Sooner or later, the warm waters of Lake Erie were sure to bite.
The National Weather Service is forecasting “significant and long-lasting lake-effect” snow next week.
[Read the latest on the forecast here]
"There's no ice on the lake, so it's fair game," said Shawn Smith, weather service meteorologist.
If it's any consolation, you’ll get a near 50-degree weekend to prepare.
Forecasts show a pair of weather systems to pass through the Buffalo Niagara region starting Friday.
The first will bring a round of rain showers with a daytime high in the 40s.
Saturday’s high is forecast to be near 50 degrees with another warmish, but windy, day to start Sunday as the second storm system passes through. Winds could gust to 50 mph Sunday afternoon and evening, according to the forecast.
Behind that, cold arctic air will rush the region.
The quick drop in temperature will turn mixed precipitation Sunday to all snow by late in the day with the lake-effect snow machine cranking into high-gear on Monday.
Maybe Thursday and Friday too.
Forecasters at the weather service said the arctic blast will bring "oscillating" lake-effect snow bands through the region with alternating shots of snow squalls from passing Canadian clipper weather systems:
THE FIRST ROUND OF LAKE EFFECT SNOW WILL DEVELOP SUNDAY NIGHT AND MONDAY EAST OF LAKE ERIE. FROM TUESDAY THROUGH THE REST OF THE WEEK A SERIES OF SYSTEMS WILL CROSS THE REGION AND RESULT IN BANDS OF LAKE EFFECT SNOW OSCILLATING ACROSS MUCH OF WESTERN NEW YORK AS WIND DIRECTIONS FREQUENTLY CHANGE.
“It’s probably a little two early to tell” how much accumulation the region can expect – or where, according to Shawn Smith, a weather service meteorologist – but it’s likely nearly all of Buffalo Niagara can expect to see some squalls at some point -- including the Northtowns.
"It's going to be an pretty active weather pattern next week," Smith said.
Although the weather service tends to release its snowfall forecast estimates, watches and warnings within a day or two of an event, forecasters at AccuWeather.com have already punched up some precise numbers for the coming week.
Not surprisingly, if AccuWeather's forecast holds, the Southtowns and Southern Tier will bear the brunt of the snowfall.