Cold retreats tonight but eyes weekend return

finger lakes weather forecast tuesday january 11 2022
Temperatures will make it into the 30s Wednesday and Thursday, but even colder air will be possible this weekend. [Photo by Gwen Moshier]

Mid-Week Warming

By far the coldest air yet this season is entrenched across the region this morning.

Combined with some lingering gusty northwest winds, predawn wind chills have been as low as -20 for much of the region. Wind Chill Advisories will remain in place until the late morning as temperatures only creep upward.

There are also a few streamers of light lake effect snow lingering across the region. As usual with weak lake effect, it is difficult to see it on the radar, but it mostly seems to be near Lake Ontario and across the eastern half of the region.

The snows will shrink and retreat toward Lake Ontario through the morning hours, leaving behind a coating to perhaps locally an inch or so of accumulation. However, with the cold air, road salt will have little impact on road conditions, so be prepared for some slick roads.

Sunshine will increase this afternoon as high pressure passes through and the lake effect dissipates. Mid 10s will spread across the western half of the region, but areas east of Cayuga Lake will struggle to get beyond 10 degrees. Many of the higher elevations will get stuck in the single digits.

As the high moves east, south winds will pick up this evening and quickly increase to 10-15 mph. Temperatures will warm, possibly even reaching 30 degrees in the Rochester area by dawn Wednesday. Most of the northern and western Finger Lakes will be into the mid 20s, while mid and upper teens hold on in the southeastern Finger Lakes.

There is some question of how much sun will be available tomorrow as a front slowly approaches from the northwest. The further south, the better the chances for sun tomorrow. Northern areas may even see a few flurries before sunset.

Temperatures will top out in the mid and upper 30s tomorrow. If more sun than expected works its way out, a few places could hit 40 degrees.

Snow showers will very gradually increase Wednesday night into Thursday as the front crawls south. Overnight lows will be around 30 degrees, with highs Thursday in the mid 30s. Snow amounts between Wednesday night and Thursday will be an inch or less.

finger lakes weather 7-day forecast tuesday january 11 2022
This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected. Click to enlarge.

Cold Comes Back

The front will clear through the region sometime Thursday night or early Friday. Temperatures will be sent into a decline, going from near 20 Friday morning to the mid teens Friday afternoon. From there, it will be into the subzero regions Friday night.

At this time, Friday night and Saturday night both look colder than it was this morning. More places will fall below zero, and some areas could fall well below zero. Temperatures in the negative teens are not out of the question in colder pockets.

Moderate winds will blow on Friday and Friday night. Wind chills will drop below zero Friday afternoon and could go as low as -30 degrees Friday night. Wind Chill Advisories are likely, and a Wind Chill Warning may be needed for the eastern counties.

The models sometimes overdo extreme cold this far out in the forecast cycle, so I would not be surprised to see a small adjustment upward over the next couple of days. Regardless, it will be quite cold.

Conditions do not look great for lake effect, but a few snow showers are likely Friday as the front moves through, and into Saturday with the limited lake response. Highs Saturday will most likely end up in the single digits.

High pressure will pass through early Sunday, leading to plenty of sunshine and southerly winds taking over. Temperatures should rebound from the cold start to reach the 20s. Some light snow may move in on Monday with highs working into the 30s.

Temperatures are likely to continue to bounce up and down over the next couple weeks, either being near or well below average. Precipitation, however, looks minimal, with only some occasional light snow showers expected at this time.

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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.