The mercury will soar to an unseasonably warm 63 degrees today, but major changes are ahead in our forecast.
A burst of warm, southern air has kept temperatures above normal so far this week. There’s a slight chance for spotty showers today, mainly after noon. It will be mostly cloudy.
Tonight will remain mild with a low of 59 degrees.
The chance for rain will jump to 60 percent by Thursday as a strong cold front starts to slide into Greater Cincinnati and Northern Kentucky, bringing a wintry mess of rain, sleet and snow.
The weather system will be followed by a blast of arctic air from central Canada that will throw our region into the deep freeze over the next several days.
Thursday night is when we’ll see the big transition. Rain is likely before midnight before changing to a mix of rain and sleet early Friday.
The overnight low will fall to 32 degrees. Up to a half inch of accumulation is possible by daybreak.
The commutes to and from work Friday look to be messy and slick. A winter storm watch also could be issued.
“It looks like there could be some hazardous driving conditions possible,” said meteorologist Steve Rhebenach.
Friday’s forecast calls for a mix of rain, freezing rain and sleet before 4 p.m. and then freezing rain and sleet between 4 p.m. and 5 p.m. After that, the precipitation will turn to snow, freezing rain and sleet.
Up to an inch of accumulation is possible.
Whenever there is a wintry mix of rain, sleet and snow, that presents a challenge for road crews. Pre-treating streets to try to keep them safe and clear for motorists often proves useless with the rain washing off salt or brine before temperatures plummet and ice and snow start to accumulate.
Temperatures will remain in the low 30s all day before sliding into the 20s Friday night and bottoming out around 17 with wind chills in the single digits by early Saturday.
The mercury Saturday and Sunday will struggle to reach the upper 20s and low 30s. Wind chills will make temperatures feel like they are in the 20s.
Overnight lows will be even more brutal with temperatures in the teens and wind chills in the single digits.
Another round of potentially messy weather is ahead Sunday and Monday. There’s a 70 percent chance for rain, snow and freezing rain Sunday.
Sunday night, there’s a 70 percent chance for freezing rain.
On Monday, there’s a slight, 30 percent chance for rain, snow and freezing rain. It will be partly cloudy with a high of 34 degrees.
The overnight low will remain frigid at 19 with wind chills in the single digits.
Tuesday’s forecast only calls for a high of 22 degrees.