IOWA — Another winter storm system will lift into Iowa on Tuesday, but this time it will bring a variety of precipitation across the state. A Winter Weather Advisory is in effect for the southern half of Central Iowa from midnight to midnight on Tuesday. A Winter Storm Warning is in effect for the northern half of Central Iowa 9 PM Monday through the day on Tuesday.
This storm is complicated and will bring a mix of conditions, beginning with freezing rain and drizzle and ending with snow. Temperatures will rise through the evening tonight. We’ve been in the teens for much of the day and temperatures will rise into the 20s though the evening. We’ll reach 30 degrees in Des Moines by morning. Drier air is filling into the upper levels of the atmosphere, which will limit snow development in southern and South Central Iowa during the start of the event. Areas of freezing drizzle is more likely Tuesday morning in Central Iowa during the morning commute. Northern Iowa, along the Minnesota border, will see snow earlier on the morning.
As far as precipitation type goes on Tuesday, the southernmost tiers of counties look to definitely have rain through the morning ahead of the arrival of the surface low. There will be a transition line of rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow between I-80 and Highway 30. Where we do see some ice, we could see up to .15” of ice accrual along the transition line in Central Iowa. There may be some brief dry time with freezing drizzle during the afternoon with a dry slot that works in.
As the low pressure center moves east of Central Iowa, an area of snow will wrap around the state into Tuesday night. Snow will accumulate through Central Iowa with 2 to 4” through Des Moines and higher amounts of 4 to 7”+ in Northern Central Iowa.
This is a tricky storm with lots of factors that will impact snowfall amounts. It’s important to know is that travel may be difficult due to some ice and snow through the state.