Wet Monday, cold week on tap

Posted February 15, 2010 8:40 a.m. EST
Updated February 15, 2010 10:35 a.m. EST

— A cold front will roll into North Carolina Monday, bringing snow to the mountains and rain to central and eastern counties.

The system will drop 2 to 4 inches of snow on the state's highest mountains, then bring rain to the Triangle region around noon.

"By the time our rain gets here, our temperatures will be warm enough that we're not really worried about anything frozen falling here," WRAL meteorologist Elizabeth Gardner said. "It's not out of the question that we would see a little snow mixing with the rain, but that's likely to be spotty."

Rain will continue to fall through the evening commute, then taper off. Rainfall totals will be about a quarter of an inch.

"This is not going to be a big soaker for us. We should have moderate showers on and off through the afternoon," Gardner said.

The biggest problems from the rain could develop overnight, when temperatures drop into the low 20s.

"The problem may be Tuesday morning," Gardner said. "Wet spots in the road may freeze and bring us some black ice."

Black ice is thin, clear ice that forms on roads as melting water flows across them and temperatures sink below 32 degrees. It can be nearly impossible for drivers to see.

On Tuesday, cold, dry weather will settle into North Carolina.

"We've just had endless days of temperatures below normal. More of that to come," Gardner said.

Highs rise out of the 40s only once in the seven-day forecast, hitting 50 degrees on Friday. No precipitation is forecast in the same period.