Cold and Wet for Monday.

Saturday, December 29th 2012, 7:10 pm
By: News On 6

Still looks like rain is a good bet during the day Monday, but there are also still some questions for the late Sunday night, early Monday morning time period with regards to precipitation type and again Monday night or early Tuesday morning. The southerly winds we will have all day Sunday, Sunday night and Monday will moderate temperatures somewhat, but the cool, dry air that is in place will be slow to modify.

For tonight, light southerly winds should help hold temperatures at least a few degrees milder than the very cold start to our day today. Also, some high level cirrus clouds will be moving in from the SW by first thing in the morning. Those clouds will be thickening as the day wears on so despite a south wind of 10-18 mph, temperatures will struggle to get much above 40 for our daytime highs.

Meanwhile aloft, a warm air advection pattern will also be setting up with a SW wind above the surface which will continue through the day Monday. A disturbance aloft embedded in this flow will be moving across the state and although it is not a particularly strong system, all indications are that it will be tapping into adequate moisture aloft to produce some widespread rainfall. It is rare for us to have southerly winds at the surface and much in the way of wintry precipitation. But, when the precipitation first starts late Sunday night, temperatures will be close to the freezing mark and a rain/ice mix or perhaps all ice for a short time will be possible for the more northern counties.

Rainfall on Monday looks to be widespread with totals around ½" but local amounts may be higher. Despite the southerly winds, the clouds and rain will keep temperatures in the 30s all day, but at least above freezing. Monday night into early Tuesday morning it could get interesting again as our winds shift to the NW behind a surface cold front that will be pushing through the state. That will bring below freezing temperatures after midnight and also colder air aloft. However, the moisture will also be moving out as the colder air moves in. As a result, there will be a rather narrow window of opportunity for some more wintry precipitation late Monday night into early Tuesday morning, mainly for the more northern counties. Whatever wintry precipitation does fall should be on the light side with perhaps as much as 1" of snow for some locations.

Another consideration will be the roads late Monday night. The rain during the day could leave some moisture on the bridges and overpasses which would then freeze as the colder arrives during the overnight hours. At the very least, look for wet roads for much of Monday and Monday night and possibly some slick spots that night as well.

After that, will go with a dry but chilly forecast for the rest of the coming week. There is another system aloft that should be passing south of us on Thursday, but right now will just go with more cloud cover and keep us dry. That is subject to change however.

By the coming weekend, we should start to see moderating temperatures as southerly winds kick back in.

In the meantime, stay tuned and check back for updates.

Dick Faurot