First day of winter, a lunar eclipse, and a slight chance of snow Tuesday
In the frenzy of interest in a potentially white Christmas we shouldn’t lose sight of the weather between now and then. The storm that missed us last night and today is forecast to stall well off the East Coast, which will tend to weaken the clipper system due here on Tuesday. NWS Sterling is still calling for a 30% chance of some snow on Tuesday, altho’ I think locations east of the Blue Ridge – meaning us – will see flurries at best.
Meanwhile tomorrow looks like the coldest day of the week, with breezy conditions and a high temperature around the freezing mark. That’s fitting for the last day of astronomical autumn, as the winter solstice is on Tuesday Dec. 21st. (Also, don’t forget the total lunar eclipse tomorrow night.) Wednesday and Thursday we may just make it back into the low 40′s with some sunshine before next weekend’s storm system makes its approach to our region.
Now, this is the forecast graphic from this morning’s GFS model run showing the storm’s forecast position on Christmas morning.
Note the blue line that bisects Virginia north to south; that’s the freezing line, meaning the Fredericksburg area will quite likely experience our typical winter forecast hemming and hawing regarding snow totals. Where this line actually sets up will determine how much liquid versus frozen precipitation we see. That always complicates things for weather forecasters as just a slight shift of this line on the map can mean large differences in snow accumulation. Thus I continue to encourage you to pay close attention to the weather pros regarding next weekend, and don’t be surprised if the forecast shifts back and forth a bit as the weekend approaches and the model solutions wobble. As for me, I’m keeping my snow shovel close at hand!