Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Strongest Cold Front Since January of 1996 Plows Our Way

Blizzard of 1978

January has a reputation for wild weather as we were discussing here on the blog yesterday. Here is some amazing proof. You can see a viewer picture of snow drifts that made it to the top of powerlines on state road 43. January is one of those months where you can walk your dog outside one day at street level and a few days later like we saw at the end of January 1978 you can walk your dog on the roof. Drifts were over 20 feet here in Lafayette. Look at the snowfall totals across the area and this combined with a lot of snow earlier in the month created an Antarctic oasis.

In this forecast we are not being hit with a blizzard, but with a memorable weather change on the way. We could see temperatures plummet more than 10 degrees per hour beginning late today and this evening with thunderstorms giving way to a quick coating of snow and possible white-out conditions at times. Wind gusts will easily hit 50 mph. Remember for severe thunderstorm warnings you need 58 mph gusts, so even outside thunderstorms we will have possible wind damage. The last time we saw such a dramatic change in January was back in 1996. This is when a tornado was spotted in Montgomery County with highs in the lower 60s. By late evening temperatures plunged more than 50 degrees into the single digits with snow. Today I cannot rule out tornadoes across Indiana. Here at home my biggest concern will be wind gusts of 60 to 80 mph in isolated spots. I will have more on this tonight and here on the blog including the very lateset on Friday's snow estimates. The general trend is moving farther south, but I still see us receiving at least 4 inches of snow and according to a least two models a whole lot more.


Anonymous said...

Mike, Do you recommend travel tonight? What time is a good time to stay put?

Anonymous said...

It looks like a telegraph pole for the railroad, not a power line. Those are a little bit lower to the ground, but still some lines carried some form of power. Still impressive nonetheless.
I still remember how deep it was in Kokomo then. My dad almost made it across town coming from work in his 1968 Mustang and got stuck one block from our house due to kids playing in the street. It litteraly sank into the snow that morning. Thanks for your hard work Mike, keep up the good work.

Nathan said...

My weather website, www.bakerweather.blogspot.com has complete half-hour updates from tonight's weather for Rochester.
Just wanted to let you know.

Anonymous said...

Ahhh, the blizzard of '78. That brings back lots of memories. I was in my senior year of college at Ball State. We had classes cancelled so often that week that we started to get "dorm fever". We were BEGGING to get back to class. The initial "yay!" turned to "ohhhhhhhhhhhh!" The only other nasty storms comparable within the last 30 years were in '79 and in I believe 1982 (or was it '83?)