Much of the active and potentially hazardous weather over the Lower 48 during the short term will be associated with a developing winter storm that is poised to produce a long stretching swath of heavy snow from the Intermountain West to the Upper Great Lakes.
Light-to-moderate snow is expected to continue across the Intermountain West this evening. Additionally, cold air filtering from the north will allow for snowflakes to fall into the lower elevations of central Nevada and Utah, which could lead to dicey travel conditions.
Snow is also forecast to spread into the Central Rockies and parts of the central High Plains tonight as an upper-level trough swings eastward. Snowfall amounts of 1-2 feet are forecast across the Rockies of western Colorado and Utah, with widespread accumulations of 6-8 inches likely into the Wyoming Front Range.
As the system continues to progress eastward on Friday, an area of low pressure is forecast to develop over the Colorado Front Range and race northeast into the Midwest by Friday night. As a result, a stripe of heavy snow is expected to the north of the low and across parts of the Central/Northern Plains and Upper Midwest.
Specifically, snowfall amounts greater than 6 inches are likely to have fallen by Saturday morning along the Nebraska-South Dakota border, northwest Iowa, southern Minnesota, northern/central Wisconsin, and the U.P. of Michigan.
The combination of heavy snow and gusty winds will lead to hazardous driving conditions throughout these regions. Given this is the first widespread and significant snowfall of the season, residents in these areas are urged to plan ahead and take proper precautions if venturing out into the storm.
Winter Storm Warnings/Watches and Winter Weather Advisories have been issued.