Snow hits the south – air travel woes coming

Image from 11:27 PM EST Sunday night

Expect a really ugly day for air travel on Monday as Atlanta’s forecast is not one of encouragement, and we all know just how important Atlanta is an a regional air hub.

From NWS Atlanta/Peachtree City, GA:


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January 9, 2011 9:04 pm

Yes it has hit, fell upon Dallas forth Worth area the forecast was for maybe one to two inches, and we received about four inches that immediately began melting away, preparing to freeze the water left from it now in the evening so Yes again snow fall in the deep south of North America

January 9, 2011 9:06 pm

It’s a bad winter, don’tcha know.
Ain’t like we didn’t try to warn everyone about the Polar Express Hopscotch effect many months ago.
Now we need to stay vigilant by keeping an eye on the Southern Hemisphere Summer.

January 9, 2011 9:17 pm

Those liberal Yankees are so cold, broke, lonely and depressed that they don’t even bother to put the barbed wire fence that holds the cold air back up when it falls over.

January 9, 2011 9:24 pm

The storms that have been pummeling the Southern Oregon Coast area have finally lifted. It has been beautiful blue sky’s and temps hitting 60+ on the deck. Cold at night though… Perfect break between major storm sessions.

Mike in Canmore
January 9, 2011 9:35 pm

Good old Alberta Clipper, enjoy!

January 9, 2011 9:52 pm

Wow, FFC is predicting higher snowfalls here than GSP is, I live right along the bottom edge of that 7+ inch section. I’ll most likely end up BBQ’ing for lunch tomorrow, not from the heat, but from the lack of power….

January 9, 2011 9:57 pm

Rather than shovel snow (again!) this winter, my wife has just laid a tarp across the driveway.
Theory being: When the snow stops, roll up the tarp/pull it sideways, and then drive out… We shall see if it works.
If not, or if ice is trapped underneath – Let it melt, let it melt, let it melt.

Leon Brozyna
January 9, 2011 10:00 pm

Not just an air hub. Let’s not forget about road travel, with Atlanta also a hub with three interstate highways converging … I75, I85, & I20 as well as the 60 mile perimeter surrounding Atlanta – I285. Folks will get themselves a three day weekend (at least).

Honest ABE
January 9, 2011 10:07 pm

That picture totally looks like a shark.

January 9, 2011 10:33 pm

Jack H Barnes says:
January 9, 2011 at 9:24 pm
Lucky you. It’s been low 40’s for highs and low 20’s for lows NW Ca. The sun was out all day, but it didn’t do squat for warming anything. All the fog drained out to the Sac. Valley, so it’s not all bad.
Did you see that Polar stuff hanging around in the Intermountain West? Watch out for backwash.

January 9, 2011 10:35 pm

Here in uncle Al’s backyard, we are set for 4-7 inches!!! … just started snowing about 30min. ago and we have about 0.25 inch already. Supposed to snow from now through Tuesday. Yikes!
BTW: Nashville, one of the coldest/snowiest years on record this year.

Robert Wykoff
January 9, 2011 10:44 pm

If it gets any colder, Florida will disappear under three feet of ocean in less than 2 years

January 9, 2011 10:55 pm

rbateman says:
January 9, 2011 at 9:06 pm
Now we need to stay vigilant by keeping an eye on the Southern Hemisphere Summer.
Its been quite a summer down here so far Robert, never seen so much rain. In Melbourne today we have a weather front that already passed us which is now heading back over us again in an easterly direction.
The arctic pressure has been building over the last few days with the AO dropping again, this is a similar weather pattern as around xmas, the next few days in the north may be bleak?

January 9, 2011 11:01 pm

When people were blaming global warming for the snow in Atlanta on Christmas I put together some info about snowfall in Atlanta. That seems appropriate to this story.
This clearly falls in the uncommon, but not rare weather for Atlanta.
John Kehr
The Inconvenient Skeptic

el gordo
January 9, 2011 11:49 pm

rbateman said: ‘Now we need to stay vigilant by keeping an eye on the Southern Hemisphere Summer.’
The only interesting meteorological event is a positive SAM, which is known to bring floods to South Africa and Australia.

January 10, 2011 12:56 am

N. Chattanooga, TN checking in.
The white stuff started hitting the ground around midnight local time.
We’ve got 4″-5″ sitting on all horizontal surfaces at the moment(3:45am local), with a steady fall continuing, and predicted to continue all day. We’re going to beat the predicted accumulation depth before daybreak.
And folks laugh at the snow tires on the super-roo. Who’s laughing now?
Tomorrow will be fun.

January 10, 2011 5:15 am

Looks like about 5″ on the ground here in NW GA- after 3″ Christmas Day. I thought La Ninas brought mild winters to the SE USA. WUWT?

January 10, 2011 5:41 am

Just as long as that little bit of West Africa that’s tacked onto the bottom of the continental United States (I refer of course to The Sunshine State) stays snow-free, then my annual pilgrimage from the ‘green’ tax hell known as the United Kingdom should not be in peril…
‘Y’all have a nice day, and come back and see us real soon…’
Love it…!

January 10, 2011 5:44 am

I also lived in the deep south for years. I would also say this weather is not rare for the deep south–in fact, I remember it being fairly common in the 70s. Many people will not think that far back, even if they were around.

January 10, 2011 5:51 am

sleeper says:
January 10, 2011 at 5:15 am
You could make the argument that this is about La Nina on Very Low Solar Activity steroids.

Pamela Gray
January 10, 2011 6:40 am

La Nina on the heels of a moderate El Nino, and occurring at the same time as a negative AO anomaly, means the SE US will get cold, cold, cold wet weather.

January 10, 2011 7:18 am

Before the storm is over you know what the warmistas will say: that the South ‘s cold isn’t as cold, and the snow isn’t as pure or as white as it all once was.

January 10, 2011 7:24 am

It was fun many years ago to be in San Antonio when they got snow and freezing rain. The folks there do not know how to deal with it. This is an obvious example of climate change. The climate is cooling. Well, that is a change isn’t it?

P Walker
January 10, 2011 8:23 am

Yesterday the Weather Channel had a segment on the cold air descending into the South . While the explaination was correct , ie. , warmer (slightly) high pressure systems over Alaska and Greenland are forcing frigid air much further south than usual , although if one hadn’t listened closely one would have gotten the impression that “warming causes cooling “. Sometimes I have to scratch my head and wonder .

gary gulrud
January 10, 2011 8:34 am

Bastardi says the next 10 days will be the coldest of the season, particularly in the South.

January 10, 2011 8:39 am

In Northwestern Alberta we had several days of freezing rain last week, followed with 15-20 inches of snow in the past three days, so I’m too busy feeling sorry for myself right now to care too much about our Southern friends. Incidentally, ya’all may need to brace yourselves for the next Alberta clipper, it’s already been sent your way.

January 10, 2011 8:41 am

thegoodlocust says:
January 9, 2011 at 10:07 pm
No kidding, a Great White!

gary gulrud
January 10, 2011 8:47 am

Current SOI 27 greater than Dec. ave. of 26 which was deepening. I’d think La Nina has legs.

David L.
January 10, 2011 8:47 am

More Global Warming hits the south. I think the MET predicted this event back in October 2009 and communicated secretly to Obama. Or was that Hansen….

James Chamberlain
January 10, 2011 9:00 am

We’ve got a couple of inches of white AGW thus far in Charlotte this morning. I have promised to embrace summer more whole-heartedly this year rather than complain about the heat.

David L.
January 10, 2011 9:28 am

Lets see what the history books say about unprecedented winter storms in Georgia. This collection of quotes is from “A Gazetteer of the State of Georgia” by Adiel Sherwood, 1837. (you can look it up on
I only cut a few selections that mentioned inches of snow…not dustings or other anecdotes.
1775, November 25.-Snow fell 18 inches deep.
1831, February 6. Snow 6 to 8 inches. Groound was almost constantly frozen in the morning for near two months.
1835, January 8. At night snow fell 8 inches and 13 in Troup and Pike; seldom known at such a depth.
1835 February 3. Four inches snow
1836, December 5. Snow 4 inches; 6 in Norfolk, but none in Richmond. No snow in Georgia before Christmas for many, many years!
1837, February. Snow 4 or 5 inches, and also in March; not much during the winter
Lest you think this is proof that Georgia is significantly warmer now than during the 19th century, check out all the references to oppressive heat and winters so warm that the cotton never stopped growing. Here’s one on page 77:
“1828-So Warm was this winter that the cotton plant in some places was not killed, and sprouts from the old roots sprung up and produced a new crop, without the labor of planting.”
and in 1830 “June, July, August, September, and October, without rain , except some partial showers. Camp and Tobler’s creeks in Jones and Baldwin, and Richland, in Greene, nearly dry-a little water in holes. Earth not wet one inch in Greenesboro’ from 1st June till 8th Novemeber!”
You get the sense that the weather was all over the place back then…from hot to cold, wet to dry. Droughts and floods, early frosts, late frosts, mild winters, cold harsh winters. But hey, that was weather in the mid 1800’s and it’s weather now.

Jaye Bass
January 10, 2011 9:59 am

Huntsville, AL checking in with about 10″ of icy snow.

David L.
January 10, 2011 10:03 am

My last post above was about Georgia weather.. But in the spirit of climate change, what does the gazetteer have to say about climate? On page 76 they describe the climate of Georgia in the mid 1800’s:
“The mercury in Fahrenheit usually fluctuates from 75deg to 86deg between April and October. Governor Ellis says it rose as high as 102deg, in 1757, in Savannah; but it has not in that city been higher than 94deg in several years.”
I searched for the temperature statistics for 2010 (the hottest year on record) in Savannah Georgia. Lets compare them to the climate quoted in 1837
Average = 78. Min. average=67, max. average = 88. Max. temperature = 102. Minimum temperature = 44.
So the maximum temperature in 2010 was 102…and the maximum in 1757 was 102
In the 19th century the temperature fluctuated between 75 and 86, and it fluctuated in 2010 between 67 and 88.
How about winter you say? The gazatteer says “the mercury falls every winter almost as low as to 20deg; sometimes to 16deg.” and “all the winter of 1828-9 was very mild, till the 9th of January, 1829. On the 9th, at 4P.M, the mercury was at 76deg, and on the 11th, at 6A.M., it was down to 16!”
This year, (Dec. 2010 to Jan 10, 2011): Maximum temperature 75F, minimum temperature 21F (compare above to the gazatteer of 1837).
Yep…sounds like definite global warming. Sound the alarms, tax the economy into submission, everyone drive an electric car (except AlGore…you can keep flying around on jets and live in a giant mansion and consume all the energy you want)

January 10, 2011 10:16 am

Let’s move to Alaska. Barrow was 40 degrees above average yesterday.
Jan. 9 Snow
Actual: 33 | 10
Precip: T
Average: -7 | -19
Precip: 0.00

January 10, 2011 11:06 am

I have lived in the South all my life (except for two winters in the frozen tundra of northeastern Maryland), and although the four inches of show and sleet on my back deck are unusual, we get something like this at least once a decade. Find an old Atlanta native and you will probably get the horror stories* without even ponying up a beer!
*At least it starting snowing on Sunday evening so most everybody was at home instead of getting stranded at work…

January 10, 2011 11:07 am

East side of Atlanta GA – 4 inches or so here
Took a ride on the mountain bike just to see what biking in the snow was like. It was hard. Very hard. Took one fairly nasty fall when the back tire independently went right at a high rate of speed and I found myself bouncing off my left hip in the road. I was only doing about 4 mph at the time but it still happened too fast to save it. Other than that, things are beautiful. Snow is rare enough here (but certainly not unknown) to enjoy it every time it comes.

January 10, 2011 2:16 pm

Please excuse my comment, I had not caught any of the tragic news out of Arizona this weekend while travelling.

January 10, 2011 2:59 pm

Ahh shoot where’s global warming when you want it?
Got about 6-8″ inches of snow in Chattanooga, Tn. Tried to get to a girlfriend’s house. No luck.
My truck could easily pile through the deep snow; but, it could not get a grip on the underlying ice. Made it about 25 feet from my house and had to turn back. Could have put on my chains, as the main roads are clear; but, I figure it would have taken 30 minute to get to a clear road and I would have to take them back off go keep from damaging the tires. I decided to call it quits since I live on a steep hill and wasn’t looking forward to putting on chains while buried in snow (would have looked like a cold drown cat by the time I got there).
Been since the early 70’s since I’ve seen this much snow in the south (North Alabama/ South Eastern Tennessee).
Regards, Kforestcat

January 10, 2011 3:03 pm

gary gulrud says:
January 10, 2011 at 8:34 am
Bastardi says the next 10 days will be the coldest of the season, particularly in the South.

The polar vortex is gearing up (slowing, allowing arctic higher pressure) , this is a result of the sudden warming following the sudden cooling in the stratosphere above the arctic.
The AO is also responding in a neg fashion, Joe will hit the mark on this one.
Also agree with your La Nina comment gary, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a double La Nina this time around.

January 10, 2011 3:09 pm

They actually closed the schools in Fayetteville, AR this morning because of the DUSTING we had last night. hahaha. Being from Michigan, I find this hilarious. I do understand though, since they dont use Road Salt, they use gravel…..even on the interstates….. when springtime comes the cracked windshield business goes crazy.

el gordo
January 10, 2011 4:44 pm

Geoff Sharp said: ‘Also agree with your La Nina comment gary, I wouldn’t be surprised to see a double La Nina this time around.’
With the subsurface remaining cool, it’s almost a certainty that there will be ‘back to back’ La Nina.

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