Possibility of snow lingers

Posted December 16, 2009 4:36 p.m. EST
Updated December 17, 2009 12:21 a.m. EST

7-Day Forecast

— A low pressure system will develop over the Gulf of Mexico Thursday and track northeast along the North Carolina coast late Friday into Saturday, WRAL meteorologist Mike Maze said.

Depending on the track of the system, there could be a chance of snow, or a rain and snow mix, over the Triangle. However, much uncertainty remains concerning the strength and track of the system.

"A change of just over one to two degrees anywhere in the lowest two miles of the atmosphere could make a significant difference in whether the WRAL viewing area sees snow or just plain rain," WRAL Chief Meteorologist Greg Fishel said.

If the storm system tracks close to the coast, the chance for significant wintry precipitation would increase. The primary threat for this would be Friday night into Saturday morning.

"If this system is all rain, it is quite possible many locations could see up to an inch. If it is all snow, and we held to a 10:1 ratio, some areas could see up to 10 inches of snow," Maze explained. "But it is too early to tell if any areas will see 100 percent snow, but if we did, it would be significant."

There is the possibility of a second system bringing wintry conditions late Saturday. The air would be cold enough for snow, but it wasn't yet clear whether any precipitation would actually form, Fishel said.