When it's April 11th and you see winter storm watches and warnings from Nebraska and Iowa into Minnesota and Wisconsin you can bet your last dime a major spring storm is on the way. The system looks a little rag tag Friday night but by Sunday it gets its act together and all kinds of weather will be going on in the central U.S...very little of it good.
These are the odds of at least an inch of snow between Sunday and Monday morning from the Weather Prediction Center.
Here are the existing winter storm watches and warnings.
The winter storm severity index points to the potential of a moderate to major event over the upper Midwest.
There will be a severe weather side to the system as well with a significant tornado threat over the south. SPC has a moderate risk of severe thunderstorms issued for Easter Sunday. There is an elevated risk of strong long tracked tornadoes and even the chance a rare high risk outlook might eventually be issued. It could be a big ticket event.
The culprit in all this chaos is a deep trough that phases over the Midwest Sunday. The bundled energy and wide range in temperatures will set the stage for the deepening storm.
The GFS has the surface low near Indianapolis late Sunday night with a pressure of 983 mb on its way to 967 mb later Monday. That's a whopper!
Normally a track like that would be prime for heavy snow in my area but it's so late in the season and the cold air can't quite get here in time to coincide with the heaviest precipitation. Thus, this is mainly a rain event for my area. However, there will be a transition to snow Sunday night before the system departs but most areas are not likely to see much more than a dusting to perhaps an inch in the northwest half of my area. The GFS is the most bullish in my region showing this for snowfall.
The EURO which is usually the way to go has this. I suspect the king will lead the way!
Precipitation which actually gets underway Saturday builds for the main event Sunday afternoon and night when it should be significant in many areas. The EURO has many spots picking up close to an inch. a little lighter south of I-80.
The GFS shows this for total precipitation. Up to 2" in spots.
One other thing I haven't mentioned is wind and a big drop in temperatures Sunday afternoon in the west, and Sunday evening from the Mississippi east. Get a load of this temperature contrast at 4:00pm Sunday. A 30 degree drop in about 100 miles.
Even more dramatic are the wind chills. In NC Iowa its feeling like the upper teens with snow falling and in the southeast where there could be a few thunderstorms. it will be feeling like the actual temperatures which are in the mid 60s. When that front hits Sunday look out!
You can also plan to hold onto your hat as gusts are likely to reach more than 40 mph Sunday night.
After the cold settles in it looks to be around for some time. Highs Monday through Thursday will remain in the 30s and 40s. Normals are in the low 60s. Booo! Well anyway, not a lot of good news weatherwise aside from the fact my area avoids the worst of the snow which in some areas just to our north will likely accumulate more than a foot! Until next time roll weather...TS