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Freezing Rain/Cold Rain Tonight, Storms Sunday Night

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As mentioned in previous blogs, this is certainly turning out to be an interesting weather situation and there continues to be considerable uncertainty regarding the impacts for specific locations due to the location of the surface freezing line.  Again, the very shallow nature of the cold air makes it extremely difficult to determine just where that freezing line will be and therefore the type of precipitation.  As a general rule, it continues to waffle back and forth on either side of the I-44 corridor and that looks to be the case through the overnight hours.

Notice temperatures as of this evening with the freezing line having dropped a little further south of the I-44 corridor and below freezing conditions to the NW of that.  Temperatures will change little for the rest of the night which means the precipitation that falls will be freezing rain to the NW of that line and just a cold rain to the SE.  Rainfall totals could easily exceed ½” with several rounds of drizzle, light rain, and showers moving through for tonight and through the day Saturday.

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As we go through the day Saturday, look for that freezing line to gradually recede back to the west along with the potential for freezing rain to be retreating back westward as well.  Again, widespread showers, light rain, and drizzle will continue off and on through the period.

Meanwhile, aloft a storm system which at this time is off the coast of Baja California is spreading considerable moisture our way and will be tapping into moisture streaming northward from the Gulf of Mexico.  This combination will keep us overcast with periods of drizzle, light rain, showers, and potentially even some thunder right on through the weekend and into early next week. 

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Sunday will see even further moderation with morning lows generally above freezing and afternoon temperatures which should be well into the 50s to even perhaps some 60s for the more E and SE counties whereas the more NW counties will at least be above freezing and generally in the 40s.  We should also see at least a brief break in the steady drizzle and rain with scattered showers over the course of the day.

However, Sunday night into the day Monday is when the main storm center aloft will finally be ejecting and spreading a more widespread line of showers and storms, some of which will be locally quite strong through the area.  The timing of this line of storms continues to slow down with each updated model run which means storms could impact the MLK parade Monday morning.  Data at this time makes that a close call.  There will also be the potential for several inches of rain with those storms as they move across the state which could in turn produce some localized flooding.

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At any rate, it will certainly be mild on Monday with temperatures not likely to fall at all that morning meaning we will likely start the day in the 50s and should see enough afternoon sunshine for temperatures to reach the 60s despite a shift back to northerly winds later in the day.

After that, the rest of next week looks to be generally warmer than normal as you can see on our forecast page along with little or no mention of additional precipitation.  After that though, the 8-14 day outlook suggests another cold surge will be headed this way towards the end of the month along with additional chances for at least some precipitation.

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So, stay tuned and check back for updates as this is a very dynamic system and certainly poses the possibility of some significant winter weather issues in the form of freezing rain followed by the possibility of storms and potential flooding.

Dick Faurot

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