LAKE EFFECT STORM "HUBBLE"
January 10-12, 2003
Lake Flake scale: **** 4 Stars
Maximum Snowfall: Lk. Ontario: 51" (N. Osceola); Lk. Erie: 24" (Perrysburg).
Duration: 36 Hours +/-
Prime Feature: Very strong "textbook" lake effect event. Excellent parameters.
Lake Flake Scale: **** 4 Flakes
A sharp cold front crossed western and central New York late Friday (10th) and dropped a quick inch or so of snow with its passage across all areas. 850 mb temperatures fell to -20C and a well aligned westerly flow set up. Low level moisture was abundant...and the lake effect machine cranked into gear before midnight. The activity began in a fairly broad area at first...covering southern Erie and Wyoming counties off Erie and southern Jefferson and northern Lewis counties off Ontario...dropping several inches into the wee hours of Saturday. As the cold air deepened and winds veered slightly to a 270 vector...very intense single bands set up Saturday morning off both lakes. Accumulations of 2 to 4 inches per hour were common over the South Dayton-Perrysburg areas off Lake Erie...and 3 to 5 inches per hour over Oswego county...including the city of Oswego.
The Erie band weakened some during Saturday afternoon with increasing shear and subsidence...but held on to some degree into the evening before drifting north and dissipating by Sunday Morning. The Ontario band held on longer...only weakening Sunday morning before drifting north and dissipating by the afternoon.
There was a brief break Sunday night as 850 temps warmed sufficiently to preclude instability and surface winds backed to southerly...before the next cold front crossed Monday morning.
This was a major event with tremendous snowfall totals over a narrow area. It focused on exactly what is referred to as the "snowbelt"...or the areas which normally receive our heaviest snowfall. It fell over generally low population areas and over the weekend though...so impact was not great. It therefore earns four **** stars.
Here are some representative amounts ....
Off Lake Erie
Off Lake Ontario
|N. Osceola||51 inches|
|W. Leyden||49 inches|