Playing It Safe

Snowfall Forecast Iowa

There is still very much confusion with how much snow we are going to see later on this evening. This morning, rain is currently falling across the southeast portion of the state. Eventually by this evening a secondary low will develop with a pressure of 984mb. This secondary low will be the one to determine just how much snow we will see. So far we have seen snowfall projections ranging from 0 to 14 inches.


National Weather Service Snowfall Forecast

So far this morning, the National Weather Service and the news agencies are erring on the side of caution which is the right choice to do. However, this set up will closely be monitored throughout the day as things could quickly change.

NAM Snowfall Totals

NAM Snowfall Totals

Starting off with the latest 12z NAM run, it has much of eastern Iowa and south central Iowa receiving 3″ to 4″ of snow.

WRF Snowfall Totals

WRF Snowfall Totals

The higher resolution 12z 4km WRF has the same area receiving snowfall with the only difference is it is outputting isolated higher totals. The WRF is outputting a general 3″ to 5″ with some areas getting up to 7″ of snow.

ECMWF Snowfall Totals

ECMWF Snowfall Totals

The 00z ECMWF is similar to the NAM and WRF, however, it has most of the snow along the Mississippi river with snowfall totals of only 1″ to 4″.

GFS 12z Snowfall Totals

GFS 12z Snowfall Totals

The 12z GFS is also very similar to the ECMWF. It has light accumulations of 1″ to 4″, with most of it along the Mississippi river. While the models are starting to come into better agreement this morning, there are still a lot of uncertainties. What does look to be the case is that eastern Iowa will be the ones to see this snowfall ranging from 1″ to possibly 6″ depending how things set up this afternoon.

Wind ForecastEven if we do not see a lot of snow this evening, the winds will be howling out there tomorrow morning. Wind gusts will be near 40mph. Because of this, any snow we do receive, will have the potential to reduce visibilities. A winter weather advisory may be issued later on this afternoon because of this blowing snow potential.

As we stated earlier, this set up is a very fluid situation so you will want to continue to check back here for all of the very latest details.


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:

(2) Comments

  1. Just a helpful suggestion from a teacher..not criticizing at all…when you want to say the national weather service is airing on some point you mean the word erring …err is to make a mistake ( as in error). So if they are using caution in their prediction they are not erring on… Airing is what is done to get mustiness out of clothing or a house…I appreciate your website and trust your comments! Thanks for your hard work! Sincerely, Cary

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