Local News

Wintry mix possible in northern areas, but 'miracle' snow unlikely for Triangle

Posted January 26, 2009 5:41 a.m. EST
Updated March 9, 2009 5:12 p.m. EDT

— Winter weather won't loosen its grip on central North Carolina this week and likely will "stay with us to the bitter end," WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said.

After a gloomy Monday with cloudy skies and highs in the high 40s, some northern counties will see a chance of sleet or a snow-rain mix early Tuesday. But the Triangle will likely just see rain.

"Around here, there is going to be no miracle for a second snowstorm in a week," WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said.

North Carolina will be just south of a cold, moisture-laden air mass, while a warmer, moist air mass tries to break in from the south.

"There's going to be a battleground between two very dissimilar air masses," Fishel said.

In the most likely scenario, the warmer air mass will win out in North Carolina, but not before the cold air tries to land a few punches in northern border areas of the state.

"The only place that would have any chance of having light, spotty freezing rain would be right up along Virginia. And even if it happens there, it would only be for an hour or so (Tuesday) morning," Fishel said.

"There might be a couple bridges and overpasses where there's a couple slick spots, but this should not be a major problem," he added.

The Triangle will see spotty rain in the morning that grows more steady by afternoon, amid temperatures in the low 40s – "not that all pleasant a day," Fishel said.

On Wednesday, the temperatures will be milder, getting close to the 60s, but it will also stay rainy and cloudy. During the afternoon, rain in the mountains will turn to snow.

"Wednesday looks like we're going have a lot of variety across the state," Fishel said.

The rest of the week will see temperatures bouncing back-and-forth, reaching as high as nearly 60 degrees and as low as almost 25 degrees.

For those getting weary of winter weather, there's some light ahead  Groundhog Day, when a rodent will let us know whether we have six more weeks of winter.