Good Dose of Snow Possible This Weekend

Posted January 18, 2008
Updated October 17, 2011

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— Anywhere from 1 to 3 inches of snow could fall in the Triangle Saturday, WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said Friday evening, with more accumulation likely in areas to the south and east of Raleigh.

The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning is in effect for much of the Triangle and surrounding areas, including Orange, Durham, Wake, Wilson, Nash, Vance, Chatham, Lee and Johnston counties.

And a winter weather advisory is in effect for counties farther to the south and west, including Cumberland, Hoke, Harnett and Wayne, Sampson and Moore counties.

The combination of cold air from the north and an upper-level disturbance tapping into moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, though, will likely bring rain early Saturday morning, turn into snow by the late afternoon and continue falling until late Saturday night, according to WRAL's latest WeatherScope computer model.

But WeatherScope continued a trend Friday night of pushing the highest snowfall totals to the south and east, diminishing snowfall amounts in the Triangle area from 2 to 4 inches projected earlier Friday to 1 to 3 inches.

"If that trend were to continue, then Raleigh could end up not getting a whole lot," Fishel said. "But I really think we're going to get at least an inch or two of snow in the Triangle, no matter how this turns out."

Temperatures Saturday are forecast to reach the mid- to upper 30s and are expected fall below freezing as evening approaches and fall into the low to mid-20s before daybreak Sunday.

After initially melting, snow is forecast to begin to accumulate on most surfaces Saturday afternoon. Temperatures Sunday are not expected to warm much above freezing, which could mean slick spots on the roads through early Monday morning.

State Department of Transportation crews went out on major roads Friday to lay down salt brine that discourages ice formation on pavement, and crews checked their plowing equipment and made some runs to get familiar with roads they would be assigned to plow.

The threat of winter weather has already prompted some cancellations. The Wake County school system has canceled all athletic events, practices and games for Saturday. Also, Durham's Martin Luther King Parade, scheduled for Saturday, has been postponed until noon Feb. 2. Click here to view a complete listing of closings and delays.

WRAL meteorologists said they did not expect freezing rain or sleet with this storm, which means power outages, if any, should be isolated.

If forecast amounts materialize Saturday, it could be one of the significant snowfalls recorded at Raleigh-Durham International Airport since Feb. 15-17, 2004, when 2.7 inches fell.

If it snows Saturday, please send us your photos and file a report on conditions in your area.

WRAL News will have meteorologists tracking the storm all day Saturday and reporters in the field to bring you the latest updates on air and online.


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  • teach4er Jan 18, 2008

    I heard weatherscope was developed at NCSU, can anyone confirm this? (you have 17 minutes to post comments)

  • Howie275 Jan 18, 2008

    I'm actually one of your "northern transplants" and here are a few of my observations.
    You are correct in regards to 4wd. It is exactly that 4WD not 4W Stop. Putting a vehicle in neutral will do wonders when a vehicle is sliding.
    Biggest thing I notice is tires. I have never seen so many vehicles with close to no tread as I have seen in NC.

  • IfByWhiskey-a-go-go Jan 18, 2008

    Do any weather services show a map with the actual front lines? I would like to see them. There is always a classic pattern of those fronts when there is a "big one" around here.

  • many moons Jan 18, 2008

    Well I'am off to food lion ,oh way what did I do with my MVP CARD!!! @$&&*@#!!!!

  • cateye Jan 18, 2008

    And on the weekend Barry Manilow comes to town . . .hope he still gets here . . .

  • wbearp Jan 18, 2008

    Quick...everyone to the grocery store for bread and milk!

  • outside_of_apex Jan 18, 2008

    A snow event is different down here than it is up north. Northerners laugh at Southerners driving in the snow, but I'll guarantee you that most of the cars you'll see in the ditch will be Northern transplants.

    The snow melts at the surface during the day and refreezes into ice during the night. So when morning comes, what looks like fresh packed snow on the roads is actually snow on top of a sheet of ice. Bridges and overpasses will be especially icy.

    It ain't the same as up north. And four wheel drive means you get to have 4 wheels spinning on ice instead of 2.

  • Deacons Jan 18, 2008

    050462 I am not a weather expert but I believe I will be close with my feeling on this. RDU 1.5 fayetville 4 - 5 goldsboro 4 - 5 rockymount 4 - 5. We can compare tomorrow night.

  • 050462 Jan 18, 2008

    i am a weather consultant,raleigh gets 2-4,fayetteville to goldsboro to rocky mount gets 4-8 inches.winter storm warnings for fayetteville Will be issued before dawn.

  • Deacons Jan 18, 2008

    so u apparently think weather scope will be wrong and there will be more snow? I think it will be wrong and there will be less than it is saying now.