A frigid Arctic high continues to build into Southeastern parts of the United States. This has allowed temperatures to plunge to well-below average values. The cold temperatures & low wind chills will stick around Monday night & Tuesday, which will help set the stage for light wintry precipitation.
The feature of interest that will generate lift, leading to light snow, is a rather potent shortwave that is diving southeast Monday evening. This shortwave is generating quite vigorous lift but with an Arctic airmass in place, the atmosphere is very dry. The one exception is the mid-layer of the atmosphere. This region is quite moist with this disturbance, which will allow snow flakes to develop and begin to fall. With the snow flakes having to survive a fall to the surface, many just wont reach the surface because the dry air will allow them to sublimate. However, a few will survive and should reach the surface beginning in southern Missouri & Arkansas Monday evening, then eventually spreading east in parts of Tennessee & northern Mississippi overnight Monday. By early Tuesday morning, the flurry threat will extend east into northern Alabama & northern Georgia as well as the higher terrain of North Carolina.
Most areas will only see an uptick in cloud-cover but a few areas will luck out and see light snow flurries. The best chance for accumulations will be across southern Missouri, northern Arkansas & the higher terrain of eastern Tennessee/western North Carolina.
Again, no travel issues are expected but enjoy the light snow if you’re lucky enough to see some and stay warm out there!
Christopher Nunley is Meteorologist on Firsthand Weather, Lecturer in the Department of Geosciences at Mississippi State University (MSU), and a PhD Candidate (Earth and Atmospheric Sciences) at MSU. He earned his M.S. in Applied Meteorology at MSU, was an Assistant Cross Country Coach and taught at the University of North Texas, and was a Broadcast Meteorologist at KTEN-TV (just north of Dallas, Texas). Christopher’s main focus lies within teaching and inspiring prospective meteorology students, atmospheric research to further our understanding of atmospheric processes, and forecasting and analyzing extreme weather events to help save lives!