Parts of Michigan will get inch of rain, while other parts will get foot of snow

Strong winter storm heading toward Michigan

Published On: Dec 19 2012 02:27:02 PM EST   Updated On: Dec 19 2012 05:47:46 PM EST
DETROIT -

We've been talking about this storm for a week now, and it'll be here tomorrow. 

Here's the timetable and what you can expect:

Wednesday: 

Tonight we could see a bit of very light rain develop late tonight, with areas north of I-69 perhaps seeing a bit of wet snow. 

Temperatures remain above freezing, so there will be no ice to worry about.  At worst, some roads could be damp late tonight, but some of you could still have dry roads when you wake up.

Thursday

A steadier, heavier rain will develop around lunchtime or a little after, and it should be a very rainy afternoon. 

We hopefully will get between one-half and one inch of rain…we desperately need to replenish our soil moisture before the ground freezes for the winter.  Remember that after the ground freezes, any rain we get doesn’t soak into the ground.  Thursday’s rain is good news. 

Temps should reach the upper 40s, even with the clouds and rain.

Thursday Night

The rain will become lighter and more scattered. 

In fact, it may even diminish to just drizzle for a while.  Wet snowflakes should start mixing in sometime after midnight.  Right now, it looks as if temps for most of southeast Michigan should remain above freezing Thursday night, so pavement should be wet for the start of the Friday morning rush hour.

Friday

Wind will increase, and we’ll see periods of light snow.  Right now, it doesn’t appear that we’ll see too much snow…perhaps as much as 1-2 inches in some areas. 

Temps will fall to near or slightly below freezing either toward the end of rush hour or by mid-morning. 

When that happens, bridges and overpasses could glaze over with some ice.  You’ll need to keep an eye on this if you'll be out driving at that time. 

You’ll also need to keep an eye on the wind, which will increase steadily and probably be gusting to near 40 mph.  Obviously, this brings the risk for a few branches to bring down a few power lines, but wind like this isn’t strong enough to flat-out snap power lines by itself.  Any power outages will be widely scattered. 

Despite the nasty day it’ll become, remember that the is our best chance to get enough snow for a White Christmas. 

Also remember that Michigan needs snow for many reasons…including restoring our Great Lakes low water levels, and winter tourism (those dollars are significant).

Northern Michigan

The weather computer model is suggesting a good foot of snow for the northern lower peninsula, including Traverse City. 

Skiing up north Very will be terrific this weekend!

We've got you covered on Justweather.com. Stay informed of any changes and keep an eye on the storm as it approaches your area.

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