The nasty, messy winter storm we've been talking about all week long is moving into the area today, bringing not just snow, but also strong winds and even the potential for an icy glaze for the early part of the weekend. Expect light to moderate snow in the area accompanied by strong, gusty southeast winds this afternoon. Snow will become heavier in the later in the day for the evening commute with those winds reducing visibility at times. Snowfall totals through sunset will be two to four inches across the area with afternoon temperatures in the low to mid-20s and wind chill values in the single digits.
Heavy snow will change to freezing rain and freezing drizzle at times by early evening and it looks like the threat for that freezing mixture will continue through midnight, possibly leading to an ice coating of one-tenth of an inch on top of today's snowfall. Light snow will then become the main form of precipitation after midnight with an additional one to three inches of accumulation possible. Temperatures will remain steady in the mid and upper 20s through the night with strong southeast winds reaching 40 miles per hour at times.
Light snow will taper off early in the morning Saturday with half an inch or less of accumulation after sunrise while winds swing around to the west on the backside of the storm system. The pressure gradient between this potent storm system and an area of high pressure to our west will generate powerful wind gusts throughout the day, causing blowing snow that will reduce visibility and make travel very difficult. Temperatures will drop from the mid-20s in the morning to the single digits in the afternoon with wind chill levels below zero for most of the day. Winds will occasionally reach 45 miles per hour until early evening.
Sunday is looking drier, but much colder and still rather blustery as skies will clear in the morning with gusty northwest winds behind the departing storm system keeping wind chill values in the teens and 20s below zero. High temperatures Sunday will only be in the single digits.
High pressure will hang around early next week, bringing cold sunshine for Monday and Tuesday with high temperatures in the single digits and teens. Beyond that, a large storm system looks to slowly move in for the second half of the week, potentially bringing light snow or a wintry mixture for a couple of days.