Ready for some wicked weather?
Ask someone to imagine a chaotic weather month, and most of the time people think of March. That’s when Mother Nature powers up her Atlantic Ocean Nor’easter machine, and unleashes mighty storms that contain punishing storm surges and howling winds.
The Ash Wednesday Storm of 1962 and the Storm of the Century in 1993 both occurred in March.
But this year’s nor’easter season may be coming just a tad early. Way early perhaps?
Let’s take a look.
Just in case, be sure to ready your rain gear and umbrellas because here we go. And keep your snow shovels close at hand.
The GFS weather model’s long-range forecast is showing for an active, rainy pattern setting up for the next two weeks and heading into early March.
While temperatures should be too warm for too much snow—let’s hope—a fairly flat jet stream will curl fairly decent lower pressure systems at South Jersey every few days.
Unfortunately, some of those low pressure systems could track far enough south to pull up some Gulf of Mexico moisture.
The fun starts in a few hours.
A low pressure system will move across the country and to the south of New Jersey this evening, leaving us with rain showers that will change over to a snow, according to the National Weather Service.
Expect 1-2 inches to fall by Saturday morning, according to latest estimates.
Then everything could get crazy heading into Saturday afternoon.
That’s when a second low pressure system is going to form off the East Coast and head toward New England. Most models suggest it will become a major storm. However, they suggest it will track too far to the east to give us any more than another 1-2 inches between Saturday evening and Sunday.
However, the big three – The National Weather Service, Weather Channel and AccuWeather – say Saturday’s weather will change quickly and forecast amounts could go up or down depending on the exact route the storm takes.
If the storm stays out to sea, look for arctic-like winds to usher in cold weather. Sunday’s daily high shouldn’t reach past 32 degrees and the wind chill will make if feel like the teens for most of the day.
This don’t settle down yet, however.
A more powerful low pressure system will cross the Middle Atlantic States between Tuesday, Feb. 19 and Wednesday, Feb. 20, leaving us with a chance for rain chaning to snow again.
The Pocono Mountains and areas to the north could get hammered with snow.
But the weather fun doesn’t end there.
We only get one day to dry out before South Jersey residents are rained on again with when another coastal low forms on Friday, Feb. 22 and heads are way.
The Weather Service’s long-term outlook keeps us in a period of cooler-than-normal temperatures and with wetter-than-normal precipitation amounts through the end of the month.
We’ll get a peak into the March outlook next week when the National Weather Service issues its monthly and seasonal outlooks.
Let’s take a look back at infamous March storms:
The Storm of 1962 reshaped barrier islands, caused a tremendous loss of businesses and washed out beachfront “by the mile.” More than 2,000 homes were damaged in New Jersey and waves reached 30 feet.
1993 Storm of the Century
Between March 12-14 1993, a nor’easter dropped feet of snow across a large portion of the eastern seaboard, killed 250 people and caused more than $3 billion in damages, according to the National Weather Service. New Jersey was punished by a high storm surge, powerful winds and a heavy wet snow.
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