Sunday Night Snow Update

March 22nd, 2013 at 11:52 pm by under Weather


Just when you thought spring was here and you were all ready to break out the grill, sorry folks, this ain’t no April Fools joke, snow is likely Sunday Night.

I just got done looking over some new model data and here are my thoughts:

  • I have¬† high confidence that we will see at least 5-7″ of snow for Allen County Sunday night.
  • I actually think 5-7″ may be just a touch on the low side and I am about ready to up the amounts to at least 6-8″, but I need to see a few more forecasting products first.
  • A forecast of 6-10″ for Fort Wayne would not be a stretch at all.
  • If you are doing any traveling Sunday night, especially between Fort Wayne and Indy, expect a difficult, if not a dangerous drive.
  • This storm is still over the Northern Rockies and any slight change in the storm track may drastically affect the final snow forecast.

On a side note, I came across this late Friday night: Prosecutor Seeks Death Penalty for Ground Hog

Lesson learned right? (Don’t trust an over-sized rodent for a long range forecast.)¬† Maybe they were asking the wrong Phil for the forecast.

Stay tuned… more weather updates coming this weekend.




20 Responses to “Sunday Night Snow Update”

  1. Mike says:

    Yes Jonathan I’ve decided to put a hit out on that rodent too. We received a storm this week that dropped 17″ of snow on us the first day of Spring just north of you. We’re back to sitting with about 3 ft of snow in the yard again. Not looking to go away anytime soon. So yes, it’s open season on that furry little creature. :)

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      Mike, too funny! Thanks for the laugh. Yep, I think I heard something about an “open season” on all ground hogs. Good thing April is about here and warmer days are just weeks away. Hang in there!

  2. Mark says:

    Why are you forecasting so much snow..everyone else is only saying a couple of inches…why the drastic difference??

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      A couple of things:
      1. This is a potent storm.
      2. I expect the heavy snow to be on the back side of the low, in the “deformation zone,” which many forecasters under estimate.
      3. Temperatures aloft, where the snow forms, is perfect for big snowflakes and higher snowfall rates.
      4. Spring storms are also under estimated, because of the warmer air associated with them, but this one should be a pure snow event for us.

      Honestly, I am not sure what others are doing. I gave up looking at others a while ago, I just go off my experience and the experience of my weather team. Remember at WANE TV, we all have degrees in meteorology. We are not just journalists pretending to know a few things about weather.

      1. mike says:

        Well said Jonathan! I wont mention any other stations in town but they are usually out to lunch on these storms.

  3. Rich M says:

    There is no such thing as a “change in the storm track”. That is just a term weather forecasters use to cover for when they don’t know or after they’ve “guessed wrong”! Think about it, the storm did not have a pattern or track in mind and then change it’s mind, it went exactly as it wanted to start to finish.

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      No, the storm does not have a mind, but the solution in the forecast models can change many times a day. Remember, two days ago, this storm was over Alaska. Once the storm gets closer and is in a better coverage area of weather sensors and radars, the models handle the storms better.

  4. Kari says:

    Well… it is the weather men that speak for the groundhog. I’d watch out Jonathan. I lived in ND for years and it snowed when I graduated from college in May. At least the snow doesn’t stick around long here.

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      I have never used the ground hog forecast. I have always been tongue and cheek about it. But, people get confused and forget that I am in weather sales, not weather management. If I could control the weather, I would be in Vegas making millions.

      1. andrea says:

        Thank you for keeping us up to date! It is GREATLY appreciated!

  5. Charity Wilcox says:

    Jonathan, are we ever going to see spring anytime soon??

  6. Mark says:

    So back to the 2 inches or so like everyone else was saying now???

    What was the reason for the 5-7 inch prediction?

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      Thanks for your comment. First off, I really don’t know what “everyone else” was forecasting. I work with the WANE Weather Team, and at times, coordinate with the National Weather Service. If the other TV stations had 2″, I would be the last to know. Second… go back about one or two blog posts. I showed some of the model data I was looking at. The NAM was continuously pumping out 6 to 12 inches for Allen County. My forecast took that into consideration, amongst other factors. But, the snow hasn’t even started yet, so let’s see how things pan out first. I don’t think a reduction of 5-7″ to 2-4″ in 24 hours is major change considering 50 miles south of Fort Wayne could see 8-10″ of snow.

  7. Tam says:

    Are you kidding me. Once again backtracking on your story, and btw yesterday on the WANE website you didn’t just say 5-7 inches you said that you were confident that it would be more than 10 inches. And yes 2 inches is a major change from 10, especially when trying to make resposible arrangements for school, daycare and work. I don’t know why every forecast has to be some major storm, are you that desperate for ratings? Well it just went down by 1 because I will never watch you, your forecast or WANE again, I am just that sick of you never even being close to correct in forecasting the weather – you know your job.

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      Thanks for the comments. If you go back and look at the last several blog posts, I never said I was confident about 10″ for Fort Wayne, I said it would not be a stretch, and that was based on consistent data from Thursday, Friday and Saturday morning. I also showed some of the forecast models that were indicating the heavier snow. If you look closely at those maps, they had a tight snow gradient, going from 2″ to 10″ in about a 50 mile difference. If you live Indiana, you know that it ain’t over until it’s over and that forecasting is not a perfect science. I am sorry you are so upset, but we are doing the best job we can.

  8. tina says:

    HAHA, I was waiting for the if you live in Indiana excuse. It is so cliche to say you don’t have to do your job right because you live in Indiana and the weather changes. If you can’t do any better job because you live in Indiana then why don’t you go down to South Florida, same forecast everyday hot, rain in the afternoon, even you should be able to get that right.
    I work in a lab and if I misinterpreted your labs and indicated that you needed a bunch of unnecessary test done, and you spent a lot of money on unnecessary medication, I pretty sure you would expect that you’d be pretty put off, but I guess it would be ok if I explained to you that you live in Indiana and it wouldn’t be too much of a stretch that you would get sick – so oops.

    1. Jonathan Conder says:

      Again, thanks for the comments. I really hope you have also emailed the National Weather Service of Northern Indiana, since they had 6-8″ for Fort Wayne on Saturday

      Actually, I completely back the NWS and I think they handled the forecast very well also.

      But, there is a huge difference between lab work and forecasting, it’s comparing apples to oranges. When you run a lab test, it is either positive, or negative.

      1. tina says:

        Actually, again you are wrong, you do interpret lab test. Not only positive or negative, so many variables, you know like the weather. But unlike the weather I am expected to know how to do my job and interpret the values in an educated way. SO much you don’t know.
        Bye WANE, until you can get a weatherman who knows something about you know, weather.

        1. Jonathan Conder says:

          1. We forecast as a team at WANE TV, pooling all our experience and knowledge.
          2. Again, our forecast was not an outlier or extreme, even compared to the NWS, who we also collaborate with.
          3. Forecasting is not a perfect science, and even the best forecasters in the country get it wrong from time to time. After this event is over and I can compare our forecast to what happened, I will hold our forecast accountable. I always have and always will.
          4. Trust me, I am my own worst critic, so you are pretty much preaching to the choir. There is no reason to go back and forth today, I am sure you have better things to do.

  9. Dawn Marie says:

    You are awesome and nobody is perfect… Great job!! Go WANE TV!!