Snow Could Mix With Rain Overnight, Larger Storm Looms Later This Week
Cold air is settling into the Northland tonight. This will be the start of a long stretch of below average temperatures. As for tonight scattered rain showers will develop along and east of Highway 53. Winds will also begin to pick up out of the west and northwest at 15 to 20 mph. Rain showers will transition to rain and snow showers during the overnight period. Temperatures will drop into the mid and lower 30s but they will only flirt with the freezing mark making it very difficult for snow to accumulate, especially after seeing a long stretch of temperatures in the 50 through 70s in the last 7 days.
Some lake enhancement is possible with this northwest flow especially east of Ashland. Lakeside areas will remain in rain, but further inland away from Lake Superior, snowflakes will probably mix in at times. By the late morning a,, the rain and snow will be out of the Northland except for Gogebic County where rain and snow showers will persist into tomorrow evening. Accumulations will be limited to elevated and grassy surfaces with up to a slushy half inch to an inch at most. Most areas will see no accumulation.
Sustained winds tomorrow will be at 15 to 30 mph and gusts will be greater as much as 40 to 50 mph. A wind advisory is in effect for the North Shore all the way to the I-35 Corridor and all of Northwest Wisconsin and the U.P. of Michigan until tomorrow evening. A gale warning is also in effect for Lake Superior with wave heights as much as 10-20 feet with this strong wind. Tomorrows high temperature will be in the lower to mid 40s.
There will be a weak clipper that comes through on Wednesday but the main storm system that has the greatest potential to impact Northlanders is on the one that moves in Thursday. Confidence is slowly growing that the Northland will see snowfall Thursday night into Friday morning. There remains differences on the exact track of the storm as well as the intensity which would make big implications on the amount of snowfall, if any, that would fall.
One type of pattern that meteorologists including myself look at for winter weather forecasting is the North Atlantic Oscillation.What we see here are upper level pressure systems in the higher reaches of the atmosphere that help steer the flow of the jet stream. When these features are strong (Positive Phase), the jet stream remains relatively straight with cold air remaining farther north. When the upper level high and low pressures weaken (Negative Phase), the jet stream becomes more wobbly and results in surges of cold air and a better chance of snowfall. This is exactly what is happening in the forecast with surges of cold air and the possibility of snowfall as well.
This is exactly what is happening in the forecast with surges of cold air and the possibility of snowfall as well. More updates are expected to come in the coming days so stick with FOX 21 for your weather reports!
-Chief Meteorologist Gino Recchia