Winter Pushes Back In

Good Monday. We’re coming off a wild weather weekend here in the bluegrass state. We had everything from an EF-2 tornado to a 40 degree temp drop. That big drop in temperatures is the beginning of a major winter comeback across Kentucky and much of the country.

Our day is starting out with temps in the 20s across many areas. This will likely lead to some icy conditions, so please be careful with the early morning commute.

The cold front that caused all the issues is slowing down just to our east. This will allow for two waves of low pressure to work along it. The first will come late today into early Tuesday and the second moves through Tuesday night and Wednesday. These will throw moisture back into parts of the state and each wave will produce a light wintry mix.

Here’s how the GFS sees this evening…


We will take a look at the radar later today to see exactly how much moisture makes it into our region.

The next wave has a little more precipitation associated with it on the GFS…GFS 2

Again… we will have to wait to see exactly how much juice meets up with the cold air across Kentucky.

The models continue to eject a cutoff low out of the southwest later Thursday into Friday. Some are turning this into a decent little storm as it skirts to our south. The GFS shows a healthy snow just to the south and southeast of the state…GFS 3

It won’t take much of a northward movement to put parts of Kentucky in line for some action.

You are going to hear more and more people jumping on the big arctic attack for later this weekend into next week. The models continue to go hog wild with it and are trying to put the coldest anomalies right on top of us…

GFS 4That will become a headline maker across much of the country!

I will have another update later today. Enjoy your Monday and take care.

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107 Responses to Winter Pushes Back In

  1. Andy Rose says:

    I guess when something has been missing for 2 yrs when it does show it could be a considered a major comeback. Temps look to be starting out in the upper 30s in knox laurel area clouds must gave kept temps up

  2. MarkLex says:

    I know this is far out – but is there any indication as to how long this outbreak will last when it does finally arrive? I hope it’s not a boring dry frigid cold.

  3. Chris Mercer says:

    Wow. Glad this is not our forecast for today. But check out where it is for!

    340 AM CST MON JAN 14 2013






  4. Cosmokramer says:

    Temps hangin tough in Morgan County at 39*…..steady rain last night.

  5. sue(Flatwoods,KY) says:

    didnt get as cold here! Temp is 38 deg this morn! Really hoping for some SNOW soon!!!!!

  6. BubbaG says:

    ” The GFS shows a healthy snow just to the south and southeast of the state”. Since not KY, it might actually happen πŸ˜‰

    As our unrequited snow lovers know, good snow events have gone south, north, east and west of us since the great dusting of 98. If CB starts talking clippers, then we might have something in the 4″ range.

    Percentage chances for snow this winter beyond a few inches:

    Old school event (southern fed) = Less than 10%
    New school event (northern fed clipper) = Less than 50%

    Notice I am presuming we will get at least one event of at least 2″, so considering the trend over last and this winter, that IS being positive πŸ˜‰

    • LD says:

      I think you keep forgetting that little surprise snow you all had in northern Madison last winter (among other places), was supposed to be a coating and ended up being about 2-3″. Richmond was covered in white, everywhere, and by the time you drove south on 75 it ended about a mile before Berea. I drove around in Richmond for like 30 minutes, looking at how pretty the wet snow was hanging on to everything it touched.

  7. bjenks says:

    Thanks CB for the update. Looks like a pretty boring pattern setting in for the next week or two. Small snow chance for th Lou. area then FRIGID COLD…..Where is that clipper? Once the cold pulls down past Kentucky it will surpress any lows that come around the corner. Hope the bullseye of cold stays up around the lakes. This will at least give us a chance of an old school thumping. The map above is showing -19 (degrees below normal) for NKY. Highs in the teens below zero lows. Won’t that be fun? Have a good Monday everyone.

    • BengalFan says:

      IMO, whatever the models shows will BE WRONG!!!! The only thing it nails for long Range is RAIN!

      • KellyinLouisville says:

        I agree…a few days with highs around 32 or so and lows around 20. If we get that cold ill be surprised. All of the 10 day forecast for me have highs in the upper 30’s to low 40’s next week.

        • MarkLex says:

          That’s what confuses me about frigid cold suppressing the lows farther south. If frigid cold tends to do that, other areas get storms in those types of temps. How are those storms not suppressed? For example, it was 9 degrees and snowing in Billings, Montana and it wasn’t a clipper storm, it came from the Pacific. It didn’t get suppressed from the cold air.

  8. john says:

    Dang it, looks like it is shaping up to be a boring winter…will kentucky ever get another major snow??

  9. Tom in Rockcastle says:

    Latest GFS says Thursday snow storm gets sent out to sea, meaning no snow for anyone. However, the last NAM run looks interesting.

  10. Joey Wilson says:

    Yep, artic cold would mean suppression of any southern moisture. πŸ™ Hopefully, we get just enough cold to allow a southern low or two to add the necessary juice to it.

    • BubbaG says:

      That is why we probably need to count on an over performing clipper. Seems old school southern feds are low chance fro most of us now and clippers are our “new” school best chance (compared to “old” school).

  11. snow princess says:

    Another disappointment, nada, zilch last night and nothing tonight or tomorrow is forcasted. We are always a week away from nothing. Fooey on winter, come one spring.

  12. Coffeelady says:

    Thanks, Chris. Looks like we may see some ice or an icy mix here, looking at the maps…guess we will see. I really hope that winter will have pity on us snow lovers in KY at some point and give us good one. At least some of you in the north central and western parts of the states did get some a couple of weeks ago. Oh well, we can still use the cold to kill out a lot of these viruses and get the bug population in check. (One of those viruses that went through my entire family this weekend…nasty!) Have a great Monday, and thanks, Chris, for all you do.

  13. LD says:

    Judging by the readings on the mesonet site, the cold air is still settling in. The Madison site didn’t dip below freezing until 630 AM this morning and that’s in the northern part of the county. Looking at the temp spread right now (current, high, low), it seems like the cold air still hasn’t fully worked its way across the state yet.

    If this arctic outbreak will be indeed arctic (which is a term thrown around way too loosely sometimes), then awareness needs to start ramping up now among the govt. agencies and various organizations who’ll have to deal with the impact from it. If it will be as cold as the possibilities shown on the map, then we’ve got a very serious situation on our hands. Be you animal, vegetable, or mineral (pipes!), that is a killing cold.

    • Chris Mercer says:

      We haven’t seen true arctic air in many a year. The last time Lexington went to -10 or lower was February of 1996. I can’t find a gap that long in the records with at least one -10 temperature. The temp hasn’t even gone into the single digits now in almost two years (February 2011). If it even dips into the single digits above zero, it will be a shock to most peoples’ systems.

      • Todd says:

        Last winter I got to 12 degrees once in Frankfort, so far 17.5 this winter, parts of the desert south west are colder than that right now?

        • Chris Mercer says:

          Yes they are. I have had almost identical low temps in Lawrenceburg. 17 this winter and 12 last winter. I hit the low teens several times last winter.

          I think in 2010-2011 it went as low as negative 3.

  14. Bernard P. Fife says:

    Of Course it isn’t gonna get that cold. Only eye candy from the maps…I think the Heatmiser must’ve pulled some strings & is really behind all these “week away” maps.

  15. jeanette says:

    26 degrees here in Etown this morning. Love the cold. πŸ™‚ Would really love some snow to go with it.

    I still remember being around 10yrs old in Buffalo NY, winter 1978 I think. Those were the days. πŸ˜€

  16. Gerri says:

    I was looking an update on How you are doing with your health lol
    Hope you’re feeling better

  17. norman ferguson says:

    if id does get down into the -degrees its not only your water pipes animals and other things at risk most people forget about your car..see the anti-freeze after time breaks down and gets week or when you add water to your car your radiator that goes through your engine block to keep it cool..well if you have water in there the water freezes and expands and when this happens it causes alotta damage from a blown head gasket busted radiator even it could bust your block of your engine which will run ya any where from 800-1500 bucks for a motor and thats not even including the labor so ppl dont forget to get your anti-freeze tested just in case and even if it dont get that cold under freezing your still at a big risk…just figured to share this with ya

  18. Bill L says:

    Isn’t there any snow out there for us?

  19. WendyT says:

    I’m praying the arctic outbreak doesn’t happen.

  20. rolo says:

    weather channel been talking next week up for days now, but they say the COLDEST AIR might not get to far south, has it making it to midewest and NEAST and KY being borderline as far as the REAL COLD goes.

    will be intresting to see how far the COLD AIR gets next week. Im starting to worry that it put breaks on and as usual we be on the ole FENCE as BUBBA would say.

    I was gung ho last week bout OLD SCHOOL winter coming in FULL force, but im concern right now, just have wait see what things look like by mid week or so as to how far the COLD AIR is going get to the south.

  21. rolo says:

    12 more inxches rain here in s/se ky mean trouble and that what NWS is giving thru WED.

    too bad the air didnt get cold enough or we be in buisness. what ur seeing set up now is what u need ti get snow here, stalled out front and low pressures riding up it, but the AIR not going be cold enough.

    fact is its like trying hit the POWERBALL here as far as snow, my OLD SCHOOL feeling of last week has turn into a sad feeling.

    it was almost a PERFECT SET UP, but almost no good.

  22. rolo says:

    that supposed be 1-2 more inches,, yea 12 inches would been

  23. Bernard P. Fife says:

    No way it’s getting that cold here next week…bank on it. The Heatmiser will never allow it!

  24. BengalFan says:

    If you notice last week the maps showed artic air going down to almost the enitre US(except far east)..Noticed todays map that Chris posted, it looks like the cold dont go that far west and incldues all of the east. It is pushing it eastward, I’m not a Pro, but IMO..this NExt weekend, next week the cold may hit the north east and Canada only and not be that cold in Mid west and KY,,,,High in the 30’s for the next 7 days does not equal ARTIC COLD!

    We are told not to get upset at looking at what the models(possiblities) are just saying right now..But Reality…Its not going to be that big of a DEAL….

    I can’t wait to read the “headline maker across” = the North East. NOT IN KY!

  25. Ready4Snow says:

    Potent system from the Nam….Say’s hello western Ky…Gfs,Euro say’s what system….Can the Nam pull a hail mary???…Run’s today and tomorrow will be interesting..Eastern Kentuckian’s may wan’t too keep an eye on this one…

    • Which Way Is The Wind Blowing says:

      I am so threw with these models! I will stay in nowcast mode for the rest of the winter. The radar is the only thing I trust.

      • Ready4Snow says:

        Model’s sure are struggling….Look’s to me like were going into another pattern change and the model’s are having a hard time digesting all the signal’s…I guess if the model’s are showing something within 2 day’s we can believe it…

    • Ready4Snow says:

      Of course i’m talking about thrusday-friday…

  26. Cold Rain says:

    I read this blog daily. For a week Chris has been talking about Winter making a return in a big way. I don’t see what he’s talking about. I appreciate very much the effort makes for this blog. Yes it’s colder but it’s only seasonally cold. Highs in the 40’s in my neighborhood. Some rain then clear skies and 40’s. SO what’s the big deal? I live in Somerset, we haven’t had the ground even dusted so far this winter. Chris is very good at getting us excited with the thoughts of snow, but it’s always a week away and never develops. I’ve had enough hoping for snow, bring on Spring. Warm weather and SUNSHINE.

  27. rolo says:

    just look at radar loop, man so close but yet so far, if moisture gets north I say lexington and surrounding areas will get nasty folks. good slug moisdture heading this way.

    we here in S/SE KY going be just 4-5 degrees to warm.

  28. Todd says:

    The radar is looking impressive in Arkansas and it is moving n east toward KY, southern half of state might get a SURPRIZE Ice or snow event tonight?

    • Aaron C. says:

      Get ready….

      • Momom says:

        I just noticed the radar too…now that looks impressive and is moving NE….so, is there a possibility Central Ky may get some of that frozen precip. or is the air going to “dry” it all up by the time it gets here? Any comments from those who know more than me about weather (which is most people on this blog πŸ™‚

    • BubbaG says:

      For the most part (not 100%), we are okay as long as CB keeps using the term “wintry mix”, since almost always means mainly rain. Now, if CB defines areas with ice, mix and rain- then watch out.

      Still could get slick, but “mix” suggests nothing compared to just ice or even snow.

      I still find using the term “wintry” in winter is ironic.

      • Aaron C. says:

        Well…look at the setup. Cold air just pushed in. Upper air a lot colder in at least the northern half of the state. Southern fed, elongated system to the south, backend heavy on precip. Battleground is setting up in this area. How far north the ice line goes is going to be dictated by how much mixing goes on in the upper atmosphere. Surface temps in the southern half of the state are borderline, but the further north one goes, the lower the temps are. Setting up for ice/snow accumulation for at least the northern 1/3rd of the state, and perhaps a bit further south than that. Need to see the soundings to find out what’s going to happen here. Don’t know where to pull those up though.

        • BubbaG says:

          Not to mention the convention I noted is based on temps in their usual above 32 degrees. Even CB has mentioned the models have over-estimated the temperatures and currently we are below freezing- even south of the river in Richmond.

          Seems for something tonight the mets would have picked up on it by now and be reporting about potential advisories and warnings.

          Would be a bit of a delayed reaction if not.

          • Aaron C. says:

            Not when conditions are so borderline like they are right now. WWA would be likely if the setup were to verify; and considering they’re already verifying in TN, I don’t see how they may not be added later. Delayed reactions are not unheard of, you know. One precip gets in here, (the very front end of which I’m sure is some light virga, just by looking at the radar returns,) we’ll be able to get a better handle on NOWCasting the event….which looks like a possibility.

            • Aaron C. says:

              Lexington currently sits at 28. That’s not going to rise that much during the overnight, if at all. The predominant precip type there will either be ice or snow, I’m thinking….how much? That’s going to be the difference between advisory and no advisory…

        • MIke says:

          Here’s a long shot — any snow will stop at the northern edge of KY river.

  29. Aaron C. says:

    I had highlighted (to a couple of friends) January 15th as a date to see some action. We’ll see tonight.

  30. Weatherdadof2 says:

    Temps dropped to 33 in London/Corbin….radar looks like lots of sleet heading our way. Could be fun!! Just saw middle Tennessee now under WWA.

  31. rolo says:

    yep it get cooler once precip stasrts evap cooling, it is interesting if u ask me.

  32. Todd says:

    North central ky probably sees a Virgo storm out of this, just heard TWC say nothing reaching the ground yet in west tenn & south east Missouri, radar sure looks interesting though??

  33. rolo says:

    yea its a virga storm, it take while to get it mopist,

    u go by radar u say WOW!! but as usual there nothing to see here.

    • Aaron C. says:

      If it were all green, it surely wouldn’t be a virga storm would it? πŸ™‚ Will be funny to see if those areas in eastern KY that show green on the map later get actual rain while the folks in central/western KY get in on pink colors have virga…something doesn’t sound right about that..

    • Andy Rose says:

      its the old school virga storm LoL πŸ˜‰ j/k

  34. Tom in Rockcastle says:

    Well it is interesting, my weather gadgets tell me it is 32 degrees at my location with a dew point of 27 and 90% humidity. That folks is pretty good conditions for true moisture.

    • Aaron C. says:

      Yes, especially when they say anything above 70% humidity generally is good enough for precip to fall to the surface.

  35. MikeM says:

    I’d like to report a 1/2 inch icicle on my car. What a thing of beauty to admire, a wonderful gift provided by the frigid winter of Central Kentucky. I’m tormented by the decision I have to make of driving my car to make a NyQuil run and destroying this perfect creation nature has provided. My children will be devastated when they come home and the icicle is gone. Life is so cruel.

    • Aaron C. says:

      Sleep it off, Mike. When you wake back up, maybe there’ll be something more than just a half inch icicle to look at.

  36. Rachel says:

    Yeah… my thermometer hasn’t broken 30 degrees here in Lexington yet, and the weather channel (which has Lexington’s current temp at 29) says it will hit 36 degrees by 4 pm. I’m just not seeing a 7 degree jump in 2 hours… If it doesn’t, I’m curious what will come of the rain we’re supposed to get tonight… ice? Snow? I don’t know because truthfully I know nothing about weather except for what may be falling from the sky right now! But my migraine is telling me something’s developing out there.

  37. Danny says:

    Weather man says its going to snow…… Oops sorry my bad that darn Miranda Lambert song stuck in my head, my bad.

  38. Ben C says:

    29Β° at my house in SW Lexington and holding stedy. Humidity increasing. We shall see what happens. Could have a big big surprise by morning. We could here Homer Pyle say,SURPRISE. SURPRISE SURPRISE!!!

  39. Aaron C. says:

    Bluegrass region will need to be monitored this afternoon for trends in precip, temp, and humidity. This looks to be the prime spot for the highest skyfall; don’t see how moderate rain in Alabama heading straight for this area is just suddenly going to turn into virga….can’t say it won’t happen, but it would have to run into a brick wall for precip not to make it to the surface—-humidity values still look good for precip to fall in this area starting late afternoon into early evening.

  40. Carol says:

    I just realized that when I go to the radar then switch back to Chris, I always click on his nose. Hmmm? I smell snow coming!

  41. Wayne says:

    Well, I live in Hopkinsville. Radar shows us covered in pink. Not a drop of anything falling from the sky. Looks like it’s thinning out to the southwest, so I’m thinking we’ll miss out on anything again.

  42. Aaron C. says:

    Sleet/snow being observed in Jackson, TN by yours truly. πŸ™‚ Well, at least we can watch it snow live somewhere! πŸ™‚

  43. Andy Rose says:

    not all virga precip reaching the ground in knox county

  44. MikeM says:

    So what to make of Chris’s last tweet.

    • BubbaG says:

      Mets are not looking at the actual temperature, which seems too high in the models. Could be no harm no foul if the stuff is evaporating before hitting ground, but seems once the air is moist, a little frozen stuff might hit the ground.

      Ironic to have all that heavy rain and still perhaps get evaporation and not much on the ground.

  45. Rachel says:

    I want to know where in Lexington “Crackuweather” is located… because my thermometer went up to 32 about an hour ago and is now back to 29. It is definitely not 35.

  46. Aaron C. says:

    Some locations in KY will have snowfall tonight. Should be under an inch in most places, but it is looking possible.

  47. Teacher in B.G. says:

    Bus drivers in Bowling Green are reporting sleet/snow falling on their afternoon routes.

  48. Andy Rose says:

    I guess 24 for highs is the new arctic are unless thats just getting started

  49. Jon says:

    Sleet in London….32 degrees

  50. mikew says:

    Sleet mixed with rain and 32 in gray ky just southeast of corbin about 6 miles.ive never seen so many 32 degree rains in my life

  51. KeavyMan says:

    31Β° and sleeting with flurries here in Keavy. Car has a slight icy touch to it.

    Come chat the sleet/rain/flurries in the chat room.

  52. Tom in Rockcastle says:

    I dont know, I have a dew point and temp that is nearly identical at 31 degrees, humidity at 90 percent, a fully saturated ground that cannot hold another drop of water, but yet being robed by verga despite radar returns displaying moderate precip over my head. Everything about that setup screams moisture falling from the sky, everything but reality. All I can do is blame it on the dome.

    • Tom in Rockcastle says:

      Of course as soon as I post that the sky has opened up, with sleet snow and rain. Amazing rain at 31, the upper atmosphere must be warmer than the lower layer. Yeah only in Kentucky do we deal with this junk.

  53. Chris Mercer says:

    This is the biggest storm I’m ever had in Lawrenceburg—if you count Virga!

  54. bob says:

    kNOTt nothing here.

  55. Aaron C. says:

    Diamond dust coming down thick outside here in Rich. Ice pellets, snow, and sleet. Roads becoming covered and interestate traffic is slowing down.

    Pretty to look at. Be safe on the roads folks!

  56. Anthony says:

    Heaviest bands are skirting off immediately to the south and east of Lexington.

    I’m not mad, I’m not mad, I’m not mad….

  57. Andy Rose says:

    34 degree rain = the new winter thats what we have in knox

  58. mikew says:

    30 and rain in gray ky at 6:48 unbelievable!

  59. Chris Mercer says:

    Looks like this one is staying south of the KY river. We don’t have to hear from our Richmond friends about being the center of the dome for this one πŸ™‚

  60. Mark says:

    Some moderate sleet earlier in Nashville TN. Untreated roads had some white on them just before dusk, a bit slushy feel on the drive home. Tree limbs and holly leaves have a few beads of ice.

    I have option to arrive later at work tomorrow as there is chance of more freezing rain during early am which could then become all rain later. Until then, time for some more Robitussin, but thankful to be improving.

  61. teacherT says:

    6:00 and snowing at my son’s house in Madison Co. Drove back toward Estill and when I crossed at Drowning Creek, sleeting big time. Sleet has just about stopped. What else is to come tonight

  62. Wes says:

    35 in Benham…the low forecast by the NWS out of Jackson is 38…

  63. Weatherdadof2 says:

    Why does NWS say that London’s temp will rise to 34 by 9pm when the temp is continuing to fall, along with sleet and frz rain? Currently 31 degrees.

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