My general M.O. as a forecaster is to be skeptical of extreme events.
What I mean by that is if the computer models try to give us 25 inches of snow I look for reasons it won't happen.
Not because I don't like snow, not because I DO like snow but because the statistics behind such an event are low...often something is a bit off that limits that kind of production. The memory betrays many on this fact, in their mind there are several 20" + snowstorms a year; in reality we go several years without tallying a single one outside the mountains.
So what's the point here? Well, I was prodding this upcoming Nor'easter, looking for weaknesses. Maybe it'll be a bit too far east. Perhaps it will vertically stack itself too early and run out of dynamics.
But the computer model trends are too strong to ignore; there may be a weakness in this storm somewhere...but it's still gonna be a biggie.
With that in mind here is the latest map which is basically the same you've seen since Sunday morning...a collective "It's gonna be a good one" nod from TJ, Todd, Jess and myself. (Cory is on vacation right now :-))
It's pretty general because that's how this storm is likely to set up: Really robust front end thump, with a uniform snow shield. Sure there will be some "meso" or small scale banding, but there's no scientific way to figure out where that will be precisely.
Snow begins mid morning over southern Maine.
It wouldn't surprise me to see some coastal convergence snow even earlier than 9 AM over York County. Often these really wrapped up Nor'easters do that before they totally bomb out to our south.
The snow shield expands by noon and snowfall rates increase over southern Maine.
By the evening commute it's snowing most everywhere and it's absolutely nuking snow over southern Maine and the Midcoast. Snowfall rates there could approach 3" an hour.
Heavy snow continues overnight Tuesday before things lighten a bit on Wednesday.
One thing I'll say, the RPM model (Depicited above) LOVES to clear out Nor'easters too fast, so I'd pencil in at least light snow through mid-day on Wednesday. No doubt, however, the heaviest stuff is Tuesday afternoon through early Wednesday morning.
1) Snow consistency: No surprise it'll be a bit on the heavy side along the coastline due to the boundary layer temperatures. But inland it'll just be a "typical" kind of snow, not powder but not paste.
2) Winds: Gusts up to 45 MPH are certainly possible on Tuesday afternoon/evening. Although that's certainly windy it's not in the upper tier of Nor'easter winds. Power outages will be possible of course but that will be due largely to snowfall amounts.
3) X-Factor: Perhaps the only limiting factor to this beastly storm will be if we get "dry slotted" a bit as the low occludes. This basically means dry air ingested into the core of the storm, shutting off back end precipitation. Many of my childhood weather weenie dreams were crushed by dry slotting. I don't see an overwhelming signature for a dry slot on this system, but I'm always looking for one in a low of this depth. Even with a dry slot it seems the low end of our range is reachable.
So that's it, it's gonna be a fun ride. I'll be out in Stormy, with my goggles on, tomorrow.