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Hurricane Zeta could link up with a cold front, bringing snow to New England

Hurricane Zeta will reach the Gulf Coast early Thursday.
Hurricane Zeta will reach the Gulf Coast early Thursday.NOAA

It was quite the dreary Monday across the region, with clouds hanging tough all day in combination with the cool temperatures. I wish I had better news for tomorrow, but even if the low clouds dissipate, I still think we’re going to contend with a mainly cloudy morning. Finally, we have the chance for some sunshine trying to develop tomorrow afternoon.

Clouds continued to stream north Monday afternoon.
Clouds continued to stream north Monday afternoon.COD Weather

There will actually be even cooler air filtering in throughout the afternoon, so temperatures will hold in the 40s over inland areas, but eventually make it into the 50s right along the coastline. Think of tomorrow as perhaps feeling a little bit better, if we can get the sunshine, even though temperatures will be quite similar.

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High temperatures Tuesday will reach only the lower to middle 50s.
High temperatures Tuesday will reach only the lower to middle 50s.NOAA

Wednesday is definitely my pick of this work week. On that day there’s no chance of any rain – we’ll see sunshine blended with clouds basically all day long and temperatures will be seasonable. This will be a wonderful day to get outside and enjoy late October weather and take advantage of the last few days of daylight saving time.

While all of this is going on, a hurricane is going to be traveling across the Gulf of Mexico and eventually hit the Gulf Coast as a category one storm.

Here in New England we have missed all the tropical activity in this very active season. Frankly it’s pretty amazing to me that in spite of the fact that we’ve had so many tropical systems – a record-breaking amount even – we haven’t had anything to write home about here.

First and foremost, we still will not be hit with a hurricane. Zeta will have weakened to a breezy rainstorm by Thursday night and Friday. Unlike many other tropical systems, the moisture from Zeta will make it into New England by Friday. Some of the rainfall could be heavy.

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Rain, which may be heavy, will move through New England early Friday and may be mixed with snow.
Rain, which may be heavy, will move through New England early Friday and may be mixed with snow.COD Weather

The atmosphere this time of the year is in flux, and the northern part of the jet stream over us often pushes any tropical waves out to sea before they ever get here. While the remnants of Hurricane Zeta are moving along the Appalachians, a cold front will be sweeping east. These two weather systems will interact in such a way that the storm’s moisture will be pulled northward at the same time colder air is moving in on the back side.

Snow is possible Friday as colder air filters into the region behind Hurricane Zeta.
Snow is possible Friday as colder air filters into the region behind Hurricane Zeta.WeatherBell

This combination has the potential to yield our first flakes of snow and light accumulation, especially across the Worcester hills and the Berkshires. There will be some heavy rain over eastern areas and this could end as some wet snow even close to Route 128. It’s less likely Greater Boston sees snow, but not impossible. We still have four days until this reaches the area, so the forecast will need to be refined.

Snow or no snow, a hard freeze is likely this weekend. Thus far the frosts have been mostly light, but this one looks to really put a hard stop on the growing season. Don’t worry however, this isn’t the start of a cold pattern, temperatures actually look considerably milder again as we begin November.

Follow Dave Epstein @growingwisdom.