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Saturday, January 14, 2017

Wet snow Tuesday night and Wednesday should help keep the high elevations a little wintry in an otherwise mild week

Pattern still looks like garbage for the next 10 days or so. That said, I knew that by going out on a limb and predicting 0-1" of snow for over the next 7 days (my forecast as of last Wednesday), the weather would find a way to prove me wrong. Interestingly, it is actually rare, even in the most god awful patterns, that we get completely shut out on accumulation over the course of a week in the middle of the winter. I have made the forecast on few occasions and noticed that almost every time I do it, I turn out to be wrong. 

So, even though a large ridge in the jet stream prevails across eastern North America, an innocuous storm system will spin its way out of the southern Rockies and head toward New England cutting right through this ridge. The cold air currently in place will grow pretty stale when precipitation arrives very late on Tuesday; in fact, temperatures Tuesday evening will probably be a few degrees above freezing. Temperatures cross sections Tuesday night into Wednesday appear a bit cooler than they have and mixed precipitation and some wet snow is the current projection. We obviously need a lot of snow and much colder weather, but I expect 3-6 sloppy inches across above 2500 feet out of this with precipitation ending Wednesday night. Doesn't look like much in the valley locations but this is a rather impressive fight by winter in an incredibly bad looking set-up. 

The storm responsible for the wet snow and mixed precipitation will close off in the Canadian Maritimes and actually keep our temperatures within 10-15 degrees of average for the balance of the upcoming week after Wednesday. This doesn't sound like much but readings will fall below freezing at night and 35-40 during the day. The spring-like warmth will remain over the Midwest during this period with readings 30-40 degrees above average in the northern Great Lakes. This large blob of  anomalous warmth will drift into Canada by the weekend of the 21st and 22nd as a strong storm system organizes in the southern plains. This storm could be a massive precipitation producer for the east coast but there is a glaring absence of  cold air and most of this precipitation will fall as rain. It is also uncertain as to how much of an impact this storm will have on interior New England. This storm will be the product of a energized sub-tropical jet stream and precipitation might be confined to areas well to the regions south. 

The pattern will gradually turn more favorable in the days following Sunday January 22nd but the key word is gradual, very gradual. Temperatures will likely stay quite mild through around January 24th; after that, both the PNA and EPO turn favorable and seasonable temperature should return and the snow potential starts to rise substantially. By early February, I expect winter to have firm grip on the region and the snow should be piling up once again. 

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