The science behind forecasting snow

If you've ever wondered how we go about forecasting snow, here's how we do it.

Posted: Jan 17, 2019 6:38 PM

TERRE HAUTE, Ind. (WTHI) - Snow forecasting is not an easy task.

It requires much more than regular weather forecasting does.

Because of that, we take our time when it comes to watching winter storms.

When it comes to forecasting snow, we are sometimes hesitant to put out numbers early, simply because there's so much that goes into our forecasting.

We look at different models, air and ground temperatures, and even patterns in the upper atmosphere before we give a definitive number.

At about a week out, we're looking at the possibility for a snow event.

This does not guarantee that the event will happen, only that early models have a good guess.

At this point, we need a little more information.

For example, if the atmosphere has more moisture in it, we'll have wet, heavy snow.

If there's less moisture, drier snow.

Then 3 to 5 days out, we have a little better of an idea.

At this point, we have a rough estimate of where the storm could track.

Then, we determine if it's likely, or unlikely that the storm will impact our viewers.

From that point, we then move to the planning stage when we're 1 to 2 days out.

Here, we decide how this storm will impact viewers, and we're trying to pinpoint an exact time.

From there, we determine what an accumulation number will be.

Here at Storm Team 10, we look at multiple different pieces of data to get our accumulation number.

Therefore, you can't always rely on the posts you see on social media a week away.

Finally, when we're within 24 hours, we make revisions to our timing and planning forecast.

This is when you'll get the best, most accurate and updated forecast for that specific storm.

Now, these are just a few steps we go through in our winter weather forecasting.

Just remember, Storm Team 10 will always keep you updated with the latest and most up to date information as it becomes available.

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