Scott Killough, NC DOT maintenance engineer in Buncombe County, talks about the preparations for this weekend’s predicted snowstorm.
Angela Wilhelm, firstname.lastname@example.org
ASHEVILLE — The National Weather Service on Friday began to solidify weather predictions for snowfall in the Asheville area over the weekend, and it looks like much of the region should see close to a foot to 2 feet of snow, followed by treacherous and icy conditions early next week.
Doug Outlaw, a meteorologist with the Greer-based NWS office, said snow should fall just short of a foot in the city of Asheville, with close to 14 inches falling in southern Buncombe County.
The corridor of the highest snowfall extends from the eastern corner of Jackson County along the Blue Ridge Parkway to Mount Pisgah, where close to 2 feet should fall.
Mount Mitchell could also see 2 feet of snow.
For Leicester, expect 9-10 inches of accumulation. Rosman, in Transylvania County, should get 20 inches. The Black Mountain area should see around 15 inches of snow.
The Fletcher area should see 14 inches, Old Fort should see about 13 inches, while Weaverville should expect a foot.
Heavy snow Saturday night into Sunday
Outlaw said precipitation should begin to fall early Saturday morning as a bit of sleet, with perhaps some freezing rain and snow in the mix to further complicate things.
“Then it transitions quickly to all snow around sunrise Saturday morning and then, for most of Buncombe County, it stays as snow throughout the day on Saturday, generally a light snow, and then it gets heavier.”
The snow should mix with sleet late Saturday night and transition back to snow on Sunday.
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For most of Buncombe County, Outlaw said snow should accumulate to the depth of about an inch Saturday morning, adding another 2-3 inches Saturday afternoon, up to 3 inches in the evening, and another 4-5 inches late Saturday night, when the heaviest snow is likely to fall into Sunday morning.
Monday night “terrible”
Enjoy Sunday, because Monday will be nasty.
“All precipitation ends Monday night as a very light snow, but during the day on Monday, expect a cold rain,” Outlaw said. “It’s going to be a slushy mess — it’ll be a winter wonderland on Sunday, messy on Monday.”
Outlaw said it would be prudent to delay any travel, if at all possible, until Tuesday or even Wednesday. “Any travel on Sunday needs to be emergency only.”
While roads may improve a little on Monday afternoon, Monday night will be “terrible,” Outlaw said.
On Monday, highs will reach only into the upper 30s, and then drop precipitously Monday night into the lower 20s.
“It’s going to be a solid sheet of ice in some areas Tuesday morning — terrible ice — then the high on Tuesday afternoon gets to 42.”
There will be lots of melting on Tuesday. “But really the worst time to be on the road is going to be early Tuesday morning, with a sheet of ice over many areas. It’s going to be terrible.”
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