Snowflakes are POSSIBLE in parts of the Piedmont late Monday night into Tuesday. More on that toward the bottom of this post.
As we mentioned on air last Monday, this storm is very unusual. It will be talked about for many years to come.
Currently, it is still a hurricane producing huge waves off the coast and windy and wet conditions on our beaches. Soon it will turn NW toward land and is expected to hit the heavily populated cities and region of the Mid-Atlantic and southern New England with damaging winds and produce power outages for Millions.
While that is happening, it will transition from a Tropical system to a cold core system and the air aloft will be getting very cold. This will lead to snow in the central Appalachian mountains by late Sunday, especially over WV and then expand into other nearby mountains including the higher elevations of NC and VA by Sunday night.
Depending on the exact track, very heavy snow may fall in WV (measured in feet) and several inches in some of NC’s mountains.I have also noticed for the past couple of days, the possibility for some wrap around moisture to return to the Piedmont on Monday night and Tuesday. This doesn’t often do much east of the mountains and we have never recorded October snowfall in the Piedmont-Triad since records began in 1928. But again, this is an unusual storm.
I mentioned this to our newsroom on Thursday and Friday, but wanted to see it for a few more runs of the models before mentioning it to the masses.It appears that IF we get the moisture to indeed wrap around into our area on Monday night into Tuesday, the upper levels will be plenty cold for snow, however the surface will be marginal.
When this happens, it usually plays out that we get all liquid if precipitation is light and it mixes with or changes to snow if the intensity is heavy enough.
Either way, the ground and near ground temperatures should be warm enough that we would have no trouble from it here.There are no guarantees we get the wrap around precipitation either. With a low to the north, this wrap around is precipitation that moves from NW to SE. This means the air sinks off the mountains as it heads our way.
This sinking motion dries the air out and that is why we often miss out when storms are to our north and get our snows more often when they come from the south.The attached image is a grab from the 12z Sat European Model. It shows where it thinks snow will fall on Tuesday morning. It was actually more impressive looking on Thursday and Friday.