(CNN) - The next winter storm is poised to leave a blanket of snow from Denver to Washington. Major cities in between -- like St. Louis -- could see the brunt of the storm with over a half a foot of snow possible through the weekend.
The storm will start to gear up on Friday across central Colorado and then move east across the Plains.
While snow will begin to fall across Missouri late Friday afternoon into the evening, there is a chance of some sleet arriving ahead of the snow on Friday afternoon.
A winter storm watch for most of eastern Missouri and southern Illinois includes 4.7 million people. The National Weather Service in St. Louis is calling for 5 to 7 inches of snow and some ice accumulation Friday afternoon through late Saturday.
"Travel is likely to be treacherous along I-70 from Kansas City to St. Louis and along I-64 from St. Louis to Louisville.
Washington, Philadelphia and possibly New York to see snow
Snow will reach the Mid-Atlantic by late Saturday night through the day Sunday, and snow totals will be lower there.
A few major East Coast cities are likely to feel some impacts, including Washington, Baltimore and Philadelphia. However, there is a possibility for some light accumulation in New York along the northern edge of the storm.
The Appalachians will pick up some snow and sleet in Virginia down through North Carolina and Tennessee. The southern mountains of North Carolina, near the borders of South Carolina and Georgia, will see less in the form of accumulation, likely mixing in with more rain than sleet and snow.
On the south side of the storm more heavy rain will fall on the already saturated South.
The Southeast has seen abundant precipitation in December and January. The additional rain from this storm could put a strain on rivers that are already high.
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