Fresh rainwater sits on top of the ice at Auke Lake on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019. The National Weather Service expects snow and cold temperatures to be in Juneau’s future. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Fresh rainwater sits on top of the ice at Auke Lake on Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019. The National Weather Service expects snow and cold temperatures to be in Juneau’s future. (Michael Penn | Juneau Empire File)

Cold snap coming

At least we’re not Chicago.

Take a last look at your lawn.

The flakes that fell downtown Tuesday afternoon were just a preview of what can be expected in Juneau in the coming days, said Kimberly Vaughan, forecaster for the National Weather Service in Juneau.

“Where the snow starts coming on in earnest is a snow-rain combination that starts falling Thursday,” Vaughan said.

She said a small amount —maybe an inch or two —could be expected to accumulate before Friday morning.

“On Friday, that’s when things start increasing even further with 2 to 4 inches expected,” Vaughan said.

[See the flakes fall earlier this month]

Then a bit more snow could pile up heading into Sunday.

While the snow falls, the temperatures will be doing the same.

“This is going to be a bit of a cold trend,” Vaughan said. “By Thursday night, we’re looking at lows at about 34 in the valley and 30 in Juneau.”

Things will continue to cool into the weekend with temperatures decreasing throughout Friday and sitting below freezing for the next few days.

“Saturday, we only warm up to about 16 degrees,” Vaughan said.

Nighttime lows are expected to be between 8 and 14 degrees.

“We’re going to be in that cold snap until we get into Monday,” Vaughan said.

[A good use for snow]

Then temperatures are anticipated to rise

This cold snap anticipated in Juneau is unrelated to the polar vortex that caused record lows in the Midwest.

“It is a different system altogether,” Vaughan said.

It will be chillier than usual, but temperatures will be well short of the negative temperatures recorded in the Lower 48.

“Yes, it’s colder than what our normal is, but it’s not extreme temperatures,” Vaughan said. “This is not so extreme that it will have the impact the Midwest is having.”

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