March 24, 2014

Tuesday will bring rain, not snow, to Charlotte

A storm system is expected to strengthen too far off the Carolinas coast to produce any snow for the Piedmont.

Forecasters say a weather system developing in the Gulf of Mexico will not be a snow-producer for the Charlotte region, instead bringing a cold rain Tuesday.

A few inches of snow are likely in the mountains, meteorologists said, and a rain-snow mix is possible Tuesday morning north of Charlotte. But temperatures are expected to remain above freezing in the immediate Charlotte area.

The storm system will be followed by two nights with hard freezes, however.

Meteorologists said late last week that the Gulf of Mexico system could bring an unusual early-spring heavy snow to parts of the Charlotte region. But low pressure is expected to strengthen farther off the coast than first thought.

That not only will save the Carolinas from heavy snow, but it also is likely to do the same for major cities along the East Coast.

“Outside of the mountains, there will likely not be enough cold air in place for more than wet snowflakes across the Carolinas,” said Kristina Pydynowski, a meteorologist with Accu-Weather.

That doesn’t mean temperatures will be balmy. Cold air has returned to the Carolinas, and highs Monday are only expected to reach the low 50s. Clouds are predicted to increase late Monday night, with light rain arriving before daybreak Tuesday.

Clouds and rain are forecast to hold Tuesday’s high temperatures to the mid 40s. Clouds will move away Tuesday evening, forecasters said, and that will allow sub-freezing weather to develop Wednesday morning.

Lows Wednesday will be in the upper 20s, with mid 20s forecast for Thursday morning.

A warming trend will begin Thursday, forecasters said.

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