The southwest winds kicked in late last night and the arctic air to start the week was in full retreat. Temperatures climbed to their warmest since New Year’s Day.
ON THE RISE
For the first time in over a week we started the day above 20-degrees in central Indiana and Wednesday afternoon was the warmest since the first of the year. The Arctic branch of the jet stream has pulled back allowing a flood of milder air to sweep into the state. By late day, the temperature climbed to 48° in Indianapolis, the normal high for March 6th!
The warm up is a product of a jet stream that is cutting in from the upper Midwest and one that carries fast moving low pressure’s or lows along them. These fast movers are called “clipper” in reference to the fast moving ships that once sailed the Atlantic in the mid 1800’s. One such clipper is headed south tonight and ahead of it, milder temperatures.
The rest of the night will include increasing clouds, southwest breezes and a low temperature near freezing or well above the normal low of 21-degrees.
COLD FRONT COMING
The fast moving low will drop into the state early Thursday with a cold front in tow. The low is limited in moisture but could kick out a few sprinkles and flurries during the day. The winds are set to shift northwest around noon with cooler air then funneling back into the state.
BIG CLIPPER BUT SNOW CHANCE?
While the weak clipper Thursday dives harmlessly off to the southeast Thursday night attention turns to a more impressive one entering the Upper-Midwest Early Friday. This low has much better upper-air support, meaning the jet stream will fuel this low in producing more substantial snowfall. Ahead of the storm winter storm watches have been hoisted from Minnesota through Iowa where snowfall could potentially reach 8″ in some locations by Friday night. This low looks impressive and could sent some snow our way entering the weekend.
There are three winter storm tracks that impact central Indiana, “Clippers” “Pan-handle” and “Gulf Coast” lows. Two of those tracks are being tracked and play a large role in our weekend forecast.
We are following the trends off overnight machines that continued to show a storm track to our south limiting the amounts of snow here. The bulk of the first low, falls west but there are still many questions as to the low track, many of which may still not be answered until Friday morning. The wrinkle in tonight’s outlook, is that the low transfers power to a southern, Gulf Coast low sometime Saturday. The new low is now a feature that could send significant snowfall totals across Kentucky and up into southern Indiana. Stay tuned, the plot is thickening in the weekend snowfall forecast and more information will be available as early as tonight. Join me for an update tonight at 10:30pm and again at 11:15pm on Fox59.