We’re tracking yet another winter storm, but this time it will track from the Northern Plains through the Mid-Atlantic region instead of being another nor’easter, which the Northeast certainly does not need anymore. This event will kick off on Friday and will make its way to the US East Coast by Sunday, making this an impactful storm for a very large area.

On Friday, a strong Colorado Low will form, making this the main instigator for the snow. Also energy working in from western Canada will aid in an expansive precipitation shield. Snow is forecast to fall on Friday from much of North Dakota into western Minnesota while to the south and east rain showers fall from South Dakota and Nebraska through Iowa and into portions of Missouri and Illinois. Near-blizzard conditions are possible with wind gusts up to 30-40 mph. Then into the overnight hours, the snow will expand eastward and will affect the region from eastern North Dakota through portions of the Midwest and as far south and east as parts of the Ohio Valley and southern Appalachian Mountains. In the warm sector of this storm, rain showers are forecast from eastern South Dakota and Nebraska through the Mid-Mississippi Valley and toward Dixie Alley in the Southeast, where some thunderstorms may be found.

By Saturday, the snow will clear out of the Northern Plains while snow tapers off during the day in portions of the Upper Midwest, including Minnesota and Iowa. This will be a snow day further south and east from northern Illinois, the Ohio Valley, generally north of the river, and into the Appalachians of West Virginia and western Virginia. Near-blizzard conditions are possible in parts of the Midwest. Some sleet and freezing rain may approach central Virginia by the end of the day Saturday. It’s not until the threat for wintry weather in the Mid-Atlantic region peaks Saturday night. Snow and/or a wintry mix of precipitation is forecast for much of Virginia while an all-snow event likely occurs back toward the west in West Virginia. Some snow may also sneak into northern North Carolina. Thankfully, in the lower elevations of the Mid-Atlantic, including central and eastern Virginia, temperatures will be around or above freezing, so that should limit significant impacts. It will also be occurring on a Saturday night, making this event not as impactful.

By Sunday morning, most of the wintry precipitation will move offshore while lingering scattered showers affect portions of the Southeast. Further north, this storm system may lead to a few light rain and snow showers across portions of New England and into the Tri-State area.

Here’s our snowfall forecast for this event:


Jackson is Head of Content and Social Media at WeatherOptics. He is currently a student at the University of Miami, studying Meteorology and Broadcast Journalism. Dill produces forecast articles for the website and helps to manage the content schedule. He has also led the growth of WeatherOptics’ social media accounts, working to keep them aligned with the company’s evolving vision.

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