Sunday, January 30, 2011

Midwest Winter Apocalypse

Well, the word is obviously out by now but I figured I would throw my two cents in to the hype. My current forecast for the DeKalb area is right around 20 inches total between the first wave on Monday and the main knock out punch on Tuesday night.

I'm somewhat busy so I'm not going to hammer out a big synopsis, but this is starting to look nothing short of insane.

Just look at this forecast surface wind/surface pressure chart for 3 AM on Wednesday morning. Northern Illinois will simply be shut down. That's got sustained winds anywhere from 30-40 mph with higher gusts underneath an unheard of period of up to 6 hours of 3"/hour snowfall rates, along with very likely embedded pockets of thundersnow with 850 mb mlcape as high as 400 j/kg. Thunder and lightning, blinding snowfall, and howling winds? I'm not normally a huge winter fanatic, but when I tell mother nature to go big or go home, this is certainly along the lines of what I'm talking about.

Friends and family down in Champaign are very close to the rain/snow cutoff line. At this point, Champaign could still stand to see almost a foot of snow. Any shift north or south (which is still likely to happen) could add another couple inches, or leave them in a soaking wet state with a rain/snow slushy mix. Too close to call right there as the rain/snow line literally follows Interstate 72 right through that area.

Up here in DeKalb, I'll be on apocalypse alert as we find ourselves bullseyed for late Tuesday into Wednesday.

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