If I say the word "snow" in January or February it can work people into a frenzy of milk and bread buying. That being said, you know if I go throwing that word around in October, people are really going to perk up. This chance for a few flakes of snow does exist late Friday night and early Saturday morning. Here's the setup behind what's bringing us this chance for a bit of wintry weather in the middle of autumn.
A strong cold front will clear the area Thursday night. Behind this front, unseasonably cold air will be diving into Virginia with our highs on Friday and Saturday in the upper 40s to near 50 degrees. Obviously that's not cold enough to support snow, so we have to examine Friday night and Saturday morning. Low temperatures will generally drop into the mid 30s, but some of the higher terrain could drop to near the freezing mark by daybreak Saturday. Those temperatures would generally support a mix of rain with a few snowflakes. Will the moisture meet up with the cold air to make this possible?
Our computer models continue to hint at the development of a coastal area of low pressure. The BIG question and problem with this forecast is the projected movement of the storm. Right now the models continue to differ on exactly where this low pressure will track and where its moisture will go. One of the more reliable models that we use at the Newsplex has a more western track, which would bring more moisture to central Virginia - giving us a better chance of seeing a few wet snowflakes early Saturday. Another very reliable model continues to indicate that this system will primarily hug the coast, which would keep the bulk of the moisture away from our area.
Here's the bottom line. This won't be a significant system for our area. Accumulation won't be an issue. We will likely see some rain showers and if you're lucky you could see a few snowflakes mix in from time to time. Save your milk and bread money for some real wintry weather later in the year. Of course this is subject to change, but wouldn't it get people talking if we actually did see a little snow in October? What's the earliest you ever remember seeing snow around the Charlottesville area? Leave your comment at the bottom of this blog!