First Alert Weather: Snow on the ground now, but will it last?

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — Thanks to a boost from Lake Ontario, parts of the Rochester area have a decent shot of seeing a white Christmas!

The west side of Monroe County and parts of Orleans County picked up over a half-foot of snow Wednesday evening into Thursday morning. We’ll add just a little more onto that with a period of light snow tonight with the passage of a warm front. Expect little more than a coating to an inch of snow this evening into the first part of the overnight, followed by just scattered snow showers after midnight.

After this little wave of snow, we’ll start to eat away at snow on the ground leading into Christmas Eve and day, as milder air and rain showers move in. Friday will be a quiet weather day with some sun and temperatures in the upper 30s and lower 40s. This will cause at least a little of the snow on the ground to melt, but not much. That will change Christmas Eve night and Christmas Day, with rain showers moving in. Saturday itself will be mild, with highs in the mid-40s and rain showers off and on.

Bottom line: If you’re one of the towns that got some extra lake effect from Lake Ontario, you’ll likely still see snow on the ground on Christmas Day. If not, expect to see green. Sunday should be a fairly quiet day with highs near 40 and mainly dry weather. So, if you’re traveling right before, or right after Christmas, the weather looks like it’ll cooperate.

Unsettled weather returns: Our weather will turn much more active next week, but not necessarily snowy. Several storm systems will pass by to our west, or just overhead next week, bringing us a mixed bag of precipitation, including rain, some snow, and perhaps a wintry mix at times.

Bottom line: We’ll experience lots of ups and downs in the temperatures department as we close out 2021, but signs are pointing toward a cooler trend the first or second week of January, which may increase our chances for snow. Until then, it is more "wimpy winter" weather for WNY.


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