Forecast: heavy snowfall for Oklahoma; cold, steady rain in Dallas-Fort Worth

Forget that Texas-OU football rivalry.

Have some compassion for our neighbors north of the Red River; they’re going to receive the brunt of a fierce winter weather system that is expected to arrive Thursday in the southern plains.

Folks living or traveling along the Interstate 40 corridor from Fort Smith, Ark., west to Oklahoma City, Amarillo and Albuquerque will see large accumulations, said Joe Harris, meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Fort Worth.

As much as 12-15 inches of snow could fall over Norman and Oklahoma City, Harris said.

"For anybody headed north, it's going to be tough," Harris said. "Truckers will be shut down going through Oklahoma."

The winter weather is expected to develop as an upper-level low-pressure trough mingles with moist air from the Gulf of Mexico, the weather service said.

There is a 20 percent chance of rain Wednesday morning in North Texas, increasing to 80 percent overnight, the weather service forecasts.

"It will increase," Harris said, "and it should rain Wednesday night and all day Thursday. It will still be raining Thursday evening, and then transition to wintry mix by daybreak Friday."

But a repeat of Christmas Eve is not likely for North Texas, even though Oklahoma will get hammered, Harris said.

"We're going to have heavy rainfall Wednesday night through Thursday," Harris said, "with 1 to 2 inches -- at least."

Snowfall is possible in the Metroplex, but it will be very light and it probably won't stick, Harris said.

"It will be falling onto wet ground," he explained, "and snow has difficulty sticking to wet ground; it just melts right into it."

But North Texans won't have to drive far before they encounter snow and they won't necessarily have to drive across the Red River to do that.

Harris said Comanche, Eastland, Stephens, Jack, Young and Montague counties may find themselves on the edges of the winter weather blast, and could see as much as a quarter-inch of snow.

Temperatures will be below freezing Friday and Saturday mornings, but the weekend, although cold, will be dry, Harris said.

A warm-up begins Monday, and brings daytime temperatures back to the mid 50s, which is normal for late January, Harris said.