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National Weather at 155pm January 2 2005


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Heavy rain, snow set to return to Southern California, Arizona

1:57 P.M. ET 1/2/2005


Senior Meteorologist, The Weather Channel




Chilly, unsettled weather will linger in the West tomorrow with most of the action in central and Southern California, southern Nevada and Arizona. Heavy rains will return to the lower elevations of Southern California and southern Arizona where flood watches already have been issued. In the higher elevations of the region, heavy snow will be the problem. Winter storm watches are posted for the mountains of Southern California, southern Nevada, southern Utah and southwest Colorado. Substantial amounts of snow may also fall along Arizona's Mogollon Rim. In the mountains of Southern California, snow totals could reach 10 to 20 inches as snow levels drop to 4000 feet or less by late tomorrow. Gusty winds will add to the storminess. Although high temperatures in the 20s and 30s will cover a large expanse of the West tomorrow, the overall range will be from slightly below zero in northeast Montana to the 60s in southwest Arizona.



Damp weather--including locally heavy showers-- fostered by a stationary front stretching from the southern Plains to the Ohio Valley will hover over areas from Kansas to the lower Midwest tomorrow. The near-surface air along the northern edge of the precipitation should be cold enough to produce a narrow band of light freezing rain and freezing drizzle from far northern Kansas and northern Missouri into extreme northern Illinois and perhaps a thin sliver of southern lower Michigan. Temperatures, meanwhile, will display a large range, with highs near zero in northwest North Dakota, and in the 60s over southern Missouri and the lower Ohio Valley.



Rain and showers will plague parts of the Northeast tomorrow, mainly West Virginia, Pennsylvania, southern New York and southern New England. Farther north, a few snow flurries may dust Upstate New York and northern Maine. The cause of the inclement weather: a nearly stationary front draped from the Ohio Valley to southern New England, and a low pressure center rippling eastward along the front into southern Pennsylvania by evening. High temperatures, meanwhile, will be well above seasonal means, ranging from the 30s in Upstate New York and far northern New England to the 60s south of the Mason-Dixon Line.



Unseasonable warmth will continue to grace the South tomorrow, although an influx of moisture off the Gulf of Mexico will make it a rather wet warmth in parts of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas and Tennessee where scattered showers and maybe a few thundershowers will prevail. The Southeast, meanwhile, should stay dry. High temperatures will continue to be spring-like with readings in the 60s and 70s, north to south, although the mercury could reach the low 80s in far south Texas.

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