Cold Triggering Heavy Lake-Effect Snow This Weekend

By Brian Lada, Meteorologist
November 24, 2013; 3:59 AM ET
Share |
Play video A look at the weather forecast for the Northeast.

A shot of frigid, arctic air moving over the Great Lakes is triggering lake-effect snow downwind of the lakes this weekend.

The combination of strong winds and lake-effect snow will continue to lead to travel disruptions around Great Lakes through Sunday, causing headaches for early holiday travelers.

Some cities that may see flight delays, slippery roads, and other travel disruptions due to the wind and snow include Cleveland, Erie, Pa., Syracuse, N.Y., Traverse City, Mich., and London, Ontario.

"This will be a powdery snow," AccuWeather.com Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams said. "Snow showers will coat the mountains with a feathery snow."

Locations that will receive the most snow this weekend will be near the lakes and in the higher elevations of western Pennsylvania.

"This will be the most snow these areas have seen all year," Abrams said.

RELATED:
Winter Weather Advisories, Watches and Warnings
Millions to Face Thanksgiving Travel Delays From Atlanta to NYC
Cold Can Drive Unwelcome Wildlife Indoors

In the most intense bands of lake-effect snow, whiteout conditions can occur for a time.

Lake-effect snow develops when very cold air blows over the comparatively warm waters of the lake. This causes the air to pile up and rise, resulting in the formation of snow showers downwind of the lakes.

In some cases, bands of lake-effect snow can continue to dump snow over the same area over a period of several hours, resulting in snow accumulations of up to a foot and sometimes even more.

Comments

Comments left here should adhere to the AccuWeather.com Community Guidelines. Profanity, personal attacks, and spam will not be tolerated.

More Weather News

Daily U.S. Extremes

past 24 hours

  Extreme Location
High N/A
Low N/A
Precip N/A

WeatherWhys®

This Day In Weather History

Colorado Springs, Colorado (1978)
A freak thunderstorm dropped damaging hail to a depth of 2 feet. Much of it had to be plowed from the freeway.

Pennsylvania ()
July 29th is historically a rainy day in Waynesburg, PA. It all began in 1878 when a farmer casually told drug store clerk William Allison that it always seemed to rain on July 29th in this southwestern PA town. The clerk made a note of it and started keeping a yearly tabulation. July 29th, 2001 was the 104th rainfall in the past 124 years on this date.

Mt. Washington, NH (1989)
34 degrees with a 45-mph wind gust (minus 6 degrees wind chill temperature).

Rough Weather