2010-03-09 00:23:03.000 – Mike Carmon, Staff Meteorologist
Our shift remains the good weather shift. Here’s a comparison of some statistics of this shift week (3/3 – 3/9) vs. the other crew’s last shift week (2/24 – 3/3). As a precedent, I attributed Wednesday’s stats to the up-coming crew of the day. There is a bit of a flaw in that our shift is not concluded until tomorrow, but glancing at the forecast for both today and tomorrow, I’m sure most of our stats will not change (with the exception of an increase in sunshine minutes).
Them: 132 mph
Us: 85 mph
Days with a peak gust in excess of 73 mph (hurricane force):
Them: 41.0 inches
Us: 0.3 inches
Liquid Equivalent Precipitation:
Them: 7.45 inches
Us: 0.02 inches
Total Duration of Precipitation:
Them: 113 hours 50 minutes
Us: 5 hours 55 minutes
Total sunshine minutes:
Them: 1072 (almost 18 hours)
Us: 1976 (almost 33 hours)
When the other crew arrived on February 24th, our snow depth reported at 6 a.m. that morning was 19 inches.
When our shift arrived on March 3rd, the snow depth reported at 6 a.m. that morning was 36 inches – an increase of 17 inches.
As of 7 p.m. last night (March 8th), the snow pack has diminished to 26 inches – a decrease of 10 inches.
The main reason for the decrease in snow pack over this shift week is blowing snow. We have witnessed an incredible amount of blowing snow over the past 6 days. Winds were primarily out of the north/northeast for the first three days, which blew all of the snow that direction. Since Saturday, winds have shifted back towards the more proverbial west/northwest direction, blowing much of the snow back the other way.
Where has it all gone? Besides the ravines below, much of it has ended up in large drifts on the auto road. There have been several failed attempts by our snow tractor to get to the summit over the past couple of days due to massive drifting and ground blizzard conditions beginning at the 4-mile stretch. Although conditions will be clearer tomorrow, northwest winds will linger in the 35-50 mph range on the summit, and there is still ample snow for fodder. This has us all worried, because shift-change Wednesday is fast approaching, and we are all itching to descend to the valley. The saving grace is that Wednesday looks even tamer, with winds most likely in the 15-30 mph range atop the summit under sunny skies. But if the tractor still cannot make it through the drifts, it looks like we’ll be hoofin’ it down!
Mike Carmon, Staff Meteorologist