The latest model runs are in and it continues to look like a massive late week snowstorm for much of New England with two feet of snow possible in Boston by Saturday morning. In fact, it looks like an all-out blizzard for much of Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, southern Maine and southeastern New Hampshire with major snowfalls of 1-2 feet and strong winds. Farther down the coast in places like NYC and Philly the general scenario looks like the start of the storm late Thursday night/early Friday will be snow, ice and/or freezing rain and then there will be a changeover to plain rain during the day on Friday, and then that will change to accumulating snow Friday night as the storm pulls to the northeast and colder air is drawn in. Substantial snow (at least 6-12 inches) and very strong winds are likely in and around the NYC region at the back end of this storm and it could turn into an all-out blizzard. A few-to-several inches of snow can even fall Friday night all the way down into the Philly metro region in SE PA. Farther south, odds favor mainly rain in the DC metro region, but even there it can start as a mixed bag late Thursday night before changing to plain rain on Friday and a changeover to snow at the end of the storm cannot be ruled out down there.
The crucial player in the late week setup is an upper level feature at 500 mb associated with a strong northern stream disturbance. This feature will allow for the rapid intensification of the surface low as a phasing process is undertaken on Friday with a southern disturbance and the trend on the GFS model runs has been for a stronger and farther south upper level feature late Friday. This will allow for a rapid strengthening of the surface low on Friday and significant wrap around snows on the back side of the storm Friday night into early Saturday. Looking ahead, after a couple days of milder weather early next week, there may be another coastal storm to deal with around the middle or latter part of next week as it turns colder again.
Stay tuned, still 48 hours to go on the Friday storm. On the positive side, the Phillies equipment truck has just taken off for Florida.