Our weekend snow system is now coming to a close and the accumulation numbers coming in so far are well in line with the previous forecasts. Areas east of the Mississippi River seeing 2-4 inches of snow, with localized 5-inch amounts, and 4-6 inches west of the river. Here in the Quad City metro, we are well in line with the 2-4 inch range. Don’t put that snow removal equipment away just yet though, another accumulating snow is on the way in 48 hours.
Our next system will have access to a better supply of moisture coming directly from the Gulf of Mexico. This will be one of two systems to watch for this week. The track of the Tuesday/Wednesday system isn’t quite set in stone yet, but some general agreement is becoming clearer, showing that we will be gearing up for another shoveling snow. Exact amounts will be clarified in the next 24 hours.
The track of this system is all too familiar, a track that many systems have taken so far this winter season that keeps us on the colder side favoring snow as opposed to rain or freezing rain. While some areas to the south of the Quad Cities will be vulnerable to that mixed precipitation come Tuesday and Wednesday, the majority of the area will once again see snow.
Moisture from the Gulf of Mexico will begin streaming northward into the region by Tuesday evening. As an area of low pressure strengthens from Oklahoma and heads towards Missouri, snow will begin to break out and move in before sunrise Wednesday.
Right now the heaviest snows will fall in areas that experienced the higher accumulations with this weekend’s system, favoring central, northern, and northeast Iowa. Lighter amounts are expected towards the Illinois side of I80 at this time. However, any change in track could shift that heavier axis of snow further north or further south. Something we’ll be watching in the next 24 hours.
One of the things we take into consideration when forecasting a storm’s track is what lies on the ground. With our fresh round of snow, the amount of snow cover over the region is now greater than what it was a few days ago. Generally speaking, areas of low pressure like to follow these snowfall gradients. If that thinking holds true, a more southern route for this next storm system would be favored.
Storm system #2 will be arriving by next weekend where a mix of rain and snow looks likely. This system may take a more northerly track, giving us a better chance for rain as opposed to snow, however, the Tuesday/Wednesday system will also play a big part in where this specific storm goes. One thing is for sure, the storm for next weekend looks rather potent, with heavy precipitation AND strong winds.
Curious as to how far we are from the snowiest period on record for the Quad Cities? We are getting closer! Just a little over a foot of additional snowfall is all we need at this point.
Meteorologist Andrew Stutzke