An active weather pattern has been the story across the northeastern US really for the past several months, and we’ll be tracking yet another storm for this coming weekend. There will actually be a disturbance that affects parts of the region at the start of the weekend before a more well-developed cyclone moves in by the end.
On Friday, we’ll be watching a weak disturbance originating from the Plains track east. As its moisture interacts with cold, near- to below- freezing air, that will instigate the development of snow showers — mostly light in intensity — across the southern Great Lakes region through New England. Wintry weather will be possible from the Chicago area all the way through the eastern Great Lakes and into southern New England. This will be a fast-moving system, so accumulating snow will not occur everywhere, especially closer to the coast in New England. Back toward the Great Lakes and interior sections of the Northeast, however, a quick, general coating to 2 inches will be possible, making for a nuisance snow event.
Meanwhile to the south on Friday, the combination of the moisture and relatively warmer air will make for light rain showers. Those showers will be in the forecast across much of the Ohio and Tennessee River Valleys and into the Mid-Atlantic. Less than 1 inch is expected, so we are not concerned about any flooding despite the already saturated soil in various areas.
That’s part 1. Part 2 will involve a more developed low pressure, which will track from the leeward side of the Colorado Rockies through the Northeast by the end of this weekend. Unlike some of the storms in the past that have affected the Northeast, this next storm will deal with warmer air based on its track. Because the center of low pressure will track near the Canadian border once it gets into the Midwest and Northeast, that will allow for above-freezing air to surge farther north, limiting the snow. Therefore, that will make for a rain and wind event.
On Saturday, the Midwest will be in the midst of the impacts from this storm with a moderate to heavy rain affecting much of the region. Winds will also be gusting up to 30-50+ mph, so power may be knocked out to some buildings. Because of how large this storm will be, impacts will actually span as far south and east as Florida. There may even be a severe weather component across the Lower-Mississippi River Valley, but it’s too early to discuss those details at this time. Meanwhile across parts of the northern Plains, heavy snow to potentially blizzard conditions will be impacting much of Nebraska, South Dakota, and northwestern Iowa on Saturday. Winds of up to 50-60 mph paired with heavy snow will no doubt make for treacherous conditions to be outside.
By Saturday night, snow may move into parts of the northern Great Lakes, spanning from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan through northern Wisconsin and back into the central Plains. By this point in time, we’ll also begin to see dryer weather move into much of the Midwest while the East Coast, especially the Northeast, deals with the rain. Some wintry precipitation will also be possible in Upstate New York and northern New England.
Then on Sunday, the rain will continue across New England and parts of the Mid-Atlantic while a large remainder of the East Coast experiences a drier weather regime besides a few lingering showers behind the cold front in the Southeast. The only area that we’ll have to really watch for snow in New England will be northern Maine, but even they may changeover to rain by the end of the day Sunday. Across the central Plains, upper Midwest, and the Great Lakes, light snow showers will remain in place, but the heavy snow will be over with by then. Additional, minor accumulations will still be possible.
It’s too early to discuss snowfall at this time, but some parts of the Midwest and central Plains will likely receive over 6-12 inches of snow. In the warm sector of this storm, a widespread 1-3 inches of rain is expected with localized flash flooding possible in the Northeast, Stay tuned for information information.