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Region stays on 'warmer' side of approaching storm, wintry mix to rain and fog

Low pressure was developing over northeastern Texas this morning and will ride along a strung out frontal boundary draped from the southern plains to near James Bay in Canada. The area of low pressure will be over the Tennessee Valley this evening, and then pivot north-northeast to be in the vicinity of the Saint Lawrence valley by early Monday morning. The Capital Region by be east of this feature, where a southerly wind flow in the lower levels will bring some relatively warmer air into the area.

Capital Region Weather Examiner Daily Weather Slides 01/05/2014
Capital Region Weather Examiner Daily Weather Slides 01/05/2014
Capital Region Weather Examiner
Weather Channel Sunday Morning Surface Weather Map

Temperatures are forecast to rise near or slightly above freezing late this afternoon, region-wide. Precipitation resulting from the low pressure area should slowly work its way into the area through this time, and thus, any precipitation that falls initially as snow should quickly transition to a wintry mix, and then to all rain as temperatures rise above freezing overnight. Areas of fog may also form overnight, thanks to the snow pack over the region interacting with the oncoming warmer air. Fog may be quite and dense in spots tonight.

A strong cold front is forecast to pass through the area on Monday morning. Another blast of chilly Arctic air will infiltrate the region in its wake. Rain showers and drizzle on Monday morning will turn to snow showers, snow squalls, and flurries by early afternoon. The front should pass through the region quickly though, and thus, frontal precipitation should end by early afternoon in most spots. Any snowfall afterwards would be the result of lake effect processes kicking into gear off of the Great Lakes.

Strong and gusty westerly winds will also accompany the frontal passage, and remain persistent in its wake. These winds, combined with high temperatures only in the teens above zero, and low temperatures in the single digits (above zero in the Capital Region and below zero north and west) will cause brutally cold wind chill values on Tuesday, Tuesday night, and Wednesday.

A potentially significant lake effect snow event is looking more certain for locales in the favored lake effect areas. Some of these bands may make it into portions of the Mohawk and Schoharie Valley’s, and the Capital Region from time to time. Though significant accumulations of snow are not likely in and around the Capital Region, renegade bands may cause some brief white out conditions, and a quick coating of snowfall.

High pressure will build into the region starting on Wednesday, and after settling overhead, will translate east of the region, over the Atlantic coast, by late in the week. This should spell a moderation in temperatures for the region as a southerly flow of air reinstitutes itself as we head into next weekend.

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

Today: Mostly sunny to start, with increasing clouds during the afternoon. A slight chance of light snow late in the afternoon. High in the mid 30’s. Southerly winds 5-10 MPH. Chance of snow is 30 percent. Little if any additional snow accumulation.

Tonight: Light snow, sleet, and/or freezing rain developing and changing to all rain, and/or areas of drizzle during the evening. Areas of patchy, dense fog possible overnight. Temperatures remaining steady, or slowly rising through the 30’s. South to southeast winds 5-10 MPH. Chance of precipitation is 100 percent. A coating of any snow and/or ice accumulation possible early before the change to rain.

Monday: Rain showers and drizzle, changing to light snow showers, and/or snow squalls by late morning. Becoming windy and turning colder. Early high near 40, with temperatures dropping through the 30’s during the afternoon. Southwest winds 5-15 MPH early, shifting west and northwest and increasing to 15-25 MPH with some higher gusts during the afternoon. Chance of precipitation is 90 percent. A coating to an inch of additional snow accumulation possible.

Monday Night: Variably cloudy, windy, and cold. Low near 10. West winds 15-30 MPH with some higher gusts. Wind chill temperatures of 5 to 15 below zero.

Tuesday: Partly sunny, windy, and bitter cold with a chance of snow showers. High near 15. West winds 15-30 MPH with some higher gusts. Chance of snow is 20 percent. Snow accumulations of a coating to an inch possible. Wind chill temperatures 5 to 15 below zero.

Wednesday: Partly sunny, windy, and bitter cold. High near 15 and low near 5.

Thursday: Mostly sunny. High near 30 and low near 20.

Friday: Increasing clouds with a 40 percent chance of rain and snow. High near 35 and low near 25.

Saturday: A 40 percent chance of rain and snow. High near 40 and low near 25.

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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