The clipper that just powered its way across the Midwest has certainly lived up to its billing. We promised you snow, wind, and bitter cold wind chills and we got 'em. Here's a snowfall graphic. Most of my area picked up 1-5".
These are the wind chills we'll be facing Tuesday morning. Most spots in my region 15 to 25 below! Thanks to the NWS Quad Cities for the graphic.
The cold will keep us in a tight grip through Wednesday and then a major thaw kicks in for the late week period. By Thursday my area will be pushing freezing and will get above that threshold Friday and Saturday. Here's the highs for all three days.
In general the sensible weather Wednesday-Saturday appears to be straight forward with dry conditions dominating through the period.
By Saturday night a deep negatively tilted trough will begin its approach on the Midwest. A 70 kt low level jet will rapidly deepen a storm in the Texas panhandle. As this come together moisture will rapidly increase leading to what could be the biggest precipitation event in about 3 months for my area. Here's the PWAT's (precipitable water vapor) Sunday morning which have exceeded 1" into SE Iowa. That's wet for mid-January.
While there is good agreement on a significant storm, there's not on the track which will be critical in determining who gets rain and who does a lot of shoveling.
Since the event is still 6 days away there will be changes in how this a system evolves but for this early in the game the models are actually pretty close on a track. The GFS is coldest and further southeast. If it holds some parts of my area would get significant snow, especially my counties in Iowa.
The EURO is warmest and furthest northwest. It's track would imply mainly a rain event for my area with a late transition to snow, especially in the west. With the lack of cold air ahead of the system I do prefer the more NW track of the EURO and its rainier solution for most of my area.
It's far too early to mess with snow potential so I will hold off until we get a more consistent track. However, I will show you the total precipitation that's forecast.
The bottom line of this post is that there's going to be lots of variety in the Midwest's weather the next 7 days. We'll go from bitter cold to another thaw and then a major storm in a matter of 6 days. Looks like challenging but fun times for yours truly. Roll weather...TS