A look at the weather map this Saturday morning indicated three major features that will bring the potential for the region’s first major snowfall within the next 24 hours.
- Low pressure over the Arkansas and Missouri border that was slowly moving northeast, toward the upper Great Lakes.
- A strung out cold front extending eastward from the low pressure area, to the mid Atlantic coast.
- A second area of low pressure over southern Louisiana, essentially providing additional moisture transport from the Gulf of Mexico.
- Arctic high pressure nestled just south of James’ Bay in Canada, keeping the Capital Region frigidly cold this morning. This high pressure will keep cold air in place across the region through the bulk of the upcoming event.
Precipitation, in the form of snow, will overspread the Capital Region by late morning and early this afternoon. Snow is then expected to fall through the overnight hours, some of it may be heavy at times. Low pressure is expected to form along the mid Atlantic coast overnight tonight, and develop rapidly as it lifts northeast, to be over the southern New England coast by early Sunday morning. Thus, precipitation is expected to slowly taper off during the morning hours. There is the potential for residual snowfall during the day on Sunday, but that should be light in intensity, tending to taper to flurries before ending during the afternoon.
A frigid airmass will penetrate the region to start the new work week on Monday, as temperatures struggle to reach to the 20 degree mark with a modest breeze from the northwest that will only make it feel colder.
Another weak clipper system approaches by Tuesday, bringing chances for some more light snow showers to the region, before high pressure returns for the midweek period. Temperatures look to slowly recover by week’s end, reaching to near 30 degrees during the daytime. However, another area of low pressure approaches for the end of the week, so despite the temperature moderation, the clouds and chances for precipitation will also increase.
..Below is the official forecast for the Capital Region and vicinity...
**National Weather Service WINTER STORM WARNING In Effect From 8 AM EST Saturday through 1 PM EST Sunday**
Today: Overcast with light snow developing by early afternoon. Snow will become steadier and heavier at times through the afternoon. High near 20. East to northeast winds 5-10 MPH. Chance of snow is 90 percent. Snow accumulations of 2-4 inches by dark.
Tonight: Periods of snow, heavy at times. Temperatures remaining steady near 20, or rising a degree or two overnight. East winds 5-15 MPH. Chance of snow is 100 percent. Additional snow accumulations of 2-4 inches possible overnight.
Sunday: Snow, heavy times early in the morning, tapering to light snow and snow showers by afternoon. Windy and cold with areas of blowing or drifting snow at times. High near 30. Winds shifting northwest and increasing to 10-20 MPH during the afternoon. Chance of snow is 60 percent. Total storm accumulations of 5-10 inches of snow.
Sunday Night: Decreasing clouds and cold. Low in the lower teens. West winds 5-10 MPH.
Monday: A mix of sun and clouds. Blustery and frigid. High in the upper teens. West winds 10-20 MPH with some higher gusts to near 30 MPH possible at times. Wind chill temperatures 5 above to 5 below zero.
Tuesday: Overcast with a 50 percent chance of light snow and/or snow showers. High near 30 and low near 15.
Wednesday: Partly sunny and breezy. High near 25 and low near 15.
Thursday: Mostly sunny. High near 25 and low near 15.
Friday: Cloudy with a 40 percent chance of snow, sleet, and/or freezing rain possible. High near 30 and low near 20.