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2/2/2021 – Arctic Air Likely Late Weekend Into Next Week

Written: 1:30 AM 2/2/2021
Written by: Nick Dunn, ONW Forecaster

Good Tuesday Morning! Many of you got several inches of snow yesterday into Monday night. I received 3″ of fluffy snow as of the time this was being typed up! Today will be another day to allow extra time when driving and snow will gradually come to an end. Of particular interest was the US-23 corridor as a band of snow stationed itself along that route for several hours. This is why we allowed our forecast to continue into Tuesday. We will be working to verify that in the coming days!

Attention is quickly turning to an arctic blast of air that will put us in the deep freeze for a few days! This will first kick on Saturday night into Sunday as a fast-moving system will bring some snow with an arctic blast of air right behind it. This will allow for lows on Sunday Night into Monday Morning to drop below zero in many areas. Of note, winds are expected to drop wind chills into the -10 to -20 range (possibly lower). IF this verifies, this will be the coldest air in 2 years!

As we look at a statistic, Columbus has not observed a sub-zero temperature in over 2 years! This streak looks to be in jeopardy Sunday Night. Here is our current forecast for Monday Morning, which does not factor in the Wind Chill!

Wind Chills are certainly even more difficult to predict this far out, but let’s show you the current *potential* as of latest guidance. It is also worth noting this is likely going to change many times over the next few days.

Sometimes models are “too cold” and thus we are not going colder than a -10 to -20 for a forecast on that part right now. However, with snowpack potentially in place (more details further down the post), this is certainly possible! This is some serious cold!

In terms of snowfall, when we have snowpack in pace it tends to help make temperatures colder. Models show a bit of snow on Friday as one round of precipitation ends. The aforementioned energy on Sunday looks to bring more snow. With colder air in place, this would be fluffier snow, meaning higher snow ratios and thus higher accumulations.

The GFS has a low-pressure system moving through with some decent looking snow bands. It is too early to speak about accumulations, but the snow will just reinforce that colder air even more. We certainly have cause for concern here, and we will be talking about this each day this week!


Prepare for Cold Weather

Dressing for cold weather of this potential is very important to prevent hypothermia. In fact, we would recommend making sure you have access to hates, gloves, extra blankets, and more. This type of cold can cause hypothermia very quickly. The homeless are most susceptible to the cold as they typically don’t have all the options knowingly ready to them. Your pets are also just as susceptible. You would not want to be stuck in the cold, so therefore your furry friends wouldn’t want to be either!

Winter Storm Jayden, the Polar Vortex, and Climate Change: 3 Factors that  Matter - Union of Concerned Scientists
Here is a helpful chart for you!
Cold Weather Tips | Mesquite, TX - Official Website

Here are some tips for your home. Frozen pipes are always a concern. Be sure your home is ready for this blast of arctic air, which could potentially stick around or come in waves this month!

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