Light Snow Chances…A Look Ahead To Christmas

Watch WISN 12 News at 5, 6, & 10 p.m. for the latest on the weekend forecast!

Thank you for stopping by the Weather Watch 12 blog! Just a reminder that yesterday’s blog entry introduced a weather pattern theory that we will be following this winter and into next Spring in the blog. To read more please see yesterday’s entry!

Now onto the weather for this weekend and a look into the week of Christmas. Starting tonight and continuing into probably Monday we will be impacted by a couple of weak disturbances. This will provide us with a few stray flurries into early Friday, followed by flurries or snow showers Friday afternoon. A period of light snow could bring minor snow accumulations to the area Friday Night into Saturday. The wind direction for much of our snow will be off Lake Michigan, but early on the temperatures will not be quite cold enough to produce true lake effect snow. We will keep a close eye on the possibilities of lake effect snow or even some lake enhancement heading into the weekend.

The period of light snow into early Saturday will be produced by a storm slipping by to our south. The forecast surface map below is valid for Saturday morning. The little ‘**’ symbols on the map represent snow, and in our case light snow. The dashed black line over Lake Michigan is a trough, which helps to lift the air, and in turn produce a little light snow.

If you look farther northwest, say just north of Montana you will notice an area of low pressure. This ‘clipper’ storm will drop into the Great Lakes and affect Milwaukee on Sunday. This storm could bring us another round of light snow with some small accumulations possible. Behind the storm another brief punch of colder air.

After this ‘clipper’ slips by the focus will turn squarely on the Christmas holiday. As discussed in yesterday’s blog, according to the theory the ‘LRC’, there should be a large storm system in the nation’s mid-section around the 23rd or 24th. This would correspoond to the storm that occurred back on October 20. Since the jet stream strengthens and shifts south during the winter months it will be interesting to see how this version of the storm forms and moves.

Below is the forecast from the 18Z GFS(Global Forecast System), one of the models we use as guidance when making forecasts. This particular run of the model keeps the large storm well south of Milwaukee, and as a result we are basically snow free.

This is what one model has to say, and I’m not necessarily buying. I think this storm will eventually be farther north and bring us some snow. The question is just how much…flurries/light snow or a major storm. This is an answer that we’ll try to find in the blog this weekend. For now I would say keep a very close eye on the WEATHER WATCH 12 forecast heading into next week.

So let me ask this question…who wants more snow before Christmas and how much? Just leave your thoughts in our comments section!

Jeremy Nelson

Weather Watch 12 Meteorologist


2 Responses

  1. Jeremy – in looking at other models, the New Year Eve week storm looks to be pretty big. It is showing up in some of the most unusual places….

    While not a surprise as we have been waiting for it for weeks to begin to show up on the models, it looks to be pretty intense.

    • It is always nice to see what we expect to show up actually show up 5-10 days out. Make sure to post your comment in the blog I just posted.


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