Ahhhhhh....we are seeing the La Nina & MJO fight the cold now. It does not look as cold as it did a few days ago. I would call this cold wave pretty typical for a winter, rather than a "Polar Vortex" event. However, the driver is a piece of the Polar Vortex breaking due to this second Sudden Stratospheric Warming episode of the winter.
This will end up as the coldest weather since last February & the coldest weather of Winter 2021.
It DOES appear that this colder pattern will exist overall for the first half of February. Although it does not look extremely cold or record cold, it will be colder than normal for much of the time now to as late as February 18. This, UNLESS we do see the MJO, the La Nina or any other indices overturn the pieces of looser Polar Vortex due to the SSW episode. Also, we need to get & see a big snow melt over a large area to reverse the pattern, as well.
Stay tuned as well monitor. All the players on the court are duking it out for influence. Think of it as an NCAA bracket as to which team will dominate. Models say one team will dominate & win it all, but analog & other data is mixed.
We will see if we can get a sudden big warm-up in the middle of all this over the next few weeks.
Temperatures are 34-39 as of 12:40 p.m. over the area with a strong south wind blowing.
Our storm system & cold front are approaching.
As the precipitation falls through dry air, it won't all be rain, but a mix of sleet, snow & rain & with the precipitation just snow at times, just sleet at time or even just rain off & on too.
This, despite the strong flow of warmer air from the south. Temperatures will tendt to run 32-37 after highs 35-40.
It will be a battle between the warm air advection (warmer air migrating in on the southerly winds) & evaporative cooling (precipitation falling through dry & partially drying up, which is a cooling process).
Southerly winds may gust +30 mph this afternoon-evening.
Timing of precipitation for the viewing area is now to 11 p.m.
Howling winds from the west-northwest to northwest tonight may gust 35-50 mph with sustained winds at 20-30 mph.
More snow will tend to fall in the north & more rain & mix as you go southward.
1" or less of snow & sleet accumulation is possible in the south, while 1-2.5" of snow are possible in the north (largely north of Highway 18). Winter Weather Advisory is up for Newton & Jasper counties for this. We will watch to see if the 1-2.5" show any migration southward.
WIth the strong winds tonight, any loose snow will blow around. Over the past few days our snow has melted into a dense, dense mass, so that will not blow, however, the snow that falls today-this evening (albeit wet) may blow around given the strength of the wind.
With these howling winds, lows wil drop to 11-17. Wind chills may drop to -11 to -2 by later tonight-early Friday morning.
Watch for icy areas on roadways too!
Highs Friday will only run 19-25 with west to northwest winds gusting up to 37 mph. Wind chills will still run 0-10 in the afternoon.
Cloudy skies tonight-Friday morning should become partly cloudy to mostly sunny.
Winds should decrease to 10-20 mph Friday night with lows 8-12. Wind chills should bottom out at -9 to -4.
After partly cloudy to mostly sunny skies Saturday, we should become cloudy by later evening with highs of 19-26 & a west wind at 10-15 mph.
A fast-moving clipper & Arctic front should pass through Saturday night.
A quick 1-2.5" of snow is expected.
Strong north winds to 35 mph behind the system will result in considerable blowing & drifting snow (given the snow's dry & powdery nature) Saturday night to Sunday morning.
The winds will quickly go to the northwest & west-northwest, so this would limit any lake effect snow showers to our far northeastern areas.
The wind will diminish greatly in the afternoon as skies clear.
Highs should run 8-15 for the afternoon after morning lows of -2 to 6 with wind chills of -26 to -15.
Beware of dangerous wind chills Sunday morning!
Monday should be MUCH WARMER with highs 28-32 with rising temperatures Sunday night (after briefly dropping to 6-11) as south wind kicks in.
A quick 0.5-1.5" of snow is possible Monday from clipper system. It may mix with freezing rain/sleet in the south.
Winds will crank up Monday night with northwest gusts to 37 mph with lows
Another clipper is possible Tuesday or Wednesday of next week with brief light snow with highs in the teens & 20s.
A storm system will need to be monitored for late next week. It has the POTENTIAL of bringing a winter storm to areas south of our area with snow & ice, but it is unclear whether it will track as far north as our area.
Per model guidance, next potential of any precipitation other than snow or ice would be February 18 with rain.