First Alert Day declared for late Saturday into early Sunday

First Alert Day declared for late Saturday into early Sunday
Although a First Alert Day was declared for Saturday, precipitation wont start until the evening and overnight into Sunday.

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) - With dry high pressure firmly in charge of our weather Friday, we’re starting in the 20s again– coldest start since Christmas morning – and we’ll struggle to get back to near 50° in the afternoon under nearly total sunshine. If you’re making Friday evening plans, other than a gradual increase in cloud cover and chilly temps in the 30s, the night looks uneventful.

That brings us to our weekend storms. The trend established Thursday is holding this morning: a slower approach to the Carolinas, more “warm air”, and relatively low moisture content (as compared to most storms of late) with this system.

With the slower start, it looks as if most of Saturday will simply be mostly cloudy and cold, but generally dry, as we may not even see precipitation break out until the evening hours. The one exception to that general rule applies in the mountains, where a little bit of snow could start to fall even during the morning hours, though any accumulation during the daylight hours Saturday looks to be light.

As a result, unless things change dramatically, there won’t be much, if any, winter weather in the immediate Charlotte area. The biggest reason for that reality is the mild air that’s expected to move in on Saturday. That means Charlotte may end up staying close to – but above freezing the entire weekend. That would result in the likelihood of mainly rain – the heaviest falling from Saturday night into Sunday morning.

WBTV Friday morning forecast

The foothills and mountains would theoretically be deeper into colder air, and so it would appear that a better chance for some wet snow, sleet, and freezing rain would be present late Saturday into Saturday night before tapering down on Sunday. A couple inches of snow will likely accumulate in the mountains, but outside of there, it appears more ice will win out so accumulating snow will be tough closer to I-40. In the foothills and along the I-40 corridor, ice accumulation looks to be generally about .10”, perhaps a little more in a few spots, but a widespread, crippling event is highly unlikely. As for rain in the Piedmont / Charlotte area, it won’t add up as in previous storms this winter; likely not more than .50 inch for most neighborhoods.

The entire system is in and out pretty quickly, however, a few sprinkles or flurries could be left into the day on Monday and it will remain chilly with highs in the 40s before we transition to more sunshine with seasonal highs in the 50s Tuesday and Wednesday.

Hope you have a great Friday & weekend!

Meteorologist Al Conklin

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