It's hard to believe New England is on the cusp of another substantial snowfall for the third weekend in a row, but I'd put the chance at greater than 90% that we'll be impacted by a storm center off our South Coast this weekend. In other words, there's no question in my mind we're getting a weekend storm.
The questions surface with regard to how much snow falls in a given community, particularly in Eastern and Southern New England, where the placement of a coastal front - separating warmer, ocean air from colder, inland air - will be critical to how much rain versus snow falls. In the probability map below, keep in mind that 6"+ means just that - six inches or greater...no top end on that, so could end up in higher amounts...same for plowable snow likely. Essentially, you can consider this a minimum likely snow map, where plowable snow implies at least 2"-4" - with the exception of the 12"+ area, denoting simply that a 50% chance of 12" of snow exists in that area. Here are some points you can feel secure about:
- Weekend storm is nearly certain for New England. Impact is still a bit uncertain in Maine - a bit more removed from the storm center - but Southern parts of the state will see greatest snowfall.
- Total snowfall amounts of greater than 6" are likely for much of interior New England
- There's at least a 50/50 chance that a foot or more of snow will fall in the deep interior
- A coastal front will develop - separating ocean air from inland air - and the exact location of that front will be the critical factor in determining total snow vs. rain in Eastern and far Southern New England
- Timeframe: Snow develops southwest to northeast Saturday midday/afternoon...continues through the overnight...ends around midday Sunday
- Heavy, wet snow means power outage concerns where storm is mostly snow
- Coastal concerns not too bad right now because it's a moderate astronomical tide - a coule of feet less than Blizzard tides two weeks ago - and storm is not as strong. That said, onshore, northeast wind will kick up the surf, and blizzard was extreme coastal flooding and erosion, so minor to perhaps moderate is still quite possible.