Another cold morning in over Ohio this morning. Subzero temps are being reported over sections of northwest and north central Ohio, and low single digit temps are being talked about elsewhere. High pressure moves across the state today, but we may not see the full benefit of south winds today. Sunshine should be seen in many areas today. Tonight, we have minor snows that cross Michigan and drift southeast into Ohio. The bulk of these light snows stay north of US 30 corridor and accumulations will be minor, mostly a coating to an inch. South of there we see only clouds down to I-70 with a few flurries around. Some sunshine will try and develop in the north by tomorrow midday at the latest, and the rest of the state will see good sun to start.
Lake effect snows remain through the day today and tomorrow in NE Ohio, and we expect some better accumulations there. However, for the rest of the state, the best chance of snow in the short term develops tomorrow overnight through Saturday. However, the clipper system seems to be having trouble finding and hanging on to moisture, and that means we are taking snow potential down this morning for the event. For now, we will look for a coating to 2” for the state from late tomorrow night through Saturday. Snows may linger longer, on through sunset Saturday, in parts of the state, but we don’t think they are able to pile up as fast. We will put out our final snow total thoughts tomorrow morning, but this looks like a slightly better forecast for us at this time. Strong north winds coming behind the system will keep lake snows in the forecast over NE Ohio through Saturday evening and potentially on into midweek next week. This can bring additional inches to far NE Ohio, and as we mentioned yesterday, the areas that seem to be most in the crosshairs are Ashtabula, Lake, Geauga and Trumbull counties, although anywhere along the south lake shore we can see lake snows, at least to finish the weekend.
As we start off 2018 we have a continuation of the pattern that brings polar air to the state. We continue to look for an entire week of temps in the single digits and below zero. A couple of minor snows may pop up through the week…A coating to an inch for Wednesday with 60% coverage, and then another clipper with a coating to 2” for late Thursday night (4th) through Friday (5th). Generally, though, snow is not the headline for next week….cold air is.
In the extended window, we could be looking at another major winter storm arriving around the 7th-8th of January as a strong front sweeps in and moisture comes up the front from the south. It is followed quickly by a similar surge for the 9th-10th. If these two come through in rapid succession as is currently being projected, we could be looking at significant snows as we move through the first part of January. Strong winds would be expected with any such frontal passage. Temperatures are expected to moderate ahead of those systems slightly, coming off the bitter cold levels we see next week, but we expect below normal temps right on into mid-January, which would mean that snow would be the primary precipitation type.