Good morning! Happy Friday!
If you’ll recall on Monday, our odds of a White Christmas were in serious jeopardy with a potential high near 50° and moderate rain Saturday. With every model run since, the forecast track of a low pressure system moving off the Ohio River Valley has shifted a bit farther south and east, allowing for colder air to remain in place and for less of our region to get stuck in what we call the ‘warm sector,’ the area behind a low’s warm front.
So here is where we are at…No major changes to Friday.
Friday: Snow spreads north throughout the day, falling at a light to moderate, but steady pace. By the predawn period on Saturday, 3-6″ of snow will have piled up, with isolated totals up to 8″ across southern Vermont. The temp today reaches the low and mid 20s and holds steady there overnight. Light south wind.
Saturday Morning: During the morning, there will be a solid 6+ hour break with virtually no precipitation. It may be spitting snowflakes or raindrops even, but for the most part it is a dry stretch. This is a great period for running last minute errands or hitting the road to go see family. Just give crews a chance to catch up with Mother Nature’s finishing touches of snow Friday night. The temp inches into the low and mid 30s, again with a light south or southeast wind.
Saturday Afternoon: The second push of moisture eases in around lunchtime and later, with mainly snow plus a little sleet from the Adirondacks to central and northern Vermont. An additional 3-6″ of snow and sleet piles up here by Christmas Eve morning with only a very light glaze of ice possible. The St. Lawrence Valley is largely left out of this second round. Farther south, from southern Vermont into central and southern New Hampshire, there is a big threat of freezing rain changing to plain rain, but not before icing things up with accumulation of 0.10″ to 0.5″. Low to mid 30s. Light wind, shifting to out of the northwest.
In total, this brings a fresh 6-12″ of perfect powder to most of our region just in time for Christmas! Enjoy it, but be safe on those roads. Don’t let the holiday stress and excitement cause you to rush. Expect varying road conditions and changes in visibility. Anticipate the actions of those around you driving and put all those great New England winter skills to use!
Christmas Eve: Sunday, we wrap things up and put a bow on this system with just a handful of upslope light snow showers and flurries throughout the morning. Otherwise, it’s a cloudy day with a high in the upper 20s.
Christmas Day: A light 1-4″ snowfall is possible with minimal travel impacts aside from the usual slippery slush. Mid 20s.
End of 2017: Brrr! It’s about the get quite cold. Arctic air is unleashed through the Northeast with subzero night time lows and daytime highs barely reaching the single digits above zero.
Have a fun and safe weekend! Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays!
-Skytracker Meteorologist Amanda Thibault