Say goodbye to the 50° temperatures; Winter finally takes hold

A quick-moving system will increase rain chances tonight. Much cooler weather is expected thereafter, with a weekend winter system bringing a wintry mix to the region.

Morning fog will gradually mix out through the morning as patchy sunshine and dry weather takes hold under high pressure this afternoon. Temperatures locally will warm to the mid-50s as the high shifts east and southerly air flows into the region. Enjoy the warmth. Today will likely be the last time we see temperatures in the 50s for quite some time.

Odds for a spotty rain shower will increase late in the day as a front approaches and travels through east-central Ohio tonight. The air behind tonight’s front will be much colder than we’ve experienced recently. Gusty wind will also accompany the front which will have an impact on wind chill values when we head out the door Thursday morning.

Gusty wind and colder air will bring “FEELS LIKE” temperatures Thursday morning in the low/mid 29s locally.

Light rain showers will change over to snow behind the front tonight but we should see little if any snow locally. The bulk of snow tonight into Thursday morning should stay off to our north and east.

Snow tonight through Friday will be mainly confined to the far northeast areas of the state.

High pressure will build over the region to bring a couple of quiet days Thursday and Friday. Temperatures will be closer to the average for mid-January, though, with afternoon highs in the low-30s. A breezy northwest wind on Thursday will make it feel about ten degrees colder.

THE WEEKEND BRINGS MESSY WINTER WEATHER
Our focus turns to the much-advertised weekend storm system. It’s a big storm and impacts will be felt for a large chunk of the Plains and Midwest. Locally it will bring a mixed bag of wintry precipitation types mainly on Saturday.

EUROPEAN MODEL DEPICTION for Saturday morning. Low pressure tracking across the Great Lakes will likely bring snow as well as a wintry mix of precipitation to east-central Ohio.

Low pressure will move out of the Plains Friday night and travel toward the Great Lakes region by Saturday. Precipitation will spread ahead of the system Friday night as it makes its way toward Michigan. Locally, we can expect snow Friday night into Saturday morning. The system will push a warm front into the region Saturday and as temperatures warm into the 40s, snow will mix with rain before changing over to all rain by the afternoon. There is a brief window where we could see sleet and freezing rain during the morning transition period.

Any wet snow that accumulates Friday night/Saturday morning will melt with the warmer afternoon temperatures and rain.

As the low continues moving northeast Saturday night it will drag a strong cold front through eastern Ohio. Wind will become gusty Saturday night with the front. Rain will change back to snow as cold arctic air takes over. Snow showers behind the front are expected to have a more easterly component so accumulation here in the Valley will be minimal at best. Most of the snow on the backside will be lake effect with accumulation limited to the primary snow belt counties in northern Ohio.

GFS MODEL SUNDAY MORNING: Cold arctic air behind a strong cold front will spill over eastern Ohio.

The energy that will become our weekend storm is just off the Pacific Coast this morning. While it’s a little too soon yet for specific numbers, this will bring some really messy weather to the Valley Saturday but snow doesn’t look to be a big problem locally. Early indications make this a 1″ to 3″ snow event for northeast Ohio counties with maybe an inch of wet snow here in the Valley – Mainly Friday night/Saturday morning. I’ll have a much better idea of the snow/sleet/freezing rain amounts in tomorrow’s forecast.

What is certain, though, is the fact that temperatures will become cold behind Saturday night’s front. Daytime highs Sunday through Wednesday won’t warm much more than the mid-20s. Nighttime lows will drop to the mid-teens.

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