An Active Winter Pattern Continues
The state will enjoy one more seasonable day as a narrow ridge of weak high pressure wedges in. This will be the last day coastal areas may reach above freezing until late in the weekend. The mountains and Crown of Maine may not see 20’s again until Sunday, or longer. The Arctic Express, and the effects of it, will dominate the weather into early next week.
The mountains are on track to feel a bite to the wind on Wednesday as a weak frontal boundary approaches from Southern Quebec. Much of the High Peaks region will be flirting with wind chill values flirting a degree or two above and below 0°, thanks to the breeze gusting 15 – 25 mph at times through the day.
Wednesday night, scattered snow showers & squalls are possible in northern and western areas as another weak wave approaches the region. By Thursday morning, temperatures start off generally in the single digits to low teens statewide, with pockets of sub-zero readings in the valleys and low lying areas. Skies will cloud up again late Thursday ahead of the main Arctic front, and once again scattered snow showers & squalls in the north and west as the Big Chill arrives overnight into Friday morning.
The coldest air mass of the season arrives Friday morning and will remain in the region until Saturday morning. With the state now under snow cover from rooftop to Southern York County, the cold air gets ground reinforcement. Add a northwest breeze, and wind chills are likely to be brutal. I expect wind chill advisories and warnings will be likely for Thursday night into Friday, as indices will likely fall well into double digits for much of the region.
A Snowy, Icy Weekend Likely
This water vapor snapshot clearly displays all the players on the table for our weather through late weekend. The deep cold advances southeastward, while energy over the Pacific rapidly advances eastward. The two pieces begin to organize around each other late Friday over southeastern Colorado and then slingshots itself to the Great Lakes by Saturday morning. The outflow ahead of this storm is on track to bring snow to the region for the first half of the weekend.
Warm, moist air aloft continues to overrun deep cold air at the lower level thanks to a southwest flow which is likely to bring plowable snow to the region on Saturday. As the system tracks just west of the St. Lawrence River, warmer air & moisture invade the atmosphere. With deep cold dammed in below, it sets up a potential for freezing rain Saturday night into Sunday.
For now, it is too early to get into any specifics as far as ice accretion amounts. One factor that is a benefit is the system appears to be moving briskly into northeastern Quebec, which will help keep accretion amounts down. The main cause of concern is after the system passes, northwest winds will increase which may cause power outages to a varying degree. It’s too early to get into any specific details, but the signals are there that icing problems from this system are possible to occur.
Stay tuned to Pine Tree Weather as the weekend approaches!
~ Mike Haggett
Specil thanks to Tropical Tidbits and Pivotal Weather for their written permission to use their graphics in this post. Use of WeatherTAP images used within their written permitted terms of media use policy. Additional forecast information supplied by the National Weather Service, WeatherBELL Analytics and AccuWeather Professional.
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