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TONIGHT-SATURDAY MORNING. Rain moves in late tonight and lasts really through early Saturday morning. Right now with this 1st wave of precip we are thinking somewhere ~0.25″-0.35″ of precip area wide. This will not be all days rains Friday but it will be scattered off and on along with overcast low level clouds. It looks like rain ends late Friday night and we see a break in the action until our weekend highly uncertain storm system arrives Saturday evening.
TOTAL RAIN BY SATURDAY MORNING PRIOR TO STORM #2 WORKING IN FROM OUR SW.
SATURDAY AFTERNOON INTO SUNDAY NIGHT:
This is where things get extremely complicated. As anticipated the 12Z runs today shoved the low farther south and east then yesterday. I believe this is on the right path. It is only one run so this is not a trend but it goes with the physics of the atmosphere and what should happen. The upper levels seem to be adjusting but are not done adjusting yet and that will affect the surface features. This is why I have to wait until Friday before really honing in on specifics. It is working the right way and if the 00Z runs tonight keep the upper levels similar and the surface features slide more eastward then I think a good handle can be made by tomorrow night. Still a few more runs but if the 12Z was the beginning then I think the model is understanding the atmosphere. If we take this theory and draw out where upper level dynamics say the surface features low goes this is what we get..
With that being said right now if the morning models were to be correct for our storm it would be a rain to sleet to snow scenario with heavy snow and gusty winds on the backside of the low Sunday morning. Here is what the latest GFS/GEM models look like for total snow.
Notice here the GFS is substantially further east which is why I believe the GFS is picking up on the trend of bringing surface features further east. Again I have no evidence to support that right now but the trend can be our friend. Again timing on this event from SW to NE right now would be Saturday 2pm to Sunday 10am for northern zone forecast areas. I would also like to mention temps will quickly fall Saturday night into Sunday perhaps into the mid 20s as early as Sunday morning so the potential for flash freezing will also be a concern. Look for winds to start out of the SE ~10mph and then quickly shift Saturday night out of the NW at 10-35MPH. For melting purposes and treatment planning we look to see some sunshine Sunday afternoon/evening. Now if wanting to use brine or what not IF we start as all rain its possible as much as 0.50″-0.60″ of rain could fall before the changeover to snow so it would wash away most of the treatment. I wouldn’t advise treating until pre-dawn Sunday right now perhaps ~3-5am if you treat prior to this time your product could be washed away. Again we are watching every model run and will share the very latest as it comes in. If you have questions text or email anytime.
MON-WED: There is a legit concern for heavy lake effect snows to develop as the Arctic air rushes in during this time frame. Still to early to know how much accumulation but heavy totals by mid week are certainly possible. Some of the morning data using a 15:1 snow ratio idea would suggest as much as 12″ in SW MI by Thursday morning!
TUESDAY: Across central zones we are watching a clipper system Tuesday afternoon and evening that could bring some high ratio fluffy snows to the area. Its too early for specifics obviously but keep this is mind for now.