The storm system that caused all of the snow yesterday has departed. Now we will have to deal with the cold. Be ready for Arctic temperatures in the region.
The storm system brought about 5-10″ of snow across the region. There were some locally higher amounts. Snow measurements varied greatly in a short distance as there was some major drifting happening. Here is a preliminary snowfall map from the National Weather Service office in Wakefield, VA.
The system became a very strong area of low pressure over the ocean. It stayed offshore the entire time, but it launched the moisture far back to the west. In fact the snow continued longer than expected as the system strengthened even more and interacted with a cold front.
Since then the system has jetted off to the northeast. It is now over the Canadian maritimes. High pressure is building in from the west.
Cold air already moved into our region. The temps this morning were near zero inland and in the teens in the metro. That was even with a little wind. So some wind chills were in the negatives.
Today we’ll have a lot of sunshine, but it will be a struggle to warm up. High temps will only rise to the mid-upper 20s. There will be a couple of 30s over North Carolina. You can get some melting with temps in the 20s as long as you have strong sunshine. However, It won’t be much. There will probably be more melting over the parts of North Carolina that had less snow. The main roads over the region are looking pretty good. The secondaries are improving, but still have some snow covering them. The neighborhoods vary, and that is due to the amount of drifting as well as the varying snow totals. Be careful on the roads. Winds will be out of the west/northwest at 10-20mph with gusts up to 25mph. So wind chills will be in the teens this afternoon.
By tonight the winds will lighten up. they will be about 10mph our of the northwest. It may go calm inland. This will lead to record low temperatures. The forecast low temperature in Norfolk is 10 degrees. If we get to that number, then it will match the current record low. That was set as far back as 1924. Inland temps will probably be near zero. Maybe in the negatives. Wind chills will be in the negatives. If there is any melting today, then those spots will re-freeze tonight. Even salted areas are only good down to a point. (Yep…Check the instructions!) Through the day we’ll have lots of sunshine, but high temps will only be in the mid 20s.
By Sunday we’ll warm up a tad. Highs will be at least near 30 degrees. If we’re lucky then maybe we can get some low 30s going. We should have fair skies. That might be enough to cause some melting in the region. If we don’t…Then some of the kids still might not be able to go to school on Monday. Or there at least might be lots of delays….That is just speculative at this point, but parents should keep that possibility in mind.
Either way we’ll warm up next week to the 40s and 50s for highs. We will have some rain late Monday into Tuesday, but we should clear up by mid-week. We’ll be in a milder pattern for a little while. Stay tuned for updates!
Meteorologist: Jeremy Wheeler