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Gone With The Wind

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The wind has gone so it’s calm and peaceful as this Tuesday unfolds. By midday, there will only be a slight drift of the air in from the northeast. The overcast will likely hang tough for most of the day over much of southern New England while some sunshine from northern New England wil be poking down into northern MA. Temperatures will only rise a few degrees to the upper 20s to about 30. There will be some gently falling flakes from time to time over portions of CT, RI and southeastern MA. There is a slight risk of more than a dusting up to a half-inch or so in places closer to the coasts of those states. The culprit is another meager clipper that is starved for moisture and energy. It’s predecessor bombed out on its approach to the Canadian Maritimes in the past couple of days and this one will develop to a lesser extent well offshore. It will be tagged by another system moving in from the Great Lakes today resulting in a few flurries scattered around the rest of the region overnight. The whole disorganized bundle will shift offshore tomorrow enabling some partial clearing. So it will turn out a bit milder up to the middle to upper 30s as a cold front moves through later in the afternoon. This will lead to a colder day on Thursday with highs back to the upper 20s to near 30 as air feeds in from Canada around a high pressure system centered in Ontario. The high pressure ridging down into the Northeast will deliver a cold north-northeasterly breeze.

High cloudiness will be increasing Thursday afternoon in advance of the next weather maker rolling in from the Great Lakes. This feature is riding along in the northern branch of the jet stream and will deliver some light snow in parts of New England on Friday. This time, however,  we have a contribution from the southern branch of the jet. In my blog of 24-hours. ago, I stated the reasons why the southern branch was likely to become a bigger player in the next series of storms. The remaining million dollar question is the extent of its involvement with the approaching system in the northern branch. The speed and strength of the individual perturbations in each stream is crucial to determining if this merger will materialize. The split flow is projected to phase according to the most reliable mathematical model. The European has been consistently postulating this linkage for many consecutive runs with only slight deviations in its forecast track and storm strength. The most recent output from this model is depicting close to 24″ of snow in Boston and 24-30″ over RI and southeastern MA just west of Cape Cod! To me, this seems insane currently realizing a number of factors such as the fact that the mean upper trough of low pressure is set up east of the region plus the apparent pattern change that is evolving nationally where a trough is in the making out west with height rises due in the east. Additionally, it doesn’t seem totally plausible that there could be so much wrapping precipitation in a progressive flow alignment. With that said, while this model is not infallible, it is amazingly accurate much of the time. Its solution cannot be ruled out because there is a shot that all of the pieces of the puzzle could be connected but, at this time, it remains an enigma. The recipe for a prolific snow event requires many specific ingredients to be mixed together in the right amount and at the right time. Honestly, despite the Euro’s insistence over the past few days, I would not be surprised to see it back off a bit with much of the development of the storm happening just beyond our latitude and longitude. Nobody can truly guarantee how this is all going to shake out right now. It will be interesting to see subsequent forecast cycles.

Whatever happens, the storm will exit with clearing to follow by later Saturday morning with sunshine on tap for Sunday. Highs this weekend will be in the middle 30s on Saturday to near 40 on Sunday. As this is going on, a new storm will take the path of the restructuring upper air pattern and churn from the Plains States into the western Great Lakes. This trajectory will produce a flow of  air from the southwest to warm us into the 40-45 range for Monday with showers as the cold frontal system approaches form the west.

BTW, today is National Pancake Day so get a free stack at IHOP! I think that is how I will celebrate National Weatherperson’s Day!

Todd Gutner will post his plot on the cast of weather characters late this afternoon or early this evening.

Enjoy the day!

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