Winter's First Snow Dead Ahead

impending snow disasterIf you don't have your milk, toilet paper and candles, Washington, you are so screwed. Why? 'Cause it's (probably) gonna snow.

The local weather prediction deities at CapitalWeather are calling for a 70 percent chance of snow in the area Wednesday, with a 50-50 chance that we'll get more than an inch of snow. And as we all know, just like a child can drown in three inches of water, Washington can work itself into a frantic death spiral over an inch of snow.

The snowstorm comes courtesy of an Alberta Clipper, which will be more prevalent in this La Niña year. The National Weather Service has issued a hazardous weather outlook for the region, saying that most of the snow will fall north of I-66 and west of the Blue Ridge.

Both CapitalWeather and the NWS say the snow will start early in the morning and last through sunset. Accumulation will speed after sundown when temperatures are expected to dip into the 20s. It doesn't appear that any schools are planning to shut down (though they do like to leave these decisions to the most inconvenient moments, when it's too late to plan otherwise), but CapitalWeather says there might be some schools (probably west of the Metro area) which close early.

To put this storm in perspective, it was 50 years ago today that Washington received 11 inches of snow. Here's some science (PDF) of that storm for you weather nerds out there. You should opt to Metro anyway, since tomorrow's National Repeal Day. More about that tomorrow. Enjoy the snow, everyone!