CLARKSBURG, W.Va. – The Thanksgiving holiday is a time for family and turkey for most of north-central West Virginia – but the commute after the meal and for the shopping on Black Friday thereafter, could be a different story.

Wednesday couldn’t be a better travel day.

Mild temperatures in the afternoon. Plenty of sunshine. Slowly increasing clouds. Sunglasses will be a good idea in the afternoon as sunset approaches.

Thanksgiving Day will be pretty good for the most part.

Conditions will be great for the Shinnston Turkey Trot and traveling to Grandma’s house for dinner and watching football.

However, if you’re heading to Pittsburgh or west to Ohio or Kentucky, make sure to leave early with showers moving toward the Mountain State.

Rain will move into the region around lunchtime into the afternoon on Thursday. Toward the end of dinner Thursday evening, make sure to have the umbrellas and properly working windshield wipers.

Better road conditions will be with us to the east from the Carolinas up the I-95 corridor into the Mid-Atlantic and New England.

Snow showers will be developing thanks to moisture from Lake Michigan overnight into Friday morning, mainly after midnight, as colder air pushes into West Virginia.

This will produce a mix of sleet, clouds, and snow for the I-79 corridor from Pittsburgh down to Charleston. As you go east into the higher elevations from the West Virginia-Maryland state line down into the New River Gorge National Park and Monongahela National Forest along the Allegheny Front, expect slick conditions for Black Friday shopping.

Slush across the lowlands will cause some slick roadways up and down the Mountain State.

Minor snowfall accumulation in the mountains may slow travelers and shoppers down as well. On top of the up to a quarter-inch of rain we’ll likely see Thursday into early Friday, a trace of snow is possible along the I-79 with up to an inch of snow is possible as you go up in elevation. The highest peaks above 3,000 feet in elevation could see locally higher amounts.

You also may want to watch out for some wind while out on the roadways.

Gusts up to 40 MPH are possible – especially along Route 219, I-68, Corridor H, and Route 33 – so make sure to take it slow and have both hands on the wheel to prevent Mother Nature from taking over along the many curves, hills, and valleys. You also may want to secure loose outdoor furniture and watch out for potential power outages in rural areas.

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