Major Winter Storm Gets Underway Today


Good Saturday Morning. The last bit of calm before the storm this morning and if you get up and look at radar you likely would say, this is coming in faster than what they anticipated before going to bed. However dry air is spilling over the mountains and into the foothills slowly. This will continue through the day and should spread South and East through the day today. This will lead to moisture falling into this but evaporating before reaching the surface. I do think a couple sprinkles of rain are possible early this morning, maybe a sleet pellet or two along I-40. Nothing significant though.


As we go through the morning snow will likely develop along the SW Mountains of North Carolina and areas Southwest of Asheville over toward the Balsams could pick up on an inch or two of snow before Noon. After Noontime things will start to expand into Asheville and possibly Polk and Rutherford Counties. Slowly, this moisture will overrun and overcome the cold dry surface air to the Northeast through 4-6pm. So start times are largely unchanged, but it may take until closer to 5 or 6pm for the moisture to reach the surface in Alexander County. The NAM is aggressive with the warm nose again this morning and brings the freezing line North to even I-40. Though I do think the NAM's run is too aggressive it does handle the warm noses better looking back over past events. The GFS is less aggressive and keeps a snow profile all the way down into the Northern Upstate of SC. So between the models we will go middle of the road and that means the freezing line would be placed around the Hwy 74 Corridor. That is to be seen yet though and will have to come with nowcasting. Monitor timing updates through the day as they still could change slightly.


County By County


Alexander:

Mainly a snow event here. Snow starts between 4-6pm. Sleet may mix in at times especially Sunday Evening as precipitation rates let up some. Significant wet snow of 10-15 inches looks possible with locally higher amounts. A light glaze of ice is possible by Monday Morning too but less than .05 of an inch. Temps fall back into the 20’s.




Burke

Mainly snow although sleet will mix in from time to time. Snow starts between 2 and 4pm. Sleet will mix in at times but a solid significant wet snow of 10-15 inches is likely down over Greater Burke. Locally higher amounts are possible. 15-25 Inches are possible in the mountains of Burke County. By Monday Morning a light glaze of ice will be possible on top of the snow but less than .05 of an inch.


Caldwell

Mainly snow but again, sleet possible at times although less likely here. Snow starts between 4 and 6pm. Significant wet snow of 10-15 inches likely and locally higher amounts could be common. The mountains of Caldwell likely will see all snow, although little bit of sleet could still mix briefly. Totals in the NW Mountains of Caldwell 15-25 inches are forecast. Less of a change of any light glaze of ice here.


Catawba

Rain and snow should start between 2 and 4pm. The initial mix will likely transition to all snow quickly after start. Significant wet snow event will unfold here as well with 10-15 inches common. Mixing of sleet could hold these totals on the lower end of that scale. A light glaze of ice up to .10 of an inch will be possible by Monday Morning.


Cleveland

Rain to start here between 12N and 2pm but this should transition to a rain snow mix and then over to snow as well. Start time between 12 and 3pm today. Snow fall of 5-9 inches. Snow will mix with sleet the most here we think. This could keep totals on the lower end of that scale. A warm nose of air could move in by Sunday Morning transitioning precipitation over to freezing rain. That freezing rain, if it occurs, could pile up quick. .25 to .75 of an inch possible with highest amounts near the SC boarder. Power outages could be most numerous here as ice accretion develops on top of the wet snowfall.


Lincoln

Rain will likely start here too between 2 and 5. This will likely transition to a snow/rain mix and then over to snow. Snow/Sleet accumulation between 5 and 9 inches but sleet could keep totals down to the lower end of this scale. Snowfall could fall a couple of hours heavy at times before mixing with sleet and then over to freezing rain. .25 to .75 of an inch of ice possible. Freezing rain on top of snow could fail trees and powerlines.


McDowell

Mainly snow although sleet will mix in from time to time. Snow starts between 1 and 3pm. Sleet will mix in at times but a solid significant wet snow of 10-15 inches is likely down over Greater McDowell. Locally higher amounts are possible. 15-25 Inches are possible in the mountains of McDowell County. By Monday Morning a light glaze of ice will be possible on top of the snow but up to .05 of an inch of ice.


Rutherford

Mainly snow although sleet will mix in from time to time. Snow starts between 1 and 3pm. Sleet will mix in at times but a solid significant wet snow of 5-9 inches is likely down over Greater Rutherford. Locally higher amounts are possible. 15-25 Inches are possible in the mountains of Rutherford County. Snowfall could fall a couple of hours heavy at times before mixing with sleet and then over to freezing rain. Up to .30 of an inch of ice possible. Freezing rain on top of snow could fail trees and powerlines.



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