MORRIS COUNTY, NJ – The National Weather Service, unleashing a squall of scientific jargon, is calling for some substantial “dendritic growth” today. In words we children can understand: The snowflakes falling on Roxbury will soon be big, hefty fellows eager to pile high very rapidly.

In today's “Metroscale Discussion 124,” the government meteorologists at the Weather Service Storm Prediction Center in Norman, OK said conditions are stacking up just right for heavy snowfall this afternoon. The fun part is the way the scientists (as scientists often do) back-up their prediction with some pretty interesting, multi-syllabic words.

There should be "an amplifying upstream shortwave trough and ample isentropic lift/frontogenetical forcing" which means you'd better remember where you left the snow shovel.

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That's not all, according to the weather service scientific folks. Because the air coming into our area is below freezing near the ground "with the surface wet-bulb 32F isoline" in play, there should be some "increasing forcing for ascent coincident with a favorable elevated thermodynamic profile for dendritic growth."

That's the big, fat snowflake part. And the meteorologists say those large flakes are going to stack up quickly atop their brethren who fell to earth already (in what feels like a winter that began a year ago) with "snowfall rates ... likely to locally exceed" an inch per hour.