BOSTON (CBS) – Up to this point the storm has “behaved” relatively well. Most locations have received between 4-to-8 inches of snow, with a little bit less in some spots well inland and over extreme southeastern Massachusetts.
With any big snowstorm or nor’easter there is always a surprise of some sort. The atmosphere very rarely behaves in a linear fashion, dropping nice and even snow bands across the state just like we drew them up on TV the day before.
This time that surprise happened in Essex Country, Massachusetts.
We thought they would end up with about 10-to-14 inches for the entire storm with perhaps a few local totals a bit higher. As of 4 a.m. Friday, they crushed those numbers – Ipswich has 23 inches!
Check: Snow Totals
So what happened up there?
It was a situation similar to what you might hear about in Buffalo, New York when they get those intense lake-effect snow bands. Instead of a giant lake, we got some heavy bands coming off the Atlantic Ocean!
Persistent northeast winds blew some extremely cold, Arctic air over the relatively mild ocean and produced a small scale band of snow that stayed put right over the same towns all day long in Essex County.
Towns like North Andover, Ipswich, Georgetown and Rowley were literally sitting under a conga line of snow coming off the ocean. Temperatures were so cold in those towns, below 10 degrees, the snow piled up very quickly, almost like an Arctic or Alaskan storm.
Speaking of the cold, this is one of the coldest snowstorms in recent memory. Boston, Worcester and all points north and west are stuck in the single digits and dropping!
Wind chill values are between -10 and -25, truly dangerous stuff. Please be careful as you being the cleanup on Friday and keep the kids inside – no snowmen this go around.
So what can you expect for the remainder of the storm?
I would expect another 5-to-10 inches of snow on average through about 8 a.m. At that point the snow will taper from west to east. Cape Cod will be a different story. The snow may linger there all day long. As winds turn to the north, we may see some similar snow bands down over the Cape as to what happened in Essex County.
Last but not least, there are significant coastal concerns.
We have one more high tide to get through around noon Friday. There will be lots of splash over at sea walls and many washed out shore roads. The flooding will be moderate to major from Hull to Sandwich where some residents have been urged to evacuate their homes.
Only the coldest morning in several years on Saturday, everyone goes below zero and Boston may approach a daily record.
Believe it or not, rain is in the forecast by Sunday night, a big turnaround from the Arctic Air residing over New England right now.
Watch Todd Gutner’s Forecast