Have a safe holiday (if you celebrate)
Travel trouble for the Midwest
Kevin Roth, Lead Meteorologist, The Weather Channel
Nov. 24, 2010 5:18 am ET
Midwesterners will have to endure the worst travel conditions based on the weather in the country today.
Snow moves through the northern Plains, Minnesota, northern Wisconsin and northern Michigan today hampering road and air traffic. The snow should not arrive in Minneapolis until midday and could be mixed with sleet or freezing rain at the onset.
A wintry mix of freezing rain, freezing drizzle with some sleet and snow is possible in northern Nebraska, southeastern South Dakota, extreme southern Minnesota, Iowa, northeastern Missouri and west-central Illinois during the morning hours. By afternoon the precipitation should end in Nebraska and South Dakota and change over to rain in southern Minnesota, Iowa, Missouri and Illinois.
Rain spreads through the rest of Illinois and into southern Wisconsin, Indiana, southwest Michigan, western Ohio and Kentucky during the afternoon. The combination of the rain and low clouds could cause some delays at the airports in Chicago and Milwaukee.
Showers and thunderstorms are expected in Missouri, southern Illinois, western Kentucky and southeastern Kansas during the afternoon and evening hours. Thunderstorms could turn severe over southwestern Missouri and southeastern Kansas producing damaging wind gusts, some hail and tornadoes.
Very cold arctic air will continue to keep temperatures cold in the western Dakotas and western Nebraska with highs only in the single digits and teens this afternoon. High temperatures should reach the 20s to lower 30s in eastern sections of the Dakotas and Nebraska and in Minnesota and northwest Iowa.
High temperatures reach the 30s to lower 40s in the remainder of Iowa, Wisconsin, Michigan and northern portions of Ohio, Indiana and Illinois. In the Ohio Valley, northern Kentucky and eastern Missouri high temperatures should be in the middle 40s to middle 50s. Elsewhere high temperatures should reach the upper 50s to upper 60s this afternoon.
A storm system moving across the northern Plains triggers scattered showers and thunderstorms across eastern Oklahoma, northern and western Arkansas and northeastern Texas today. Some of the thunderstorms could become severe producing damaging wind gusts, isolated tornadoes and possibly some hail.
Other showers and isolated thunderstorms are possible in central and western Tennessee, northern Mississippi and northern Alabama as moisture flows northward out of the Gulf of Mexico toward the storm in the Plains. A few stray showers are also possible along a warm front in central Alabama, all but southwestern Georgia and southern South Carolina.
Windy conditions are forecast in eastern and northwest Texas and in western Oklahoma today. Sustained winds should be between 15 and 25 mph with gusts over 40 mph, especially in northwest Texas and western Oklahoma.
High temperatures hold in the upper 50s to middle 60s in North Carolina, South Carolina and northern Georgia.
In northwestern and western Texas, northern Oklahoma, northern Arkansas, Tennessee and northern portions of Mississippi and Alabama high temperatures should reach the upper 60s to middle 70s this afternoon.
Elsewhere high temperatures should be in the upper 70s to upper 80s today.
The biggest travel trouble in the Northeast will be wind from New York City north and eastward through the remainder of eastern New York and New England. Sustained winds of 15 to 25 mph and a few gusts over 40 mph are expected. The winds may be strong enough to cause some rough driving conditions for high profile vehicles. Delays should be expected at the airports around New York City and in Boston due to the winds.
The remainder of the region should have a mostly sunny and breezy day.
High temperatures should range from the middle 20s to middle 30s in northern New York and northern New England to the upper 40s to middle 50s from Pennsylvania and New Jersey southward to Virginia.
Snow winds down in eastern Montana and eastern Wyoming by this afternoon with additional accumulations of 1 to 4 inches and a few high spots of 6 inches. Snow showers will continue throughout the day in and around the mountains of Colorado with accumulations of 6 to 12 inches expected.
Lingering flurries and snow showers in western Wyoming and the mountains of Utah and northern Arizona should not accumulate more than an inch or two today.
Strong winds are expected in southeastern Wyoming, eastern Colorado and eastern New Mexico today. Sustained winds of 15 to 30 mph and gusts over 40 mph are expected.
High pressure builds into northern Utah tonight setting up a Santa Ana wind event in Southern California late tonight and Thursday morning. This event with be a weak one with sustained winds of 20 to 30 mph and gusts over 45 mph in and below passes and canyons.
The arctic chill continues in Montana, eastern Idaho and northern Wyoming with high temperatures ranging from minus 5 to plus 10 this afternoon.
It remains cold in the Northwest and the remainder of the mountain states with high temperatures this afternoon reaching the teens to lower 30s this afternoon. Seattle and Portland could struggle just to get to freezing today.
The warmest temperatures across the region should be found in southern Arizona and southern New Mexico where they will be in the middle 50s to middle 60s this afternoon.