Locally Heavy Snow Aims for Chicago

Lake effect snow coming to Chicago

Chicago, IL-(ENEWSPF)- AccuWeather.com reports lake-effect snow will reach westward across lower Lake Michigan to Chicagoland and northwestern Indiana beginning Friday and lasting into early Saturday.

The event which features respectable cold air passing over the wide-open waters of the lake will unload locally heavy snow, especially from along the Chicago Lakefront to northwestern Indiana.

The worst of the snow will hit Chicago and Gary and Portage, Ind., Friday afternoon and should run through Friday night.

Since it will turn colder during the event, the drive home Friday could turn quite slippery as wet areas turn slushy and slushy areas freeze.

The visibility may get very low for a few hours in snow and blowing snow, perhaps resulting in flight delays.

There is the potential for 3 to 6 inches of snow in this swath. There could be even more in a narrow zone if a band of snow sits over a particular location, as such is the nature of lake-effect.

Lesser amounts of snow are in store north and west in Illinois and the southeastern tip of Wisconsin.

Lake-effect snow will be no stranger to the upper Michigan Peninsula and will extend farther west than usual over northwest Wisconsin due to the north to northeast flow.

Little lake-effect is in store along much of the eastern shore of Lake Michigan, due to the north to northeast flow.

However, then general push of arctic air can bring a period of flurries and enough snow to cover the ground in spots even over southeastern Michigan, northwestern and central Ohio and central Indiana.

In these areas, the same temperature drop accompanying the snow or shortly thereafter can lead to icy travel. This includes the metro areas of Detroit and Indianapolis.

Farther east, the combination of an upper level disturbance, the Arctic front and lake-effect could bring several inches of snow to Cleveland.

Written by Alex Sosnowski, Expert Senior Meteorologist for AccuWeather.com