The last several days have been quiet around here with dry and seasonably chilly conditions, but a much more active and progressively colder pattern is about to begin as we move into the second half of the month. A train of waves of low pressure currently exist over the Pacific Ocean and they are being pushed along by a very fast-moving jet stream. As a result, there may be three different storms to deal with next week here in the Mid-Atlantic region and then colder air will follow by next weekend. Let’s try to break down this active and complicated scenario for next week:
The first storm will head from the Central Plains region on Saturday to the eastern Great Lakes by Sunday and at the same time strong, cold high pressure will be situated over southeastern Canada. This setup will spread some light rain our way late Saturday night and there is an outside shot for the precipitation to begin as a little freezing rain or sleet in the far northern and western suburbs thanks to some cold air damming that will be in place at the onset of the precipitation event. By Sunday, temperatures will move to well above freezing levels with some rain likely later in the day.
The next storm in the series will likely affect us from late Monday through late Tuesday night and that should be in the form of rain along the I-95 corridor although, as the storm pulls away and intensifies off of the Northeast coast, there is a small chance that it could pull in enough cold air to cause a changeover from rain to snow later Tuesday.
Yet another storm will approach the Great Lakes region late next week and, given the blocking expected in the upper atmosphere, it could help to spawn a secondary low pressure system near the Northeast coastline. This storm system may become the most explosive of all creating quite a snowstorm for the Upper Midwest and it will likely affect us by Thursday night and Friday of next week. There will be cold air over the Upper Midwest feeding into this storm system and it may provide us with our best shot at a little snow on the backside of the low. Colder air will move into the region by next weekend on the heels of this storm and the last weekend before Christmas promises to be quite chilly and windy throughout the Midwest, Northeast and Mid-Atlantic. This pattern will also likely send cold air all the way down to Florida next weekend and will set up a significant "lake-effect" snow event just downwind of the Great Lakes. The colder air is likely to stick around at least right through Christmas Day.
Stay tuned as next week will be quite volatile and interesting.