Friday is a mild day as we wait for the storm to overnight form the south of New England and arrive on Saturday with rain, snow and wind.
Temperatures will rise to the 50s by Friday afternoon, even with variable clouds, limited sunshine and light rain. A gentle southwest wind accompanies the light air. In the short term, this means there will be raindrops – not snowflakes – projected Friday night and overnight and slowly expanding in the south of New England by Saturday morning.
There are some major sources of uncertainty in the forecast that will encourage people to return to our first alert weather team.
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The delicate merger of the North-South disturbance, very close to New England, should be just right for a big event in the south of England (but it seems Maine should and almost certainly will).
The limit temperature of snow is also questionable. We start in the 40s and then go through the 30s in the 30s in the central and eastern parts of New England as the storm intensifies and draws cooler air from the north and west of New England.
TIME LINE: Hourly appearance at the weekend in Nor’easter
As long as the storm comes together, as we think, the rain alone will be effective, it will rain heavily. By Saturday morning, we will project an inch of rain onto large puddles and swim water on the roadways.
Of course, as the rain turns to snow in the high terrain of downtown Massachusetts and the north and west of New England, the roads will deteriorate. Stagnant water covered with wet snow causes slush and icing on the roads. Snow accumulation on top is likely to require treatment.
Further east, the concern may not be as long for hours, but may be intense for a short time on Saturday afternoons.
As the storm intensifies rapidly to the east, a strong rainstorm on the west side of the storm will move directly over eastern New England on Saturday afternoon. It will surely throw extremely heavy snow in much of Maine and eastern New Hampshire, and there will likely be at least an hour of heavy snowfall in eastern Massachusetts on Saturday afternoon through midnight. Southeast Massachusetts is an exception.
If all goes well, this snowstorm from northeastern Massachusetts will cause two to four inches of snow per hour until Maine on Saturday night. If it comes together sooner, this potential extends to the South Coast.
That’s why, while our first alert team recognizes the uncertainty and the need to keep up with our updates, we also encouraged every resident of the South South Coast to prepare. Place your uphill bet, prepare your snowblower and plow, and have room for heavy travel and road treatments – so if the snowstorm takes you south to Plymouth County, you’re all set.
Wind screams on the shore on Saturday afternoon and evening. Initially, gusts of wind from Cod from the south will reach 60 miles per hour if the storm center moves directly over the Cape. It will then blow from north and northwest, kicking briefly to 60 mph in Cape Ann and at speeds in excess of 45 mph than many others. The wind can cause some power outages where heavy snow falls and puts extra strain on the power lines.
The storm starts on Saturday night and sleet on Sunday, but leaves a dry day. Prolonged snow and tide events are an exception in the North, where more than a snowfall falls in Maine and New Hampshire. Maine will get a natural boost to start the ski and motorbike season, while Vermont will see lighter amounts of snow.
Next week, everyone has a cool week that’s perfect for ski areas to blow up snow guns and continue building nature’s snow base, and the trail opens quickly in the week ahead.