Forecasters are tracking not one, but two potential weather systems that could bring heavy snowfall to the Chicago area in the new work week, with the National Weather Service terming it a “two-punch” threat that could arrive on Tuesday and stick around through Thursday.
As the work week begins, warming temperatures are expected, with highs reaching into the 30s on Monday and then into the 40s on Tuesday, according to forecast models.
On Tuesday afternoon, a significant change is expected to hit the area, with a weather system potentially bringing heavy precipitation to the region.
That system will start out with rain, but as temperatures begin to cool it will transition to snow, and according to forecast models, there could be serious travel impacts caused by the storm, with mixed precipitation, snow or ice all possible, depending on temperatures and location.
Adding some uncertainty to the equation is another round of wintry weather that could arrive right on the heels of that storm Wednesday evening and into Thursday. According to NWS, that second system could strike the Chicago area, bringing even more snow to the region, but there is an “equally likely” chance that the system could veer off to the south, leaving the Chicago area largely unscathed:
The NWS explained the difficulty in tracking the storms in a tweet on Saturday, saying that the disturbances that would cause the potential heavy snowfall are still working their way across the Pacific Ocean, giving them plenty of time to interact with other systems or to potentially veer off-course:
As a result, the service says it has not yet begun to dial in forecasts for snowfall totals or other variables with the storms, and will continue to monitor their progression across the ocean and ultimately across the country before they arrive in the Midwest.
The NBC 5 Storm Team will continue to monitor the weather systems as they develop, and the latest information can always be found on the NBC Chicago app.