For This Afternoon: A very mild afternoon is expected across Western and Central Mass with high temperatures of between 60 and 65 Degrees expected. In addition, breaks in the clouds will allow for peeks of sunshine throughout this afternoon. It will be windy this afternoon with southwest winds gusting up to 35 mph at times. Tonight: A very mild night for this time of year is expected tonight as we wait for a cold front to push through the area. Temperatures this evening are expected to remain in the 60 to 65 Degree range, which is absurdly warm for this time of year. It will also be windy this evening with southwest winds gusting up to 35 mph at times. A cold front is expected to cross Western and Central Mass probably during the 3 to 6 am time frame Friday morning. Very little in the way of rain shower activity is expected with this frontal passage. Temperatures after midnight tonight will gradually fall through the 50s and will probably be in the 45 to 50 Degree range by morning. Friday: A sunny and windy day is expected across the region as a high pressure system very briefly builds into the area. Morning temperatures will be in the 50 to 55 Degree range with temperatures falling through the 40s during the afternoon. West winds will gust up to 35 mph at times on Friday. Friday Night: Skies will start out clear to partly cloudy Friday evening, but will become cloudy after midnight as an area of low pressure begins to move our way from the Ohio Valley. Low temperatures Friday night will be between 30 and 35 Degrees. Saturday, Saturday Night & Sunday Morning: An area of low pressure is expected to move across Southern New England on Saturday night bringing with it a messy mixture of snow, sleet and freezing to the entire area beginning on Saturday afternoon and continuing through Saturday night and even part of Sunday morning. The big question continues to be where will the demarcation line between mostly all snow and a mixed bag of icy precipitation set up. Even though the weather forecast guidance continue to have differences between them on where the snow/ice line sets up, the trend since yesterday is for the possibility of more cold air being available. This would mean that freezing rain and sleet could be a bigger issue than previously thought. In fact, I’m beginning to become concerned that we could see an all out sleet storm for a while Saturday night across areas near the Mass Pike making travel one huge headache. Here Are My Thoughts: Snow is expected to overspread all of Western and Central Mass around midday or so on Saturday with the snow continuing for a while during Saturday afternoon. Based on what I’m looking at, I think the snow will change to sleet across areas near and south of Route 9 late Saturday afternoon or early Saturday evening. Sleet is then expected to continue through Saturday evening and possibly all of Saturday night across areas near and south of Route 9. For areas including the Berkshires, the far upper Pioneer Valley of Western Mass and across areas that are north of Route 9, the precipitation could remain as all snow through the entire storm. The question then becomes will the precipitation change to freezing rain late Saturday night. At this point, I think areas south of the Mass Pike have the greatest chance of changing to freezing rain for a while late Saturday night, while areas from the Mass Pike northward to Route 9 remain as sleet. Finally, it continues to look possible that the precipitation may end as snow across the entire area during Sunday morning. My latest forecast snow/ice accumulation map is attached to this post. If you have plans for Saturday afternoon and Saturday night, be aware that the roads will likely be a real mess, especially after sunset Saturday. If it’s possible, delay any plans you have for Saturday afternoon and Saturday night to Sunday.
Thank You: As always, I thank you for your continued support. If it were not for you, I would not be able to do a job that I love so very much – forecasting the weather for Western and Central Mass. If you have not done so already, please consider donating to help alleviate the costs required for producing these weather forecasts for Western and Central Mass. Mixed precipitation storms like we’re going to have on Saturday are extremely complex and complicated. This means that it take me many hours to analyze the data and write up a forecast. Thank you so much in advance!!