We saw a brief respite from the bitter cold the past two days, but Mother Nature is bringing it back in with full force now. A cold front last night dropped temperatures back to around freezing for today. Lingering moisture has produced a bit of patchy freezing drizzle and flurry activity but no accumulation is expected. We will remain cloudy and chilly tonight with lows dropping into the middle 20s.
An arctic frontal boundary will swing through the Ohio Valley late Sunday afternoon. Along the front, one or two bands of moderate snow showers will develop. Watch for reduced visibilities in this line along with a quick hitting dusting to half inch of snowfall. This could create temporary hazardous driving conditions between 2 p.m. and 5 p.m.
Temperatures will hang out in the upper 20s until late afternoon when they will start to drop. We will head for the teens during the evening and middle single digits by Monday morning. A stiff northwest breeze at 10-20 mph could drop the wind chill as low 5 to 10 degrees below zero.
With the arctic air mass firmly implanted across the region on Monday, high temperatures will struggle to reach any warmer than 15 degrees! With a breeze continuing to blow, it will still feel like either side of zero all day.
Skies clear out and the wind will calm down somewhat Monday night. This could lead to even colder lows, very close to zero degrees. Luckily the wind chill should be much less of a factor. This means that Monday morning will likely be the coldest FEELING morning but the actual air temperature may barely be the coldest Tuesday morning.
We start to “warm up” on Tuesday with highs pushing the balmy 20s under some sunshine. A weakening disturbance, or almost “clipper” type system, will skirt the region to the south on Wednesday. Forecast models have been varying on how much moisture will actually be leftover as it weakens. It does appear than a light inch of snow will be possible during the day on Wednesday. Stay tuned for further updates.
Then as we head towards the end of the week, a stronger weather system is expected to take shape. Right now almost all possibilities are still on the table due to extreme model variability. Anything from accumulating snow, to a mix, to just rain remains possible. It certainly bears watching as we head through the week.
The good news is there is some light at the end of the cold weather tunnel. A return to warmer conditions may start as early as the following week. In fact, we may end January with a flip to above normal temperatures. This does not signal the end of winter, but perhaps a reprieve from our recent cold weather.