2014 is off to a snowy and cold start.
The weather this weekend and early next week will keep the trend going. Winter Storm Watches have been issued by the National Weather Service for the entire WNWO viewing area in advance of the storm.
Final storm track, speed and intensity will all affect the final outcome, but current indications are that this will be a major winter storm for our area.
A cold front will be approaching from the northwest Saturday evening. As it slows down, an area of low pressure will form over the south-central U.S. and work it's way northeast along the frontal boundary. As it treks toward the Ohio River Valley into Sunday, it is expected to intensify and slow down. This will put NW Ohio and SE Michigan in the bulls eye for some heavy snow.
Overnight Saturday into Sunday morning, some light snow will have developed. This could be good for 1" to 3" of snow. So if you wake up Sunday morning without much new snow...or even no snow falling...don't let your guard down.
The real show begins late Sunday morning...as moderate to heavy snow starts to move into the area. The snow will likely be heaviest from late Sunday morning into late Sunday afternoon. Heavy enough that an inch or more per hour could fall at times.
By the time we get to sunset Sunday, the going forecast is for a fresh 7" to 10" of new snow to have fallen. The possibility for higher amounts exist...but are are highly conditional.
The additional components of wind and cold will make this storm a tough one...possibly as tough as we've seen in years.
The winds will start to pick up late Sunday afternoon...and increase into the evening. Wind speeds look to be in the 25-30mph range through most of Sunday night. At the same time, air temperatures will plummet back into sub-zero territory.
The wind and cold will combine to produce wind chills in the range of 30-40 degrees below zero come Monday morning. "Ground Blizzard" conditions may exist at times Sunday night. (This is where blowing snow severely reduces visibility without snow acually falling at the time).
The combination of blowing/drifting snow and dangerous cold will make this a very dangerous storm.
The bone-chilling cold will remain in place for the beginning of next week. Sub-zero high temperatures are possible for both Monday and Tuesday...and wind chill temperatures will stay in dangerous territory all the way into Wednesday.
The WNWO Weather Team will be providing updates to the forecast all weekend long...on-air, on-line and via social media.
Links to all are provided below.