Lighter rain and freezing rain tonight

<B>(Monday Evening January 28, 2013)</B> there will be some areas of light rain or freezing rain over central New York tonight. The greatest threat for any frozen precipitation will be east and northeast of Syracuse. Temperatures will gradually warm during the day tomorrow. There could be some spotty freezing drizzle early in the day with a few rain showers in the afternoon.
Temperatures have been slow to rise today and that means freezing rain could still be an issue tonight, especially east of Syracuse.  Luckily, the precipitation that falls tonight will be lighter and spottier than what moved through the area earlier in the day.  Although Syracuse’s temperature may rise above freezing this evening it may not stay there overnight.  A weak area of low pressure will slip by to our north overnight.  This will allow an equally weak cold front to drop south through the region.  We should loose ground temperature-wise overnight and end up close to freezing again by morning.  That could lead to some patchy freezing drizzle in and around the Syracuse area for the morning commute.

While all this is happening overnight, a new area of low pressure will be making up over the middle part of the country bringing record warmth and even strong thunderstorms to that part of the country Tuesday.  Even though the storm will still be quite distant from us tomorrow, we expect temperatures to rise.  An approaching warm front, the leading edge to the record warmth, will mean more numerous showers around here later in the day.

Central New York will get into an unseasonably warm air mass for Wednesday. The aforementioned storm will continue to spin up and track into the Great Lakes with a cold front dropping from the low into the Ohio Valley. Very strong southerly winds aloft will develop ahead of the low in the counter-clockwise flow around the low. Aloft, the winds will be rather strong (50 mph plus) later Tuesday night into Wednesday.  Although all those winds won’t translate down to the ground, it will be quite windy around here Wednesday, especially over higher elevations.

Those strong southerly winds will transport very mild air into central New York.  In fact, we think we have a good chance of reaching or exceeded the record high of 54 degrees.  However, this unseasonably warm air won’t be with us long.  We mentioned a cold front earlier and by Wednesday evening it will be sweeping across New York state from west to east.  It will be accompanied by showers and even a rumble of thunder. 

Much colder air will arrive Thursday on the heels of a gusty west winds.  With a cold and moist air mass moving over the Great Lakes, heavier lake effect snow may fall. Right now it appears the heaviest snow Thursday will fall east of Lake Ontario.  That means for most of central New York it will just be a blustery and colder day Thursday.  IF lake effect snow was going to impact the Syracuse area it would have to come Thursday night or Friday as our computer models suggest a switch in the winds to more of a northwesterly direction.
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