Weather Wisdom

Blizzard Warning For Much Of The Area

A quick update to the morning blog. We now have a blizzard warning which means basically whiteout conditions tomorrow night through Tuesday midday. Winds over Cape Cod could gust to hurricane force and power outages are almost as sure bet.


I tweaked the accumulation numbers somewhat. It's still a 1-2 foot storm for the area. I am just trying to figure where the 2-3 foot area sets up. This could be southwest of Boston into Rhode Island and Connecticut. The evening model trend will give a better sense of the "jackpot" spot.

Boston needs to see 18.7 inches or more for this to be a top 10 storm and over 25 inches to make it into the top 5. I'd say there's a 50-50 shot at hitting 19 inches of snow, but only 20 percent we hit 2 feet. This is why there are ranges. There's a small chance we hit 30 inches in Boston, but that's likely around 5 percent.

I am most unsure of the outer Cape where if the cold air holds, they would see more snow than expected.


As I wrote this morning, while it's a big storm and should be taken seriously, in the end, we've all seen these before and we'll see them again. I tend to just appreciate the awe of nature during these events and try not to stress about the disruption to my routine. I'll keep updating frequently, but I am going to sleep during this storm in spite of the internal little boy who wants to run around screaming, look Mom and Dad it's snowing!.


A major and potentially memorable storm is on the way for the region beginning late Monday evening and continuing through Tuesday evening. The word memorable is being used because the amount of snow, wind and cold coastal flooding could, in combination, make this one for the record books.

Will this storm rival some of the biggest storms New England has ever seen? Perhaps, but we wonít have the full perspective on the stormís place in history until after itís over.' Right now, I don't see this becoming a top 5 storm in the annals of winter storms.

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Prepare For The Storm
You are not going to be stuck in your house for a week, so hoarding food isnít recommended. However, I would plan on not being able to get out on Tuesday and perhaps Wednesday, at least the first part of the day.

Power is going to be lost during this storm for many. The power companies will likely bring on extra crews to get us back up and running, but it might take a few days in some areas. Some of you wonít lose power at all, but I always prepare for these things just in case.

Grab the cooler from the basement and have it ready to put your food. Itís going to be cold enough outside to not worry about things spoiling out there. If you have a grill, be sure to have a way to start it, it might be how you cook for a day or two. Fill up gas cans and your care, if you are out of power, so is the filling station down the road. Have a good flashlight and undo the automatic garage opener so you can manually get the door up with no power.

I also like to cook some dinners ahead of time that can be eaten cold or heated on the grill if necessary.

If you lose power, you likely lose internet. You can call your cell phone company and have your phone turned into a ďhot spotĒ if you feel like you will need internet access. After the storm is over call them back and cancel that part of your service.

Donít freak out, itís still just a snowstorm. Unless you own a house that is one storm away from being washed into the sea, this wonít be a life-altering event. Weíve seen big snowstorms before and we all endure them. If you watch a lot of local news over the next several days, it may start to feel like Armageddon, let them do their thing, thereís some great information there too.

Weather Details.

Snow Duration
The snow likely begins Monday afternoon, but I don't expect much accumulation before the evening commute is over. The snow becomes heavier during the night and continues throughout the day Tuesday ending sometime Tuesday night. Most of the accumulation is over by mid-AM Tuesday, but there can be a few more inches during the day and perhaps longer.

Snow Accumulation
The map below is my best estimate as of now for where the greatest snowfall will occur. Remember, there's a range here, the upper limits of that range are just that, the upper limits. Some of you might be close to those number, but you could even slightly under the lower range if you miss the heaviest banding. I expect the rain-snow line to make it to the outer part of Cape Cod, but if it doesn't then even there a foot to two feet isn't out of the question.


Blizzard Watch
There is a blizzard watch Tuesday for eastern Massachusetts for, much of Rhode Island and the eastern side of the Connecticut coastline. A blizzard means winds will reach and possibly exceed 35 miles per hour for three hours or longer and these winds in combination with the snow will lower visibility to a quarter mile or less. A blizzard condition has nothing to do with the amount of snow.


Winds will be strong and gusty starting after midnight Monday and lasting through Tuesday night. This long duration wind is why power issues are likely. Winds will be strongest along the coast and there is a high wind watch posted.


Coastal Flooding
A coastal flood watch is posted for the eastern Massachusetts coastline including Cape Cod. Moderate to perhaps major coastal flooding is possible during the two high tide cycles Tuesday, the first in the early morning around 3 AM followed by the one later in the afternoon around 3 PM. If you are susceptible to coastal flooding take the necessary precautions you normally do before a storm.


Sunshine returns on Wednesday which will likely be a digging out day. There could be some light snow Friday. Wintah has arrived.

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