Tonight’s the night. What started as a small probability one week ago has grown into a full blown Winter Storm ready to slap the Capital Region. The storm has been sliding across the country all week, wreaking havoc and destruction with blizzards in the Plains and tornadoes in the South.

Showing all the signs of a classic Winter Nor’easter, the National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for most of Upstate New York as we prepare for heavy, wet snow. Here's what you need to know, including how much snow your Capital Region city is due to receive.

What Causes A Nor’easter?

New Yorkers Brave Messy Winter Storm Commute
Getty Images

A Nor’easter starts when the Polar jet stream pushes frigid Arctic air south from the North Pole, then east toward the Atlantic. On the East Coast, the Polar air collides with warm air moving up the Coast from the Gulf of Mexico. The huge difference in temperature between these two makes for powerful storms that love to dump snow across New York and New England.

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The name Nor’easter comes from traditional British nautical terminology. The term Nor’east was first recorded in 1594, and eventually found its way as the official scientific term for these storms due to their particular geography.

What Do You Need To Prepare?

Snow Driving tips from NOAA

The snow is due to start falling around 5 to 7pm tonight through early Saturday morning. There may be some rain mixed in on Friday as temperatures warm through the day. This could cause more problems for Friday night commutes, as the rain could turn to ice on the streets.

Snow shoveling tips from NOAA

This ice could also accumulate on power lines and cause outages. Here's what to do in case of a post-storm outage, according to NOAA:

What to do after a post-storm power outage

How Much Snow Is My City Forecasted To Get?

Data pulled from Accuweather

Schenectady - 6-15" (87% Chance)

Johnstown, Gloversville, Amsterdam - 8-18" (74% Chance)

Albany, Rensselaer, & Averill Park - 4-8" (56% Chance)

Troy - 3-10" (88% Chance)

Clifton Park - 6-15" (86% Chance)

Saratoga Springs and Ballston Spa - 6-15" (56% Chance)

Here's what the National Weather Service map forecasts:

77" In 48 Hours - A Look At WNY's Record Breaking Lake Effect Snowstorm

The wet and heavy lake effect snowstorm pelted the area, making traveling impossible. Flights were canceled at Buffalo-Niagara Airport, causing headaches for travelers heading into the Thanksgiving holiday week. Driving bans are in effect in multiple WNY counties, making it illegal for employers to require their workers to commute.

Here’s some snapshots of what it looks like on the ground:

Gallery Credit: Cameron Coats

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