Parts of South see freezing weather settle in for year's end

The cold air pool takes residence in the Southeast through the weekend, with temperatures 10-20 degrees below average for this time of year. That cold air won't be going anywhere fast.

A few snowflakes could continue flying in parts of the South on Saturday as the region sees its coldest temperatures this winter, dropping below freezing in some areas.

The same storm that blasted the Plains with near hurricane-force winds and almost a foot of snow that created blizzard conditions this week has dropped south and east. 

"This low has been pretty much a troublemaker, wherever it is across the northern Plains now, moving into the south," said FOX Weather Meteorologist Kiyana Lewis. "This cooler air mass filters in behind it, and we'll see a lot of areas, where typically around this time of the year would be associated with warmer weather – Florida being one of those areas, that we watch closely towards the end of the week."

24-hour temperature change in the Southeast between Friday and Saturday.
(FOX Weather)


Big chill takes hold into the weekend

The cold air pool has taken residence in the Southeast through the weekend, with temperatures 10-20 degrees below average for this time of year. 

"And we're talking about some big-time cold that's going to be moving in," said FOX Weather Meteorologist Stephen Morgan. "We have this low, which we have seen, when we look at the cold air, a lot of times we have the South respond and rebound quickly. But this low has basically been meandering through the Plains, not moving much. And it's essentially going to do the same thing in the South." 


Saturday morning's forecast low temperatures.
(FOX Weather)

Saturday's forecast highs across the Southeast U.S.
(FOX Weather)


New Orleans will be cooler than New York City for New Year's preps. 

Friday morning, gusty winds dropped the wind chill or feels-like temperatures below freezing across Arkansas, Alabama, northeast Texas and north Georgia. New Orleans felt like 31 degrees early Friday morning and the city activated the city's freeze plan, which has opened temporary shelters amid the frigid weather. Atlanta felt like 26 degrees and Houston felt like 32.

New Orleans moderated a bit Saturday morning with a low of 39, but Atlanta still felt like morning temperatures were around 30. It was in the upper 20s in Jackson, Mississippi and a chilly 32 degrees in Jacksonville, Florida.


Revelers flocking to Florida for the holiday will hardly find beach weather either. Key West and Miami won't make it to 70 degrees on Saturday.

Southern snow flurries

Some southern cities could even see a few flurries. FOX Weather Winter Storm Specialist Tom Niziol shared a video on X, formerly Twitter, that showed decent-sized snowflakes already flying in Roan Mountain, Tennessee, on Friday afternoon.

Huntsville and Birmingham in Alabama, Atlanta in Georgia and Nashville in Tennessee haven't seen measurable snow since 2022. For Nashville, the city hasn't seen an entire calendar year without snow since 1908 – a record that will reset this year as the city made it through the night and morning with just a little drizzle. 

The forecast for most locations at most was just a few tenths of an inch of snow, if any, while higher elevations could see 1-2 inches. A Winter Weather Advisory has been issued for far eastern Middle Tennessee and along the North Carolina border into Saturday morning.


Winter weather alerts have been issued in parts of Middle Tennessee and along the North Carolina border.
(FOX Weather)


Some light snow is possible Saturday farther north in the West Virginia mountains into western Pennsylvania.


The snowfall forecast for the eastern U.S.
(FOX Weather)


Bundling up for New Year's

Those with outdoor New Year's Eve plans may want to start shopping for festive gloves and hats now.

Temperatures may not be fast to rebound as a reinforcing cold front looks to be poised to follow this week's big chill.