When it comes to snow, my forecasts are usually among the least aggressive. In other words, I call for less snow.
I can’t be sure why. Each forecaster approaches the number differently. The amount of data is overwhelming. The right answer is always there hidden inside the pile of wrong answers.
Anyway, it works. No one is perfect and I certainly sweat every flake all-the-way to the ground, but my snow calling is pretty good.
As it turns out I am helped by a factor I never considered until recently, compaction. As soon as a pile grows it also begins to shrink. Crystals splinter and break. The snow begins to play Tetris.
Snow piles are larger when storms build gradually and fall off quickly. The same amount of snow, the same fluffiness of snow, can produce wildly differing accumulations. Inches of light snow can disappear into a compacting pile.
There are equations. Calc is involved. Thanks, I’ll let the machines do the grunt work. But this is a big deal.
Weather Service observers start fresh every six hours. They count more snow than you see because of their technique.
The map above shows my call for the New England weekend storm. It seems most likely the bulk of the storm will pass out-to-sea. The Jersey Shore will get clobbered.
By wake-up time Saturday Connecticut will already see a few inches on the ground with moderate to heavy snow falling.
My friends in Connecticut will probably accumulate around six inches where the snow’s allowed to pile up. You’ll get a little more on the shoreline and a little less on the UCONN campus.
I’ll be on the patio if you need me.