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Wintry mix of sleet, snow, freezing rain predicted

DAILY LEADER GRAPHIC / The local area is under a winter storm watch and a hard freeze warning with snow, freezing rain and sleet predicted.

DAILY LEADER GRAPHIC / The local area is under a winter storm watch and a hard freeze warning with snow, freezing rain and sleet predicted.

The Lincoln County area is under a winter storm watch and a hard freeze warning for the next few days.

Area schools have announced closings for Tuesday, and local utilities are making special preparations for the storm. (Please see related stories.)

The weather service has issued a winter storm watch in effect from Tuesday morning through Tuesday evening and a hard freeze warning in effect from 6 a.m. Tuesday to noon Wednesday.

Monday night’s forecast is for increasing clouds with a 20 percent chance of light snow and light sleet after midnight. North winds of 15 to 20 mph are forecast, along with lows in the mid-20s. Wind gusts may be up to 25 mph in the evening. Wind chill readings are predicted at 14 to 19.

Tuesday’s forecast calls for snow, sleet and freezing rain likely in the morning. Then the forecast is for snow, sleet and a chance of freezing rain in the afternoon.

Ice accumulations of less than one quarter of an inch are possible and snow accumulations around 1 inch. Temperatures will be much colder and nearly steady in the mid 20s. North winds of 10 to 15 mph are predicted. The chance of precipitation is 80 percent. Wind chill readings are forecast at 12 to 17 degrees.

The forecast for Tuesday night is for cloudy with a chance of light snow in the evening, and then partly cloudy with a slight chance of light snow after midnight. Temperatures will be colder with lows near 15. North winds of 10 to 15 mph are forecast. The chance of snow is 50 percent.

On Wednesday it will be partly cloudy in the morning, and then clearing. Highs are forecast in the upper 30s. North winds will be around 5 to 10 mph. Wednesday night will be clear with lows of 15 to 20.

Thursday will be sunny and warmer with highs in the upper 40s. Thursday night will be partly cloudy and not as cold with lows in the upper 30s.