After a cold, blustery, snowy day yesterday, the lake effect snow machine will shut down and the sun will slowly return for a more pleasant day today and the snow will begin melting again.
On the 17th we had 12 hours of daylight as we cross over to the spring equinox tomorrow the nighttime hours have begun to decrease.
U.S.A and Global Events for March 19th:
1907: The highest March temperature in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, was set when the temperature soared to 97 degrees. Dodge City, Kansas, also set a March record with 98 degrees. Denver, Colorado, set a daily record high of 81 degrees.
1948: An estimated F4 tornado moved through Fosterburg, Bunker Hill, and Gillespie, Illinois, killing 33 people and injuring 449 others. 2,000 buildings in Bunker Hill were damaged or destroyed. The total damage was $3.6 million.
2003: One of the worst blizzards since records began in 1872, struck the Denver metro area and Colorado’s Front Range started with a vengeance. Denver International Airport was closed, stranding about 4,000 travelers. The weight of the snow caused a 40-foot gash in a portion of the roof, forcing the evacuation of that section of the main terminal building. Winds gusting to 40 mph produced drifts six feet high in places around the city. Snowfall in the foothills was even more impressive. The heavy wet snow caused numerous roofs of homes and businesses to collapse. The estimated cost of property damage alone, not including large commercial buildings, was $93 million, making it the most costly snowstorm on record for the area. In Denver alone, at least 258 structures were damaged. Up to 135,000 people lost power during the storm, and it took several days for power to be restored. Mayor Wellington Webb of Denver said, “This is the storm of the century, a backbreaker, a record-breaker, a roof breaker.” Avalanches in the mountains and foothills closed many roads, including Interstate 70, stranding hundreds of skiers and travelers. The Eldora Ski area 270 skiers were stranded when an avalanche closed the main access road. After the storm, a military helicopter had to deliver food to the resort until the road could be cleared. Two people died in Aurora from heart attacks after shoveling the heavy wet snow. The National Guard sent 40 soldiers and 20 heavy-duty vehicles to rescue stranded travelers along a section of I-70. The storm made March 2003 the snowiest March on record, the fourth snowiest month on record, and the fifth wettest March on record. The total of 22.9 inches is the most significant 24-hour total in March. The storm also broke 19 consecutive months of below-average precipitation for Denver. The 31.8 inches of snow was recorded at the former Stapleton Airport in Denver for its second-greatest snowstorm on record (the greatest was 37.5 inches on 12/4-12/5/1913) with up to three feet in other areas in and around the city and more than seven feet in the foothills. Higher amounts included: Fritz Peak: 87.5 inches, Rollinsville: 87.5 inches, Canin Creek: 83 inches, Near Bergen Park: 74 inches, Northwest of Evergreen: 73 inches, Cola Creek Canyon: 72 inches, Georgetown: 70 inches, Jamestown: 63 inches, Near Blackhawk: 60 inches, Eldora Ski Area: 55 inches, Ken Caryl Ranch: 46.6 inches, Aurora: 40 inches, Centennial: 38 inches, Buckley AFB: 37 inches, Southwest Denver: 35 inches, Louisville: 34 inches, Arvada: 32 inches, Broomfield: 31 inches, Westminster: 31 inches and Boulder: 22.5 inches. This storm was the result of a very moist intense slow-moving Pacific system that tracked across the four corners and into southeastern Colorado, which allowed a deep easterly upslope to form among the front range.
Grand Rapids Forecast3 19 grr
Lansing Forecast3 19 lan
Kalamazoo Forecast3 19 kzo
-- Lake-effect snow showers ending this morning, then clearing -- Lake-effect snow showers/flurries continue to be sampled by KGRR radar and area surface obs, but overall coverage/intensity has waned in recent hours. In some areas northwest of Grand Rapids (e.g., near Muskegon), persistent reflectivity returns are noted, but surface visibilities are unrestricted. Here, an appreciable subcloud dry layer may be resulting in virga, given the sizable surface dewpoint depressions in recent obs at MKG/FFX/LDM. As the morning progresses, the loss of pronounced low-level cyclonic curvature will result in weakening boundary-layer convergence/lift and contribute to lowering inversion heights amid large-scale subsidence. Beneath this lowering inversion, boundary-layer moisture will be gradually removed from the overlying DGZ. These factors should ultimately result in the cessation of lake-effect snow activity later this morning. Once lake-effect clouds dissipate-- aided by the onset of low-level warm advection--abundant sunshine is expected area-wide today. -- Chance of light rain/snow Mon evening/night -- Guidance suggests that a quasi-stationary front will likely be draped across the region on Mon evening. Lift near this frontal zone will be provided via frontogenesis in conjunction with the approach of a low-amplitude shortwave trough / vort max. Light precip is possible, as indicated by numerous EPS and GEFS members. Thermal profiles support rain and/or snow, but amounts are expected to be light (< 0.1" liquid). -- Light rain likely Tue night into Wed morning -- Models suggest that a midlevel shortwave trough will emerge from the WY Rockies on Tue, then contribute to the development of a surface cyclone over the Northern Plains on Tue night, with the resulting surface low reaching MN/WI by 12z Wed. Southeast of this low, the presence of low-level warm advection and associated forcing for ascent, along with increasing PW (~0.6" in the EPS mean), should support precip (likely rain) over much of the area. EPS-median precip amounts during this timeframe are light, generally in the range of 0.1-0.2". -- Wed night/Thu and beyond -- EPS and GEFS ensemble means both depict a midlevel trough over the SW CONUS at 12z Thu, with an amplifying downstream ridge over the central/eastern CONUS. A pronounced, west-east-oriented baroclinic zone will likely be situated from the High Plains to the Great Lakes on Wed night and Thu. There is a broad signal for two possible precip episodes affecting the region later in the week. The first is on Wed night into Thu in conjunction with a frontal wave propagating along this baroclinic zone, with mainly rain favored. Another period of precip is possible on Fri-Sat, but forecast uncertainty in this timeframe is considerable. The 00z deterministic ECMWF solution, for example, depicts a deepening cyclone over southern IL at 00z Sat. However, this solution currently has tenuous support from the latest available (12z Sat) EPS ensemble, with EPS members loosely clustered around a mean position that is southeast of the deterministic solution. The 00z deterministic GFS does not develop a prominent cyclone and instead suggests that a frontal wave will pass south of the region, with reasonable support from the GEFS.