We've been talking about it for a while (because, let's face it, there's not been much else going on lately) and now it's here. The pattern is going to turn more active this week. Christmas Eve i still going to be quiet and cool.
The first system then comes late Monday night into Christmas morning.
There has been more agreement among the models with this system now, showing a lack of moisture and minor accumulations of snow. Snow will likely be wet and slushy, and any accumulations will be near and north of Highway 20 and mainly in grassy areas in the south.
Part of that reason has to do with the temperatures in the morning:
Temperatures will be below freezing north of Highway 30 and above freezing to the south. That's where the line will be drawn with snow to the north and a wintry mix/rain in the south. *IF* temperatures end up colder at the surface then more snow will be possible. Here's the latest sweep of models.
The hi-resolution NAM:
Most of the precipitation will occur before noon west of the Mississippi and then end in the evening to the west. Looking like a pretty low impact event and maybe just a little snow to put you in the Christmas spirit.
A much stronger storm will be developing and moving through the Midwest Wednesday through Friday.
The low will likely move through Iowa and bring rain to Iowa, Illinois and Missouri. Snow will be more likely to the north and west. This is still several days out, so any changes in the track will change exactly where that changeover from rain to snow occurs.
One thing is for sure - there will be no lack of moisture with this system.
Above is the anomaly for precipitable water (available moisture) - Thursday is showing around 200 to 350% of normal moisture values! Behind this system, colder air will be moving in for the end of December and beginning of 2019.
After some quiet and mild weather now winter is starting to show it's face again.