day bonanza that we enjoyed last year? Will we get shut out like we did two years ago? What, exactly, are the experts saying? Most importantly, what does our staff think?

Let's just say we do not at all like the general trend toward much warmer temperatures in the Northeast. Just a few weeks ago--September 25th--we broke a daily high temp record with a reading of 89 degrees. Back on June 12 of this year, GSD recorded 89 degrees at the home office. These were the hottest days of the year so far and they didn't even fall in summer months! We really wonder how broken the system is, and we are concerned about the future of this enterprise.

But take heart. Winter will persist in the 2017-'18 season. We will have snow. That you can count on.

A good friend of GSD reminds us that with long-range forecasting, you need to factor in two things. One is the jump we've seen in average high temperatures over the last 20 years; many of the models factor those higher temps in. It doesn't take a degree in meteorology to conclude that warmer weather means less snow.

But his second point is that big fall storms--hurricanes and typhoons--can throw off long-range forecasting radically. That we have had 3 major hurricanes this fall will impact our winter forecast; how they will impact our winter is very much unclear.

One interesting development recently--and this trend was not being talked about this past summer--is that we're starting to see signs that a La Nina pattern could be in place for the winter. Typically, La Nina winters bring slightly colder temperatures for the Northeast and normal precipitation totals. Should the La Nina take hold--we are under a La Nina watch right now--New England could see an average or slightly above average snow total because of the colder temperature and average precipitation forecast.

Another concept shared with us by our meteorological insider looks at the cold air around the poles. Right now, it looks like the cold air will be trapped up by the North Pole for most of the winter and might only break free during the late winter period. If we do get a few late winter shots of cold air from the polar vortex, we could see a few big late season (February, March) storms. That's a really intriguing idea that we embrace wholeheartedly at GSD. And just to remind you how turbulent the end of the season can be--last year we saw record highs in Pittsfield on March 1 (60 degrees) only to see a high of 18 degrees on March 4th and widespread snow days in the county on March 14th.

So, after all of our debate and discussion at the barbecue, the GSD Staff agrees we're in store for a healthy, hearty winter for the Berkshires this winter. The La Nina pattern could keep temps down and the chances for snow up, and the late season cold snaps could set up a few really big storms. A December snow day might be a long shot, but we should have plenty of activity January through March.

GSD is setting the over/under for snow days for most schools in the Berkshires at 4.5 this year. What do you think? Feel free to let us know in our comment section.

Sunday, August 6, 2017

2016-2017 Snow Fall Totals

(Snowfall amounts as recorded at the GSD Home Office in Williamstown, MA.)

Thurs Oct 27 1.2"
Sun./Mon Nov 20-21 8.5"
Sun/Mon Dec 4-5 1.2"
Fri Dec 9 0.1"
Sun/Mon Dec 11/12 5.0"
Wed Dec 13 0.7"
Sat Dec 17 5.8"
Thurs Dec 22 1.7"
Thurs Dec 29 4.0"
Thurs Jan 5 0.1"
Fri Jan 6 1.0"
Sat Jan 7 0.25"
Sun Jan 8 0.25"
Tues Jan 24 2.0"
Tues Jan 30 1.0"
Wed Jan 31 2.5"
Tues Feb 7 2.0"
Thurs Feb 9 7.5"
Sat Feb 11 2.25"
Sun/Mon Feb 12-13 8.6"
Tues/Wed Mar 14-15 16.5"
Thurs Mar 23 0.7"
Fri Mar 31 1.5"
Season Total: 73.35"

(Red=Mostly Delays
Blue=Mostly Snow Days)

Friday, March 31, 2017

There's Plenty of Storm Left

Even though dedicated snow day hounds were disappointed by the outcomes this morning, this storm has some bite of its own left in it.

Let's just say this storm isn't moisture starved. The wall of wetness is still headed our way as the low pressure system begins to intensify all the way down there around the Delmarva peninsula.

A lot of moisture yet to come. 12:45 PM radar.
The Berkshires are in the Winter Weather Advisory period, and we have an outside chance of getting upgraded to a Winter Storm Warning later this afternoon or tonight if the temps drop a degree or two. Your elevation also will determine the severity of your weather this afternoon and evening. Places above 1500 feet will get a combo of snow and sleet while locations below 1500 feet will see wet snow and rain with the eventual changeover to all snow for everyone.

Driving conditions tonight don't look encouraging. The messiness should extend into Saturday morning as well.

Enjoy the weekend, and let's hope this is winter's last gasp.

Late March Storm Update & Cancellations

At the GSD Home Office, we have a light coating of snow on the ground but roads are just fine. Heavy snow bands are in our very near future--between 6 and 8 AM--which will make the commute to school interesting.

Right now the storm is not tightly organized, but snow, sleet, and rain should become steadier throughout the day as a secondary low forms off the coast.

The 6 AM radar.
We do have a few cancellations and early releases to report. We'll add to this list if/when more come in, and we do think a few more will add their names to the release list. New schools to the list will be in blue.

TWO-HOUR DELAY:

Southern Berkshire

SNOW DAY:

Emma Miller
Gabriel Abbott Memorial
Mohawk Trail

EARLY RELEASE:

Greenfield
Southwest VT Supervisory Union
Stamford, VT

Thursday, March 30, 2017

April Fool's Storm -- The Evening Report

It's almost April and we're sweating out another snow day decision. Thank you, winter of 2016-17, for making up for last year.

Here are a few maps before we talk about tomorrow:

Channel 6 Albany

Channel 10 Albany
National Weather Service Albany

Really, it's just mess. The latest models are definitely leaning toward longer periods of sleet and freezing rain, which they were not indicating earlier in the week. The predicted temperature is still a moving target--some models show warmer and others have the cold air in place longer. This is just to say that we could see 1 inch or we could see 10 inches. Elevation and north/south location will make a big difference tomorrow.

Despite the uncertainty, this is what the GSD Staff thinks is going to happen. It will be snowing or sleeting during decision time for Superintendents tomorrow morning, especially north of I-90. Most will choose to go with a full school day because the roads won't be too bad. Because of the threat for ice and power outages, one or two will get nervous and opt for the snow day. The likely candidates are North County schools as well as Central Berkshire, due to the higher elevation. Then, if we get an extended period of sleet and freezing rain, we could see some schools call the early release and let the youngsters get a head start on their weekend. Schools south of I-90 are probably going to have a full day, with a slight chance of a delay.

The Staff will be up early. We'll update on the storm and run a list, should schools opt out tomorrow.

Winter Weather Advisory for Northern Berkshire

The NWS has just changed the Winter Storm Watch to a Winter Weather Advisory. Under normal circumstances we would consider this a downgrade and our chance for a snow day would also be downgraded, but nothing about this storm is typical.

The forecast now is for 4-7 inches of snow but--as we feared might happen earlier in the day--the storm is now scheduled to start a few hours earlier. The Winter Weather Advisory begins at 2 AM, which means it could be snowing and/or sleeting right in the wheelhouse hours of 4-5 AM.

A slight upgrade from earlier in the day. Image courtesy of the NWS.
So...we're going to alter the True North Confidence Meter only slightly. North County schools have a better chance for a snow day now due to the improved timing, but not by that much. South County schools still look like they'll be left out as the snow fall total likely won't be high enough to warrant snow days.

Looks about right. Thanks to WNYT Channel 13 for this image.
Because of the very long time period of this system--all the way through Saturday afternoon--it doesn't seem as if it will be snowing hard enough in a short enough period of time to make the roads supes dangerous. But that's merely speculation on our part as this storm is proving to be very hard to nail down even 12 hours in advance of it.

We'll be out of commission for a few hours this evening, but we will be back around 9 PM for our final update of the day.

Don't Let It Fool You

For ease of use, we'll call this the April Fool's Day storm. And it does appear to have some trickery up its sleeve.

More signs are pointing toward a full school day or an early release tomorrow for the northern half of Berkshire County. We've had no movement on the Watch to a Warning, and Advisories have not yet been posted for South County. That could all change this afternoon and evening, though, so don't set anything in stone just yet.

A bold call from The Weather Channel.
The latest run of the models indicates the brunt of the storm will hit just to our north, northwest, and east. The Weather Channel's map appears to be very aggressive, calling for over a foot for our neighbors in Franklin and Hampshire County. We'll be surprised if we see totals that high.

But just the fact that there's such widespread difference in the predicted snow fall totals means that we can't sleep on this storm. Given the winter we've had, it would not be wise to underestimate this storm's potential. The moisture will be there. It all comes down to how long it stays as snow.

One of our favorite maps: the NOAA Probabilistic Snowfall Map.

The GSD Staff unanimously agrees that school will be in session tomorrow. If this were the first storm of the season, we would probably see full snow days because of (1) the novelty of it and (2) there's house money to play with when you haven't used up any snow days yet. But because the end of the school year is hastily approaching July 1, Supers will be quick to pump the brakes on a snow day for tomorrow. The early release, however, is very much in play for North Berkshire schools as conditions should deteriorate as the day progresses...as long as it stays all snow.

The big stumbling block for our staff is the temperature. We will get close to 32 degrees tonight but not beneath it. Snow can still fall when the temperature is above freezing, but often it takes a while to stick to the roads in those situations. Roads should be passable tomorrow morning unless the storm suddenly speeds up and the snow starts falling around 4 AM instead of 6 AM. We'll have to wait until later to know exactly when the snow should start to fall.

We stay informed to keep you informed!

April Fool's Eve Snow Storm -- Morning Report

We have a few tidbits for you this morning as you prepare for snow day 7, 8 or 9 for your school.

*The timing of the storm is now not as good as we thought it would be a few days ago. It's still very good, but it looks like the snow will start for the Berkshires between 6 and 7 AM. So, this means Superintendents are going to have to make their decision based on the forecasted snow and anticipated driving conditions, which is never an ideal scenario.

*It will snow and sleet throughout the day for Northern Berkshire county, but we'll see a changeover to rain south of I-90. Higher elevation towns will see snow all day with a lesser chance of sleet mixing in.

*Snow-to-liquid ratios will be low for this storm. The snow will be a nightmare to shovel if it accumulates over 6 inches.

*The period of heaviest snow is expected to be in the early evening on Friday. Snow will last until the earliest hours of Saturday.

Right now we think snow days and early releases are in play. Delays seem unlikely given the 6 AM start to the storm. We could see some schools making the call to go with an early release tomorrow morning as the morning drive will likely not be as bad as it potentially could be in the afternoon.

The words we are consistently seeing from our weather sources are "low confidence." There are so many moving parts--the timing, the intensity of the late March sun, the rates of expected precipitation--that it will be hard to predict the final outcome. The warm late March sun makes a changeover likely, but if the precipitation comes down hard enough, that will pull cool air in and prolong our period of snow tomorrow and tomorrow night.

You can see why this will have to be a "game day decision." No Superintendent will make his or her call tonight--of that you can be assured.

We do have a few maps to share, with more to come later.

From NBC Channel 22 in Springfield. 
From the National Weather Service in Albany.
Of course we'll have much more later today as we start to see a few more runs of the models.

Wednesday, March 29, 2017

Winter Storm Watch for Friday for Northern Berkshire County

We don't suggest you go into full freak out mode just yet, but the National Weather Service just dropped a Winter Storm Watch on Northern Berkshire County. Nothing has been posted for Southern Berkshire County yet, but we see a Winter Weather Advisory in your near future.

The Watch is up because the potential for 5-10 inches of snow exists. Because Northern Berkshire is the southernmost area of the watch, this likely means that we'll be on the low end of the 5-10 inch prediction. Also, the Watch begins at 5 AM and ends at 11 AM on Saturday.

We do want to remind you that a Watch does not mean a snow storm will definitely happen. We will raise the True North Confidence Meter up a few ticks in response to the Watch, but things will get real only if the Watch gets bumped up to a Winter Storm Warning. If that happens, students in several schools will not have classes on Friday.

Perhaps it's a sign--perhaps it isn't--but 20 years ago on these exact dates New England got pounded by a major snow storm. Here's a map from the 1997 storm on March 31 and April 1, courtesy of Boston meteorologist David Epstein.



We really doubt we'll reach snow totals that high, but it is a nor'easter and there may just be enough cold air in place to give us moderate to heavy snowfall throughout the day on Friday.

Twelfth graders--and sixth graders--rejoice.

Snow For Friday

Just when it seemed we had turned the corner--whammo!--winter is back. Or so we think.

According to our sources of information, it looks like snow will fall in the Berkshires starting late on Thursday night. Yes, the morning commute could be impacted.

As of this morning, we're seeing a wide range of possibilities for snow outcomes. At the low end, we would see a coating of heavy wet, slushy snow in lower elevations with a transition to rain by midmorning. In higher elevations, the snow would hold on for longer, leading to 2-4 inch snow totals, before the rain kicks in in the afternoon. Given this outlook, we might have a delay or two in the usual locations (Florida, Central Berkshire, Southern Berkshire).

From the NWS--not too bad so far. But this map will be updated.
On the high end, we could see 4-6 inches in the lower elevations and 8-12 in the hill towns. Given this outlook, we would see--[deep sigh]--cancellations.

Those of you who want to get on with spring, take comfort that there are many moving parts with this storm and it could all turn to rain. Keep those fingers crossed.

Those of you who want a snow day--pretty much 12th graders and that's it--you've been on a hot streak this winter, so why won't that continue?

The GSD Staff is at the ready; we'll have much more later today.


Sunday, March 26, 2017

Freezing Rain for Sunday Night

If you're out and about tonight (Sunday), be aware of the potential for freezing rain. We won't see steady rain tonight, but a few showers could slide through the Berkshires and create the potential for slightly hazardous driving conditions.

We know what some of you are thinking, and we need to squelch those ideas right now. There's no chance for the freezing rain to impact the commute to school tomorrow morning. As the rain moves through, temps will be on the rise. We may even hit 60 by Tuesday.

With daytime temperatures in the 40s and 50s all week, we could be seeing the end of winter. Expect rain on Monday and Tuesday and then dry days for Wednesday and Thursday. Friday is up in the air, as the professional weather prognosticators have forecasted a rain/snow mix.

Spring sports teams hoping to get on fields this week will likely have to wait another week due to all the rain, but the snow should be all gone by Wednesday.

We'll be back later in the week to look at Friday's storm. We'll know more as the storm gets closer to us.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Winter Weather Advisory for Friday

Old Man Winter still refuses to give up the ghost.

The old feller is relentless. While we don't think the forecast will impact the length of the school day on Friday, everyone should know that we could see some messy weather in the morning in the Berkshires tomorrow. We have been issued a Winter Weather Advisory by the National Weather Service.

Expect to see snow and sleet starting between 7 and 8 AM on Friday. The ride to school could be dicey--especially for the elementary school set--but the late (relatively) arrival of the snow will mean delays are highly unlikely. The ground could get coated quickly with the cold temperature in place. We might see an inch of snow and sleet north of Pittsfield and lesser amounts south of Pittsfield. All precipitation will change to rain after lunch.

After that little burst, you can expect to see showers and freezing rain from Saturday through Monday. The freezing rain on Monday morning is something worth keeping an eye on. This weekend will not help anyone who suffers from seasonal affective disorder. It looks like a great weekend to binge watch that show you've been meaning to get to.

We'll have more over the weekend. The worst driving tomorrow will between the hours of 8:30 and 11:00.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

More Snow for Saturday

Now that we've had a day to dig out, we have a few observations on the most recent storm.

Forecasters definitely hit it right on the nose for Berkshire County, but they whiffed on their prediction for NYC and Boston. We almost had another Trump/Hillary, Pats/Falcons, Moonlight/La La Land scenario on our hands. We heard of one teacher in Berkshire County who promised he would give students 100s on their most recent quizzes AND staple $100 to their quizzes if there was no snow day on Tuesday. He came a lot closer to making his students very happy than he probably realizes. The bust potential increased dramatically as the storm veered more westward.

The big winners were the Adirondacks and northern Vermont. Tuesday's storm dumped 30+ inches on Burlington, VT, making it the second biggest storm on record there.

The forecasted precipitation for Saturday evening. A fifth of an inch of liquid--as seen here--will yield 2-3 inches of snow.
In the wake of the storm, we've been left with some very cold January-like air. We won't get above freezing until Saturday afternoon when an Alberta Clipper comes a-visiting. This system should move on past us to the south, but parts of the County could see 2-4 inches by Sunday morning. Those in South County and in higher elevations have a better chance of needing the snow shovel again.

As for next week, temps will moderate and get into the 40s before the mid and low 20s return on Wednesday. Also, we're eyeing some kind of snow/mixed precipitation event for next weekend.

Happy first day of March Madness!

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

Very Few Changes So Far...

Snow ceased falling around 1 AM, giving road crews plenty of time to get things under control. The only additions to last night's list are in blue below.

SNOW DAY:

Berkshire Christian School
Berkshire Country Day
Berkshire Hills
Clarksburg
Farmington River
Gabriel Abbott (Florida)
Lanesborough
North Adams
Richmond
Southern Berkshire
Southern Vermont College

TWO-HOUR DELAY:

Adams-Cheshire
BArT
Central Berkshire
Emma Miller (Savoy)
Hancock
Housatonic Academy
Lenox
McCann
MCLA
Mohawk Trail
Mount Greylock
Pine Cobble
Pittsfield
Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union
Stamford (VT)
Williamstown

THREE-HOUR DELAY:

New Lebanon
Berkshire Community College

OPENING AT 11:00

Williams College (Admin Offices; Children's Center at 10:30)

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Scenarios for Wednesday & Delay/Cancellation List

(See below for the list of delays and cancellations. Several schools have indicated that they will "reassess" in the morning. Stay alert.)

For those of you who do not have a delay or cancellation, we don't like the look of the latest radar image. It's very iffy if the wraparound snows are going to stick around for long enough--or heat back up again overnight. We do see heavy bands out in Pennsylvania that we'd love to see move their way to Berkshire County, but we're just not sure they will. Those upslope, lake effect-type snows could also get cranking overnight. Unfortunately, we'll have to wait until about 5 AM to see how the back end of this storm sorts itself out.

If you want a snow day on Wednesday, start rooting for that snow out west to move east.
The wind is the big X factor for tomorrow and whether or not you have a nothing, a delay, or a snow day. The blowing and drifting of snow essentially makes up for any snow falling from the sky. So, the few of you who don't have a delay or snow day tomorrow, you'll probably end up with a delay. We will also be surprised if many schools upgrade their delay to a full snow day.

Wednesday:

SNOW DAY:

Berkshire Christian School
Berkshire Country Day
Berkshire Hills
Clarksburg
Gabriel Abbott (Florida)
Lanesborough
North Adams
Richmond
Southern Berkshire
Southern Vermont College

TWO-HOUR DELAY:

BArT
Central Berkshire
Emma Miller (Savoy)
Hancock
Housatonic Academy
McCann
Mohawk Trail
Mount Greylock
Pittsfield
Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union
Stamford (VT)
Williamstown

THREE-HOUR DELAY:

New Lebanon
Berkshire Community College

OPENING AT 11:00

Williams College (Admin Offices; Children's Center at 10:30)

Delays and Cancellations for Wednesday

As we have near or over a foot of snow in most of Berkshire County and it continues to snow moderately--a good band is working its way through right now--several Superintendents are starting to call in their decisions for Wednesday already.

Snow totals from the NWS as of 7:30 PM.


Delays will be the standard tomorrow, but if things break the right way and the wrap-around snow bands are moderate or heavy, many schools will bump the delay to the full snow day.

Here's our list. We'll have a more meteorologically focused report later tonight.

SNOW DAY:

Berkshire Country Day
Berkshire Hills
Gabriel Abbott (Florida)
Lanesborough
North Adams
Richmond
Southern Berkshire
Southern Vermont College

TWO-HOUR DELAY:

Central Berkshire
Clarksburg
Emma Miller (Savoy)
Hancock
Mohawk Trail
Mount Greylock
Pittsfield
Southwest Vermont Supervisory Union
Williamstown

"She's Breaking Up, She's Breaking Up"

As of 4 PM, we are officially on the backside of Winter Storm Stella (as named by the Weather Channel). It's still snowing lightly, and some of you out there may have noticed some sleet mix in with the light snow in the last hour or so. The nose of warm air really pushed far northward, which surprised most meteorologists.

We won't see that much more snow over the next 3-4 hours. It's safe to go out and shovel.

You can see the storm is losing some of its oomph. Central NY is still getting pounded. Those dark blue bands there are moving west.
But the storm isn't entirely over. It's a very powerful system, and the deformation phase of the storm will be very interesting. We will see several more light and moderate bands of snow tonight and through a good portion of the day tomorrow. We will not be surprised to see an additional 4 inches of snow. Plus, the wind will really kick up as the storm slides up the Maine coast. The blowing of snow onto roadways will be a nuisance we will have to contend with.

We also need to keep on eye on those pesky downslope, "lake effect" type snows we often get at the ends of these storms, especially so this winter. With so much moisture in the air, we could get trapped in a downslope pattern that gives us another 6-8 inches of snow in the Berkshires. That outcome will be hard to predict accurately, but we'll keep an eye on the radar all evening and have, hopefully, a more accurate assessment later on.

So, will we have delays or snow days tomorrow? Already Southern Vermont Supervisory Union (Mt. Anthony) has called in a delay. But for the rest of us, we think it's a 50/50 proposition for delays and snow days. But that could change as we get a better sense of how this storm will behave on its way out.

And we do want to thank all of you readers over the last seven years. We are about to receive our 1,000,000th page view, which is pretty amazing to the Staff here. Thanks for all of your support!

Heavy Snow Bands Coming

The storm started a few hours earlier than expected, and as of 10 AM we have around 3 inches on the ground at the GSD Home Office.


A classic nor'easter.

So far the storm is behaving as expected. The more western track of the storm is bringing snow totals down to our south and east, but the Berkshires are still going to get at least a foot, with 18 inches highly likely. If you really need to get out of the house, you would want to go and get back within the next 2 hours. We see some very heavy bands of snow headed our way around noon or 1 PM. It will come down 2-4 inches per hour for a few hours.

And if this storm isn't enough for you, we have another shovelable snow event headed our way for Saturday. Just in time for spring sports to start on Monday!

Monday, March 13, 2017

Bombogenesis and Thundersnow

Just about every school has called in a snow day for tomorrow. Of course, you're next question is: will we have school on Wednesday? We'll crawl under that hurdle when we get to it. But should we get 24 or 30 inches of snow from this storm, then school on Wednesday would certainly be in jeopardy. We should definitely let it start snowing first before we offer up our prediction for Wednesday.

It's been quite a few years since we've seen predicted snowfall totals this high for the Berkshires. Kick back and enjoy it.
Two words we love to see from meteorologists: bombogenesis and thundersnow. Bombogenesis is the deepening of the low pressure system off the coast that leads to intense snow totals. Thundersnow is just plain fun to hear. Keep your ears open for thundersnow during the day tomorrow.

Expect the heaviest snow--falling at a rate of 2-3 inches per hour--between 10 AM and 4 PM. And don't sleep on the wind: gusts up to 40 mph at times.

Here's our complete list of school cancellations:

SNOW DAY

Adams/Cheshire
BArT
Berkshire Christian
Berkshire Community College
Berkshire Country Day
Berkshire Hills
Berlin (NY)
Central Berkshire
Clarksburg
Emma Miller Memorial
Farmington River
Gabriel Abbott
Hancock
Hoosick Falls (NY)
Housatonic Academy
Lanesborough
Lee
Lenox
Miss Hall's
Mohawk Trail
Mount Greylock
New Lebanon (NY)
North Adams
Northern Berkshire (McCann)
Pine Cobble
Pittsfield
Richmond
Southern Berkshire
Southern Vermont College
Southern Vermont Supervisory Union
Stamford
Williams College (Administrative Offices & Children's Center)
Williamstown

Cancellations and a Blizzard Warning

It's only been a few times that we've been able to write the words "Blizzard Warning" in the history of the Greylock Snow Day. We'll mark it down for the record books. Yay us!A blizzard warning has very little to do with snow totals; it's all about visibility. With the wind supposed to kick up into the mid and upper 30 mph range, the NWS has gone with the Blizzard Warning until midnight tomorrow because visibility will drop to below a quarter mile for at least a 3-hour period.

It's a probably a good decision for Superintendents, if they haven't done so already, to phone in their decisions now.

It would appear either Lee or Lenox was the first to remove the bottom block on the Jenga tower. Once those two made their decision, many others have followed suit.

Here's our list, which we'll update here or in a separate post later.

SNOW DAY (updated 10:14 PM; new schools in blue):

Adams/Cheshire
BArT
Berkshire Christian
Berkshire Community College
Berkshire Country Day
Berkshire Hills
Berlin (NY)
Central Berkshire
Clarksburg
Emma Miller Memorial
Farmington River
Gabriel Abbott
Hancock
Hoosick Falls (NY)
Housatonic Academy
Lanesborough
Lee
Lenox
Miss Hall's
Mohawk Trail
Mount Greylock
New Lebanon (NY)
North Adams
Northern Berkshire (McCann)
Pine Cobble
Pittsfield
Richmond
Southern Berkshire
Southern Vermont College
Southern Vermont Supervisory Union
Stamford
Williams College (Administrative Offices & Children's Center)
Williamstown

Here's a very interesting map about expected precipitation for this storm. Many teams these projections are high, but let's just engage in the process and understand what this forecast map is saying.


As you can see, parts of Berkshire County are in the 2.5 inches of liquid precipitation range. Using a standard 12:1 ratio of snow to liquid, that, my friends, is a projected 30" snowfall. Yeesh.

Noon Report

Here's a helpful graphic from the National Weather Service about the timing of the storm:


If you can't quite read the fine print, the relevant info is that the storm starts for Berkshire County between 4 AM and 6 AM, which is just about as good as it gets for timing. Meteorologists are still on board for 15 inches (on average) in the Berkshires. With the storm shifting slightly to the west, the winds will kick up more, which means we could see a Blizzard Warning at some point tomorrow. That would be unusual for this part of the Commonwealth.

We're still awaiting the first school district to pull the plug on the school day tomorrow. Some likely candidates have been listed on our Facebook feed.

Snow Day Tuesday (Unofficially)

Four of the top 20 snow events in Albany, NY occurred in the month of March, dating back to the late 1800s. There is a chance this storm will crack the top 20 as the models are indicating that the storm will follow a more westerly track. The more west the storm moves, the more snow we'll see.

Snow days are assured tomorrow. The heaviest snow will fall in the afternoon. It will be curious to see what the local colleges do about the heavy snow. We also are curious what the Commonwealth of Massachusetts will do, is it may have to issue a State of Emergency at some point if the storm is as debilitating as forecasters think it will be.

That's a lot of snow. Some meteorologists think the Berkshires should be moved to the 18-24 range.
Buckle up. It's going to get wild after midnight tonight.

Sunday, March 12, 2017

Early Maps

It must be a big storm as we have maps a full 12 hours sooner than normal. Let's compare:

Fox/ABC News of Albany

NBC Channel 22 in Springfield

Our good friends at Channel 13 in Albany
Aesthetically, we like Channel 13's effort. The blend of a deep royal contrasted with the white and then tinges of lilac and true purple in the far left corner is soothing. But you have to love the bluntness of Channel 22's effort. This palate says, "It's gonna snow a lot. Let's not make this complicated." And then there's something sinister about the Fox/ABC graphic. That fang of 14-22" inches is menacing.

All in all a fine first effort by the weekend meteorologists. The weekday regulars take over tomorrow, and we'll share their creativity at some point during the day.

For actual information about the storm, see the previous few posts.

Waving the Warning Flag

It's about 30 hours until the biggest storm of the entire season is about to descend upon us poor and beleaguered Berkshirites. Yes, the weather hype machine is cranked up to 11. Hide all your valuables. Keep your children and pets indoors. Raid the shelves of the local grocery store because Snowmageddon will be upon us soon.

That's certainly how a few of the major weather outlets are portraying this storm. And they could be right, but we think we'll be on the lower end of some of their forecast totals. Everybody relax.

Witness some of their fine work:

The Weather Channel
Accuweather
The range here is 12-24 inches of snow. And the NWS is on board too as they have officially upgraded us from the Winter Storm Watch to the Winter Storm Warning. The Warning begins at midnight Monday and ends at 8 PM on Wednesday. The warning is calling for 10-18 inches of snow with gusty winds and potential snowfall rates of 3 inches per hour at time on Tuesday. If we are to take this guidance seriously--and there's no reason we shouldn't--there aren't going to be many Superintendents willing to open up their schools on Tuesday.

We are still sticking with our 8-10 inch prediction, and that will be more than enough to cancel school. We'll start to see a few local maps tomorrow, and we'll see if the local meteorologists agree with us. But if we're on the upper end of predicted snow totals, the big question will not be "will we have a snow day Tuesday?," but "will we have snow days both Tuesday and Wednesday?"

Tuesday Storm -- T Minus 48 Hours (Roughly)

It's a bright sunny Sunday but don't let that fool you. It's freezing out there--5 degrees at the GSD Home Office as of 8 AM--and a Wind Chill Advisory is still technically in effect, although it isn't very breezy out there at the moment.

But you're probably reading this because you're interested in the rumored snowstorm for Tuesday. Well, the rumors are true. It is going to snow on Tuesday, potentially very hard at times. And the wind will kick up significantly with gusts into the 30s (mph).

This storm hits a lot of the checkboxes for a snow day Tuesday: nor'easter; 6+ inches of snow; high winds; great timing (expected to start around dawn); lots of storm hype. This storm feels a lot like the storm we had on February 9th, which resulted in snow days for almost all students in the county.

NOAA is predicting 8-12 inches for the Berkshires with higher totals south.
We do think some of the early maps we've seen exaggerate how much snow we'll get. The intel we're receiving in our office indicates that we'll see snow throughout the day on Tuesday in light and moderate waves. Then, as the storm intensifies off the coast of Cape Cod, the wrap-around snow (as the storm deforms) will hit is with several more inches Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning. It could still be snowing on Wednesday morning.

Right now we think we'll get 4 inches during the day on Tuesday (starting around 7 AM) and then another 4 inches Tuesday night/Wednesday morning. Some bolder Superintendents may choose to go with the early release on Tuesday; many others will opt for the full snow day. And then Superintendents may have to debate delays or full snow days on Wednesday as well. Those folks are going to be a little sleep-deprived in the middle of the week.

At the very least students should expect at least one day this week to be be shortened due to snow. The best case scenario for students will be two snow days.

Saturday, March 11, 2017

Winter Storm Watch Begins Late Monday Night

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for the Berkshires, starting late Monday and lasting through Wednesday. The potential exists for 7+ inches of snow in this period.

The models are still not in full agreement for a blockbuster winter storm for Western Mass. But here is one inescapable fact: it will snow on Tuesday at some point for several hours. The cold air is firmly in place and the moisture will arrive at some point. The GSD Staff is confident we'll see at least 6 inches of snow, but the track of the nor'easter will determine if we (the Berkshires) see an additional 6 inches on top of that or even an additional 12 inches. An 18-inch snowfall total is not out of the question for this storm.

The most recent forecast map from the NWS suggests we're in for a doozy:

Get the plows and shovels ready...
Even though the potential exists for this much snow, we think this map is just a little aggressive. Realistically, we'll see 8-12 inches for the Berkshires, which will almost assuredly shut schools down for Tuesday.

We will not be surprised to see two things happen in the next 48 hours: 1) the NWS will upgrade our Watch to a Warning; 2) School Districts will begin to phone in school cancellations on Monday night.

More to follow on Sunday.




Friday, March 10, 2017

Tuesday Storm is Buzzworthy

Light snow has made its way to the ground in Berkshire County this morning, mostly in the southern half. The snow should be ending soon, and then we will await the arrival of unseasonably cold air later tonight and into tomorrow.

All the buzz, though, is about the Tuesday storm. It's easy to get sucked into the hype, but this storm might actually warrant it. Preliminary reports suggest coastal New England will get blasted--blizzard conditions could happen--and the storm will be strong enough to spread plenty of snow into the Berkshires. We're seeing forecasted liquid precipitation between 0.5 inches and 1.25 inches for our part of the Commonwealth, which would yield 6-15 inches of snow. We all know that 6 inches is certainly enough to cancel school on Tuesday. Whether we get 3 inches or 15 inches from this storm, it will be an all snow event--no sleet or freezing rain will mix in.

The National Weather Service is already prepping us for a storm on Tuesday.

There is also a scenario where the snow continues all the way through Wednesday morning's commute. Double snow days might be in play for some districts, but to believe in that outcome this early would be foolhardy.

Stay tuned throughout the weekend for more updates.

Thursday, March 9, 2017

Snow South and a Tuesday Snow Event Looms

Here we are in March and it feels like we're back in January.

Tonight, we could see a few snow flakes in our area, especially in South County. Connecticut, Rhode Island, and easter Mass all could see 2-4 inches from a clipper-type system moving west to east through southern New England. The bulk of Berkshire County will not be affected by this storm, but if anyone were to get a delay tomorrow morning, it would have to be Southern Berkshire students, giving them their second delay this week. It's not very likely that the snow line will creep into South County but it's a possibility worth warning folks about. Just be aware.

Are Southern Berkshire students ready for their second delay this week? We shall see!
But the GSD Staff is much more focused on a storm for Tuesday. We've noticed that the major models are all in agreement that we will see a moderate snow event starting Monday night and lasting throughout the day on Tuesday. It is very unusual to see the models in such agreement this many days ahead of a storm. The models do not agree on the timing or amount of liquid precipitation, but all of them are calling for snow on Tuesday. If the trend of this winter is going to continue, our GSD gut instinct tells us widespread snow days will be the rule not the exception on Tuesday. We, of course, reserve our right to change our minds over the weekend, but many signs are staring us in the face for a moderate snow event.

Speaking of the weekend, gird yourselves for another brutally cold one. We got word today that Williams College cancelled their women's lacrosse game for the weekend due to the cold. Yes, it will be as bad as last weekend (but winds won't be quite as strong). Don't get lulled into a false sense of security because of how warm it was on Wednesday and Thursday. Cover up appropriately if you're going to be outside on Saturday and/or Sunday morning for a prolonged period of time.

And don't forget those clocks on Saturday night. Bump them ahead 1 hour.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Cold and Snow Approach

Winter is not over.

The cold air will return Thursday, and we might see a dusting (especially in South County) on Friday. Temps will plummet over the weekend, and on Saturday we'll see highs in the teens. That's well below normal for this time of the year.

Coastal storm potential for Tuesday. With a quarter inch of liquid--as this map shows--we would see 4-6 inches of snow.
With this cold air in place, we have an eye on a developing situation for Tuesday of next week. Signs are pointing to a coastal storm. At this juncture we're seeing the potential for 4-8 inches of snow if everything goes according to plan. We're still too many days out in front of this storm for this prediction to be accurate, but we might see cancellations next week either on Tuesday or Wednesday. A lot can change so we'll be monitoring this storm carefully.

Stay warm!

Monday, March 6, 2017

Week of March 6 Forecast

It sure was cold this past weekend. Having been softened up by the 70 degree temps from the week before, we all probably felt that the cold was worse than it actually was.

We have a wide variety of weather offerings for this week. Numerous rain showers will move in on Tuesday. We will see temps slide back up into the mid-50s on Wednesday, but winter will return by the weekend. Snow showers are possible Thursday night into Friday. The coldest day of the week will be Saturday, when we will see a high in the low 20s. It will be cold but not as bad as this past weekend.

We are also monitoring a possible light or even moderate snowfall for Saturday night. Some models are showing a coastal storm development late Saturday night, which would mean a shovel-able amount of snow for Sunday. It will not be a major storm, but it certainly could impact travel and outdoor sports on Sunday.

But the really bad news of the entire week as that we lose an hour of sleep this upcoming weekend. Yes, it's already time to move those clocks ahead at 2 AM on Sunday.

And we leave you with a fun fact: did you know that the correct expression is Daylight Saving Time, not Daylight Savings Time? Most people incorrectly throw that S on the end of saving when they talk about losing or gaining an hour of sleep. And now you know.

Monday, February 27, 2017

We're Back...And So Is Spring

Our apologies for the lack of posts recently. The record-breaking warmth we just experienced last week really depressed some of the staff members, so we all decided to take a few days off, regroup, and get ready for a several more weeks of winter.

Unfortunately, this strategy has backfired as more record-breaking warmth is headed our way for Tuesday and Wednesday of this week. Sad.

We were watching our friend Bob Kovachick on Channel 13 NYT and he revealed that the 74 degree mark that hit in Albany on Friday was the warmest temperature in winter (December, January, February) in the history of the recorded daily temperatures (1874). And still there are some who doubt damaging climate change is occurring.

From eastern Mass meteorologist Dave Epstein. This trend suggests GSD will be out of business in about 20 years.
We won't see 70 this week, but we could come close on Wednesday. As for liquid or frozen precipitation, we have a chance of showers Tuesday night and then a chance for more thunderstorms on Wednesday. The official GSD position is that we should not be seeing thunderstorms this time of year.

But a change in the temperature is coming for Friday. We could see a dusting of snow on Friday as well as temps moderate and return to the low 30s.

As for bigger storms, we see nothing in the meteorological crystal ball. There's another chance for a dusting or inch of snow on Tuesday (the 6th) but that's about the size of it.

We know that Old Man Winter has one more trick up his sleeve. It might take a few weeks but, despite how warm it will get for the next few days, winter is not over.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Snow Showers Tonight; Slim Chance for Delays Thursday

Another coastal storm is blasting Maine with another 6-12 inches right now, but around these parts we're only going to see an inch or two of snow tonight.

We do not think there will delays tomorrow morning, but there is an outside shot one or two schools calls in for the late start. Part of the problem is the warm temperature. It's 35 degrees at the GSD Home Office so the snow is not sticking to the roads. We will drop below freezing after midnight so we might see some accumulation on the roads.

We could see 3-4 inches if and only if the upslope snows continue and we get stuck in a few moderate bursts of snow. While this scenario is unlikely, it could play out and impact the morning commute.

No snow for the weekend, and we will see temps warm up to the 40s.


Tuesday, February 14, 2017

One Delay Tomorrow; Squalls and Upslope Snow on Wednesday

Gabriel Abbott Memorial in Florida has a two-hour delay today, but that should be the only one for the County this morning.

Today will start out very cold (low teens) but warm up to almost 30 today. Our snow that we hoped would impact the morning commute tomorrow is going to hold off until midmorning. The snow tomorrow will be more of the snow squall variety, which means it will be intermittent and hard to predict. A few strong squalls could coat the roads quickly, but these squalls will not be enough to impact the school day on Wednesday. On Wednesday night we could see the return of upslope snow. We'll keep an eye on that situation to see if it will impact the Thursday morning drive to school.

After early Thursday morning, we'll see a period of relative quiet until the middle of next week. Temps in the mid-40s this weekend. Get out the shorts!

Monday, February 13, 2017

Upslope Snow

Good morning! Those of you looking for the list of cancellations and delays, you can go here. Sadly, we didn't see too many upgrades over night. There still could be a few more, but most likely this list is final. Schools north of Pittsfield were the big winners with this storm.

As for today, Berkshire County will see what is called upslope snow. What lake effect snow is to Buffalo, New York, upslope snow is to Berkshire County. After a big storm exits to our east, the wrap around energy creates a snow pipeline from Canada down through the Green Mountains and into the Berkshires (see below). Sometimes, we get trapped in this upslope snow for hours, which can lead to several more inches of accumulation in the dying hours of a storm.

A good image of upslope snow from Vermont all the way down to the Litchfield Hills in Connecticut.
Today, we'll see another 1-3 inches from upslope snow, especially in northern Berkshire County.

The other big issue, which you've probably already noticed, is the wind. We do have a Wind Advisory for the County, which means sustained winds in the 20 and 30 mph range with gusts up to 50 mph possible. Roads next to open fields and spaces could be particular treacherous during the day because of the blowing snow.

Everything will start to wind down late in the afternoon and in the early evening. The snow will be intermittent throughout the day before coming to an end this afternoon. Winds will finally die down around nightfall.

Next up for Berkshire County is a minor storm for Wednesday morning. Originally, the thought was we might see a third nor'easter, but the two energy systems will not phase and create a large coastal storm. Instead, we'll see about 2-3 inches during the morning commute and morning hours. Yes, delays are indeed possible.