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New England dodges a storm Saturday but another system poses a threat for next week

A pedestrian used an umbrella for protection from the cold wind and rain on Massachusetts Ave. in Boston.Craig F. Walker/Globe Staff

It turned out to be quite a nice afternoon across Southern New England with relatively comfortable temperatures and plenty of sunshine.

There’s a storm system to our south that is going to continue to move eastward over the next 24 hours. Our region will be on the northern fringe of the clouds and precipitation from the system. This means there is the chance for a little bit of light rain or snow late Friday and the first part of Saturday as the center of low pressure moves away.

If there was any accumulation of snow it would be insignificant and mostly southwest of the Mass Pike. I could see a coating to an inch there.


Low pressure moving east has thicker clouds south of New England.COD Weather

Temperatures during Saturday will only be in the upper 30s with a rather raw wind off the ocean. I don’t expect much, if any, breaks in the clouds for most of the day.

Below-average temperatures with spotty morning precipitation are in the forecast for Saturday.NOAA

It’s better weather for Sunday with more blue sky and temperatures getting back into the 40s. Winds will be light.

Remember, we resume daylight saving time on Sunday at 2 a.m. so set your clocks ahead onet hour before you head to bed.

You may have heard of a possible storm for early next week and this is still likely going to happen. Cold air is always necessary for a snowstorm but the deeper into March we go, the more difficult it becomes for that cold air to be present, especially at the ground.

If the track of low pressure is too close to the coastline it pulls in mild marine air at the lowest levels of the atmosphere. We call this the boundary layer and this is where we all live. When the boundary layer is too warm, the snowflakes end up melting on their way down.

Even if it’s cold enough for snow in the clouds by the time the precipitation arrives it’s in the form of rain.


Temperatures will be well above freezing Tuesday as rain falls in southeastern New England.WeatherBELL

This is likely what is going to happen later Monday and Tuesday. This is not to say that there couldn’t be heavy wet snow in the higher elevations of Worcester county and perhaps in the Berkshires.

Certainly in parts of Northern New England there will be some snow, but based on current information it is not going to turn into a snowstorm for coastal Southern New England.

An inch to an inch and a half of precipitation are likely with next week’s storm. Where it is all snow this can easily translate into over 6 inches.WeatherBELL

One important caveat here: If the track of this storm shifts east, and colder air works into the system, then we are looking at a major snowstorm, even in Boston. The odds do not favor this right now, but I will monitor the guidance over the weekend and have an update of any changes.

The stakes are high and a colder dynamic would bring a very different scenario.

Rain along the coastline Tuesday will transition to snow much further north and west. This will be especially true in the higher elevations.WeatherBell

No matter the storm’s exact track, it is likely this is a system with strong winds, some coastal flooding, and where there is heavy wet snow, power issues. The exact details on which tides are most affected and when the worst of the storm arrives will be worked out over the weekend, so stay tuned.

We will see clearing for the middle of next week but it is not going to be excessively mild. As a matter of fact the 8- to 14-day outlook does have average to perhaps even slightly below-average temperatures for much of the Northeast.


Colder than average conditions are likely for much of the US into mid-March.NOAA