As Arctic air pushes southward across the Great Plains through Friday, a swath of snow and ice will develop and create slippery travel from Nebraska and Colorado to parts of Texas and Oklahoma.
The arrival of the Arctic air will erase temperatures in the 60s and 70s and replace them with temperatures in the 20s and 30s in a matter of hours.
Many major highways will be adversely affected by the snow and ice, including I-20, I-25, I-35, I-40, I-70 and I-80.
The greatest amount of snow will fall from the mountains of Colorado and northern New Mexico to northwestern Nebraska, where 3 to 6 inches of snow is forecast.
In most areas, a heavy amount of snow and ice is not expected. However, even a small amount of snow and ice can create dangerous travel conditions, when combined with plunging temperatures.
For example around Denver, while only a few inches of snow are forecast, temperatures will drop quickly into the 20s during the snow. As a result, any untreated surfaces made wet by the now initially will freeze.
Other cities in line for snow include Omaha, Neb.; Colorado Springs, Colo.; and Dodge City, Kan.; Thursday into Thursday night. Around Albuquerque, N.M., most of the snow will fall on Friday, but it could begin sooner in the heights.
A wintry mix of a bit of snow, sleet and freezing rain are in the offing Thursday night into Friday for Des Moines, Iowa; Kansas City, Mo.; Wichita, Kan., and Amarillo, Texas.
Areas as far south and east as Oklahoma City and Tulsa, Okla.; Abilene, Texas; and Roswell, N.M.; could get a dangerous thin glaze of ice Friday.
Plain rain and drizzle will fall farther south and east from San Antonio, Texas, to Little Rock, Ark., and St. Louis. However, thunderstorms Friday in parts of South and coastal Texas can be locally heavy.