By James M. Arnold, Weather Specialist
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for points to the north and west of the Shrewsbury/Worcester area for tonight.? They are expecting a sloppy mix of snow, sleet, freezing rain and rain from about 8:00 P.M. tonight through about 9:00 A.M. tomorrow morning.? I suspect that most of the frozen precipitation will be over before sunrise tomorrow, with?accumulations?of about 2 inches?around the Route 2 corridor to 1 inch or less in our area to only a coating to the south of the Mass Pike.? There could be a repeat of this?early Saturday morning, complete with a nuisance coating of frozen precipitation.? During the day Thursday we could see yet another tantalizing taste of Spring as, if we see enough sunshine, temperatures could rise to the middle 50s before dropping back to more seasonal levels Thursday night.? The same could be said for Saturday afternoon, as we could again see it warm to the 50s with enough sunshine.
That is not what concerns me though.? Another burst of arctic air will move into southern New England late in the weekend, with temperatures once again falling to levels of 15 to possibly 20 degrees below long term averages.? This air mass will be with us into the middle of the week, when there is a chance we will have to contend with a major winter storm.??In the wake of?this storm, there is another surge of arctic air poised to pour into New England for the latter part of next week and that weekend.? This air mass could be the coldest of the winter that we have seen when?compared to averages, potentially dropping temperatures to more than 20 degrees below?long term?values.??In an earlier email I mentioned that the last 10 days of the month could be a wild ride, and it looks like it will be if the forecast and climate model outputs are anywhere near right.? This is all a week or more out, so it is not practical to even begin talking numbers and/or probabilities.? Nevertheless, all the ingredients are there for what will hopefully be winter's “Grand Finale”.? It also looks like April could also be rather cold and damp.
James M. Arnold is a Weather Specialist working with Shrewsbury Emergency Management Agency; town of Princeton; Worcester Emergency Communications and Emergency Management Agency; Southborough Emergency Management Agency; town of Grafton and Wachusett Mountain Ski Area