Winter Storm Warning now in place for a good portion of Central Indiana tonight into Friday night. A wintry mix will become heavy at times this evening, and quick accumulations of sleet are likely by midnight. Snow totals in the Indianapolis metro area will range from 4″ to 7″, with higher amounts in southern Indiana.
Snow may become heavy at times tonight before diminishing toward 4am. The next round of snow picks up between 7am and noon on Friday, and snow will be moderate to heavy at times.
There will be a sharp gradient in snow amounts from north to south, and 20-25 miles will make a big difference.
Areas that see sleet will have lower snow totals. Regardless of how much snow you end up with… roads in Central Indiana tonight and Friday will be dangerous due to sub-freezing temperatures.
A weaker system arrives Sunday and a bitter blast of Arctic hits next week. Stay tuned for updates this evening – Sean Ash
The southern half of Indiana is now under a Winter Storm Watch that begins Thursday at 7pm and goes until Friday 7pm. As previously advertised, the brunt of this storm will likely hit areas south of I-70.
No worries on the roads in the morning, with some showers possible and temperatures well above freezing. A burst of rain/sleet arrives around 4-5pm… but surface temperatures again should be above freezing and keep roads mostly wet.
By 11pm temperatures are likely below freezing and roads will begin to get slick to icy… especially elevated surfaces and overpasses.
We’re still targeting Friday as very messy to dangerous day to be out driving. Sub-freezing and areas of moderate to heavy sleet/snow are likely.
We haven’t deviated much from our initial snowfall forecast, only bumping the southern viewing area up a category into a 4″-7″+ range. For now our forecast for the majority of the Indianapolis metro area holds at 2″ to 5″.
Remember this forecast is highly changeable and the snow zones are not in concrete. Please allow some wiggle room and don’t be surprised to see changes the next 24 hours.
Sleet is the forecast wildcard, and I think there might be plenty. Exactly how much and where dictates whether you’re on the low/high side of forecast. Any heavy banded precipitation (which is also likely) could balloon snow totals in “some” places.
We’re heading into a deep freeze and expect another system to arrive Sunday. It’s too early for specifics, but with snow on the ground I’m concerned for icy roads with a messy wintry mix. Yes… those are “highs” in the teens next Tuesday and Wednesday. That may actually be too warm! Welcome to winter – Sean Ash
Buckle up Central Indiana for what promises to be an active stretch the next few weeks, that likely delivers multiple precipitation events to the region. The image below shows the average configuration of the upper level flow across the northern hemisphere the next 8-10 days.
Please note much will change between now and the end of the week, and there is plenty of time to iron-out specifics. This post is not to “hype” or “scare”, but merely shed some light into what we’re seeing behind the scenes… and the various outcomes with this set up.
Both the GFS and European models shows a persistent southwest to northeast flow during this time. This will be an ample moisture supply that will travel over Arctic air at the surface… resulting in increased chances of snow/winter precip in the very near future.
***click images to enlarge***
Preceding the temperature tumble later this week will be a surge to near 60+ on Wednesday. The warmth and a front will trigger scattered showers and possible some gusty storms.
Notice the downward spiral in the temperature meteogram above for Indianapolis. The peak on Wednesday is evident, as is the Arctic chill for the weekend. The meteogram below is snowfall potential.
Being 72+ hours away from a “potential” winter precip event is still too far out from trying to pinpoint amounts and location of heaviest snow/precip. With much uncertainty regarding actual moisture, temperature profiles, and the likelihood of sleet and freezing rain complicating matters. Both the Euro & GFS models show snow accumulation across Central/Southern Indiana by 7pm Friday.
You’ll also notice the NAM and GFs showing sleet accumulation. It’s too be determined how quickly the Arctic air will fill the column overhead and switch all precip to snow.
For now, sleet and freezing rain are very much in play from Indy-southward. We can also look at the past to help predict future events. The image below shows the historical best match (analog) for the “modeled” conditions later this week… and it is an event from December 13-14, 1985. No two events are the same, but this gives confidence Central Indiana will see some snow. We won’t have a good handle on amounts until Wednesday.
We’re putting the finishing touches on an outstanding holiday weekend in Central Indiana, and enjoy a relatively pleasant evening in the 50s. Plenty of temperatures in store this week for us… as we go from near 60° to possibly the single digits next weekend.
More on the Arctic Express later in the blog. For now let’s ease into the work week with a quiet night ahead.
Clouds return by the time you wake Monday morning with low temps in the mid 30s. Despite less sun tomorrow, I believe highs creep into the mid/upper 40s.
Clouds have more bark than bite the next 48 hours. Though sprinkles are possible, our next best shot at organized precipitation will be Wednesday. This will also mark the warmest day for awhile in the upper 50s to near 60°.
There is good agreement in long range models on this warm up being brief and a return to much colder air looking eminent during the day Thursday.
There is less consensus in the models regarding the timing/track of low pressure ripples tracking along an Arctic cold front. Being five days out accumulating snow is merely a “possibility” in the forecast… but very subject to change regarding location and potential amounts. For now, the spread of snow “potential” ranges from Central Kentucky to Northern Indiana. Stay tuned for forecast updates, and we’ll be able to fine-tune timing and how much in the days ahead.
The coldest air of the season lurks behind any wintry precipitation next weekend. Depending on snow pack, single digit lows and highs near 20 are very possible. This system(s) late week look to mark the beginning of a active pattern that carries into the middle of December.
Happy Thanksgiving everyone! Thankfully the sun was shining over Central Indiana or it would have been much colder.
The 18,000+ Drumstick Dash runners braved the 8th coldest Thanksgiving morning low temperature since 1871 at a bitter 16°. This afternoon was the first Thanksgiving day below 40° since 2002… and the city’s sixth straight day below the average high.
In fact, it’s been over 140 hours since Indianapolis has had a temperature at/above 40°! That streak continues until Saturday. If you’re shopping this evening expect chilly temps falling into the 20s by 9pm.
If you’re out early Friday morning searching for deals expect temperatures near 20°, and wind chills in the teens.
More blue sky on Friday and daytime highs near 40° by 4pm.
Should be a very nice, albeit chilly, evening for the Circle Of Lights in downtown Indianapolis.
FutureTrak13 shows an overall quiet, cool pattern heading into Sunday. Though it appears clouds will dominate the sky the second-half of the weekend. Colts tailgaters can expect chilly Sunday morning lows near freezing, and highs struggling to hit the lower 40s. Layer up if you’re heading to Lucas Oil.
Next “best” shower chance is Tuesday, with long-range indicators pointing toward a strong cold front hitting a week from now. This front may deliver our coldest temps of the season to this point… and I wouldn’t be shocked to see single digits lows next weekend. Stay tuned for details. Have a great Thanksgiving evening – Sean Ash
Though Central Indiana will get a glancing blow. areas along and east of the Appalachians will get bombarded with heavy snow, rain and strong wind the next 36 hours.
As the storm rapidly deepens (intensifies) the next 24 hours, wind will become a big issue at the major airport hubs in the northeast. The combination of holiday travel volume, wind and rain may make for lengthy delays Wednesday.
Thankfully (no pun intended) the weather on Thanksgiving Day will be fairly quiet over a good chunk of the United States. But make no mistake… it will also be unseasonably cold over much of the eastern US too.
If you’re driving eastward expect a swath of heavy/wet snow from eastern Ohio into western Pennsylvania/New York.
We can’t stress enough that the Indiana Toll Road and I-94 in southwest Lower Michigan will be highly impacted by a heavy lake effect snow band beginning tonight and lasting well into Wednesday.
Some areas within the core of the band will have whiteout conditions, and likely near a foot of snow. Lake Effect Warnings are in place for La Porte county in Indiana and Berrien County in Michigan. Lake Effect Watches are up for several counties in northwest Indiana… and subject to upgrades based on the exact trajectory of the expected band.
Hi-res modeling and a persistent north-northwesterly fetch off Lake Michigan suggest lake effect showers/squalls may impact even Central Indian late tonight into Wednesday morning. This is not all that uncommon under this type of set up (unseasonably cold air, persistent wind vector, relatively warm lake water).
Due to the narrowness of the band/squall not everyone will be impacted, but localized accumulations are very likely… and roads “within” the band will be slick for sure.
With or without snow Wednesday will be a flat-out bitter day. Wind chills near zero in the morning and highs struggle to return to the mid 20s… a good 20 degrees below normal.
The latest arrival of Arctic air sets us up for one of our colder Thanksgiving Days since 1989.
Expect upper teens if you’re running in the Drumstick Dash or any other holiday runs. Clouds dominate the sky early, but we’re expecting a brighter finish and mid 30s by end of the day.
Clouds covering Central Indiana mostly have more bark than bite early this afternoon. But an area of flurries and light snow showers continues to track along/north of I-74.
Some flakes are possible from Lafayette to Munice this afternoon. We’re also monitoring an area of light snow in southwest Illinois. All short-range models indicate this area will expand and track northeastward, possibly dropping a quick accumulation for areas along/south of I-70
Notice this is a quick-hitting feature, and will likely be east of the area by Tuesday at 7am. But an accumulation of an 1″ or less is conceivable between 7pm this evening and 1am Tuesday morning. This “may” create some slick roads overnight across the southern half of Indiana.
Appears most of the viewing area will be living on the edge of heavier snows located to our east. But if you’re traveling through central/eastern Ohio Tuesday into Wednesday expect tricky conditions. Also note, that we’re expecting an area of heavy lake effect to develop Tuesday night into Wednesday for northwester Indiana…which will impact traveling the Toll Road, I-65 and possibly US-31. In fact, the fetch off Lake Michigan may be orientated in a way to drag down squalls into the Indy metro Wednesday too.
FutureTrak13 shows precip-free conditions Thanksgiving morning, but temps will be cold in the teens for the Drumstick Dash. Stay tuned for changes to the travel forecast
Anyway you slice it, today was a C-O-L-D day in Central Indiana. It’s quite an impressive air mass to produce temperatures some 20 degrees below normal this time of year, without the aid of snow cover and under a good dose of sun.
The 13 degree low and 28 degree high in Indianapolis marked the city’s coldest day since February 20th, and coldest November afternoon since 2005.
Lows tonight will again tank into the mid-teens, but likely climb into the 20s by sunrise as a layer overcast creeps in tonight.
Clouds mostly have more bark than bite Monday, but can’t rule out some flurries or areas of light snow.
We’ve highlighted a “potential” pre-Thanksgiving weather hiccup for travelers. Last week I mentioned I wasn’t convinced the modeled system would completely miss Central Indiana. Latest modeling suggests some light snow is “possible” in the viewing area as the system begins to ramp up. This is NOT a given, but a trend we’re monitoring… especially for traveling Tuesday.
The latest FutureTrak13 model runs shows snow in play Tuesday morning… and I’m not ruling out an accumulation of an inch or less. But the best chance of accumulating/problematic snow is just to the east of Indiana.
But certainly too close for comfort right now, and very subject to change. We do want to give you a heads-up that east bound travelers will likely run into heavy snow Tuesday-Wednesday morning, and a high potential of flight delays Tuesday at ATL, JFK, BOS, PHI, and other hubs in the northeast US.
Locally another shot of Arctic air hits Wednesday and squeezes out lake effect flurries/snow showers. Just like Saturday, some of the squalls will make interstates slick.