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Old 08-30-2016, 03:33 PM
 
811 posts, read 1,742,617 times
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It is amazing just how much precipitation this region gets.
It amazed me how much more snow/rain they get compared to adjacent regions like the Ohio Valley/Alleghney plateau or the Blue Ridge/Smokey mountains.

As I understand, the reasoning is elevation and geographic location.
The Alleghenies are the highest points in the mid-Atlantic (by far) east of the Mississippi.
Being in the mid-Atlantic, they are proximate to weather systems from the SW (Gulf moisture), NW (lake effect snow moisture leftover), as well as any N'Easters from the Atlantic.

Hence, is this why this region gets SO much more moisture than other large ranges like the Smokies or Blue Ridge?
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Old 08-30-2016, 04:58 PM
 
Location: Westminster/Huntington Beach, CA
1,780 posts, read 1,242,969 times
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I'm assuming yes? Orographic lift can cause huge variations in precip between lower and higher elevations. Many do not know this, but the coastal and low lying areas in SoCal only get 12-16 inches per year of rain, but parts of the higher elevations just east can get up to 60 inches of rain per year.
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Old 08-30-2016, 08:03 PM
 
Location: Downtown Phoenix, AZ
18,927 posts, read 6,850,118 times
Reputation: 5850
Quote:
Originally Posted by NativeOrange View Post
I'm assuming yes? Orographic lift can cause huge variations in precip between lower and higher elevations. Many do not know this, but the coastal and low lying areas in SoCal only get 12-16 inches per year of rain, but parts of the higher elevations just east can get up to 60 inches of rain per year.
Bingo, even in the San Diego area, the coast gets the least amount of rain, and east county gets the most
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Old 08-30-2016, 11:25 PM
 
6,957 posts, read 14,089,206 times
Reputation: 4538
All I can say about this is driving from KY to Philly this summer was terrifying through MD on I68. Through Frostburg, MD was the worst fog I've ever driven through. I almost had a panic attack and wanted to pull over and cry and I have NEVER even been close to a panic attack before in my life. And I'm from West LA where fog can get thick and lived in SF for 3 years. But driving down an interstate in the middle of nowhere with fog so thick you literally can't see 20 ft in any direction is terrifying. You couldn't see cars merging from on ramps until they were basically already in your lane. Cars were all tailgating each other so that we wouldn't lose sight of the road and you basically couldn't see the other side of the interstate. There was no cell phone signal for a long time up there because I wanted to call a family member or friend to calm me down. I couldn't pull over and compose myself because someone would have been trying to follow lights and rammed into me. You could barely see the lanes in the road.

I later looked it up. It's due to the elevation difference and orthographic lift and is not uncommon. Needless to say, I took the PA TP next time and I will never ever ever take I68 through MD ever again.

This picture is from winter. I was driving in Spring, but it's really the best and only picture I can find that shows how low the visibility is. Add in winding mountainous curves and higher speeds than a surface street. I feel like a lot of people there knew how to deal with it, because they were driving faster than I was comfortable going. I felt as though I had to keep up with them, though, because I really couldn't see the road and didn't want to drive off the interstate.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3130/...bd6eb5dfc1.jpg

Here's an article I found:
Chain-reaction crash kills 2, injures scores in Maryland along I-68
"Fall brings ice to the roadway, Garrett County Forensic Investigator Jim Wilburn said, and springs brings fog.

"The fog just rolls out," said Maryland State Police Sgt. Terry Fisher, who lives on the mountain and oversees a roadside truck weigh station. "I call it the doorway to hell."

Richard Hitchens, meteorologist for the National Weather Service's Baltimore-Washington office, said the weather situation that contributed to the chain-reaction accident is not unusual.

"The environment is very moist and there are low clouds and with a higher terrain, the low clouds meet the ground and you have dense fog conditions," Hitchens said.

"This is not uncommon at all in the spring, unfortunately, especially when you have east-northeast moist air flow with air coming off the ocean into the higher elevations."

He noted that there is about an 1,800-foot difference in elevation between Cumberland, where there was no fog, and Frostburg, near where the accident occurred, which was socked in with limited visibility.

Road cameras installed along Interstate 68 and available on the Maryland Department of Transportation Web site showed clear views of traffic at Cumberland but a wall of gray farther west on the interstate.

By 1:30 yesterday afternoon, visibility atop Big Savage wasn't much more than 200 feet, East Garrett firefighter Nick Wiland guessed.
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Old 08-30-2016, 11:30 PM
 
6,957 posts, read 14,089,206 times
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Let me add on top of that, I hate driving anyway. So that further convinced me that driving is a horrendous activity.
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Old 08-31-2016, 05:09 AM
 
Location: The canyon (with my pistols and knife)
13,217 posts, read 17,951,565 times
Reputation: 14655
Quote:
Originally Posted by jessemh431 View Post
All I can say about this is driving from KY to Philly this summer was terrifying through MD on I68. Through Frostburg, MD was the worst fog I've ever driven through. I almost had a panic attack and wanted to pull over and cry and I have NEVER even been close to a panic attack before in my life. And I'm from West LA where fog can get thick and lived in SF for 3 years. But driving down an interstate in the middle of nowhere with fog so thick you literally can't see 20 ft in any direction is terrifying. You couldn't see cars merging from on ramps until they were basically already in your lane. Cars were all tailgating each other so that we wouldn't lose sight of the road and you basically couldn't see the other side of the interstate. There was no cell phone signal for a long time up there because I wanted to call a family member or friend to calm me down. I couldn't pull over and compose myself because someone would have been trying to follow lights and rammed into me. You could barely see the lanes in the road.

I later looked it up. It's due to the elevation difference and orthographic lift and is not uncommon. Needless to say, I took the PA TP next time and I will never ever ever take I68 through MD ever again.
Yeah, people **** on the Pennsylvania Turnpike all the time, but when I drove I-68 for the first time, the first thing that struck me was how steep and long the grades were. The Pennsylvania Turnpike has much more gradual elevation changes, aside from one five-mile segment immediately east of the Allegheny Mountain Tunnel. And in the coming years, more and more segments of the Turnpike will be widened to six lanes, versus I-68 staying at four lanes. Be all that as it may, the weather can still get tricky in the higher elevations on the Turnpike too.

Anyway, West Virginia and western Maryland get more rain and snow because of their elevation, and the fact that the eastern U.S. is more humid than the central and western U.S.
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Old 08-31-2016, 05:28 AM
 
Location: Northeast Suburbs of PITTSBURGH
3,718 posts, read 3,571,762 times
Reputation: 2331
Quote:
Originally Posted by jessemh431 View Post
All I can say about this is driving from KY to Philly this summer was terrifying through MD on I68. Through Frostburg, MD was the worst fog I've ever driven through. I almost had a panic attack and wanted to pull over and cry and I have NEVER even been close to a panic attack before in my life. And I'm from West LA where fog can get thick and lived in SF for 3 years. But driving down an interstate in the middle of nowhere with fog so thick you literally can't see 20 ft in any direction is terrifying. You couldn't see cars merging from on ramps until they were basically already in your lane. Cars were all tailgating each other so that we wouldn't lose sight of the road and you basically couldn't see the other side of the interstate. There was no cell phone signal for a long time up there because I wanted to call a family member or friend to calm me down. I couldn't pull over and compose myself because someone would have been trying to follow lights and rammed into me. You could barely see the lanes in the road.

I later looked it up. It's due to the elevation difference and orthographic lift and is not uncommon. Needless to say, I took the PA TP next time and I will never ever ever take I68 through MD ever again.

This picture is from winter. I was driving in Spring, but it's really the best and only picture I can find that shows how low the visibility is. Add in winding mountainous curves and higher speeds than a surface street. I feel like a lot of people there knew how to deal with it, because they were driving faster than I was comfortable going. I felt as though I had to keep up with them, though, because I really couldn't see the road and didn't want to drive off the interstate.
http://farm4.static.flickr.com/3130/...bd6eb5dfc1.jpg

Here's an article I found:
Chain-reaction crash kills 2, injures scores in Maryland along I-68
"Fall brings ice to the roadway, Garrett County Forensic Investigator Jim Wilburn said, and springs brings fog.

"The fog just rolls out," said Maryland State Police Sgt. Terry Fisher, who lives on the mountain and oversees a roadside truck weigh station. "I call it the doorway to hell."

Richard Hitchens, meteorologist for the National Weather Service's Baltimore-Washington office, said the weather situation that contributed to the chain-reaction accident is not unusual.

"The environment is very moist and there are low clouds and with a higher terrain, the low clouds meet the ground and you have dense fog conditions," Hitchens said.

"This is not uncommon at all in the spring, unfortunately, especially when you have east-northeast moist air flow with air coming off the ocean into the higher elevations."

He noted that there is about an 1,800-foot difference in elevation between Cumberland, where there was no fog, and Frostburg, near where the accident occurred, which was socked in with limited visibility.

Road cameras installed along Interstate 68 and available on the Maryland Department of Transportation Web site showed clear views of traffic at Cumberland but a wall of gray farther west on the interstate.

By 1:30 yesterday afternoon, visibility atop Big Savage wasn't much more than 200 feet, East Garrett firefighter Nick Wiland guessed.
Somerset County, PA on the turnpike is near the same as Garrett County (Frostburg). The difference is (as Craziaskowboi pointed out) that the turnpikes grades are much less steep, and there are 4 tunnels on the turnpike instead of going over the mountains. I advise anyone traveling across the Allegheny Mountains and Laurel Highlands in winter to have a survival kit just in case for that exact reason. Laurel Summit gets over 150" of snow per year... more than 100" than nearby Ligonier. Cumberland gets 29" per year and Oakland Maryland (higher than frostburg) gets 100"+.

FYI I had a similar experience on the PA turnpike so I definitely feel for you. It was during an ice storm and I was going over Sidling Hill... absolutely terrifying. I just went about 20 through the fog, and by the time I got to breezewood it was raining and less foggy.
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Old 08-31-2016, 03:43 PM
 
Location: Westminster/Huntington Beach, CA
1,780 posts, read 1,242,969 times
Reputation: 1196
Quote:
Originally Posted by Craziaskowboi View Post
Anyway, West Virginia and western Maryland get more rain and snow because of their elevation, and the fact that the eastern U.S. is more humid than the central and western U.S.
I think he is comparing them to other EC ranges. Typically the mountains out west get much more rain/snow.
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