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FORECAST | Dave Epstein

A significant storm could develop along the coastline this weekend

Two men walked along Lynn Shore Reservation as surf kicked up in the aftermath of a snowstorm.Elise Amendola/Associated Press

The weather will be relatively quiet through much of the workweek, but that all changes as we head into the weekend with the possibility of a significant storm system developing.

A weak weather system is going to bring a little bit of snow overnight tonight through sunrise on Tuesday. This does not look like anything more than dusting to an inch. After this system goes by, it will actually be fairly mild Tuesday with temperatures reaching within a couple of degrees of 40 along with some melting.

A swath of snow is predicted to bring a dusting to an inch to much of the area overnightCOD Weather

It turns colder for Wednesday and Thursday, but it’s dry. That’s pretty much the summary of the weather through most of the workweek. Things will become more interesting as we head for the weekend.

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It will be mild for January on Tuesday before cold air arrives the following day.NOAA

Most of the models are agreeing there will be a storm system developing along the Atlantic coastline Friday night and Saturday. There’s going to be a lot of conflicting information being posted over the next several days. This far out, there can be wild swings in the forecast with predictions ranging from the storm heading out to sea to a major snowstorm.

A major East Coast storm is possible over the weekend.TropicalTidbits

This far in advance, I would say the odds favor a significant storm starting this weekend, and because tides are astronomically high, we are going to have to keep an eye on how this situation unfolds. It does not look like the storm is going to be prolonged, but even one or two high tide cycles with a major system can cause significant issues along the coastline.

Friday and particularly Saturday morning’s high tides are astronomically high this weekend.NOAA

Precipitation type can also be a forecast issue with large storms. Snow, mixed precipitation, and rain can occur across the entire area, and where the lines are between these types is anybody’s guess.

So with all of the uncertainty, what should you be thinking about? At this point if you are a cautious person, I advise moving airline flights you might have anywhere from the second half of Friday to Sunday morning. My reasoning is that if the storm is impacting the Northeast quarter it’s going to have effects to our south early, and if it’s a major system, impact will linger into Sunday. It’s important to know this is like buying insurance: You may not need it but you’ll be glad if you do.

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Rain, snow, or a mixture are all possible Saturday.WeatherBELL

If you’re wondering why I might be speaking about a storm so far in advance, it’s because most of our models from the Canadian to the American to the European are all raising the storm flag. Often when you have all the models agreeing, it gives more confidence in these long-range forecasts.

There is lots of agreement about a storm this weekend, but the track is very questionable five and six days before the event.WeatherBELL

Forecasting is going to be challenging this week and I recommend staying in tune with the ever-changing variables. What you hear on Tuesday and Wednesday may ultimately be quite different from what we’re thinking about by Friday morning.