First Alert Weather: Travel will be tricky later tonight and Sunday

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) — After enjoying a temperature near 50 degrees today, much colder air is now pouring in across Western New York for tonight and Sunday. As a result, it will feel and look very different over the next 24 hours. A nearly stationary front is now draped across southern Ohio, portions of Pennsylvania into southern New York State and along that boundary several areas of low pressure are rotating along the front creating a great deal of unsettled weather. For Rochester, it will be a slow, but steady return to winter conditions.

The News10NBC First Alert meteorologists have issued a yellow alert for late tonight and Sunday. Tonight, a cold rain will change to a wintry mix of sleet and snow by late evening. This transition will happen from north to south between 9 p.m. and midnight. Areas that take longer to make the change to snow will have a better opportunity to accumulate an icy glaze during the overnight. It will be difficult to pinpoint the exact temperature and type of precipitation, but it appears the greatest chance of snow will be north of the Thruway with the greatest chance of sleet and freezing rain then located south of Thruway. Any slight deviation in temperature will have an impact on where the change to snow takes place, but it is likely that most of the icy weather will happen during the overnight south of Rochester. The temperature will eventually fall into the upper 20s.

Sunday should bring all snow for most of Western New York. This will be a light to moderate snowfall that will slowly taper to flurries and snow showers by later Sunday afternoon. Total snowfall from tonight and into Sunday will range from three to five inches generally north of the New York Thruway with one to three inches south of the Thruway. It will be much colder as the temperature will be some 25 degrees colder compared to Saturday. Expect a northerly wind with the temperature slowly falling through the 20s. In addition, that would bring the wind chill into the lower teens.

Sunday night and Monday will bring some lake flurries and snow showers, but an additional accumulation will be very limited. The mid-winter chill will continue with the temperature remaining in the mid-20s for Monday. Tuesday partial sunshine will return with the temperature moderating into the middle 30s. Wednesday the temperature will continue to rise into the low 40s with rain or wet snow shower possible.

Looking ahead to the middle of the week another strong low-pressure system will be cutting into the great lakes. This will drag another cold front across the area on Thursday bringing another round of cold air and a fresh batch of lake snow for Thursday and Friday. It appears winter is here to stay for the first week of January.