Thursday Thoughts

Good afternoon, folks. Our light rain maker is rolling across the region and has a brief period of snow on the leading edge of it. As this system moves away, we focus on the weekend storm set to bring a lot of different weather our way. Everything from the potential of flooding rains to snow moves through here.

Before we get to that, let’s get to regional radar to track todays action…

Our weekend storm system remains on track to come at us via two lows. The first rolls in here with heavy rain on Saturday, with the next one taking over to our south and east. Exactly where that second low takes over is the determining factor on how much snow falls Saturday night and early Sunday.

My ranking of the biggest impacts the same yesterday…

  • Flooding and flash flooding. A general 1″-3″ of rain will fall on Saturday.
  • A flash freeze Saturday evening into Saturday night. A lot of standing water combining with temps dropping through the 20s and into the teens is not a good combo. Things ice up quickly.
  • Accumulating snow. A period of snow Saturday night will be followed by snow showers and squalls Sunday. There are a lot of variables at play in terms of how much snow falls where you live.
  • Freezing rain. A period of freezing is possible Saturday night as we make the transition from rain to snow. Again, there are a lot of variables at play for how much of this we get in on.

The WPC has the greatest risk for flooding across central and eastern Kentucky…

Here’s the risk area for 4″+ snows from Saturday morning through Sunday morning…

It’s obvious they are not going with their own model, the GFS, and for good reason. The GFS continues to be way too fast with the overall storm speed and that limits precipitation amounts. The reason for this is because it’s putting too much emphasis on the lead low and doesn’t really see the second low until it’s way east…

Contrast that with the Hi Res NAM, which only goes through early evening Saturday. The GFS has a low over Pennsylvania while the NAM has the low on the Kentucky/Tennessee border…

You can see that swath of snow on the backside of that low. That would then work across the state quickly Saturday night into Sunday morning.

The UKMET has a very similar look to the NAM…

The new version of the GFS is kind of a split between the GFS and NAM/UKMET…

One thing for sure, the GFS has no friends. There’s a reason this model is about to be replaced.

I will have the latest on WKYT-TV starting at 4pm then here on KWC this evening. Make it a good one and take care.

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49 Responses to Thursday Thoughts

  1. feederband says:


  2. BubbaG says:

    Jeepers, looks like NE of us is getting smacked again this weekend and likely a few more times this winter.

    • Jim B says:

      Yep, stick with the trends BubbaG…. kind of like those old soap operas, you could not watch for years, then tune in, and know exactly what is going on, and what’s gonna happen…. haha

  3. Troy says:

    Not sure of why the hate on the old GFS as it was by far the most accurate with the early December bust as well as more recent events. Actually, the new GFS has proven to be the worst of all to date…

  4. Mike S says:

    If the GFS should be used at all, it should not be used for purposes that a higher resolution product like the NAM or HRRR or other ‘mesoscale’ type models which can perform and do a much better job.

  5. msd says:

    Thanks Chris. Looking forward to tonight’s runs of the short range models. On that point: none of the models correctly predicted the snow and sleet that we have seen here in parts of east TN this morning. Was shocked to go outside at 9AM and find it sleeting; the north east of hte state is reporting snow. Models not handling the low level cold correctly. Perhaps it means something for Sunday?

  6. geoff says:

    Like Chris said yesterday, most people come to this site to see/hear about how much snow they are going to get…..based on the models in this most recent post, I don’t see anyone getting more than 2″ inches of snow in Kentucky….the Euro Model yesterday was indicating the Ohio River Counties north and east of Louisville could get up to 6 inches….curious that Chris didn’t show this model with the most recent post….

  7. Bernard P. Fife says:

    It could be an episode of the Twilight Zone. All of Kentucky takes a nap just to wake up and find that the state has moved to the Pacific Northwest as clouds and rain dominate two thirds of the year.

  8. Formerly from KY says:

    Where I live in NW PA the weatherman are not even using the gfs or the nam for guidance. There using the euro for their guidance.

  9. Jimbo says:

    I thought this was supposed to be the heralded start to the loaded back half of Winter. Charleston NWS has 22 for Mondays high then 45 on Tuesday and 50 on Wednesday.

  10. mbc says:

    The “Mud Winter” of 2019.

  11. Russell says:

    Jimbo right on. As I’ve stated before wheres the snow….RIP

  12. Mike S says:

    Some of the top analogs still hinting at a swath of heavier snow in a range of 2-5″along the Ohio River, and these are GFS analogs, that nearly matches the latest 12z run of the NAM. I would be paying attention to a southward shift. The 0z run of the NAM and tomorrow’s 12z run will be the NAM’s “sweet spot”. Some freezing rain, but snow threat is increasing for areas along the Ohio River.

  13. Drew says:

    Euro just busted.. lol
    What a letdown!!

  14. Teacher Nate says:

    NAM showed a giant dry slot. Based on past trends…that is something that is likely to happen…. We’ll get slammed by the dry slot

  15. Debbie says:

    “Winter Storm Harper”….My eldests’ (she’s 12) name. If it holds true, we’re going to be banging our heads against walls before this is said and done!

  16. JimCVB says:

    Wilmington NWS saying 4-6″ along the Ohio near Cincinnati.

  17. Rodger Dodger says:

    Super cold with little or no snow = kissing your sister! Rodger in Dodger

  18. Tom says:

    For those who would enjoy reading about how the euro is constructed…fifty plus model runs in each run so pick the one you like! I prefer the one that shows sunshine and eighty degrees. Check out

  19. Tom says:

    For humor…or for accuracy…take your pick. I reviewed the 52 model runs in the noon Euro just for my own education. Twenty (around 40%) were showing 4 inches of snow for middle Ky such as the Lexington area. Quite a few others were showing 2-4 inches of snow but I did not count them. I suspect one of the 52 models will be right. Then again…What do you think?

  20. feederband says:

    A few Louisville mets are calling for the most snow in Central Indiana and a dusting for Metro and areas south. They’re calling a little early in my opinion.

    • Bjenks says:

      Could it be that the are driven buy the GFS and NWS. It is local media and they have to stay the course. Although they are probably correct.

  21. BH says:

    I’m just going to wait and see what we are going to get. All this computer bouncing around is not telling us anything. All the Mets can’t even get it right have of the time and they are suppose to be the experts on weather. Just look out the window in a couple of days and you’ll know what you getting for sure.

  22. National Weather Service said 1-3 max for areas primarily north of I-64, dusting everywhere else.

    If you want snow, drive north to Mansfield/Marion Ohio, or up towards Sandusky! Great hotels near Cedar Point and they are cheap since it’s the off season! 15+ inches according to the NWS in Cleveland! Great extended weekend getaway for snow lovers! Go tomorrow! We are thinking of going and getting a room for the long weekend at a nice hotel with an indoor pool. Definitely taking the 4WD SUV!

  23. Jim B says:

    Armchairs and Naysayers are nailing these forecast a week ahead of time haha….. all about the trends, tough to buck the trends folks

  24. Jared from Letcher County says:

    Looks like none of the models picked up on the snow in SEKY today. Nice little snowfall on top of Black Mountain.

    • Troy says:

      Snowed heavily in Middlesboro, nothing laid….1 mile across the state line in Harrogate, TN got almost 2″ of snow. It’s completely comical at this point!

      • Terry says:

        Between a 1/4 to 1/2 snow stuck at noon in Harlan but already melted of course.

        Elevation is too dang low in Middlesboro! That is the problem that almost 2020 models still haven’t corrected for when snow accumulation is predicted. Also, models treat the valley areas of SE KY too cold, especially in summertime when they show us in upper 80s but we are ever bit of 95 with heat index over 100!

        Still, it was pretty today and mt tops are at least white:)

  25. Melva says:

    Will be a bust for my area near Huntington. Then we’ll get a new series of model runs calling for a new snow a week away. That will be a bust. Then rinse and repeat…lol

  26. BubbaG says:

    Well, we’ll know snow does not look good if CB starts posting about other people’s snow. One year wa as so wimpy he did.

  27. Tom says:

    The new GFS shows substantial snow across eastern half of Ky.

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