DETROIT – Normally, clearing skies and a fresh snowpack means plummeting temperatures.
But the third leg of this stool is the wind, which is blowing from the southwest at 15 to 20 mph, with gusts between 20 and 30 mph -- that’s bringing in milder air, and we will start the day near 30 degrees (1 degree Celsius). For perspective, remember that our average low right now is 19 degrees (-7 degrees Celsius).
The day ahead will feature plenty of sunshine to start the day, and then there will be a gradual build up of clouds from north to south this afternoon. It will remain breezy, with those southwest winds pushing highs to near 40 degrees (4 degrees Celsius). This will undoubtedly be our warmest day of the next two weeks (at least), as a consistent colder pattern develops.
Today’s sunrise is at 7:56 a.m., and today’s sunset is at 5:34 p.m.
Mostly cloudy and still breezy Thursday night, with scattered light snow showers possible. Lows in the mid 20s (-4 degrees Celsius).
Mostly cloudy and still breezy on Friday…but not as breezy as today…with steady temperatures in the mid 20s (-4 degrees Celsius) and wind chill in the low teens (-11 degrees Celsius).
Gradual clearing Friday night and, this time, with a slackening wind, lows will drop down well into the teens (-11 to -9 degrees Celsius).
Mostly sunny on Saturday -- what a great winter day to hit the slopes or kick the kids outside to play. Highs in the mid 20s (-4 to -3 degrees Celsius).
Becoming cloudy Saturday night, with lows in the upper teens (-7 degrees Celsius).
An upper level disturbance will trigger a period of light snow on Sunday. This won’t be much -- some models suggest no accumulation, while others suggest perhaps up to an inch. Highs in the low 30s (-1 to 0 degrees Celsius).
The computer models have completely flip-flopped on Monday’s storm. One model that yesterday developed accumulating snow now has it missing us to the south. Another model that yesterday kept us dry now hits us with the snow.
From a consensus standpoint, the GFS, UKMET and GEM models all keep the storm far enough south to miss us completely. However, what makes me nervous is that the one model that hits us with a solid snowfall is that trusty ECMWF model. The bottom line is that the upper level disturbance that will generate this storm won’t cross the west coast until the Friday-Saturday timeframe.
That’s crucial because, once it gets over the continent, it’s dynamics can be directly sampled by our land-based upper air balloon network (called radiosondes).
Until that time, expect more variations in what the models spit out for their Monday solution, and it will be interesting to see which model(s) get it right. As such, this entire paragraph can be summed up in two words: “Stay tuned.”