Good overnight to all of you! A lot of the comments we receive when we put out forecasts ask about forecasts for specific areas. In the past, Firsthand Weather has done forecasts for large areas and while we do try to break those forecasts down for local areas on specific storms, we have not generally in the past dedicated forecasting duties to certain regions. This article will be the first in an effort to change that for you and to bring more regional and localized forecasting to certain areas. Obviously since there are only 2 of us, this will be limited at first. But if this endeavor is well received, we would look to expand it to other areas. For myself, I’m Rob and I’ll be forecasting for the Northeast region, from Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware up through Maine. I’m located in the Boston Metropolitan area and have over a decade of experience forecasting in this region. While I will certainly mention locations outside my area, as storms not in my region can still effect my region as you’ll see below, my forecasts will be dictated by those boundaries. Firsthand Weather will continue coverage on a national scale as well, so we aren’t leaving you, but this will serve as a test case to see how much demand there is for a more localized forecast. Without further adieu.
2 Low pressure systems are set to effect the Northeast by the end of this weekend with some heavy rains soaking much of the area through Sunday and snow and ice falling in some locations. Strong winds and potentially record breaking warm temperatures will accompany these systems starting tonight in Western Pennsylvania and New York and concluding Monday morning for Northern Maine with the exception of Lake Effect Snow Showers that will remain on the Northwesterly winds.
Beginning tonight, a weak low pressure system near Chicago will move towards Upper Michigan and be near Sault Ste. Marie by Saturday morning. Light rain, light snow and freezing drizzle will move through Western and Central Pennsylvania and New York. The general instability brought by this system will be impacting the remainder of the region with light rain, snow or freezing drizzle through morning. Currently, Winter Weather Advisories are in effect from Cumberland and Thurmont Maryland up through Central PA including Berlin, Lewiston, Hyde, Kane and Wellsboro. The Advisory then extends along the PA/NY border to Scranton and down to East Stroudsberg staying just North and East of Allentown. This Advisory extends east to Suffern New Jersey and North, through Binghamton, Middletown, Delhi and up along I-81 towards the Southern Tug Hill region. The advisory is for a trace to a tenth of an inch of ice accretion and a small coating of sleet and snow. This has the potential to lead to very slippery conditions on the roadways. Areas near Buffalo and Rochester are not under an advisory due to warm air moving into the region off the Great Lakes, which are very warm for this time of year.
With temperatures as marginal as they are, this snow will not stay around long. Temperatures will get above Freezing well into Quebec and even portions of Canada will be seeing plenty of rain with this system.
For New England, The Eastern slopes of the Berkshires in Massachusetts, as well as non coastal areas of Fairfield and New Haven Counties, are under Winter Weather Advisories for a light mix of frozen precipitation until Saturday morning. Northern Worcester County could also see some light frozen precipitation but no accumulations are expected beyond a Trace. Temperatures have already climbed above freezing in other Southern New England locations and any precipitation should fall as rain. Further North, Vermont should escape any accumulations beyond a Trace, but New Hampshire and Southern Maine, including Waterville, Lewiston, Portland,and Rockland will see light amounts. Northern Maine, including Ellsworth, Bangor, Houlton, Allagash and Presque Isle are under Winter Weather advisories for less than an inch of snow with light accumulations of ice for late tonight into Saturday afternoon.
A gap in between the 2 storms is occurring on Saturday in Pennsylvania and during the overnight period for New York with clearing in New England Saturday afternoon and evening. After that, a much stronger low pressure system moves into the area Saturday into Sunday. This low pressure will bring heavy rain and very warm air into the region with a chance for several high temperature records to fall.
The second system should move into Maryland and Southwestern Pennsylvania late Saturday night as rain. By Saturday afternoon, half an inch to an inch of rain will have fallen over most of Pennsylvania, the Maryland panhandle west of Hagerstown and Western New York including Buffalo and Rochester with only a few tenths of an inch in Eastern Maryland, Delaware and Southern New Jersey. The heaviest rains will then move Northeast along the I-95 and I-90 Corridors. By Sunday night, the heaviest rain will have moved through Manchester and Concord New Hampshire with amounts over 2 inches near Conway New Hampshire up into Rumford Maine and amounts between half an inch and 1 and a half inches of rain throughout the remainder of both states as well as Vermont.
Temperatures will climb into the mid 50’s along the New England coastline and reach above 50 as far inland as Albany with 40s from Buffalo and Pittsburgh up to Bangor Maine. Cape May New Jersey, Dover Delaware and the Eastern Shore of Maryland will reach as high as the 60s.
Following the second system, the coldest air of the year will move across the Great Lakes and turn the remaining precipitation across Western Pennsylvania, New York, and Northern areas of Vermont New Hampshire and Maine to snow. Amounts will Erie Pennsylvania with lake enhanced snow bringing around 5 inches to the Tug Hill region.
Let us know what you think Northeasterners.