Another winter storm could bring more snow to the East

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Another Winter Storm Could Bring More Snow to the East

By Jon Erdman, The Weather Channel

Another East Coast storm is looking increasingly possible next week, bringing snow, ice, rain, wind, even some severe thunderstorms to parts of the East and South.

It may be a case of déjà vu after the mess left behind by Winter Storm Olympia.

RECAPS: Over 20 Inches of Snow | Tens of Thousands Without Power | South Tornadoes

It's still far too soon to be confident of the details, such as how much snow, rain or ice this storm may wring out in any area, nor can we completely rule out a storm won't occur at all.

RELATED: See more of the previous snow storm below:

18 PHOTOS
#Blizzard2016 aka Winter Storm Jonas slams the east coast
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Another winter storm could bring more snow to the East

A massive winter storm system pummeled the eastern United States in late January 2016, with two low-pressure systems merging into a potent nor’easter that dropped heavy snow from Virginia to New England. By late afternoon on Jan. 23, snowfall totals were approaching records in several states, and hurricane-force winds were battering the coastlines and leading to serious flooding. The storm was expected to continue through the morning of Jan. 24.

The Visible Infrared Imaging Radiometer Suite (VIIRS) on the Suomi NPP satellite acquired this image of the storm system at 2:15 a.m. EST on Jan. 23. It was composed through the use of the VIIRS “day-night band,” which detects faint light signals such as city lights, moonlight, airglow, and auroras. In the image, the clouds are lit from above by the nearly full Moon and from below by the lights of the heavily populated East Coast. The city lights are blurred in places by cloud cover.

(Photo via NASA)

NEW YORK, NY - JANUARY 23: A woman walks in strong winds and heavy snow fall in Central Park on January 23, 2016 in New York City. A major Nor'easter is hitting much of the East Coast and parts of the South as forecasts warn of up to two feet of snow in some areas. (Photo by Astrid Riecken/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A man use a skiing on a snow covered street in Manhattan in New York on January 23, 2016. A deadly blizzard with bone-chilling winds and potentially record-breaking snowfall slammed the eastern US on January 23, as officials urged millions in the storm's path to seek shelter -- warning the worst is yet to come. US news reports said at least eight people had died by late Friday from causes related to the monster snowstorm, which is expected to last until early Sunday. / AFP / KENA BETANCUR (Photo credit should read KENA BETANCUR/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A pedestrian walks in the center of a snow-covered residential street in Washington, DC on January 23, 2016. A deadly blizzard with bone-chilling winds and potentially record-breaking snowfall slammed the eastern US on January 23, as officials urged millions in the storm's path to seek shelter -- warning the worst is yet to come. / AFP / MANDEL NGAN (Photo credit should read MANDEL NGAN/AFP/Getty Images)

January 22, 2016

Scott Kelly ‏(@StationCDRKelly): Massive #snowstorm blanketing #EastCoast clearly visible from @Space_Station! Stay safe! #blizzard2016 #YearInSpace

TOPSHOT - A man lays in a pile of snow in Times Square on January 23, 2016 in New York. A deadly blizzard with bone-chilling winds and potentially record-breaking snowfall slammed the eastern US on January 23, as officials urged millions in the storm's path to seek shelter -- warning the worst is yet to come. US news reports said at least eight people had died by late Friday from causes related to the monster snowstorm, which is expected to last until early Sunday. / AFP / Don EMMERT (Photo credit should read DON EMMERT/AFP/Getty Images)
CAPE MAY, NEW JERSEY - JANUARY 23: Waves crash on the beach on January 23, 2016 in Cape May, New Jersey. A major snowstorm is upon the East Coast this weekend with some areas expected to receive over a foot of snow. (Photo by Andrew Renneisen/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 22: Nuns from the Fraternite Notre-Dame in Chicago, Illinois are covered in newly fallen snow as they walk along Constitution Avenue while snow begins to accumulate January 22, 2016 in Washington, DC. A major snowstorm is forecasted for the East Coast this weekend with some areas expected to receive up to 1-2 feet of snow. (Photo by Win McNamee/Getty Images)
Snow covers cars parked in Washington on January 23, 2016. A deadly blizzard with bone-chilling winds and potentially record-breaking snowfall slammed the eastern US on Saturday, as officials urged millions in the storm's path to seek shelter -- warning the worst is yet to come. US news reports said at least eight people had died by late Friday from causes related to the monster snowstorm, which is expected to last until early Sunday. / AFP / Mladen ANTONOV (Photo credit should read MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - A man pushing a snow plough during a snowstorm January 22, 2016 in New York. / AFP / FRANCOIS XAVIER MARIT (Photo credit should read FRANCOIS XAVIER MARIT/AFP/Getty Images)
A man walks on snow covered Thomas Circle in Washington on January 23, 2016. A deadly blizzard with bone-chilling winds and potentially record-breaking snowfall slammed the eastern US on Saturday, as officials urged millions in the storm's path to seek shelter -- warning the worst is yet to come. US news reports said at least eight people had died by late Friday from causes related to the monster snowstorm, which is expected to last until early Sunday. / AFP / Mladen ANTONOV (Photo credit should read MLADEN ANTONOV/AFP/Getty Images)
WASHINGTON, DC - JANUARY 22: A snowplow cleans up snow on Pennsylvania Avenue in front of the U.S. Capitol January 22, 2016 in Washington, DC. A winter snowstorm is forecasted for the East Coast this weekend with prediction of up to 30 inches of snow for the DC area. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - The White House is seen during a snowstorm in Washington January 22, 2016. Thousands of flights were cancelled and supermarket shelves were left bare Friday as millions of Americans hunkered down for a winter storm expected to dump historic amounts of snow in the eastern United States. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
TOPSHOT - People cross 15ht Street during a snowstorm in Washington January 22, 2016. Thousands of flights were cancelled and supermarket shelves were left bare Friday as millions of Americans hunkered down for a winter storm expected to dump historic amounts of snow in the eastern United States. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
A Homeless covers from the snow in Central park on January 23, 2016 in New York. A deadly blizzard with bone-chilling winds and potentially record-breaking snowfall slammed the eastern US on Saturday, as officials urged millions in the storm's path to seek shelter -- warning the worst is yet to come. US news reports said at least eight people had died by late Friday from causes related to the monster snowstorm, which is expected to last until early Sunday. / AFP / KENA BETANCUR (Photo credit should read KENA BETANCUR/AFP/Getty Images)
A man walks past a restaurant during a snowstorm January 22, 2016 in Washington, DC. Thousands of flights were cancelled and supermarket shelves were left bare Friday as millions of Americans hunkered down for a winter storm expected to dump historic amounts of snow in the eastern United States. / AFP / Brendan Smialowski (Photo credit should read BRENDAN SMIALOWSKI/AFP/Getty Images)
CHAPEL HILL, NC - JANUARY 22: Vehicles move along Interstate 40 as an overhead sign indicates 'Winter Weather Warning In Effect' during a winter storm on January 22, 2016 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina. A major snowstorm is forecasted for the East Coast this weekend with some areas getting a possible one to two feet of snow. (Photo by Lance King/Getty Images)
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One reason for this is the jet-stream disturbance responsible for this potential East Coast storm as of Wednesday afternoon, was still 4,000 miles away from the West Coast, roughly over the Sea of Okhotsk between Japan and Russia's Kamchatka Peninsula.

It will be traveling over a relatively data-void region of the Pacific Ocean until Sunday, meaning numerical forecast models may have difficulty resolving important details of this upper-air disturbance important to an accurate forecast of the potential storm next week. It's a basic concept of forecast models that initial errors in analysis or short-term forecasts amplify with time.

However, there has been enough of a consistent signal in our longer-range guidance to suggest a storm is on the table next week. Let's break down what we know, and, frankly, don't yet know.

The Setup

After a thaw reaches the East Coast this weekend, a weak cold front should drop south into the Northeast and Ohio Valley Monday.

Then, a vigorous jet-stream disturbance is forecast to carve out a deep southward plunge of the jet stream over the East Tuesday.

If energy from the northern-branch, or polar jet stream, is able to overlap with that from the southern-branch, or subtropical jet stream, low pressure could strengthen rapidly as it moves up the East Coast the middle of next week.

In addition to whether this scenario will actually come to pass, there are two key uncertainties that will determine the storm's impacts:

How strong will the cold air initially in place be? How easily, or soon, will it give way?

What will the track of the surface low be?

RELATED: Best men & women's snow boots:

18 PHOTOS
Men and women's winter boots
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Another winter storm could bring more snow to the East

Top Women's Boot: PAJAR 'Iceland' Winter Boot, $164.95

Top Men's Boot: Sorel 'Cheyanne' Snow Boot, $125

Top Women's Boot: Columbia Women's Ice Maiden II Winter Boot, from $56.97

Top Women's Boot: Ugg 'Lodge' Water Resistant Lace Up Boot, $199.95

Top Women's Boot: ECCO 'Trace' Snow Boot, $239.95

Top Women's Boot: Sorel Women's Winter Carnival Boot, from $87.97

Top Men's Boot: Sorel 'Caribou' Snow Boot, $160

Top Women's Boot: Kamik Women's Momentum Snow Boot, from $79.83

Top Women's Boot: Santana Canada 'Melita' Waterproof Boot, $238.95

Top Men's Boot: Hunter 'Original Short' Rain Boot, $145

Top Women's Boot: Totes Womens Troy Snow Boot, from $29.80

Top Men's Boot: Wolverine 'Felix' Waterproof Boot, $190

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The Outlook

While the precise details cannot be determined yet, there are some generalities of this potential Eastern storm beginning to take shape.

First, rain and thunderstorms are expected to flare up across much of the South by Sunday and Monday. Some of these thunderstorms could be strong or severe.

By Tuesday, though, some Gulf moisture begins to meet up with the southern fringe of the cold air mass lingering over the Northeast and Ohio Valley.

Next Tuesday through Thursday, low pressure could intensify near the East Coast. Here's what the preponderance of the evidence suggests, right now:

  • Best chance for snow, possibly heavy: Appalachians to the interior Northeast
  • Rain/snow uncertainty: Near the I-95 Northeast corridor, precipitation could start as snow, change to rain, then change back to snow. How much snow vs. rain depends on the forecast track of the low and the cold air available, which is uncertain.
  • Ice: There may also be a narrow zone of freezing rain, for a period of time, similar to what we saw with Winter Storm Olympia, though this doesn't appear to be a setup conducive for a significant ice storm.
  • Wind: If this low does intensify, there could be blowing/drifting snow, as well as strong winds ahead of the cold front in the storm's warm sector.
  • Severe Threat: Given the combination of the strong jet stream and warm, moist air, severe thunderstorms and tornadoes are possible in the Deep South and Southeast as soon as Monday, continuing into Tuesday and possibly early Wednesday.

MAPS: 10-Day Forecast Highs/Lows | Weekly Planner

For now, don't change any plans for next week just yet. Continue to check back with us at weather.com for the latest on this potential storm and any likely forecast changes ahead.

RELATED: More snow so far in February:

2 PHOTOS
February winter weather across U.S.
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Another winter storm could bring more snow to the East
WASHINGTON, DC - FEBRUARY 13: Ai Koid, 25, fights gusty wind chills and snow while walking to the bus stop at Dupont Circle in Washington, D.C., February 13, 2016, to catch a bus to New York. (Photo by Astrid Riecken For The Washington Post via Getty Images)
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