Storms are expected to drop as much as three to six inches of snow in northern Michigan and parts of Ohio, Pennsylvania and New York, potentially making Thanksgiving weekend travel difficult in cities including Detroit, Cleveland and Buffalo.
A southward dip in the polar jet stream, which is blasting cold air from central Canada toward the northeastern U.S., is fueling fast-moving storms with snow targeting the region Saturday night into Sunday. The system could produce as much as a foot of snow east of Lake Erie, according to the National Weather Service's Weather Prediction Center.
At least one storm from Canada will bring the first snow of the season to the Great Lakes region this weekend, according to AccuWeather.
AccuWeather senior meteorologist Tom Kines told USA TODAY road travel could be hazardous in some areas and that the weather could delay flights.
Drivers who get caught in the snow should be careful, Kines said: "That first snow of the year is always a slippery one because we don't remember how bad it can get."
"There are probably going to be some bursts of heavier snow, so road conditions could change dramatically over a short distance," Kines said.
Kines had two pieces of advice for post-Thanksgiving travelers: Allow yourself extra time and take it easy on the road as far as speed is concerned.
These kinds of storms, which tend to originate over western Canada, are dubbed Alberta clippers, because of their fast movement and origin, according to AccuWeather.
The northern-most stretches of New England saw snow from similar systems Friday night.
Major East Coast cities like Boston, New York, Philadelphia and Washington, D.C. aren't expected to be impacted going into Saturday night.
Contributing: Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Thanksgiving weekend travel forecast: Snow in Great Lakes region