Storm watch: 4 to 8 inches of snow possible in Jamestown areaThe low-pressure system is still over the Pacific Ocean but the National Weather Service has already issued a winter storm watch for much of North Dakota beginning Thursday. The weather system, if it follows its anticipated track, could bring the first shot of severe winter weather of the season to the Jamestown area.
By: Keith Norman, The Jamestown Sun
The low-pressure system is still over the Pacific Ocean but the National Weather Service has already issued a winter storm watch for much of North Dakota beginning Thursday. The weather system, if it follows its anticipated track, could bring the first shot of severe winter weather of the season to the Jamestown area.
“It is not the storm of the century but it is kind of a big deal,” said John Wheeler, meteorologist for WDAY television and radio.
Forecasts from the National Weather Service indicate the storm is still a day away from the Jamestown area.
“Jamestown is not likely to become involved until Friday afternoon running into Saturday morning,” said Todd Hamilton, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Bismarck. “It could start with rain and sleet before snow. It is a little hard to tell where the worst of the storm will hit but most of western and central North Dakota could see 4 to 8 inches of snow.”
Wheeler said there is a lower chance of rain than there is for snow although he still anticipates slippery conditions.
“We’ll go from above freezing to below zero in short order,” he said. “That will cause some trouble and I would expect the roads to ice up.”
Hamilton said with the storm still off the West Coast, its path and intensity will still be refined Thursday and Friday although the size of the storm makes it unlikely anyone in the northern United States will escape some sort of inclement weather.
“This same system will bring rain to the Ohio River Valley and thunderstorms to the southeast,” he said. “Here in the northern Plains we’ll pull in some arctic air to make matters worse.”
The cold weather will likely extend beyond the length of the storm.
“The cold will likely arrive Thursday night,” Hamilton said. “The weekend will be bitterly cold with a slow warming after the storm through the middle of the week. Temperatures will remain below normal pretty much all next week.”
Wheeler said the overall dry conditions have contributed to a relatively storm-free winter, so far.
“We are in a drought, after all,” he said. “We just haven’t had a lot of chances for storms for a while now.”
Sun reporter Keith Norman can be reached at 701-952-8452 or by email at email@example.com