Local meteorologists are dealing with a tricky and in some cases low confidence forecast for this weekend. A storm is going to impact the area with rain, snow and wind but to what extent is still in question. Far interior sections should see mainly snow and it could pile up to 6 to 10 inches. The trickiest part of the forecast is near and along the coast where temperatures are forecast to be marginal, meaning a few miles one way or the other can mean the difference between a cold rain or heavy wet snow.
Precipitation should overspread northeast Massachusetts and the metro Boston area mid to late afternoon on Saturday. Mostly a light snow at that time we could see a mix of rain along the immediate coast and Cape Ann. With low pressure developing near the mid-Atlantic coast Saturday and tracking southeast of Nantucket Sunday morning we can expect the precipitation to get heavier overnight and Sunday morning, before tapering off Sunday afternoon. A mix of rain and snow, or all rain at times, may persist along the immediate coast for most of Saturday night and this would keep accumulations there much lower from what one may expect inland. Communities along and west of Route 95 should remain mostly snow throughout the storm, although some rain could mix in Saturday night, with areas along and west of Route 495 getting a significant snowfall. Even areas along the coast are expected to share in the snowfall during Sunday morning before the storm begins to exit the region.
There is no question this forecast has major bust potential because a shift in the track and a couple of degree change in temperature will make all the difference with respect to the rain/snow line, snowfall totals and duration of rain on the immediate coast.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for the local area, from Saturday afternoon through Sunday afternoon. The hazards are heavy wet snow, winds gusting to 30 mph and the potential for scattered power outages due to the heavy wet snow and gusty winds. The National Weather Service suggesting accumulations could reach 6 to 10 inches inland.
Keep in mind the snow totals may be significantly less right along the immediate coast where 2 to 4 inches accumulate, increasing to 4 to 6 inches between Route 95 and Route 495 and over 6 inches along and west of Route 495. These numbers could change one way or the other as new computer models and information becomes available tonight.
Stay current with updated information on this storm through local weather and news outlets or at our Twitter feed. https://twitter.com/NorthShore_Wx
Short Term Forecast:
Tonight: Cloudy and cold. Low temperatures 23 to 27 degrees. Light east winds of 10 mph or less.
Saturday: Cloudy, light snow inland and a snow rain mix on the coast developing later in the day. Highs 32 to 36. East winds 5 to 15 mph.
Saturday night: Snow inland, mixing with rain closer to the coast and possibly periods of all rain along the immediate coast and Cape Ann at times. Near steady temperatures. East to northeast winds 10 to 20 mph, with some gusts to 30 mph possible along the coast.
Sunday: Snow in the morning tapering off to flurries or snow showers during the afternoon. Temperatures remaining near steady from 33 to 37 degrees.
Sunday night: Becoming partly cloudy. Lows 25 to 29.