Cold start to March, snow possible in Virginia

Temperatures likely well below average for the start of March

FORECAST: Rain/snow chances through the weekend

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - The month of March will likely come in like a lion for much of the country, including right here in Virginia.

First things first... there is a First Alert Weather Day posted for pre-dawn hours Friday, as there could be a light wintry mix over parts of Virginia north of I-64> IF there is some, no accumulations are expected except for perhaps a light coating on grassy areas Northern Virginia. Metro Richmond should be just light rain that could have a sleety mix at times before sunrise Friday. Here is the GFS model map for late Thursday night:

Looking beyond the next few days, colder than average temperatures are likely and there is potential for a round of snow in the Richmond metro area Sunday or Sunday night, although model guidance has been HIGHLY variable on timing and actual chances for snow vs rain. For now we’ll just need to monitor. There remains model discrepancy, and the most consistent EURO model shows just rain.

Regardless, it will be getting cold by early next week, as the jetstream shifts south, it will allow a surge of cold air to plunge out of Canada and into much of the U.S.

As the jet stream sinks south, it allows a surge of cold air to bring well below average temperatures to much of the U.S.
As the jet stream sinks south, it allows a surge of cold air to bring well below average temperatures to much of the U.S.

The jetstream is the fast moving “river” of air high in the sky that controls the movement of air masses and directs the path of low pressure (storm systems).

The latest Euro model forecast, is relatively warm and produces almost all rain in Central VA, while the GFS is showing a few inches of wet snow Monday morning. Hree is the latest Euro for Sunday...just rain.

Here is the GFS model

We are still 4+ days away from the potential storm and we’ll be watching closely.

As noted as well, some parts of Virginia could see a little light snow or mix late Thursday night during pre-dawn hours Friday from a weaker system than the late weekend storm. Only a very light accumulation will be possible mainly over northern VA.

Keep tuned to NBC12 on TV, online, and on the app for updates

Copyright 2019 WWBT. All rights reserved.