Déjà vu

48hourforecastsnowfallIt’s as if we have experienced this just not long ago. Yet another winter storm is taking aim on Iowa, that wasn’t forecasted a few days ago. When people in Iowa went to bed on Friday night, they expected the rain that many areas received today, but what they didn’t expect, was to wake up to hear another winter storm will move into the area on Sunday.

For most of the week, weather models showed warmer temperatures for the weekend with the chance of showers and thunderstorms. As we experienced in our last storm though, this can change very rapidly, and that’s exactly what happened. The storm system that is set to move out of the the Colorado, Kansas, and Nebraska area was originally thought to move East and eventually Northeast and track over the Eastern part of Iowa. Once again, the storm system had something else in mind. The track of this storm shifted South overnight Friday and through the day on Saturday. This now means the storm will track to the South of the Iowa and Missouri border which usually means a band of moderate to heavy snow will impact Iowa.

The main event for this system looks to be during the daytime on Sunday and into the night time hours. Western Iowa will see a mixture of rain, snow, and freezing rain changing to all snow Sunday morning. Central Iowa will see light rain mixing with snow around the noon hour and quickly changing to all snow by 1 pm. The snow will become heavy at times, especially when the snow initially starts to fall. During the periods of the heaviest snowfall we will see snowfall rates of 1” to 2” per hour with possible thunder snow. Another big concern will be the strong winds with the snow. Winds on Sunday and Sunday night will be sustained from the North at 20 mph to 30 mph with gusts reaching as high as 35 mph at times. This will create a problem with blowing and drifting snow, and limited visibilities especially when the snow is falling.

So the big question remains, how much snow will fall?  Areas of central Iowa will see the heaviest accumulations, which will range from 6” to 9” with some locally higher amounts. Areas in Western Iowa can plan on 2” to 4” of snow with the lightest amounts falling in the Southeastern part of the state where 1” to 3” is expected.

A winter weather advisory is in effect from 7 am to 7 pm Sunday for Western Iowa and a winter storm watch is in effect for Central and Northeast Iowa from Sunday afternoon through Monday morning. Make sure to stay tuned to Iowachase.com for updates.

Zach Sharpe

My name is Zach Sharpe. I am the president and forecaster for the Iowa Storm Chasing Network. You can find me on Twitter @Stormchaserzach and on Facebook at: https://www.facebook.com/stormchaserzach/

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