At long last the real chill of winter is blowing into New England this afternoon - and especially tonight.
We had a few intense snow showers drop a coating of snow on the leading edge of the coldest air of the season earlier in today. Now, much drier air comes in with many of us experiencing blue sky and sunshine through our setting sun - at a few minutes before 5 p.m.
The high temperatures for the day occurred before the sun came up. This afternoon we are in the 10s north and 20s south with wind gusting past 30 mph, creating a sub zero wind chill this evening.
The reason for the wind is a backing low-pressure system over eastern Quebec combined with an advancing high-pressure system over Ontario.
The pressure gradient is tightening and the wind actually increases overnight.That’s a rather unusual event, but it can happen with these arctic cold fronts.
The thermometer will read near zero degrees at the Canadian border to about 15 to 20 degrees in Southern New England by sunrise tomorrow. At that time the wind will be gusting from the northwest 40 to 50 mph, creating a numbing wind chill.
A wind chill advisory has been posted for northern portions of New England where our windchill index may drop to 25 degrees below zero.
Tomorrow will be more windy than today, but with similar temperatures. Under sunny skies we should be in the 20s to near 30 degrees in Southern New England, and 10s to near 20 degrees north.
The wind eases on Monday with clouds increasing, high temperature back into the 30s south and 20s north.
All eyes are going to be on California next week with a major storm coming. Elements of the storm are injecting west to east across the nation and likely missing New England to the south.
But it’s going to be close - one impulse goes by Tuesday, another stronger one on Thursday. That Thursday storm is going to be a powerhouse, and it’s going to be close enough to keep an eye on - in our first alert 10 day forecast.