A system that will come up this weekend will likely spread a cold rain into the area on Saturday.
Temperatures at critical levels above the ground should be too warm for snow. So at the lower levels, we have to watch to make sure it stays above 32 to prevent freezing rain. The best chance for that will be northwest of the Triad.
On Sunday, the upper levels will get colder and we may see this end as snow. It’s too far out to be specific yet as this system will continue to change with each update of the computer models.
This is the same system that models have been hinting at for nearly a week. Many of you have seen the snowfall projections going around on Facebook for the past several days – some even showing 20+ inches in parts of central North Carolina.
Unfortunately, many people started posting these images way too early and getting hopes up for some and worrying those that don’t want to see snow.
It’s a model outlook, and it’s usually only one possibility of many that the model puts out. The European Model has 51 projections each cycle. Picking 1 of the 51 is not the best way to forecast. I like to look at the consensus.
We have had data like this available for years, but only recently has it become more available to the general public. This combined with the “share” option on Facebook has led to things spreading like wildfire.
We will post data when confidence is high enough for it to be reported. Otherwise, if you put a forecast out that shows 12+ inches of snow and 12 hours later the new model run shows nothing, it’s hard to build trust with that type of inconsistency.