We continue to remain in a mid Winter pattern with unseasonably cold air entrenched across the region. High temperatures on Friday once again failed to get out of the 20s as another cold front slid across here during the day bringing a reinforcing push of cold air. A few snow flurries have been reported this afternoon, especially north of the city. With strong high pressure to our north and a developing storm system to our south on Saturday we are set up for snow to develop during the day with a significant winter storm on our hands overnight into Sunday.
Light snow breaks out by mid afternoon Saturday, although a few coastal flurries may fall earlier than that. The snow remains on the light side through the afternoon but then begins to increase in intensity during the early night with periods of moderate to heavy snow making travel difficult through the night. Several inches of snow will fall during the overnight hours, tapering off around midday Sunday. Very late Saturday night and or Sunday morning we may see a mix to sleet most everywhere with the possibility of a period of rain mixing in along the coast. By that time the damage will have been done as most of the accumulation will have already taken place during the overnight hours.
The computer models are not completely in agreement on any one scenario just yet but it is looking more likely than not that a significant snow event will take place. The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Warning for our area, effective mid day Saturday until mid day Sunday. Estimates on snowfall have been upgraded to 6 to 10 inches west of Route 128/95, possibly up to a foot just west of Route 495 with 4 to 6 inches inside of Route 128/95 to the coastline. These estimates will probably be tweaked as we get into Saturday morning.
Colder temperatures through the interior will keep the snow fluffy and easier to move while areas along the immediate coast may have to deal with a wet and heavier snow. So, even though the coast receives less snow it will be more difficult to push around. The idea is to be ready for significant snowfall Saturday night into Sunday morning.
The storm center is expected to be near Nantucket Island around daybreak Sunday and then move quickly toward the Canadian Maritimes. In its wake we can expect improving conditions Sunday night and Monday but with more well below normal temperatures and gusty winds.
72 Hour Outlook:
Tonight: Becoming cloudy late and very cold. Low temperatures from 5 to 10 degrees inland, 10 to 15 along the coast. Diminishing winds.
Saturday: Light snow overspreads the area through the afternoon. Much below normal cold continues, highs 20 to 26, coldest inland. Northeast winds 5 to 10 mph.
Saturday night: Snow intensity increases, possibly heavy at times. Sleet may mix in late, chance of rain mixing in on the coast by morning. Near steady temperatures, possibly flirting with 32 degrees along the coast toward morning. Brisk northeast winds may gust to 30 mph, possibly higher along the coast.
Sunday: Precipitation winds down mid day. Chance of snow showers in the afternoon. Windy and cold. Highs 28 to 34, coldest inland.
Sunday night: Partly cloudy, windy and cold. Lows 12 to 20 degrees, interior to coast.
Monday: Windy and cold with mostly sunny skies. Highs 22 to 26.