Bitterly cold weather ahead

Good Wednesday to one and all. Arctic air has arrived in the Bluegrass State, with the potential for bitter cold showing up this weekend and much of next week. This might be the coldest stretch of weather we’ve had since the winter of 2013-14.

Wednesday starts with temps in the single digits across the north, with low and middle teens elsewhere. Wind chill numbers can drop below zero at times to start the day. The afternoon won’t warm too much, with highs hitting the upper teens and low 20s in many areas. Gusty winds make it feel much colder.

Thursday’s forecast looks a lot like Wednesday’s.

From there, the forecast gets a lot colder, but how we get there is the question. Snow is likely to fall this weekend, but I’m still not ready to commit to how it comes at us, or how much might fall.

The European model continues to say we get an arctic front with a wave of low pressure along it Friday night and Saturday:

That blows up into a major storm across the northeast.

The GFS continues to show a different setup, and it starts with a system before that one. The GFS has a little better system showing up Thursday night and early Friday:

The model then is much weaker with the system diving in Friday night and Saturday, producing a swath of light snow across our region:

It still develops another system working in from the southwest for New Year’s Eve and Day:

That setup could be a healthy snow maker for us.

Here’s my take on it all:

  • Bitterly cold temps are very likely through next week. There is an increased threat of temps to go below zero on at least one occasion.
  • This will probably become the longest period of bitter cold we’ve had since 2013-14.
  • Wind chills have a chance to get into the danger category at some point.
  • It’s likely we will put some snow on the ground this weekend. It’s too early to tell how much we can get. That all depends on whether the southern stream gets involved.

Make it a great Wednesday and take care.

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