WINTER STORM OUTLOOK

Welcome to our "Winter Storm Outlook" page! This page was redesigned to make it easier to obtain the information you want to know. This product, like similar products we release, is created for "guidance" purposes only. Therefore we ask that you bear this in mind, because forecast errors in the time frame of this product can be large! We have revised the graphics and have discontinued the use of "probabilities" in the product. This was due to the fact that certain winter weather products don't really warrant probability usage. Another change to this product was to eliminate the "older style" of everything in a table concept. Instead, we now incorporate all the graphics into a single pane, which will allow you to select each days outlook graphic using tabs located above the grid panel (see below). A complete text summary for the entire outlook period appears below the graphics. We believe this approach will make it a lot easier for you to obtain the latest information while bolstering it's usefulness too.

The Elusive Winter Storm!

Winter storms can and generally do pose many kinds of hazardous winter weather elements, such as heavy snowfall, strong winds, sleet, and even some freezing rain. In the extreme cases, high winds and very heavy snowfall can result in "whiteout", or blizzard conditions. Because these storms can cover multiple states at the same time, and their often "erratic" movement, the skill of predicting where such storms will move to becomes a huge challenge to forecasters, especially further in advance of a storm. Because of the steering currents of air aloft, a winter storm can change it's direction of movement several times during it's developmental stages, and even during it's life cycle. While every effort is made to render the most accurate forecast track of a winter storm, such forecast errors can still be large. This is fully illustrated by the image below.

So bear this in mind as you read of a potential winter storm for the coverage region in this outlook!

Below is the main graphical display of the charts, followed by the textual discussion below that. This product is valid from the current date out seven (7) days ahead. It is issued once per day around noon local time, and is updated as necessary.



Outlook Graphics

Composite Day 1 Day 2 Day 3 Day 4 Day 5 Day 6 Day 7

The following table summerizes the categorical levels of risk we use in this outlook, what they mean, and most importantly, what YOU should do in each instance. Remember, every situation is different, so you need to adjust your actions accordingly.
STORM POTENTIAL WHAT IT MEANS! WHAT YOU SHOULD DO
NO STORMS EXPECTED No significant major winter storms are expected for the forecast period. No actions are required.
MINIMAL THREAT There is a small chance for a significant major winter storm. But this is far from certain! No actions are needed. But keep up with later outlooks as things may change.
LOW THREAT There is a low risk for a significant major winter storm. But there still remains some uncertainty regarding evolution. Pay attention to later outlooks for the current information. Go ahead with any travel plans, but bear this in mind.
MODERATE THREAT Confidence is high enough that a significant major winter storm will impact all, or parts of our coverage region. If you have any travel or other outdoor activities planned, you better carry them out immediately, or hold off until the storm passes. Roads and highways will likely deteriorate quickly once the snow arrives.
HIGH THREAT A significant major winter storm is imminent. Any travel or other outdoor activities planned should be canceled until the storm has passed. Never travel even for short distances! You can become lost very quickly.


Outlook Discussion (Text)

  
SWO48SCO

REGIONAL WINTER STORM OUTLOOK
SCO/MIDWEST WEATHER SERVICE STEVENS POINT/WHITING WI
1041 AM CST TUE JAN 23 2018

PLEASE NOTE...This product is for guidance purposes primarily, therefore, forecast errors may be large.

OUTLOOK VAID: 01/23/18 - 01/29/18 

...OVERVIEW/DISCUSSION...

....WINTER STORM POTENTIAL FOR THE REGION (SHORT TERM) = NO RISK ... (LONGER TERM) = NO RISK.

The flow aloft across the CONUS is progressive but amplified, and this general pattern looks to persist throughout this
entire outlook period. Departing storm "Alex" will be followed by stout mid level ridging at this time from the rockies
into the Canadian prairies. Then, even further upstream trough will migrate across the pacific northwest coast and high
plains by the end of the forecast period. This will be a fairly quiet period winter storm wise for our region.

FORECASTER: Zimmerman

NNN

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