Seasonal weather returns to Siouxland late-week

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It is currently mid-December but it sure doesn’t feel like it outside. 

That will soon come to an end as a large cold front will slide through on Thursday. 

For now, we had another warm day today, that will keep up tomorrow as we will reach the upper 40’s again. 

Wednesday is much of the same, but Thursday is where the forecast gets interesting. 

A strong cold front will sweep through Thursday, and that will drop temperatures while bringing a good chance for some snowfall into early Friday. 

Temperatures will remain in the teens and 20’s the rest of the weekend after, and Christmas looks like we will see a good amount of sunshine, but it will be cold with a high of only 11 degrees. 

SNOW FORECAST: 

Siouxland Metro:  1″- 2″

North of Sioux City:  2″- 4″

South of Sioux City:  Trace – 1″

We are expecting this storm to start as some rain showers before the rain/snow line pushes far enough south to cover our area with snow.  

The rain/snow line will start to the north and creep down south as temperatures drop through the region.  This causes snow to fall earlier to the north, bringing potentially higher amounts, while the south could avoid much of this system. 

WHY HAS IT BEEN SO WARM?

There is one word to describe why it has been so warm, and that is snow! 

Surprisingly enough, our lack of snow has kept temperatures about 10-15 degrees above average.  

At this time of the year, usually snow covers our area.  This changes what is called the albedo, or reflectivity of the ground surface. 

The higher the albedo, less radiation is absorbed by the ground. 

We have seen almost no snow cover, so the ground has stayed clear.  Having snow actually reflects much of the sunlight and radiation that comes in during daylight hours, back out into the atmosphere.  

Because there is no snow cover, more radiation is able to stick at the ground level, and that allows us to heat up about 10-15 degrees above where we normally sit at this time of the year. 

If you have further questions about the snow chances or albedo, feel free to reach out to my email at akopnitsky@kcautv.com.

Austin Kopnitsky – Weekend Meteorologist, KCAU 9 News

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