Frigid air moves into area this weekend

The start of Thanksgiving week will feel very wintry as sub-freezing air is pulled down from the arctic this weekend.

The National Weather Service said a widespread area from the Great Plains through the Ohio Valley can expect lows in the single digits.

Storm Center 7 Chief Meteorologist Jamie Simpson said off-and-on rain today will taper off in the evening and temperatures will begin to drop into the upper 20s.

Highs will only be in the mid to upper 30s on Saturday, Simpson said, and a breeze will make it feel like the 20s all day. He said a late-day snow shower is possible to the northwest of Dayton.

Sunday will be even colder.

“We’ll start in the upper teens and rise to only the upper 20s,” Simpson said.

Looking ahead to the busy travel time on Wednesday, Simpson said things look to be dry across Ohio and points north and west with rain from the Southeast to the Mid-Atlantic.

“On the northwest edge of that there will be some snow in the Appalachians, so travel over the mountains could be a bit problematic,” he said.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration released its annual Winter Weather Outlook on Thursday with a prediction of normal conditions across the Midwest through February.

“Their reasoning for the ‘normal’ winter is because many of the global signals utilized for trends toward colder or warmer, or drier or wetter through the winter season are just not showing anything definitive for the Ohio Valley,” Simpson explained. “For the first time in a long time all of the global signals are neutral in respect to their effect on our part of the country for the winter season.”

Mike Halpert, acting director of NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, said in the outlook announcement that neither El Niño nor La Niña conditions are expected during the upcoming winter, which makes a long-range forecast difficult.

“Without this strong seasonal influence, winter weather is often affected by short-term climate patterns, such as the Arctic Oscillation, that are not predictable beyond a week or two. So it’s important to pay attention to your local daily weather forecast throughout the winter,” Halpert said.

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