Models are coming into better agreement on the overall pattern setting up next week. There will be a number of storms instigated by the pattern shift over the next several days with a variety of weather expected.
The first system is currently moving into the Great Lakes. This system will spread rain showers from southwest to northeast across the area later today and tonight. Temperatures across Pennsylvania and New York could be cold enough for the precipitation to start as a light wintry mix before changing over to all rain.
Rain showers will continue through the day on Sunday as the low moves into the eastern Great Lakes. Mild air being drawn up from the south will ensure the precipitation on Sunday is all rain across the entire region.
The system will move off to the east Sunday night, but our next system will already be taking shape across the Ohio Valley. This storm will intensify as it moves northeastward across Ohio and into Pennsylvania on Monday. Rain will break out across the region on Monday, with the heaviest rain falling across Ohio, Pennsylvania, and New York.
As this system pulls away from the area Monday night and Tuesday, colder air will pour southward on brisk northwesterly winds. Rain showers will gradually change over to snow showers during this period with some minor accumulations possible, especially across the higher terrain of Pennsylvania and New York.
High pressure will briefly build across the region on Wednesday bringing most of us some drier weather. The exception will be across New York state where a few snow showers could linger.
By late Wednesday, our next system will already be knocking on our door. By this time frame, the models begin to lose their consensus. It currently looks like this storm will move from the Plains States Wednesday night to the Great Lakes on Thursday. Mild air will likely surge northward across the area ahead of this system with rain overspreading the area during the day Thursday.
A strong arctic cold front will sweep eastward across the area late Thursday or Thursday night opening the door to some very cold air. Rain will change to snow from west to east late Thursday with snow showers and squalls continuing through the day on Friday downwind of the lakes.
The amount of cold air predicted varies from model to model, as does the amount of lake effect and wrap around snowfall. Some of the models show lake effect snows lasting through the weekend prior to Christmas.
I will continue to monitor the ever-changing forecast and will post updates as the forecast becomes more clear.
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