Weather Blog: Another ‘warm’ winter storm

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Yes, another one. A noticeable shift towards warmer air in today’s weather models has more and more rain taking away from snow accumulation with this one through broad valleys. Meanwhile, heavy, wet snow is still on tap midslope to mountain peak. Plus, we’re talking big wind gusts, too. Let’s get the breakdown as of Tuesday evening. Be sure to check back tomorrow for any forecast adjustments! These complex thermal profiles leave us with a great deal of uncertainty.

Tonight – Light rain and/or snow showers are possible as a weak front sits draped over the North Country. The temp falls to the 20s after a mild afternoon in the 30s and 40s. With all the recent snowmelt, areas of dense fog may form with visibility falling periodically below one-quarter mile for drivers.

Wednesday – Much of the day is quiet with high temps in the mid to upper 30s. Still, thanks to that boundary slowly inching north towards the international border, light rain and snow showers remain, with little to no accumulation. Mountains may find an inch or two, but most, if you manage to sneak in some snowflakes with those raindrops, should stay under 0.5″ at a slushy coating.

Wednesday Night – A double-barrel low takes aim at the Northeast. The primary low moves a little too far west and the secondary low forms a little too late to make this a big even snowmaker. Yes, mountains still could see up to one foot! And yes, those living in midslope areas will be shoveling or plowing. But, valleys, not so much. The temp drops to the low and mid 30s, making this a complicated forecast, to say the least.

Thursday Morning – Valley rain and snow (depending on elevation) spread north after midnight. Precip will be heavy with downpouring rain and snowfall rates of 1-2″ per hour. At this point, the delineation seems to be around 1000′. That could still change.

With heavy rain and snow tapering off midday, snowfall totals will range from a coating to an inch or two in immediate valleys, to 3-6″ midslope and 6-12″ of slushy, wet snow across our area mountain ranges. For an added bonus, some instability may provide for lightning and thunder Thursday morning, too.

The other puzzle piece is the wind. With a strong low-level jet screaming overhead, gusts over the peaks of the White Mountains, down the spine of the Green Mountains and through western facing slopes of both mountain ranges could hit 60 mph. That wind is out of the southeast, sustained at 20-30 mph. Scattered power outages and tree damage are possible.

Thursday Afternoon – This is a fast-mover. Once we hit midday, rain and snow will taper. The temp will begin dropping out of the 30s and into the 20s. The wind weakens and shifts to out of the west-northwest, as more traditional upslope and lake-effect (terrain-influenced) snow showers take shape.

Thursday Night – Snow showers continue over favored terrain under a mostly cloudy sky. Teens to near 20 degrees.

Friday – Snow showers finally trail off, with a fresh 1-3″ in areas that typically pick up bonus, post-storm upslope or lake-effect snow. Top temp, mid 20s.

Saturday & Sunday – Partly sunny. Upper teens to low 20s daytime; teens to single digits at night.

Have a great Wednesday! Be sure to check back tomorrow for any forecast adjustments!

-Chief Meteorologist Amanda Thibault

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