The pattern looks quite active over the next 7 days with several chances for rain and snow. Timing and amounts will remain the biggest challenges.
Tonight: Rain to brief snow. Minor.
Thursday evening: Period of snow showers.
Friday night: Period of flurries/snow showers.
Saturday PM : Rain and/or snow late.
Sunday PM: Light rain/snow possible.
Monday: Rain to snow. Setup to watch.
Next Thursday: Chance for snow.
This is certainly going to be a forecast that will keep evolving as we gather details (like most do). The biggest challenges will be the amount of moisture in the air and how cold we are not only at the ground, but aloft as well. Those variables will be changing often in the days ahead.
I will try to break down the basics of how things look this morning, but please stay close to the WAVE 3 Weather App for the latest.
Tonight: This still looks to be a classic setup of the cold air trying to catch the rain as it leaves. There remains a risk for a “thumping” of snow at the end but duration and the temperatures will keep this event minor. Ground cover will range from just a wet ground to perhaps 2″ in the heavier bursts of snow. To get those higher totals, rates have to be decent just as temperatures drop. That still looks more likely east of I-65. Even with a light coating, we are going to drop below freezing tonight so untreated roads will develop slick spots. Use caution overnight/early Thursday.
Thursday Evening: Arctic front #1 moves in. There will be very limited moisture with this one but the ratios do go up. This could allow for a dusting to perhaps 1/2″ of snow. This doesn’t seem like much but with temperatures diving into the teens, I have seen this setup lead to lots of car crashes due to the “light” snow appearance. We’ll need to watch this.
Friday Evening: Another piece of energy zips by with the same issue above but likely not as much coverage.
Weekend: Data is still conflicted if we will see one or two clippers zip by. Saturday PM seems to be the one most are focusing on but we did put the risk for both days for now. We do look to warm enough that precip type will vary for this one. Burst of snow north, mix/rain south. I-64 may end up be the line...yet again. We will monitor this for travel issues Saturday night.
Monday/Tuesday: Arctic Front # 2 arrives. The modeling still hasn’t got this one nailed down correctly just yet, but the pattern supports a dramatic front passing through. The wind fields aloft look to support highs jumping into the mid 50s on Monday! Low pressure will pass mainly north that will drag the Arctic front through WAVE Country. The amount of lift will be impressive so this looks to be a healthy band of rain to snow with a very quick rate of changeover. This could also be another risk for a flash freeze setup as we crash into the teens Monday night. The snow part cannot be determined at this time but the increase in temperatures would allow for more moisture at play. So it bears watching. We then turn very cold with below zero temperatures again possible.
Late next week: Another system may try to roll down the Rockies and into the Ohio Valley with energy moving in from the Gulf. This one could be interesting as it would take advantage of the Arctic air in place. Just too early to know more than that right now.
So guys, I know I say this a lot, but stay close to the changes in the forecast details. As you can see, several items to track that can affect travel. Even if they will be minor in amounts.