It appears we will see yet another decent snowstorm on Sunday and into Monday over the Mid-South, as expected. But before we get into that, let’s focus on today and Saturday. Today should be a relatively nice day, with sunny skies, a high temperature reaching into the upper-30s, and light winds out of the north. We may see some light and scattered flurries tonight as a weak spin-up at 500 mb moves over our area, perhaps creating just enough lift to produce some light flurries that shouldn’t pose any travel problems. Saturday looks similar to today, but maybe a touch cooler and a little cloudier as well. Overnight Saturday we may begin to see some of the first few snowflakes associated with this impending storm.
Now on to the big story. It appears that the consistent snowfall from this storm will arrive ahead of the potent 500 mb vorticity max sometime during the late morning hours on Sunday. While we’ll most certainly begin with snow, there is some question as to whether or not some rain may mix in during the day on Sunday, as the forecasted high is 34 with light south winds. But after looking at the models, it really appears that for south central Kentucky, we’ll be getting snow throughout the day. The 540 thickness line hangs around the Gulf Coast on Sunday, and while the freezing-line at 850 mb begins to advance northward, it doesn’t get any farther than northern Mississippi, Alabama, and Georgia on the models. Sure, this doesn’t tell the whole story, but it would take a pretty serious low-level warm layer to melt that snow, and I’m just not seeing it.
As Dr. Goodrich mentioned, this “Manitoba Mauler” is going to take its sweet time advancing through the area, meaning we’ll be looking at consistent snowfall well into Monday. But this storm will be fairly moisture-starved, with upper level winds out of the west and not the south. So we should be looking at a drawn-out, nearly 36-hour light snowfall. The models are still in disagreement about just how much snow we should see, however. The NAM has about 1-2 inches for Bowling Green by Monday night, but the GFS is much bolder with 4-5 inches. This is due to the fact that the GFS has modeled this storm system diving all the way down to Tennessee, putting us on the north-side, which is the significant area for snowfall with these storms. Specifically, the GFS shows a narrow swath of 4-5 inch snows from Bowling Green northeast to Richmond.
There is still quite a bit of uncertainty with this storm, so check back later for an update. Enjoy your weekend, and check out this quick read that discusses the possibility that all 50 states may have snow on the ground by the end of this weekend.