A new storm system is set to bring snow, ice, and rain to much of the eastern US mid- to late- week. There is already a disturbance ahead of this main storm system that is delivering messy weather to parts of the Midwest and Northeast.
For the rest of today into tonight, there will be an area of freezing rain that will impact a rather large part of New England, especially in the Green and White Mountains. Some icing will be possible this evening into the wee hours of Thursday morning west of Boston and in much of Massachusetts, however. Meanwhile in Maine, a light to moderate snow will be found in most of the state.
To the south and west, rain will be the story through tonight. A rather widespread area of light to perhaps moderate rain is forecast from southern New England through most of the Mid-Atlantic, Ohio River Valley, and as far west as Oklahoma.
At the same time as this messy weather is occurring, the main storm system will be developing over the Plains. The low pressure fueling this weather will really begin to ramp up tonight as a widespread snow, most of which will be light, breaks out across the northern and central Plains and the upper Midwest. There may be some banding features to watch for, however, near the low. That includes in the Kansas City, Omaha, and Des Moines areas.
Another risk this storm will bring beginning tonight for most areas will be freezing rain. A corridor of icing is currently expected from the southwestern Great Lakes, especially in the greater Chicago area, through northern and western Missouri. Brief freezing rain will also be possible in parts of eastern Kansas.
The low pressure will continue to intensify as we get into our Thursday as heavy snow becomes more present and widespread. This won’t be a significant winter storm, however, with most areas receiving less than half a foot of snow. Keep in mind this region typically experiences a lot of snow in the winter, hence the Winter Weather Advisories in place instead of Winter Storm Warnings, which are more severe. The heaviest of snow is expected in the upper Midwest while a brief round of moderate to heavy snow sweeps through southern areas, including much of Iowa and Missouri, in the morning. Also in the morning, freezing rain will still need to be watched in parts of the Great Lakes region, especially from central Wisconsin through central Lower Michigan. By the end of the day, that ice will changeover to snow in Wisconsin while rain moves into Lower Michigan.
For the evening, the Chicago area will deal with a period of snow before the precipitation clears out completely overnight. Therefore, travel issues can be expected not only in Chicago but across the upper Midwest in general due to the falling snow during the commute.
Overnight Thursday, most of the Great Lakes can expect light snow on the backside of the low pressure before it clears out by Friday morning. Up to a few inches will be possible, but don’t expect any significant totals. Now as the rain begins to move into the Northeast, some snow may break out in the colder spots, including in the eastern Ohio River Valley and in northern Maine. Spotty areas of the central Appalachians may also deal with a wintry mix Thursday night.
By Friday, our storm system will begin to clear out into Canada, but some of its impacts will still be felt in the East. Its cold front will fall apart, making for lighter precipitation. Therefore, rain showers will end midday across the Northeast while some snow showers fall across the interior throughout the day. The rain will also dissipate by the late-morning in the Southeast, making for good time as we approach the weekend.
In terms of snowfall between now and Friday, a widespread 2-6 inches is forecast across the upper Midwest, with localized totals of up to 10 inches near the Upper Peninsula of Michigan. There will also be up to 3 inches that comes down across parts of the interior Northeast.