A major winter storm is set to bring heavy snow, gusty winds, and polar air to our area this weekend.

THE LATEST:

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) - A major winter storm is set to bring heavy snow, gusty winds, and polar air to our area this weekend.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for Saturday afternoon through Monday afternoon for Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Wayne, and Wyoming counties.

Our news partner, News10NBC's weather team has issued a Red First Alert Weather Day for our area for Saturday night into Sunday. A Yellow Alert is in effect for the day on Saturday and also for Monday.

This will be a long duration winter event. Snow will begin during the day Saturday and become heavy into the night. Snow, heavy at times, will continue through Sunday and possibly into Monday morning.

There will be a combination of snow from the storm itself at first and then lake effect at the end. When all is said and done, over a foot of snowfall is likely across our area.

The heaviest of the snow will take place Saturday night into Sunday morning mainly south east of Rochester in to the Finger Lakes. Yet by Sunday night into Monday morning, north easterly winds carrying temperatures in the single digits will be moving over the relatively warm waters of Lake Ontario which still has a surface temperature of around 36 degrees. This will be fuel for some heavy lake effect snowfall through Monday.

Blowing and drifting snow in strong gusty NNE winds. Travel will be difficult on Sunday. It will be bitterly cold with temps near or below zero by Monday morning with a windchill as low as -25°.

We will continue to update this pending storm forecast from our news partner. 

EARLIER:

ROCHESTER, N.Y. (WHEC) - A major winter storm is set to bring heavy snow, gusty winds, and polar air to our area this weekend.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch for Saturday afternoon through Monday afternoon for Livingston, Monroe, Ontario, Orleans, Wayne, and Wyoming counties.

Our news partner, News10NBC's weather team has issued a First Alert Weather Day for our area for Saturday night through Monday.

Looking at the latest data, it still looks like Rochester will get a significant amount of snowfall. There is still a lot of uncertainty concerning amounts of snow. However, even if the core storm misses us, a cold northeast wind will still bring significant lake enhanced snow to Rochester.

For now, plan on some heavy snow, the heaviest being Saturday night into Sunday from the core of the storm. Sunday night into Monday lake effect snow will bring even more accumulations.

Winds will also create lots of drifting snow with wind chill readings well below zero Saturday night into Sunday and possibly Monday as well.

The colder the temperature is the lighter the weight of the snow typically is, making it easier for the snow to blow around.

The storm is currently impacting California and other parts of the west coast. This means we still have a lot of time to monitor it and nail down the details on how it will impact your weekend.

We will continue to update predictions for this upcoming storm.