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Colonie Weather Online

Located in the heart of New York's Capital Region

Mostly Sunny 31°F

Source Albany National Weather Service

This outlook is valid for the two-week period from February 15th to March 1st.

Observed Snow Depths and Water Equivalents

North of I-90, snow depths are above normal in the Adirondacks and portions of the southern Green Mountains. Adirondack snow totals ranged from 12 to 30 inches; this equates to between 3 and 8 inches of liquid equivalent. Southern Vermont is carrying snow depths of 6 to 20 inches, with 2 to 5 inches of measured liquid equivalent in the snowpack. Snow amounts are below normal for this time of year south of I-90, where any snow that remains is hydrologically insignificant.

River Ice Conditions

The breakup of river ice the weekend of January 13th resulted in multiple ice jams across the service area. Ice jams that remain in place bear watching with the warmup and attendant snowmelt forecast for the middle of the next work week. Ice jams that are no longer in place since the last outlook include: Based on Civil Air Patrol aerial photos from February 13th, two ice jams that had been in the vicinity of Kent, CT were flushed out with river rises over the weekend. The ice jam on Zimmerman Creek in St. Johnsville, NY is no longer in place, however sufficient shear walls and shore ice remain to potentially cause future issues. A jam on the West Canada Creek upstream of the Mohawk River in Herkimer, NY has opened up significantly since the last outlook two weeks ago. Ice jams that are frozen in place with no flooding currently observed: A five to seven mile long ice jam is in place on the upper Hudson River in New York from Thurman, NY to the Stony Creek, NY town line. This jam has a history of causing flooding that closes 418 at the bridge as well as a portion of River Road. On the Mohawk River in New York, an approximately 17 mile ice jam remains in place from the Schenectady-Montgomery County line to just downstream of the Route 146/Rexford Bridge. The ice jam that was in place on the Hudson River in New York from about Green Island to the Menands (378) bridge two weeks ago now only extends as far upstream as the Route 2 Bridge; an open channel exists through the jam, indicating weakening. Thus far it has not caused any flooding. Ice has jammed where the West River meets the Connecticut River on the Vermont-New Hampshire border. The jam extends up the West River for about a mile. On the 23rd and 24th of January, an ice jam on Sunkauissia Creek backed water up close to Route 7 and Maple Way in Rensselaer County, NY. The water has receded but the jam remains in place.

Streamflow and Soil Moisture Conditions

Due to recent slow snowmelt and rainfall, streamflow and soil moisture are currently above normal. According to U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) streamgages, 28 day streamflow averages across western New England and eastern New York are above normal. There was sufficient snowmelt and rainfall to also remove any "abnormally dry" designation from the area by the U.S. Drought Monitor.

Water Supply

New York City Department of Environmental Protection (NYCDEP) water supply reservoirs are very close to normal for this time of year; the system as a whole is at 87.9 percent of capacity, which 0.3 percent below normal storage capacity. Hudson River Black River Regulating District reservoir levels in the Upper Hudson/Sacandaga watershed are generally high for this time of year due to the mid-January rain/snow event and subsequent rainfall events. Indian Lake is about one foot above normal while the Great Sacandaga Lake is about two feet above normal. In the Black River watershed, Stillwater Reservoir is about 4 feet above historical averages while Sixth Lake and Old Forge are within a foot normal.

Temperature and Precipitation Outlook

The 6 to 10 day (for Feb 20 to 24) and 8 to 14 day (for Feb 23 to March 1) outlooks call for above normal temperatures and precipitation.

Summary

For the two week outlook period, any ice jams that are currently in place are at risk for causing new or renewed flooding in the event of a large scale thaw or runoff event. These ice jams remain a serious situation and could show some movement over the next two weeks. Those with interests near ice jams currently in place are urged to closely monitor future forecasts and heed instructions from emergency management officials and local law enforcement. Temperatures and precipitation are forecast to be above normal for the outlook period, with some melting of the deeper than normal snowpack resulting. As a result, flood potential from snowmelt is above normal in the Adirondacks and southern Green Mountains. In the near term (next week) the determining factor for flooding due to ice jams or snowmelt will be the amount of rainfall that occurs with the mid-week system. However, there is still considerable uncertainty regarding how much snowmelt and rainfall occurs. The fifth Winter/Spring Flood Outlook is scheduled for Thursday, March 1st. It is important to remember that heavy rain can cause flooding at any time of year. Extended hydrologic information will be included in the Hazardous Weather Outlook when necessary at http:/www.forecast.weather.gov/product.php?site=NWS&product=HWO&issuedby=ALY . Observed and 3 day forecast river information can be found on our web page at www.weather.gov/albany . Three to seven day ensemble forecast information can be found at www.weather.gov/erh/mmefs  .
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