Winter weather alert: Snow, ice may disrupt weekend travelers in parts of Northeast

A sneaky storm with rain may tap into just enough fresh cold air to produce some snow and ice on its northern flank as it pushes into the eastern United States this weekend.

A small batch of air from central Canada is forecast to slice across the Great Lakes and into the Northeast during Friday and Friday night.

While that press of cold air may trigger a couple of spotty snow showers over western and northern New York state, northern Pennsylvania and northern and western New England as it first arrives, an approaching storm with rain from the south could cause more regional trouble for travelers along the Interstate 70, 80, 84, 86, 88 and 90 corridors this weekend.

"It looks like a close call this far out as temperatures will be marginal on the northern flank of the storm should the storm reach across the central Appalachians," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dave Dombek said on Tuesday.

Temperatures will be mainly in the 30s F in this swath. However, while air temperatures may be just above freezing near the ground, temperatures at critical layers in the atmosphere may allow snow and sleet to fall or a mixture of snow, sleet and rain for a time. On colder surfaces, patches of ice may form, which can be an added hazard for motorists.

The storm has the potential to be a player in area football games this weekend, including the Big Ten football matchup between Ohio State and Penn State in Columbus, Ohio, on Saturday. The Columbus area could be on the northern edge of the storm, where snow, rain or a wintry mix can occur.

Rain is likely to fall from much of Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, New Jersey, southern Pennsylvania, southeastern New York state and southeastern New England.

However, as the storm begins to shift eastward Saturday night to Sunday morning, rain may end as a period of snow or a wintry mix in parts of southern Ohio, West Virginia, western Maryland, northwestern Virginia, southwestern and south-central Pennsylvania, northern New Jersey, the lower Hudson Valley of New York state and central New England.

"After all, it is late November and storms that bring a combination of rain, ice and snow or a bit of snow at the tail end over the central Appalachians and even the coastal Northeast are not uncommon this time of the year," Dombek said.

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Arctic blast brings snow, ice and bone-chilling temps to U.S.
A woman walking the half mile from Chicago's Adler Planetarium to the Chicago Aquarium braces herself in the stiff wind and blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
A woman walking the half mile from the Chicago Aquarium to the Adler Planetarium braces in a stiff wind and blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
A woman walking the half mile from the Chicago Aquarium to the Adler Planetarium fights a stiff wind inverting her umbrella in the blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
A lone hiker navigates the 31st street beach bike trail in a stiff wind and blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
An American flag and a bouquet of flowers mark the grave of U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Shelby B. Harris who served in the Persian Gulf conflict in Fort Logan National Cemetery in Sheridan, Colo. The annual memorial service at the cemetery for Veterans Day was moved inside to mark the holiday as light snow and cold temperatures enveloped the intermountain West. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Jeremy Kohsman uses a leaf blower to remove the snow from his car in front of his home in Farmington Hills, Mich., Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (David Guralnick/Detroit News via AP)
Flint, Mich., residents traverse the snow as they walk into Flint City Hall to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Sheldon Neeley as the new mayor Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: As snow continues to fall a commuter waits for a bus in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident clears snow from her sidewalk in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident clears snow from her steps in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A cyclist rides along a snow-covered street in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: Snow covers bicycles in the Bucktown neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident walks through snow with her child in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A jogger runs through a snow-covered Humboldt Park on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident plays with his dog as snow falls in Humboldt Park on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A cyclist navigates a snow-covered street in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident walks his dog through a snow-covered Humboldt Park on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A person cleans their car during a snow storm on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A worker shovels snow from a sidewalk n the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: People navigate snow-covered sidewalks in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: People navigate snow-covered sidewalks in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Pedestrians in downtown Chicago bundle up from the wind and snow during the early morning rush hour as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Snow and rain make for a messy drive to work during the early morning rush hour as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Pedestrians in downtown Chicago bundle up from the wind and snow during the early morning rush hour as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
A maintenance worker spreads salt in the area around Cloud Gate during a morning rush hour snow storm as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area on Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Maintenance workers clear the snow around Cloud Gate during a morning rush hour snow storm as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
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How cold the air gets and how far north the storm is able to track into the cold air will determine the amount of snow and ice, if any, versus rain from part of the Ohio Valley to the central Appalachians and coastal Northeast.

While a heavy snowfall is not expected, just enough snow and/or a wintry mix can occur to create slippery road conditions. Also, the rainy part of the storm can slow motorists down and reduce visibility and increase emergency stopping distance.

A storm that follows during next week has the potential to produce a large swath of winterlike weather including the chance of heavy snow, strong winds and a freeze-up centered around Wednesday, which is the worst travel day of the Thanksgiving season in lieu of weather conditions.

Download the free AccuWeather app to check the forecast in your area. Keep checking back on AccuWeather.com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather Network on DirecTV, Frontier and Verizon Fios.

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