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What a great birthday I just had. It snowed all day and my daughter Eden had a fresh box of donuts at the foot of the bed when I woke up. That's the way to start the day. I measured 18 inches at my place, the Portland Jetport/airport) about 5 miles away had 17.6" so I think I'm right on with my number. Several places just north (Gorham for example) had up to 24". The most I saw in the Portland NWS forecast area was 42" at Springfield, NH, about 1.5 hours away. This is the view of my driveway from the front door. Shoveled that mother all myself.

This is the view out the back door of the deck. Nimbus is a bit unsure about bathroom duties. From grass to this in twelve hours time. Poor dog is going...dude, what happened!

A celebratory fist pump from me in honor of an 18 inch snowfall. Who's your daddy?

This also just came down and it makes me feel very lucky that I picked this year to winter in Portland. It turns out that the official snow total of 17.6" that fell in the city makes this the 3rd largest snowstorm in December history. The last time a larger one occurred was 50 years ago. The snow ratio was 21:1, an average ratio is closer to 10:1. That means this was a very fluffy powdery snow that really piled up. Nice big crystals.

Back in the good old Midwest the weather looks friendly though the weekend and Tuesday of Christmas week. Temperatures will finally moderate after a 6 day stretch below freezing going back to last Saturday. Where things get more interesting is December 23rd and beyond. At that point energy is expected to dig into the Midwest and drag down an Arctic air mass. This is what the GFS shows for temperatures the next 15 days. Notice the moderation that takes place until the front hits. Then a big crash with a highs going from 45 the 23rd to just 5 Christmas Eve day and 11 on Christmas.

The EURO is less aggressive and faster to move the cold out. It has 14 Christmas Eve day and 27 Christmas day. We'll need to keep an eye on how this evolves but it seems a solid bet that it will turn much colder just in time for Santa to fly.

The other thing to watch is how much the trough digs as the cold enters the Midwest. As it stands now most models develop a wave on the cold surge that kicks up some snow that stays just north. All my area gets out of it is some snow showers or flurries as the cold squeezes out the existing moisture. If the trough can dig a bit more and produce a more significant wave further south at least some parts of my area would have a shot at some light snow. That looks unlikely today but until we see how the energy resolves itself the possibility exists. That's basically the last shot for a white Christmas in my area. Here's what the latest GFS, EURO, and GEM show for potential snow totals through Christmas.



The Canadian GEM

With that, I'm calling it a day. At my age shoveling 18" of snow is no day at the beach, especially when you're using muscles that aren't in shape for that type of labor. A small price to pay for one of the top 3 snowstorms of my life. Happy Friday everyone and roll weather...TS


  1. Mail services are swamped and they say it is now too late in the month to order and receive a copy of my new book, Derecho 911, Iowa's Inland Hurricane for Christmas. However, we have come up with a couple creative ways you can still give the book on the costliest thunderstorm in U.S. history as a gift without the actual book. All you need to do is click and make your order, Then, later this week we will prepare a festive card with a picture of the books cover, Carolyn and myself, and a greeting announcing that whomever (fill in the persons name) is a gift recipient of Derecho 911. Then you print it out, wrap it up, throw on a bow, and use it as a substitute until the book arrives.

2. On top of that, I will also make a broad based video message on YouTube wishing your loved one a

merry Christmas with the announcement they are receiving a copy of derecho 911. I'll send you the YouTube link which they can open and watch when the time comes, rather personal if a dare say so myself. Make it easy on yourself and order one up today, we only have 166 left! Thanks and happy holidays...TS


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