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NWS Winter Storm Warning (Ashe County)

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Phillips Gap , NC

Forecast Last Updated at Wednesday, November 14, 2018 at 1:11PM

Rain to Mix to Light Rain to Snow Showers

This is an odd way to start the winter season--ice. Low pressure moves from the Eastern Gulf today and northeast, right along the East Coast, Thursday and Friday. Normally that's a snowy path for the NC Mountains; however, warm air aloft will produce a wintry mix. Rain develops this afternoon. Rain changes to freezing rain and sleet just after sunset (snow may mix in late tonight and early tomorrow). The wintry mix changes mostly light rain by Thursday afternoon. After a brief break, precipitation ends as snow showers Thursday night into early Friday.

Accumulations are dependent on precipitation type--if mostly freezing rain, this is a significant ice storm; if more sleet, 1"-2" of sleet/snow is possible. Don't let those accumulation totals fool you--ice is bad news. Icing and accumulations get some help because the nighttime changeover will help overcome warm ground temperatures.

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Sunny
Pleasant, Low 50s
NW wind 5-15 mph
Wednesday

Hi: 43 Lo: 31

Generally cloudy; Rain developing in the afternoon, becoming a wintry mix just after sunset; East wind 5-15 mph, becoming gusty at higher elev's late tonight
Thursday

Hi: 39 Lo: 29

Cloudy; Sleet and freezing rain changing to rain; Precip ends as snow showers Thur night; East wind 5-15 mph, but NW 10-20 mph & gusty Thur night
Friday

Hi: 46 Lo: 33

Early clouds with flurries possible; More afternoon sun; NW wind 10-20 mph, gusts to 40 mph
Saturday

Hi: 54 Lo: 35

Sunny; Nicest day of the week
Sunday

Hi: 50 Lo: 37

Mostly sunny; A tad cooler

Further Out

Monday - Mostly cloudy; Sprinkles or flurries possible; Cooler; High in the upper 40s; Low in the lower 30s
Tuesday - Mostly clear; Cool; High in the mid 40s; Low in the lower 30s

Forecast Discussion

We've been watching this for several days, and it looks more ominous the closer we get... Low pressure moves from the Eastern Gulf today, to the South Carolina Coast tonight, and up the Northeast Coast Thursday. Meanwhile, high pressure anchored in the Northeast and Eastern Canada today will hold a cold wedge into the Appalachians. That's normally a snow scenario; however, warm air aloft will keep most of the precipitation as a wintry mix in the mountains.

Rain develops this afternoon but changes to freezing rain just after sunset. Precipitation will be mostly freezing rain and sleet overnight with some snow mixing in late tonight into early Thursday. Precipitation transitions back to light rain by Thursday afternoon. Then Thursday night, precipitation will end as snow showers (possibly lingering into early Friday). Accumulations depend on precipitation type. If mostly freezing rain, it's a significant ice storm. If more sleet, then we'll get an inch or two of sleet/snow.

Friday has decreasing clouds after early flurries. Expect a windy daytime.

By the weekend, the weather turns much nicer. Saturday is the nicest day of the week with seasonal temperatures. Sunday and Monday are somewhat cooler as a mostly dry front blows through. A few flurries or sprinkles are possible early Monday. Tuesday brings cool, clear weather as Canadian high pressure builds southeast.

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