James Spann: Frigid weekend ahead for Alabama; snow next week?

COLD/LIGHT SNOW: As advertised, cold, Arctic air has returned to Alabama, and radar shows some light snow continuing over the northern half of the state. We have reports of flurries as far south as Livingston and Demopolis. A winter weather advisory continues for the far northern part of Alabama, up in the Tennessee Valley, where icy travel is possible tonight. The counties in the advisory are Franklin, Colbert, Lauderdale, Lawrence, Limestone, Madison and Jackson.

Flurries and a little sleet are possible down into central Alabama over the next few hours, but there will be no impact. Strong northwest winds have dried road surfaces. Precipitation will end tonight from west to east.

FRIGID WEEKEND: The sky becomes partly sunny tomorrow with a high in the 36- to 39-degree range. Sunday will feature a morning low in the upper teens, followed by a high around 40 with a good supply of sunshine.

WINTER MISCHIEF NEXT WEEK? Monday will be dry with a high in the upper 40s, but a clipper-type system will arrive Tuesday with a fresh supply of very cold air. Global models are suggesting some Gulf moisture could become involved in this, with potential for some light accumulating snow over a decent part of Alabama. The Global Forecast System even hints some snow could fall as far south as Mobile, Fairhope and Gulf Shores by Tuesday night or early Wednesday morning.

The ensemble mean from the reliable European global model is showing about 1 inch of snow for north and central Alabama, with potential for heavier amounts in a few spots to the south, where moisture will be deeper. Needless to say, it is way too early for a specific forecast on snow amounts and impact, but be aware of the potential.

Wednesday and Thursday will feature very cold mornings with lows between 10 and 15 degrees; there’s a good chance we stay below freezing all day Wednesday. Then, a warming trend begins later in the week.

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