Published Sunday, December 18, 2022, 10:00 am EST
By now most of us are aware of the potential for a winter storm that will likely bring impactful weather to the Valley late in the week. There has been plenty of speculation floating around social media circles regarding snow amounts and such. This post will focus on what we actually know as of today and what you need to know now in order to prepare.
IMPORTANT: This is a general idea of what we COULD be looking at late this week. Details still need to be worked out and forecasts WILL CHANGE as more details come into focus. If you have holiday travel plans, pay close attention to future forecasts and be prepared to make adjustments.
WHAT WE KNOW
Various weather computer models have been honing in on the potential for a storm moving through the Midwest and Great Lakes region toward the end of the week. While all of the details are not quite in focus yet we are starting to see things a bit more clearly this morning.
Warm air out ahead of the system will likely bring rain to start things out Thursday night. Rain may change over to snow Friday morning/afternoon. The changeover will be accompanied by a rapid temperature drop Friday afternoon/evening. Temperatures will quickly fall from the low-40s to the low-20s within a few hours. Wind chills will fall to the low single digits.
Snow accumulation is likely with this first wave of snow. At least scattered snow showers will continue into Christmas Eve. Additional snow accumulation as well as blowing snow is also likely through Saturday.
Windy conditions and cold temperatures will create wind chills near or below zero on Christmas Eve and perhaps Christmas Day.
Cold temperatures will probably stick around for a while and may carry into the start of the new year.
WHAT WE DON’T KNOW
No matter what you see on posted social media or weather apps, no one knows how much snow will fall at this point in the forecast. It is likely there will be accumulating snow but just how much we will see here is just something we don’t know yet. I will say that will likely be enough to impact travel. We also do not know if there will be any issues with ice.
We do not know the exact timing of when the rain begins or when the changeover to snow will occur. This is my general idea as of Sunday morning. It will also likely change as I learn more.
Certainties like snow and ice amounts are not likely to come into focus for 36 to 48 hours yet. Whether this turns out to bring a lot of snow or just a little to our area is yet to be seen. However, some type of winter storminess is likely and it’s best to be prepared to make adjustments to your holiday travel plans and have a plan ‘B’ just in case.
At the very least we do know that temperatures will turn much colder and very cold wind chills are going to be an issue. At a minimum, you’ll need to prepare for that if you have outdoor plans.