Period of snow tonight amidst warm end to 2021

finger lakes weather forecast tuesday december 28 2021 increasing clouds snow tonight above average temperatures
A quick inch or two of snow is likely this evening, possibly with some sleet and freezing rain mixing in late. [Photo by Gwen Moshier]

Quick Snow, Some Ice This Evening

The weather system responsible for the wintry mix yesterday and last night has departed, and the next system is still to our west.

Between the two systems, some sunshine will make an appearance this morning, mostly for areas south of I-90. Thin clouds will start to move in before noon, and thicker clouds will take over for the afternoon.

The morning sunshine will help nudge temperatures into the upper 30s and low 40s by the midday hours. From there, they will remain steady through the mid-afternoon before dropping as the sun sets.

Snow ahead of a warm front to our south will quickly spread across the region early this evening. The snow will be widespread and will come down at a moderate rate for a couple of hours.

By 10 PM, the snow may mix with sleet or freezing rain across the southern half of the region as warmer air aloft noses into the area. Freezing rain will be most likely over higher elevations in the Southern Tier.

Snow and sleet accumulations of around two inches are expected south of the Thruway, with an inch or so near and north of the Thruway. A localized glazing of ice will also be possible. Given the chance for the glaze of ice, it would not be surprising to see another round of Winter Weather Advisories issued by the National Weather Service.

Temperatures overnight will sit in the low 30s and precipitation should end before sunrise. Wednesday will be a cloudy but quiet day with highs in most areas reaching the low 40s.

finger lakes weather 7-day forecast tuesday december 28 2021
This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected. Click to enlarge.

Mild Until Sunday

Clouds Wednesday night will keep temperatures mostly in the mid 30s overnight. The next system will approach on Thursday and should track directly overhead Thursday evening.

All the precipitation associated with this system should fall as rain. Showers will enter the area from the southwest Thursday afternoon and persist into Thursday night. Rainfall amounts over a quarter-inch are unlikely.

Temperatures on Thursday will be just a touch cooler with highs hovering around 40 degrees. Overnight temperatures will mostly be in the upper and mid 30s but should drop to the low 30s just before sunrise Friday.

Outside of this morning, Friday will have the best chance for some sunshine as we close out 2021, though there will also be plenty of clouds mixing in. No precipitation is expected.

While most of this week will have wind speeds under 5 mph, Friday will see a slight increase with southeast winds of 5-10 mph. The southerly component to the wind, along with the partial sunshine, should push temperatures toward the mid 40s.

Winds will increase Friday night into Saturday, remaining from the southeast. A few gusts could exceed 30 mph, particularly over the higher elevations east of Cayuga Lake into Central New York.

Rain will move in after midnight Friday night and continue into Saturday morning. Some areas could exceed a half-inch of rainfall. As of now, the afternoon looks less rainy, but precipitation will return late Saturday night into early Sunday as a cold front moves through.

Ahead of the front, temperatures could breach 50 degrees Saturday night, but should be falling by sunrise Sunday. By the mid to late morning, it should be cold enough for rain showers to turn to flurries, and by the afternoon, temperatures should be in the 20s with a stiff northwest wind.

This will set up a cold Monday with scattered lake effect snows. Temperatures will quickly moderate next week with more 40s possible before another cold front late in the week.

More Information:

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finger lakes weather 7-day forecast tuesday december 28 2021
This 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.

2 Responses

  1. Nancy Cusumano

    We will be driving north from MS this weekend. We had been planning on arriving in Ithaca on Sunday but have seen predictions of 3-7” of snow on Sunday and do not want to be towing our camper through that. Do you think we should leave a day early and arrive home on Saturday? I don’t see much about snow on Sunday in your forecast.
    Thank you!

    • Meteorologist Drew Montreuil

      Hi Nancy,

      Heavy snow looks very unlikely on Sunday. The main belt of snow from this system looks like it will track through the Upper Great Lakes and far north into Canada, while we just see some snow showers on the backside of the cold front with little if any accumulation.

      Safe travels!