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This weekend will bring a coastal chill to Massachusetts

A person sits on a bench in the Public Garden.David L. Ryan/Globe Staff

Sometimes people will ask me what my favorite type of weather is. It’s hard to pick one favorite, but one of the types of weather I really find fascinating is the backdoor cold front — and we’re going to experience one this weekend.

Before the system arrives, we will enjoy a gorgeous Friday evening on this Earth Day, although it has continued to be a bit breezy. Try to take advantage of the nice weather, but also be careful with any open flames, as it is very dry today. Overnight temperatures will fall back down into the 30s over inland areas and 40s at the coast. There could be a bit of light frost again in the cold spots.


On Saturday, temperatures will reach at or just above 60 degrees, especially over inland areas with lots of sunshine, but it will fade behind clouds in the afternoon ahead of this frontal system. These clouds could bring a shower.

Forecasted temperatures for Saturday are shown.National Weather Service

So why do I like backdoor cold fronts so much? Typically weather moves from west to east across the globe in our latitudes, but sometimes weather can move from east to west or backward. Here in New England when this happens, cool marine air can flow westward behind a frontal system coming in from the opposite direction of what is typical.

A backdoor cold front in New England will slip toward New York on Sunday.NOAA

When these boundaries continue to push west, they allow cool air to flow in from Maritime Canada. Temperatures can go from near 90 to the 60s if conditions are favorable. This time of year, it’s more likely we see readings fall from the 60s back to the 40s as the air mass changes. There can be a very light shower or sprinkle with the change during tomorrow afternoon as the boundary approaches.

A few light showers are possible Saturday afternoon as a front approaches New England.WeatherBELL

Sometimes the air behind the front is actually fairly dry, and we end up with a lot of sunshine in spite of the chill. I think this is what’s going to happen on Sunday as the boundary pushes farther and farther away toward New York City. We will enjoy a blend of clouds and sunshine, but temperatures in Essex County could stay in the 40s all day, reaching around 50 in Boston and into the 50s in the 128 to 495 belt.


Cool marine air will keep readings in the 40s at the beaches on Sunday.WeatherBELL

It likely turns unsettled sometime early next week as a storm system gets trapped under a slow-moving jet stream bringing us a lot of clouds, cool temperatures, and perhaps frequent showers. So enjoy the sunshine for now!