Metro Detroit weather: The calm before the cold

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I hope you’re enjoying our little break from the very cold air because more is on the way.

Aside from some snow showers generally near and north of I-69, most of us should be dry until late at night when a few drips or flakes are possible ahead of an approaching cold front. Since we’ll be ahead of the front all night long, temperatures won’t fall much overnight.

Temperatures may even rise a bit into the mid-30s (2 to 3 degrees Celsius) by the time we wake up Wednesday morning. It’ll be a breezy night, with gusty southwest winds at 10 to 20 mph.

This evening’s sunset is at 5:30 p.m., and Wednesday morning’s sunrise is at 7:57 a.m.

Wednesday

Any lingering drips or flakes first thing Wednesday morning will end with the passage of the cold front. The rest of the day will be mostly cloudy and breezy, with temperatures falling into the upper 20s (-2 degrees Celsius) by late afternoon. Making it feel colder will be wind swinging around to the northwest behind the front at 10 to 20 mph.

That’ll put afternoon wind chills down to about 10 degrees (-12 degrees Celsius), becoming partly cloudy and much colder Wednesday night, with lows in the low teens (-11 degrees Celsius). And by the way, those same northwest winds racing down the length of Lake Huron will generate a reasonably intense lake effect snow band on the lake’s southeastern areas Wednesday night into Thursday.

While the exact location of that band will be based upon the wind’s exact direction, it appears that it could set up somewhere in the vicinity of Grand Bend and extend inland west of London. So be extra careful if driving on the 401 or 402 in this area Wednesday night and Thursday, as you could run into white-out conditions with little notice.

Thursday

Partly cloudy skies to start our Thursday become mostly cloudy by afternoon. Highs will struggle into the low 20s (-6 to -5 degrees Celsius),

becoming mostly clear Thursday night. That, combined with light wind and a cold, dry air mass, means it’ll be a good radiational cooling night, a very efficient loss of daytime heating.

Friday

As such, temperatures by dawn Friday will likely drop well down into the single digits for most of us (-17 to -13 degrees Celsius). Mostly sunny on Friday – it’s always great to end the work week with some sunshine – and highs once again in the low 20s (-6 to -5 degrees Celsius). Mostly clear Friday night, with lows in the low teens (-11 degrees Celsius).

Weekend forecast

Clouds should be on the increase during the day Saturday, but I think we’ll remain dry during the daylight hours. Highs rebound into the upper 20s (-2 degrees Celsius). Light snow is possible Saturday night. This does not look like accumulating snow, so it’s doubtful we’ll get enough for the kids to play in—lows in the upper teens (-7 degrees Celsius). Then mostly cloudy on Sunday, with highs in the mid-20s (-4 degrees Celsius).


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About the Author:

Local 4 meteorologist Paul Gross was born in Detroit and has spent his entire life and career right here in southeast Michigan. Paul has researched, written and produced eight half-hour documentaries for WDIV, as well as many science, historical and environmental stories.