Initial Thoughts on Local Snow Amounts for Sunday/Monday’s Winter Storm

Posted Friday PM, January 14, 2022

I’ll make this quick. There has already been a lot of background and discussion regarding the incoming winter storm this Sunday. If you want to learn more I suggest you read my earlier posts. Those will give you most of the information you might need.

NWS Pittsburgh issued their first stab at snow totals earlier today. I can’t dispute their ideas at this point. So, instead of making a whole new map, I’ll just repost theirs. I think it’s a good start.

The main question regarding amounts is the potential for a warm layer setting up nearby at the onset of precipitation Sunday afternoon/evening. This, should it develop as some of the modeling suggests, could introduce a period of sleet. Any sleet would of course lower snow totals slightly.

There is also still some wiggle room on where the heaviest snowfall ultimately sets up. Expect these dividing lines to vary somewhat in future forecasts.

Whether we end up with four inches or eight inches, the impacts will be nearly the same. Expect enough snow to shovel and plow. The streets and highways will be a mess for a while. Travel will likely be challenging Sunday night into Monday morning.

Expect snow showers to get underway in our area late afternoon/early evening. It will move in from the south and spread north. Once the snow gets started, it will snow for most of the night and into Monday morning. Snowfall could be heavy at times during the night. The snow will be wet and heavy to start out. As temperatures cool as the night wears on it will get lighter and fluffier.

ODOT has been out pretreating the state highways and they’ll continue through tomorrow. As is always the case, the main highways will fare better. Less traveled secondary roads will likely take some time to clear.

On a positive note, freezing rain is not likely at this point in our forecast. Our location puts us in a more favorable position for this to be all snow except for that brief period of sleet I mentioned earlier.

The Winter Storm Watch will likely be upgraded to a Winter Advisory or Warning at some point on Saturday.

Remember that winter storm forecasts are not a one-and-done thing. Updates to the forecast will continue over the next 48 hours as more data comes in and computer models hash out new solutions. We’ll know more tomorrow than we know today.

I’ll post updates as here as usual. You can also follow me on Twitter @tuscwx. I do SOME Facebook but it’s limited due to time constraints.

Wax up the snow shovel. Gas up the snowblower. Be safe out there.

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