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Everything is still on track for the first snow of the season to spread across the majority of my area tonight. This is a relatively weak event with marginal temperatures so it should have minimal travel impacts. Most of the accumulations will occur on grassy and elevated surfaces where the cold can under-cut. The overall totals should be on the order of 1 to perhaps 2 inches, fringe areas a little less. The precipitation will likely start as rain or a rain snow mix before changing to all snow. This all gets underway mid to late evening tonight. As you can see in the animation below this is a fast moving wave and the window for snow will last only about 4-7 hours.
Currently temperatures are in the upper 30s to mid 40s where the snow will fall so evaporative cooling will be a key element in cooling the column sufficiently to generate snow once precipitation develops. That will take a little bit. The sooner that happens the better the chances for some of those 2" totals.
The forcing for snow doesn't really arrive until this evening and for that reason precipitation is just beginning to show up out west.
The NWS in the Quad Cities has issued this for a snowfall forecast.
The NWS in Des Moines shows this for totals.
The snowfall forecast from the NWS La Crosse looks like this.
These are the odds of an inch of more from the NWS in my area.
These are the latest model forecasts for tonight's event.
The GFS tight and regional perspectives
Just in time for Halloween a second storm is due to bring more snow back to parts of the central Midwest for Halloween. There are still some issues to resolve here and I won't get the EURO data for a couple of hours. I will bring you an updated report on where that situation stands once I get all the models in later this afternoon.
Meantime, here's some snow stats for available cities in my area from the NWS in the Quad Cities.The all-time earliest dates for an inch of snow around my area falls into the range of October 18-20th. Were roughly a week beyond that.
Here's the one that really sticks out, the average date of the first 1" snow is typically around the first week of December. We are way ahead of the game here if we hit that mark.
The most snow in October ranges from 3.9" in Dubuque, to 6.6 in Moline, to 7" in Cedar Rapids. If this second storm materializes some spots have a chance of breaking that all-time October record.
I'll be back with more later this afternoon. Roll weather.