ROCKFORD (WREX) – A snowy week ahead, with the first system moving in later tonight.
Monday morning is delivering cloudy and dry conditions. That trend continues through much of the afternoon before changes move in. A few areas are seeing some patchy fog, so if you’re traveling this morning, be aware of that potential as you head out the door. While the skies may look ominous right now, precipitation does hold off until this evening.
Models continue to suggest dry weather even through the evening commute. By 6 PM, parts of the Stateline will see the first snowflake or sleet pellet fly. A winter weather advisory goes into effect this afternoon for Boone, Lee, Ogle, and Winnebago Counties. Stephenson County will be under a winter storm warning through the duration of this event. This system is still across the Intermountain West, but will slowly creep into the Great Plains later today.
The snowfall begins to pick up during the latter half of the evening. Models are suggesting warmer air sneaking in just above the Earth’s surface as this system evolves, meaning a wintry mix is likely across much of the Stateline. Areas south of the Rockford, specifically Lee and Ogle Counties, could see the greatest ice accretion. Along the immediate border with Southern Wisconsin, as much as 6″ or more is possible. Between Rockford and Dixon, 3″ to 6″ is most likely. With the potential for freezing rain, these totals could be cut down drastically by the time this system moves out of the region.
Wind will pick up as the afternoon and evening progress. In the past, this has meant the potential for blowing snow. This will not be a concern with this event as the snow-to-liquid ratios will be around 10:1 (meaning for every 10″ of snow, there is 1″ of liquid equivalence). Unlike the powdery and dry snow the Stateline has experienced in the past month, this will be the kind of snow that is nearly perfect for snowball fights.
Roads will likely become snow-covered overnight. Expect treacherous driving for Tuesday morning. The 13 Weather Authority will continue to keep a close eye on this system as it evolves.