'Lot of question marks' about possibility of weekend snow

— As central North Carolina dries out from a soggy start to 2017, attention shifts to the possibility of snow across the region this weekend.

Although at least one computer model forecasts snow on Friday night and Saturday morning, WRAL meteorologist Nate Johnson said Tuesday it’s just too early to say what will happen.

“There’s a lot of uncertainty,” Johnson said. “We don’t have a lot of confidence in what exactly, if anything, would fall this weekend. We are confident it will be very cold this weekend.”

The system that could bring snow is still over the Pacific Ocean off the Oregon coast, he said, so there hasn’t been an opportunity to gather much information on it yet. Also, it’s unclear where a low-pressure system will develop off the Southeast coast and how it will move, he said.

If the low is farther south, North Carolina might now get any precipitation, Johnson said. If it tracks farther to the west, he said, snow could be limited to the North Carolina mountains, while the Triangle would see only rain.

“A lot of question marks. We’ll continue to watch this over the next couple of days,” he said.

The region has already seen plenty of rain since New Year’s Day, as the second storm front in as many days moved through central North Carolina Tuesday morning.

Drier air was moving in from the southwest during the afternoon, helping to clear out some of the clouds.

“There’s plenty of dry air about 2,000 feet above our heads. We have to be able to tap into that, and it certainly would help for us to see some sunshine,” Johnson said.

Although clearing will continue into Tuesday night, he said, fog will be likely into Wednesday morning because of the moisture in the atmosphere.

When the sun breaks through on Wednesday, it will bring high temperatures in the 60s.

Highs on Thursday and Friday are expected to top out in the 40s, with lows in the 30s. By Saturday, highs will be in the 30s, and temperatures stay cold through the weekend.

A special thank you to our friends at WRAL for helping out with this post.

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