Colder weather Wednesday to be followed by a warm-up Thursday, then accumulating snow this weekend

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After nearly three weeks of above-normal temperatures in Madison, temperatures will finally fall below average on Wednesday for the first time since the astronomical start of winter, and the first time since December 18th of 2019.

A cold front passed through southern Wisconsin late in the day on Tuesday. As a result, low temperatures by Wednesday morning will fall to the single digits, with wind chills dropping to near ten below zero at times. High temperatures will only reach the lower 20s.

Thursday will be windy and milder with high temperatures climbing back into the middle 40s. Rain showers will develop in the afternoon, and should end Thursday night. Rain amounts should be relatively light.

The active weather pattern will continue this weekend, with two potential systems affecting southern Wisconsin with accumulating snow. Friday will be mostly cloudy and colder before snow develops Friday night. Some accumulation is possible; right now it appears that any snow accumulation should be generally light, probably around three inches or less. The snow will end on Saturday morning, but there is a chance that snow redevelops Saturday afternoon as the second system moves closer. Some additional snow accumulation is possible through early Sunday morning.

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Right now, the first system appears more likely. There is much more uncertainty with the second system. However, if the second system does materialize, southern Wisconsin could see major impacts and the potential for significant snowfall accumulations. At this point, the longer-range weather computer forecast models are very far apart, with possibilities including the storm missing Wisconsin completely to the south to a major winter storm with snowfall amounts around a foot or more.

The active weather pattern should continue into next week. Snow showers are expected on Sunday night and Monday morning with little accumulation. Light snow is possible again on Tuesday afternoon and Tuesday night (also with little accumulation expected). Another weather system from late Wednesday into Thursday morning may bring additional snowfall. Although right now only minor accumulations are expected, there could be some potential for this storm to be stronger than forecast, leading to heavier snow accumulations.

Assuming that there will be snow cover over southern Wisconsin by the end of next week, temperatures should be colder and most likely below normal by the end of next week.

Stay tuned to News 3 Now newscasts, Channel3000.com on the internet, and the Channel3000 First Alert Weather and Traffic app for further weather updates.

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