BOSTON (CBS) – After an easy-breezy winter, Mother Nature decides to wake up now? Is this some cruel joke? Nope, it is just classic New England winter, not over until it’s over and as you know, it certainly isn’t over on March 1.
So here we go again We are tracking not one, but two potential storms this weekend.
Let’s take them one at a time.
This storm has escalated rapidly. As recently as just a few days ago, most guidance had this one east of Bermuda. But a very quick reshuffling of the atmosphere has trended it so far west that it now has the chance to be our first nor’easter of the entire winter. In fact the trend has been so aggressive that we’ve boosted totals significantly with a good shot at over 6 inches in parts of our area. Considering Boston’s biggest storm of the whole winter so far is 3.6 inches, this is a taste of something quite different.
Timing: The shield of snow (and some rain) pivots northward well after midnight Friday night.
By 7 a.m. Saturday it should be snowing in most of southern New England with some rain possibly over Nantucket and Martha’s Vineyard. Snow could come down at a steady clip with some 1 inch+ an hour rates in the stronger bands, which are most likely across eastern Massachusetts.
Some mixing with ice/rain may occur at times across Cape Cod and the South Coast, with all snow inland. Temperatures will be right around 32 degrees so this will have a stickier consistency than the pure fluff we had the other night.
Steady snow is currently expected to continue into early afternoon before gradually tapering off late afternoon into the evening from west to east.
Snow Amounts: More than 6 inches from the Boston through most of southeastern Massachusetts now looks possible. Some mixing with rain and milder temperatures may cause snow amounts to drop off over parts of the Outer Cape and Islands. Three-to-six inches north and west of Boston, the farther away from the storm, the lower the snow totals. Just some lighter stuff in western Mass. and central and northern New England.
The eventual track of this storm will hinge on what exactly Saturday’s storm does. The first lays the groundwork for the second, so to speak. So it will likely also remain low confidence until we are in close.
But the current look of it features snow for all to start, then a changeover to an icy/rainy mix across southeastern Massachusetts and the coast. In other words, the two storms should favor different areas in terms of snow. The first favoring those farther south and east, with the second favoring the interior for the higher totals. There’s quite a lot of precipitation with this one so between the two it’s a lot of moisture that we don’t really need, especially with unusually cold air coming in next week.
Timing: Mainly during the overnight hours of Sunday night into Monday morning. A fast moving storm, in and out of here in about 12 hours.
Snow Amounts: Too early to tell, but a pretty strong likelihood of over a half-foot across interior locales and potentially reaching a foot. Lower totals in the mix zones near the coast and to the south.
Other concerns: As mentioned above, damaging wind gusts could be a factor particularly along the coast and Cape. Thankfully tides are astronomically low, so not much concern for coastal flooding.
Searching for Spring?
Don’t look at our 7 day forecast. Next week looks downright cold. We will spend most of the week with high in the 20’s and lows in the teens. As our typical (average) highs climb into the 40’s, it seems Mother Nature has no plans for a spring preview anytime soon. And after a lot of rain and snow, it’s going to freeze up into quite a mess with nights in the 0’s and 10’s and days below freezing.