Weekend Storm Could Bring Heavy Snow to New England

A cold start Sunday sets the stage for a burst of heavy snow late in the day and during the evening

Winter storm watches have been issued for many parts of Massaschusetts, including the Boston area, and winter storm watches will also be in effect Sunday for parts of New Hampshire, Connecticut and Vermont.

The combination of a high-pressure system in eastern Canada, and the storm that went by here a couple days ago stalled near Newfoundland now, is continuing a flow from Canada at a brisk pace.

Skies remain mostly clear overnight with a low temperature in the teens north and 20s south, the breeze remains from the northwest about 15 to 20 mph creating a colder wind chill factor. For the weekend, all eyes are on a major storm impacting much of the western United States, with snow in the hills all the way to southern California and Arizona. There’s also a blizzard warning in the northern plains. That storm system is only slowly crossing nation and will arrive here Sunday.

That leaves us another bright and cold day tomorrow with sunshine, high temperature in the 20s north and 30s south. Wind from the northwest continues at 15 to 25 mph.

Wind finally lets up Saturday night, but that will allow for radiational cooling which will drop the temperature to 0° in parts of northern New England, 10 to 20° central, and 20s at the south coast.

That cold start on Sunday, along with a few hours of sunshine, sets the stage for a burst of heavy snow late in the day and during the evening. Roads will become snow-covered quickly from west to east from about noon time through 6 PM. The exception is far northern New England where we stay dry, and the storm may be a complete miss due to a tract south of New England.

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This storm looks like the first significant snowfall for the cities of southern New England. It may snow all night Sunday night, most of Monday, not ending until around sunrise Tuesday for some in eastern New England. So if we do the math of snow for the most part of 36 hours, at about 1/3 inch per hour, you get pretty close to a foot of snow in the higher elevations of central and southern New England. Snow may change to rain and freezing rain toward the shoreline in Massachusetts, Rhode Island, and Connecticut.

Though we still have a day or two to fine-tune, it’s a pretty high confidence forecast that this will have major impact on travel around New England beginning later on Sunday and maybe lasting through the Tuesday morning commute. Also- along the coast wind will be out of the northeast gusting past 40 mph Monday and Monday night, that may result in some coastal erosion but we have lower astronomical tides, so flooding does not look like a big issue at this time.

Sunshine should return Tuesday afternoon with the temperature holding around freezing. There’s another front moving through on Wednesday with a chance of some rain or snow showers. Next weekend looks seasonable and dry to start out, but there is one storm after another lined up off the Pacific Ocean so there’s no extended quiet here in our First Alert 10-Day Forecast.

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