Winter Storm WARNING in effect until Sunday morning

A powerful winter storm system will impact the Sauk Valley this weekend bringing a mix of rain, freezing rain, sleet, and snow.

A Winter Storm WARNING has been issued for both Lee and Whiteside Counties until 12am Sunday morning.

Rain will become likely after 6pm this evening with heavy downpours likely at times. As colder air filters in, the rain is expected to mix with freezing rain and sleet after midnight Saturday morning through much of Saturday morning. Minor icing of elevated surfaces is likely during this time frame, especially bridges and other untreated surfaces.

A mix of freezing rain and sleet will continue through much of Saturday afternoon before a complete switchover to snow for Saturday evening. This is when road conditions are expected to deteriorate with strong winds combining with heavy snow at times reducing visibility to less than a mile.

Total snow accumulations of at least four inches is likely with localized higher amounts of up to eight inches. Lighter amounts will be found the further east you travel since the switchover from rain, freezing rain, and sleet will be later. Higher totals will be found further west closer to the Mississippi River.

The snow will end by midnight Sunday morning, however, some blowing and drifting will likely be ongoing, especially in open areas.

A mix of rain, freezing rain, and sleet begins early Saturday morning through Saturday afternoon, transitioning to all snow by Saturday evening with accumulations of at least four inches likely. Some minor ice accumulation is likely Saturday morning and afternoon, especially on elevated surfaces. Increasing winds behind the system Saturday night into Sunday morning likely to cause blowing/drifting snow.

Travel should be avoided for much of Saturday if possible.

More updates throughout the day. A reminder you can always check in with our LIVE weather camera network here.