Arctic air and snow possible by Thursday (12/20/22)
The season of “winter” may start by Wednesday, but winter weather won’t start for us this week until Thursday. With the potential for snow and frigid temperatures to end this week the time to plan is now in case you are traveling or need to do last minute shopping before the holidays.
In terms of the precipitation type, we have a chance for rain first that will transition to snow following the strong cold front that sweeps through our area. This could start as early as Thursday afternoon with small chances for flurries into Friday morning.
One of the major components to the cold weather is the high probability that we see strong winds behind the front. These winds could blow snow and reduce visibilities for a time, and they will be sure to make conditions outside very cold. Limit the time you spend outdoors Thursday evening and Friday if you can. Frostbite can occur in less than half an hour with conditions like these.
A quick snapshot from one model shows temperatures will plummet RAPIDLY come Thursday evening, giving us a good feel for arctic air. Temperatures will drop into the teens and continue to be far below normal.
Wind chill watches/warnings may go into effect in the coming days as wind chill values could drop -15 to -30°F in some spots once you factor in the wind. That will lead into a very cold start on Friday with some slick spots certainly possible with a system like this, starting out as rain then transitioning to snow.
By Friday morning, ACTUAL air temperatures will be in the single digits if not below zero. Being prepared ahead of time, including car inspections and getting winter kits ready for the car and house, is a good idea for the coming days.
Once we get past this, Christmas and beyond looks to slowly recover when we finally reach temperatures close to freezing again. Highs in the 30s will feel sort of like a heat wave compared to the COLD start on Friday.
Meteorologist Jessica Blum
FOX 23 Storm Alert Team