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Today's Weather Outlook

8 AM EST, February 3, 2011

UPDATED By WeatherBug Sr. Meteorologist, James West

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In the wake of a dangerous and historic midweek major winter storm for the central and eastern U.S., a broad area of high pressure will provide relief in the form of a dry, but bitterly cold weather pattern today. The exception to the fair weather will be along the Gulf Coast, around the Great Lakes and across the Pacific Northwest, all subject to unsettled conditions.

WeatherBug Meteorologist Todd Nelson has the latest on today`s weather in this exclusive WeatherBug National Outlook Video.

The storm that ravaged the Eastern half of the U.S. has exited into the Canada Maritime, but its influence will still be felt in the Great Lakes. A few bands of lake-enhanced snow showers will be common, particularly downwind of the favored southern facing snow belts of Lake Ontario in western New York, as northwest winds swirl around the departing storm. Accumulations of 3 to 5 inches are likely.

Meanwhile, another storm developing in the southern Gulf of Mexico will spread a blossoming shield of snow, sleet and freezing rain along the Gulf Coast after midday. The bout of wintry weather will expand inland, encompassing the Lower Mississippi Valley by late in the afternoon and evening, while showers and perhaps a rumble of thunder litter the landscape across the Southeast and into the Florida Panhandle.

Meanwhile, high pressure will settle across the Eastern U.S., allowing for sunny skies to assist with post-storm cleanup. Temperatures from the Plains to the Mid-Atlantic will be on the chilly side in the 20s and 30s, with teens in the western Great Lakes. Only the Carolinas, Southeast and Florida will remain above average with highs in the 50s and 60s.

Fair weather will, for the most part, also be found across the West, as high pressure remains locked in place. This will keep sunshine overhead from California to Utah. The main exception will be in the Pacific Northwest, where a new storm will push onshore. Showers will develop during the morning, with a few snow showers spreading into the Cascades. Also at risk for a few snowflakes will be the higher elevations of the Colorado Rockies.

Temperatures in the West will range significantly between the coast and the Rockies. While the interior West will struggle to get out of the teens and 20s, warmer 50s and 60s will be common from California to Washington.

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