CLOUDS INCREASE TONIGHT...SOME AREAS OF LIGHT RAIN/DRIZZLE

TEMPERATURES NEAR AVERAGE THROUGH MID-WEEK

PERIODS OF RAIN TUESDAY AND WEDNESDAY

BIG TEMPERATURE DROP WITH SOME SNOW THURSDAY

Tonight: Partly to mostly cloudy with a few showers possible. Chance of freezing rain east. Lows 30-35. Light northeast wind.

Tuesday: Showers likely. Mild. Highs 50-56. Southeast winds 5-15 mph.

Tuesday Night: Light rain showers continuing.  Steady temperatures.  Lows 42-48.  South winds 5-15 mph.

Wednesday: Rain becoming more widespread.  Warm start.  Temperatures dropping and rain changing to snow late.  Highs 56-62.   Southwest winds 5-20 mph.

Weather Summary:

We are tracking a broad area of high pressure in the StormTrack 5 Weather Center. This system has helped to clear things out, and make for a mostly sunny afternoon with temperatures running a few degrees below average for this time of year.

Meanwhile, as high pressure drifts eastward the cold air is again banked up against the Appalachians late into Tuesday.  This could result in some freezing rain Monday night into Tuesday near and east of the Blue Ridge. Be alert for icy travel there.

A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued until noon Tuesday for Ashe, Watauga, Grayson, Smyth and Tazewell counties, because of the potential for freezing rain in these locations.  A freezing rain advisory is in effect for Avery, Mitchell and Yancey Counties until noon Tuesday.  Many areas outside of these advisories will drop to near freezing, so please be alert to possible slick spots, especially on bridges/overpasses and untreated roads.

As high pressure slowly moves eastward, we are tracking a storm system that will intensify on the leeward side of the Rocky Mountains.  Low pressure to our west and high pressure to our east will restore a moist airflow into the region. A warm front will lift northward and southerly winds will bring temperatures at or slightly above average for Tuesday and Wednesday. A few showers are possible Monday night. Scattered showers are likely Tuesday, especially after noon.  These showers will likely be light in nature.

As a slow moving cold front moves towards the area, air flow will run parallel to it especially on Wednesday.  Rain could become heavy at times, but models are converging on the idea of the heaviest band of steady rain being further west.  I wouldn't be surprised if we see a few renegade thundershowers late Tuesday and Wednesday. It will be breezy Wednesday and Thursday as well.  Regardless, some rain could lead to flooding in spots. 

With heavy rain in the forecast especially by mid-week, we will need to be alert for the dangers of rising water on streams/rivers this week. Snow pack is melting and the ground is saturated. This is something worth keeping an eye on as rainfall totals by mid-week could exceed one inch.  An Areal Flood Watch is in effect for Dickenson and Buchanan until Thursday morning...Thursday evening for Leslie, Letcher and Harlan counties, as well as Lee, Russell, Scott and Washington counties.

Late Wednesday and early Thursday, colder air rushes into the Tri-Cities behind a departing cold front.  Temperatures will drop very quickly!  As this cold front departs, a storm system will swing through. A period of snow appears likely late Wednesday and/or Thursday.  Accumulations cannot quite be pegged down just yet, but some accumulation appears likely at this point, especially near the KY/VA line.  Lift along the higher terrain will result in more accumulations.  Some models are bringing in warmer air aloft in the Tri-Cities and areas eastward.  This would cause precipitation to fall as sleet/freezing rain before changing to snow...cutting into any accumulations.  Check back for updates on this possible winter storm.

High pressure fills back in Friday through Sunday. As a result, the weather will become less active.  We'll see lots of sunshine as we wrap up the first week of March.  Temperatures will slowly make their way up again during this time.

Highs in the 50s Tuesday, and near 60 Wednesday. Only near 30 Thursday and 40s Friday and Saturday, near 50 Sunday and Monday. Lows in the low to mid 30s tonight, and 40s Tuesday night...20s Wednesday night, 10s Thursday and Friday night, and near 30 Saturday night.

We "Spring Forward" one hour Saturday night!

Our average high is 55°, low 31°.

Meteorologists Chris Michaels and Dave Dierks