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Nice today, Winter weather possible Tuesday

Jason Samenow @ 2:27 AM

The second half of the weekend continuing into the start of the work week will be mostly sunny and crisp. But old man winter may have one last trick up his sleeve with some snow possible by Tuesday.


When you get up and head out this morning, dress warmly as temperatures will start off near 20 in the colder suburbs to the mid 20s downtown. Full sunshine should allow temperatures to reach the low 50s by late afternoon. A northwest wind of 10-20mph will make things feel a bit cooler.

Pictured: Beautiful sunshine in Chinatown yesterday. By photographer Kevin Ambrose.

Snow Lover's Crystal Ball

Chance of Accumulating Snow: Tuesday, March 21
Probability: 50%
Potential Impact:

Commentary: A low pressure system moving out of the Plains into the Tennessee Valley may produce some overrunning precipitation in our area by sometime Tuesday morning. All model guidance suggests the airmass overhead will be quite cold for the time of year. Accordingly, some snow may fall. However, the impact of any snow may be diminished by the following factors:
  • Previous daytime highs near 50 will warm the ground and will also probably result in surface temperatures at least several degrees above freezing when the precipitation begins. So precipitation may be rain at the onset and will not initially stick when it snows.
  • Precipitation will likely fall mostly during the day meaning snow will have a hard time sticking given high March sun angle and temperatures warmer than they would be at night.
The amount of precipitation that may fall is hard to predict now. If the cold airmass to our north forces the storm to the south and out to sea, not much precipitation may fall. But if a secondary low pressure system forms and comes up the coast, there could be significant amounts of precipitation. The precipitation type would be dependent on the track of the low and, to some degree, its intensity -- both of which are uncertain.

There are lots of variables are at play here, and forecast confidence is low. But the graphic to the right illustrates snowfall possibilities which suggest there is a about a 50/50 chance of seeing at least 1" of snow from this storm and 20% chance of seeing more than 3". Tomorrow, I will have more details about what to expect. Also check the site comments during the day for discussion. If necessary/appropriate, I may do a brief late afternoon or early evening update.

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