Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Winter in Spring From Dakotas To New England

Is is shaping up to be one of those winter during
spring types of years?  Forecast for this week
isn't too promising.  
During the course of our recently ended record warm winter in New England, I was kind of afraid winter would arrive just as spring does.

And sure enough, it's happening.  

Eastern New England got through a nor'easter yesterday morning that left several inches of snow. It melted rapidly in most places across southern New England, anyway but still.

Next, up, northern New England for wintry weather. Actually that expected snowy or icy or icky weather extends in a broad arc from northeastern Colorado through parts of South Dakota, Minnesota, Wisconsin, Michigan and then on into northern New England.

That next storm we've been talking about gathering forces in the central Rockies and western Plains is indeed doing so, and will spread snow across those central and northern Plains areas I just mentioned.

Here in the Northeast, a wavering front connecting to that storm out west is setting up shop over and near New England later today.

That will be the focus of several days of occaional snow, sleet, freezing rain and rain. across northern New York, and much of Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. The more north you go, the more likely you'll see snow or ice.

Once you get into southern New England, it'll be mostly a cold rain.

In northern New England, the first salvo will come tonight in the form of wet snow. It won't come down all that hard, so there will maybe be an inch of slush in the valleys and up to three inches in the higher elevations

The front will sort of waver north and south Wednesday through Friday as the Midwest storm rides along it, heading east.

In a zone from the Adirondacks, through Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine, it's still hard to say who will get rain, who will get snow, or ice, or how much and where. It depends on where the weather front is set up at any given time, and how much chilly air is bleeding south from a cold air mass over Quebec.

But the fact there will be a strong temperature contrast between, say Montreal, where it will be below freezing, and New York City, which will flirt with 70 degrees, makes me nervous.

Often, when there's such a contrast, precipitation can be pretty heavy. Some computer models crank out up to two inches of rain or water equivalent over northern New York and northern Vermont over the next few days.

If some areas in this zone get mostly snow or ice, it will be troublesome. Luckily, it's late March, and chances are pretty good that most areas even in the north will change to rain at least occasionally, which would minimize the effects.

But of course I can't guarantee the plain rain. There's a chance some areas could stay snow or ice through most of the time Tuesday night through Friday.  The heaviest precipitation looks like it will come along Thursday into the first half of Friday as the main storm system trudges through.

We'll probably get a break in the weather over the Easter weekend in New England before possibly more storminess arrives early next week.

And my fears of winter during spring continue. There are strong signals that the first week of April at least will be quite cold and wintry from the northern Plains through New England.

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