Snow showers a common companion this week

Flurries and squalls will be on and off this week as cold winds shift over the Great Lakes. [Photo by Gwen Moshier]

Lake Flakes

The weather has taken a wintry turn over the weekend and that trend will continue this week.

Areas of lake effect snow this morning are being enhanced by a subtle wind shift from a weak disturbance aloft. This boundary has been sinking south since the overnight and is now focused mainly across the southern half of the region.

As the morning goes on, the snow will continue to sink south and dissipate as drier air moves in. A few areas could still see some heavier bursts at time with another inch or so accumulating.

Flurries will still be possible through the afternoon, but they should become much less widespread. A few glimpses of sunshine will even be possible here and there.

Temperatures will change little today, with most areas only adding a couple degrees to the morning lows. This will result in highs a couple degrees on either side of 30 degrees.

Winds will be from the northwest at 5-10 mph with gusts to 25 mph. This could cause a few areas of blowing and drifting snow.

The wind will gradually turn back to the west-southwest tonight, bringing flurries and squalls off Lake Erie back into the region. The heaviest snows will be confined to areas west of I-390, but localized amounts of 2 or 3 inches will be possible tonight throughout the Finger Lakes. Most areas should see periods of snow with accumulations up to an inch.

The lake effect will focus on the northern half of the region on Tuesday with southwest winds. Flurries and squalls are most likely in the morning before tapering off some for the afternoon. Accumulation will again be highly localized, but generally on the order of an inch or two.

Temperatures will start Tuesday morning in the mid and upper 20s, with highs reaching the low 30s.

finger lakes weather 7-day forecast monday january 18 2021
This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected. Click to enlarge.

Snow Showers Continue

Snow will continue to be possible throughout much of the week, often subject to the shifting winds that are driven by weak impulses of energy moving through the region.

One such wind shift will turn winds to the northwest for Wednesday, allowing flurries and squalls off Lake Ontario to enter the Finger Lakes.

Much like today and tomorrow, the lake effect will not be terribly well organized, so the snow will be on and off and spread across most of the region. Localized accumulations are likely, but widespread and/or significant amounts are not expected.

The northwest winds will bring in a shot of cold air with highs Wednesday only in the upper teens and low 20s.

The snow will gradually dissipate late Wednesday with quiet conditions into early Thursday. Wednesday night will be cold, but clouds and an increasing south wind will prevent it from dropping too far. Most areas should end up in the teens with pockets of single digits.

A disturbance will pass by to the north Thursday afternoon, which could spread some snow showers into our region. The south winds ahead of this system will push highs into the mid 30s.

Areas of lake effect will again be likely Friday into Saturday behind this system as winds turn back to the northwest. It is too early to say too much about how well organized this may become or its exact timing and location.

Temperatures Friday will remain in the low and mid 30s, but Saturday should drop back into the low and mid 20s.

Quieter weather looks possible Sunday and Monday before a stronger weather system targets the region Tuesday. There is far too much uncertainty for speculating details of this system, but it should only have a minor to moderate impact, unless perhaps it ends up as an icy mix.

Temperatures will remain cool next week with highs generally in the 20s. Those temperatures will of course open our region to at least the possibility for more periods of lake effect snow.

More Information:

» Finger Lakes Weather Radar

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finger lakes weather 7-day forecast monday january 18 2021This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected.

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Follow Meteorologist Drew Montreuil:
Meteorologist Drew Montreuil has been forecasting the weather in the Finger Lakes region since 2006 and has degrees in meteorology from SUNY Oswego (B.S. with Honors) and Cornell (M.S.). Drew and his wife have four young boys. When not working or playing with the boys, he is probably out for a run through the countryside.