TGIF. Warmer air builds over Ohio today and tomorrow. We will see very mild air in play and most of the state will be above normal for the period. This does come with a bit of a disclaimer, though: we also have to deal with some strong southwest winds, averaging at least 12-25 mph, and likely higher. These winds will be what brings the warmer air in.
Rains start tomorrow afternoon and goes through midnight. By 2-3 am Sunday morning, we will be done with all action. The rain has a very light start in. We are trimming our rainfall forecasts a bit to now a few hundredths to half an inch maximum. Coverage will be about 80%. The map shows rain totals through Sunday morning.
Drier, cooler air is in for Sunday as high pressure moves in. However, this is not a bitter cold arctic air mass, just a typical cool push behind a weak system. There may be enough cold air to trigger some minor lake effect snows over northern and northeastern Ohio on Monday. Snow and flurry action can break out anywhere off the south shore of Lake Erie on Monday, and we can even see some lake effect clouds and flurries make it all the way in from off of Lake Michigan in far NW Ohio. But, generally, the best areas for action on Monday will again be in northeast Ohio, in our typical lake effect areas. WE can see minor accumulations, and in NE OH, perhaps several inches. Cold air will be in play for both Sunday and Monday, with temps slightly below normal.
Tuesday of next week we see winds switching back to the southwest, signaling yet another moderating push of temperatures to above normal levels. The winds will be rather strong on Wednesday, the 31st. This hints at another strong front wanting to arrive shortly thereafter. We have rains starting to move into NW Ohio around midday on Thursday, and then precipitation slowly works across the state. Action starts as rain, but we still expect cold air to catch the moisture, and switch rain over to snow. Liquid equivalent precipitation could range anywhere from .25”-.75” as things stand right now, and we are have a concern that we see some heavy snow in Ohio after sunset through midnight. Some models are projecting 4-6 inches – but it is way to early to look seriously at snow totals. As always, it comes down to timing of cold air, track of the front, and location-location-location. We will have a significant update on this system Monday morning.
The week finishes with a dry Friday midday and afternoon, but temps are cold, with most of the state below freezing. High pressure sets up over western Ohio for next Friday afternoon. We keep cold air into Saturday, but south winds return on Sunday. This time, though, we do not expect a significant warm up, as a cold front organizes quickly to the northwest, and brings colder flow in by Sunday afternoon. This leads to some moisture over central and southern parts of the state for Monday the 5th, although we can’t quite call it a clipper system anymore. Canadian high pressure dominates most of the rest of the 11-16 day period, with another system coming out of the central plains into our area late the 8th through the 9th. That system can bring potential for big snows again.