A quick morning update on the upcoming storm threats. I am still expecting a couple of inches of snow today across the immediate coastal sections of the Carolinas, especially North Carolina. A band of precipitation will rotate on shore during the day today and model guidance is showing between 0.25and 0.5 inches of QPF along the immediate coastal areas. Temperatures as of 9am are in the upper 20s to low 30s and wet bulbs are in the 20s. So I think as the precip starts later this morning temperatures will fall to near freezing and snow will fall. So enjoy this rare event down there. I think 1-2 inches with locally 3 inches is possible.
As far as the threat for next week, the Canadian and ECMWF continue to show a significant system for the southern Appalachians and also North Georgia and east TN and western Virginia. The 00z ECMWF is a big snow for north Georgia (north of Atlanta) to NW SC to east TN, to NC from I-77 west. The synoptic weather setup of no 50/50 low and the southern stream s/w taking a negative tilt west of the mountains favors a piedmont or coastal plain track. You can see the surface high is departing New England by later Tuesday so the low level cold air source will be cut off just prior to the storm moving in from the Gulf Coast. That means that p-type will be determined by the track of the low pressure and the decaying in-situ wedge left behind by the departing high. Right now the 00z ECMWF seems like a pretty good scenario to me. This would mean areas like Hickory, Asheville, Knoxville, NE Georgia, Boone, and Greenville, SC, could be in line for a significant snow Tuesday night and into Wednesday. Areas just east of there including Charlotte and the Triad will be very close to the transition zone and areas like Raleigh could see brief snow/sleet to start and end but mostly rain. This the 00z ECMWF solution but it also makes most sense to me form a meteorological standpoint. It also seems most models, except for the GFS, are trending this way. Of course all it would take would be subtle timing differences to change this scenario. It would seem to me if the storm system evolves faster a further east track would occur and the rain/snow would be further east as well. A stronger storm evolving slower and further west may would cut off all snow east of the mountains.
Have a good Saturday.
I have already seen reports of 2-3 inches in the Morehead City area this afternoon. Latest radar trends suggest we could see 3-6 inches of snow form this system in around and north of the Morhead City area.
As far as the next week storm. The GFS finall gets a clue and is much closer to the model consensus. The GFS Ensemble has several members further east than the operational model. The ECMWF shifted east, while the Canadian is west and the UKMET is west. So confidence is very low still. In RDU, we would still need more of a shift east for this to be a significant snow event here.