ROANOKE, Va. – After a near-record warm December, January pulled a 180 on us. While not a record cold or snowy January, it has been the coldest in four years and the snowiest in six years.
While the final day of January doesn’t feature any newly-fallen snow, it does feature more cold air. After starting in the teens and 20s, highs reach the 40s under a mix of clouds and sun.
We welcome in February with more winter chill - starting in the 20s. High pressure over Maine and low pressure over the western Atlantic push the air in out of the northeast, creating a wedge. Tuesday’s highs will only be in the 40s under more clouds.
The wedge loosens its grip a bit by Wednesday, so some area groundhogs may wind up seeing their shadows after all.
A few mountain showers will be possible late Wednesday and early Thursday, as the wedge begins to break. The wind turns out of the south, warming us up into the 50s and 60s by Thursday evening into Friday morning.
A cold front then sparks periods of rain Thursday night into Friday morning.
Rain totals, at the moment, look to be on the order of a half an inch to a little more than an inch in the mountains.
After that, temperatures crash heading into the first weekend of February. The worst of any winter weather throughout the week will stay in the Plains, Upper Midwest and Great Lakes.