Update: 12:04pm CDT Tuesday:  The blizzard warning (orange) has again been expanded.
It is extremely likely the following cross-country interstate highways will be closed due to blizzard conditions Wednesday/Wednesday Night:
  • I-70, west of Denver to western Kansas.
  • I-80, eastern Wyoming to western Nebraska
  • I-76, Colorado and Nebraska (nearly entire route)
  • I-25, Colorado and southeast Wyoming
  • I-40, Texas and eastern New Mexico may be closed because of wind (only)
  • I-27, Texas (wind only)
Rest of information below is unchanged.

If you will be in or over (yes, the cautions include flying) the region, heads up!!

Make sure your friends or family in the area are aware as this storm was not publicized until yesterday afternoon. Please do not let your family to travel into areas outlined below.

This storm is so strong meteorologists forecast all-time state minimum barometric pressure records to be set in both Colorado and Kansas tomorrow. It is the strongest storm of its type since 1973. If you have a tracking needle on your barometer, set it when you read this and then compare tomorrow.

Warnings as of 8:30am CDT.
  • Orange are blizzard warnings. Severe blizzard conditions are likely in at least part of that area. I fully expect I-80 and I-70 to be closed. 
  • Pinks are winter storm warnings. 
  • Dark blue is a winter storm watch. I'm disappointed the NWS does not have an ice storm warning out for north central Nebraska and south central and parts of eastern South Dakota. More on that below.
  • Brown is a high wind warning for tomorrow. Note: The HWW is actually in effect all the way to South Dakota but is covered up by other warnings. 
  • Hunter green is a flash flood watch.
  • Gray is a dense fog advisory for today. 

Here is my interpretation of the snowfall risk.
A point or two could receive as much as 25 inches of snow! That is not drifts. I fully expect drifts of more than six feet. Please compare to the wind forecast, below.

Wind Speeds
Winds will be a tremendous issue over the entire Central Plains and Foothills regions.
Yellows are gusts of 50 mph or stronger. Browns are gusts to near 90 mph. Power failures will result; some will be of extended duration. 

Turbulence and Airline Travel
If you are planning to fly through the rectangular area above, be prepared for severe turbulence, which is a rare condition. Keep your seat belt on constantly. Drink little before the flight to eliminate the need to get up from your seat and eat lightly. Unless you have a bad reaction to them, I'd recommend an airsickness medication before you take off. 

Also, I fully expect numerous flight cancellations and delays at Denver, Colorado Springs and Cheyenne tomorrow and tomorrow evening. See if the airline will let you go later today. \

A parting comment: Ironically, near zero wind energy will be generated through all of this -- winds are forecast to be shut down and, in some areas, the turbine blades will be iced over.


Popular posts from this blog

[1:10am Update] Tornado Forecast for Rest of the Night

First Tornado Watch of the Day Issued

Hilary's Forecast Path Shifts West; Updated 9:20am PDT