The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for a large portion of Northern Michigan, shown in bright pink, including: Alpena, Presque Isle, Alcona, Montmorency, Oscoda, Otsego, Crawford, Antrim, Kalkaska, and Grand Traverse counties. The warning begins at 4 p.m. this afternoon and ends at 7 a.m. tomorrow morning. Other areas in Northern Michigan are under a Winter Weather Advisory for the same time period, with lower snowfall amounts forecast for the areas shaded in gray. If you are traveling anywhere for New Year’s celebrations, please exercise lots of caution on the roads.
The main source of the incoming snowstorm is a storm system moving from the Ohio Valley region toward southern Michigan. Additionally, a cold front currently moving across the Upper Peninsula will assist in producing widespread snowfall.
Here is how much snowfall can be expected — most of the area under the Winter Storm Warning is forecast to receive 6-9 inches of snow. This region includes most of Alpena County (away from the shoreline), most of Alcona County (excluding shoreline locales and communities at the southern end of the county), Presque Isle County (except at the shoreline) Montmorency county, Oscoda county, Otsego county, Crawford county. Surrounding areas, including the shoreline of Alpena, Alcona, and Presque Isle counties can expect 4-6 inches of snow.
Lower snowfall amounts are forecast closer to Saginaw Bay because of a wintry mix or even some rain possible this afternoon limiting snowfall amounts. Because of a wintry mix including the risk of sleet and brief freezing rain, areas south of M-72 may encounter slippery roads this afternoon and evening.
Snow inland, or a wintry mix (rain/snow/sleet/possible freezing rain) for places at the shoreline and south of Alpena will arrive this afternoon. Throughout this evening, the precipitation will change to snow everywhere in Northeast Michigan. The heaviest snow is anticipated to fall from 7 p.m. until midnight this evening. The snow should clear out by midday tomorrow, and highs will reach the lower 20s on New Year’s Day.