Our winter storm will begin to get its act together as it develops this Saturday. In the Ohio Valley, colder air will intrude, allowing for snow to fall north of the river, although accumulations will be light and between a coating to two inches for most areas–if anything. It’s not until you get into portions of the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast where significant snowfall is expected as the low pressure develops near the Outer Banks.
Snow will break out and move into the Mid-Atlantic region this afternoon. Snow is forecast to fall across eastern Ohio into much of Pennsylvania, New York, and down into portions of Maryland and West Virginia, including Washington D.C., Baltimore, and Philadelphia. By the evening and the first half of Saturday night, the snow will expand eastward as our storm quickly develops just off the coast, into cities like New York, Hartford, and Boston. Snow will begin by midnight across northern New Jersey into southern New England and as far north as southern Maine. This will be a very heavy, wet snow, but thankfully temperatures behind this event will return to back above freezing, allowing all of this snow to melt quickly.
Moderate to strong lift is expected across portions of the Northeast, especially in southern New England. This is where the heaviest snowfall totals and snowfall rates will be found. Snowfall rates will likely eclipse two inches per hour at times in this region.
Now in the Washington, D.C. area up through coastal New Jersey, into Long Island, and along the southern coast of New England through southeastern Massachusetts, this is where the forecast is most uncertain and difficult due to marginal temperatures. Temperatures will begin relatively mild and above freezing due to a strong flow of onshore winds. Now once the snow begins, winds will actual shift offshore but temperatures will still be marginal into the mid 30s. It all depends on how heavy the snow will be, which will determine if the snow can overcome these non-conducive temperatures for accumulating snow.
During the early-morning hours of Sunday, snow will exit the Ohio Valley into Pennsylvania, New York, and the Mid-Atlantic region while it continues for a few more hours across all of New England. As you wake up Sunday morning, it will be sunny as you see a blanket of white covering the ground. A few more hours of snow is expected in down-east Maine, but that is forecast to end by 10am ET.
Our snowfall forecast reflects our forecast above. We wish we had better confidence in this forecast but it remains low to moderate, especially at the coast based on the marginal temperatures. The highest totals of four to seven inches is forecast across portions of southern New England with the biggest numbers likely just away from the coast. There is even the chance localized areas pick up as much as nine inches of snow. Accumulations on the roadways will be a little less, and little to no accumulation is expected in the I-95 corridor between New York City and Washington, D.C..
Snowfall forecast for select cities:
- Boston: 4-7 inches
- Hartford: 4-7 inches
- New York City: 4-7 inches
- Philadelphia: Coating-2 inches
- Baltimore: Coating-2 inches
- Washington, DC: Coating-2 inches
- Pittsburgh: 2-4 inches
- Syracuse: Coating-2 inches
- Portland: 2-4 inches