Saturday, March 11, 2017

DST snow? It'll be close!

Today is a chilly reminder that, despite clocks springing forward tonight and temperatures being in the 70s two days ago, spring doesn't officially start until March 20 and the average last freeze of the year isn't typically until March 19. We may not end up missing it by much this year when all is said and done!

Overview

It looks like we'll have one last chance at winter precipitation tonight as a chilly day gives way to falling temperatures this evening that reach critical thresholds in the snow-making process by late evening. Though not expected to be highly-impactful locally, Mother Nature reminded us this morning that sometimes she has a mind of her own, dumping over 4" of snow up near Paris, TN!
Closer to home, light rain showers will continue to move over the area this afternoon with temperatures in the lower 40s and wind chills in the mid 30s thanks to a biting wind. As the sun sets tonight, temperatures will fall into the 30s as one last round of precipitation moves in from the west-northwest, pushed ahead of an upper level disturbance. It's this round that poses the risk of wintry precipitation.

Simulated radar forecast from the HRRR model at mid-day shows showers moving over the area that mix with a bit of sleet and then snow this evening as precipitation departs. Click here if the image doesn't loop. (WxBell)

Details

It appears that rain will transition to snow, perhaps with some sleet mixed in briefly during the transition process, between 6-10pm from north to south. The wintry precipitation won't last long, perhaps a couple hours. Though some morning models indicate that a brief "burst" of snow could occur late this evening, the latest high-resolution model data is indicating that precipitation might be tapering off as the critical temperatures are reached, limiting the potential for any major issues. It does appear that by midnight, any snow will have ended with temperatures still at or above freezing. I don't expect any significant travel issues overnight or in the morning on local roadways.  Accumulation chances are highest in Tipton County in the metro and drop as you go south. Even then an inch in grassy areas would be the most I would expect, again mainly north of the immediate metro. A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for Tipton County where the best chance of measurable precipitation exists.




Bottom line

What: Rain transitioning to light snow
When: 6-10pm, north to south, ending by midnight
How much: Maybe up to an inch in northern grasslands, little to nothing Memphis and south
Why: Because you've already mowed and the tulips are lovely!

Spring Break Week

Looking ahead, brace for continued chilly "late winter" conditions this upcoming spring break week with high temperatures that average some 10-15° below normal and a few mornings that could see frost or a freeze. The most likely mornings to approach conditions that could harm early budding trees, bushes and flowers are Sunday, Wednesday, and Thursday as a reinforcing shot of cool air arrives behind another upper level disturbance that brings additional rain chances on Monday.


Spring Forward!

Lastly, one more reminder that tonight ends Standard Time and we "spring forward" to Daylight Saving Time at 2am Sunday! You'll lose an hour of sleep and an hour of daylight in the morning, but get a later sunset that many people seem to favor, especially heading into spring!


Erik Proseus
MWN Meteorologist

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2 comments:

Rebecca Badgett said...

Love your sense of humor AND your understandable weather reports.

Meteorologist Erik Proseus said...

Thanks Rebecca! That means we're doing our job! Stay safe and warm!