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Bitter cold and looming winter storm introduce 2014 to Capital Region

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Cloud cover as result of lake effect processes off of Lake Ontario will grudgingly give way to some intervals of sunshine this morning. Clouds will quickly increase once again by this afternoon, however, as a duo of low pressure systems begins to impact the Capital Region.

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A disturbance over the central Plains is forecast to move south and east and join forces with a moisture rich area of low pressure moving north and northeast from the Gulf of Mexico. Snowfall will begin this evening as the region experiences the effects of the central Plains low pressure area. As the Gulf of Mexico system integrates northward through the overnight hours, and lends its moisture to the scenario, a steady, fluffy snowfall should result. The snowfall looks to last through the day on Thursday, and into Thursday evening before slowly tapering off Thursday night and early Friday morning. Significant snowfall accumulations are expected in the Capital Region, with perhaps a bit more further south, and a bit less further north.

Friday into the first part of the weekend will be dominated by cold Canadian high pressure. The combination of this high pressure, clearing skies, light winds, and a fresh and deep snow pack will send temperatures plummeting, most likely well below zero on Friday night. As the high pressure area moves east of the region on Saturday, and a southerly wind flow slowly picks up, temperatures will begin a slow upward trend, though it will still remain very cold.

Another weather system looks to approach the region to close out the weekend and open up the first full work week of 2014. There are still quite a few ambiguous details to be sorted out concerning this storm’s track and evolution. It looks to be mainly a frozen precipitation event at this point in time, and it also looks to be followed by another bitterly cold airmass. Stay tuned for later details.

...Below is the official forecast for the Capital Region and vicinity...

**National Weather Service Winter Storm Watch in Effect Wednesday Evening Through Friday Morning**

Today: Intervals of clouds and sunshine this morning, followed by increasing clouds this afternoon. A slight chance of light snow late in the day. High 20-25. West winds 5-15 MPH. Chance of snow is 20 percent. Little if any snow accumulation anticipated.

Tonight: Overcast with snow developing. Low near 10. Light north to northwest winds. Chance of snow is 70 percent. Snow accumulations of 2 to 4 inches possible by dawn.

Thursday: Snow likely. Bitter cold. Temperatures remaining steady between 10 and 15 degrees. North to northwest winds 5-15 MPH. Chance of snow is 100 percent. Additional snow accumulations of 4 to 7 inches possible. Wind chill temperatures between zero and 10 below zero.

Thursday Night: Overcast with periods of snow. Windy and bitter cold. Low zero to 5 above zero. North to northwest winds 10-20 MPH with higher gusts to near 25 MPH possible. Chance of snow is 80 percent. Dangerous wind chill temperatures between 15 and 25 below zero possible at times. Additional snow accumulations of an inch or so possible.

Friday: A chance of light snow early, then becoming partly sunny, windy, and remaining bitter cold. High near 5 above zero. Northwest winds 10-20 MPH with higher gusts to near 30 MPH possible. Dangerous wind chill temperatures between 15 and 25 below zero possible at times. Additional minor snow accumulation is possible during the morning.

Saturday: Mostly sunny and cold. High near 15 and low near 5.

Sunday: Mostly cloudy with a 40 percent chance of snow late in the day. High near 30 and low near 15.

Monday: A 50 percent chance of snow. High near 30 and low near 5.

Tuesday: Partly sunny, blustery, and cold. High near 15 and low near zero.

Useful links...

Capital Region Weather Examiner Home Page
Capital Region Weather Examiner Facebook page
Current Surface Weather Map
Weather Prediction Center (WPC) Surface Weather Map 48 hour loop forecast

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