IT'S HERE, STRONG WINTER STORM HAS ARRIVED...
Snow is falling at my house in Marion, Iowa and will quickly advance east across the rest of my area through early afternoon. It will be heavy at times accompanied by gusty winds up to 30 mph. Low visibilities and snow covered roads will make for difficult travel conditions.
The widespread accumulating snow will eventually mix with sleet, freezing rain and even rain in the south towards evening. The mix will advance into my central counties later in the evening. North of HWY 30, most of the precipitation will remain in the form of snow, especially from HWY 20 north. Snow accumulations of 3-6" look likely, along with ice accumulations of up to 1/4". The greatest ice accumulations are anticipated near or just south of I-80. Locally higher amounts of snow may occur in areas where snow ratios are greater and the mix is avoided, again north of HWY 30 and especially in eastern Iowa.
Saturday morning, very strong northwest winds gusting as high as 45 mph will lead to blowing and drifting snow resulting in greatly reduced visibility, especially in areas where there is no glaze from freezing rain or sleet. Again, this issue is most likely in the northern third of the area.
Winter storm warnings remain in effect of much of the region north of I-80 in Iowa. The rest of my area is under a winter weather advisory.
The latest snowfall models are are bullish on several inches of snow. Initially the snow will be dry, especially in the northern half of the area and will exceed ratios of 10:1 for several hours. Therefore I am using the Kuchera method of snow forecasting which takes that into account. I also added the standard 10:1 ratio for comparison. I prefer the EURO Kuchera version as I think the GFS is overdoing the amount of overall precipitation. Here you go.
The EURO 10:1
The GFS 10:1
Most of the heavier snow will be out of the south by evening and the rest of the area by late evening (10:00 pm)
Some snow showers will redevelop later tonight and Saturday morning as the arctic air invades and again drops temperatures and squeezes out the remaining moisture. In total, most areas have a very good chance of seeing 3 to 5" accumulations from south to north with some local spots in the north around Waterloo getting 6 to perhaps 7" totals. That's all for now. Roll weather...TS
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