Snow, freezing rain forecast for USA heartland on Valentine's Day weekend

Snow, freezing rain forecast for USA heartland on Valentine's Day weekend

The National Weather Service's preliminary call for the Monday into Tuesday storm is for a wintry mix, though it won't rule out a period of all rain.

On Sunday, the major storm from the West will dig into the Southern Plains with heavy snow expected from Colorado to North Texas. Another storm system approaches late Monday night, but is really a Tuesday system with snow likely.

We are tracking two systems next week.

Except for possibly northwestern Sussex County, every part of the state can expect a wintry mix with varying types of precipitation once the storm ramps up sometime Saturday afternoon, the weather service. Additionally, and perhaps more dangerously, widespread ice accumulation is expected from Houston to New York City. This comes on the heels of the 1 inch snowfall Portland received on Thursday. This storm has the potential to affect both the Tuesday morning and evening commutes.

For some historic context, Seattle would need a little over 7 inches of snow on Friday to place it in the top 10 snowiest single days on record.

Icy conditions will also be a problem.

"Sunday afternoon that's where we're gonna see some changes with some wintry mix of freezing rain, sleet and then changing over to snow by Monday", Benavides said, adding that north winds will blow 15-20 miles per hour on Monday and gusts may be in the 30-mph range. An ice storm warning is in effect for portions of western OR, making travel almost impossible. "Between 1/4" and 1/2" of ice could accumulate.

These totals are dwarfed by the forecast totals across the higher elevations of the Cascades in Washington and northern Oregon. As much as 2 new inches are possible in the central Willamette Valley.

The NWS is forecasting temperatures to reach a high of 37 degrees on Sunday but lows will get down to 16 degrees Sunday night with chances of snow and sleet. The main factor will be the influence of cold air coming from the gorge.

SATURDAY NIGHT: Cloudy and chilly.

"While many thought that winter may have missed us, it appears it was just taking a bit of a break", says NWS Portland.

Related Articles