PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – Our stretch of stormy days begins Saturday as the first of what are likely three winter storms prepares to strike the Delaware Valley. A nasty winter mix will continue north all morning and will likely overtake Philadelphia and much of the urban corridor around 12 p.m.
The initial precipitation in Philadelphia and much of the immediate suburbs will be snow, sleet, and probably some freezing rain as well. As the messy mix is moving toward Philadelphia, we’ll begin to see a shift to more level rain on the coast, while areas of light snow could develop in the northern tier of the counties.
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The mix in Philadelphia and across the I-95 corridor will persist through the rest of the afternoon and evening before becoming slightly lighter overnight.
Warm air will continue to invade the north and into the afternoon as well, and we will likely move from snow / sleet to more rain / freezing drizzle in the urban corridor during this time.
A change from a winter mix to simple rain will be possible on the coast, while the northern areas will remain light and wet.
The greatest risk of icing will occur overnight on Saturday and possibly into the early hours of Sunday as well. The reason for the high risk of freezing rain is because surface temperatures on Saturday will remain below freezing, while temperatures in the lower / middle levels of the atmosphere will rise above freezing.
Saturday’s highs will be near 30 degrees.
The threat of a wintry mix, including freezing rain, will continue Sunday morning. Most of the precipitation will end in the morning hours of Sunday, but some persistent light areas of mixed or single rain will still be possible during the afternoon. Sunday’s highs will be between the upper 30s and 30s.
When our weekend system is all said and done, we aim to have a glaze of up to a tenth of an inch of ice accumulation in the vast majority of the region.
However, there is the possibility of a fringe of greater ice accumulation in the interior of South Jersey, where up to 0.25 inches of ice could be possible.
Right now, we are not asking for a generalized ice storm, but power outages and very difficult trips are possible from Saturday afternoon to at least Sunday morning.
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Snow quantities will be extremely light with this system. If something sticks, it would only amount to a layer of about 1 inch maximum in some places.
Monday offers a slight respite from the winter weather for at least a few hours as we wait for storm number two to appear. Monday will generally be mostly cloudy with possible winter mixing periods during the day.
Those who see any winter weather on Monday will notice that it should be light and fast. The best opportunity for a more robust winter mix comes Monday night. Right now, our Monday night to Tuesday storm is trending slightly warmer.
What this means for us is a better chance of seeing rain, sleet, and freezing rain, with a lower chance of seeing snow, especially in Philadelphia.
The second round of winter weather ends Tuesday night, leaving a chance for fairly good clearing on Tuesday night and Wednesday.
Definitely my new favorite graphic! The winter weapons of choice for this storm will be the thaw and the broom. There may be wet muddy snow / sleet early on with a change to freezing rain / drizzle ending early Sunday morning @CBSPhilly pic.twitter.com/wynu8jF22a
– Matt Peterson (@MPetersonWx) February 13, 2021
This will also allow the high Arctic pressure to take over for at least a short time on Wednesday afternoon. Wednesday appears to be mostly sunny but very cold with highs of only 30 degrees.
The sunny skies are short-lived as the number of storms for the week arrives on Thursday. Thursday’s storm at this time looks like it should start as snow / mix for most of the region before transitioning to mixed / rain and then rain for most.
As the system progresses into Friday, a transition to snow or rain / snow will be possible. An early look at next weekend’s shows we may finally have a couple of lazy days after the rocky road that’s on the way.
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