UPDATE 12:05 AM, 10/25: Overnight snow showers may linger Friday morning, especially west of Roanoke, but will dwindle into what will probably become a mostly sunny day. We’ll start our with near-freezing temperatures, rise into the 40s, then back down for a hard freeze with many 20s Friday night and early Saturday. I will do a full new blog post sometime on Friday. END UPDATE
Southwest Virginia is now fully into winter’s first intrusion of the season, with blustery winds, many temperatures already in the 30s by early Thursday evening, and even a few snow showers. Freeze warnings are out west of Roanoke overnight and early Thursday, where temperatures may drop below 32 degrees, with frost advisories in the Roanoke Valley and points east, where winds may diminish in some spots to allow frost to form. Rain/snow showers will dwindle overnight and into much of Thursday, when even sunshine will have a hard time getting anyone above 50. But an approaching disturbance Thursday evening and early Friday will likely spark another round, perhaps even more vigorously, enhanced by upslope northwest flow over the Appalachians. As of Wednesday evening, the Weather Prediction Center had even colored some probabilities of getting at least 1 inch of snow, mostly north and northwest of the Roanoke and New River valleys. (Click here for latest WPC snow probabilites, which will be updated Thursday morning). But some of the low-end 10 to 20 percent colors (light greens in map at left) even made it to the U.S. 460 corridor at Roanoke and Blacksburg. Measurable snow is probably a long shot for Roanoke, but seeing some flakes, maybe even an outright snow squall or two, briefly, is not out of the question for Thursday night and early Friday. Some parts of the New River Valley may get a quick coating underneath the more robust snow showers and squalls. Higher elevations along the Virginia-West Virginia border and farther west are most likely to get ground-whitening — the 3,500-feet-plus ridgetop areas of West Virginia were already getting snow in inches as of late Wednesday.
The snow threat blows by on Friday, and a clear, calm night may allow lows to plummet into the 20s and some teens almost areawide by Saturday morning. Then we’ll start a gradual warmup into next week, though no atypically warm air is on the horizon.