Monday February 03, 2014 | 08:29 PM
Posted by David Epstein

Maine missed a small storm today which brought a few inches of snow across much of southern New England.  For snow lovers, you are going to get your wish for more snow and perhaps that wish will be granted twice over the next 7 days.

Tuesday brings a nice quiet day to the area with mainly sunny skies and seasonable temperatures just above freezing.  I expect some more melting to continue, especially in those areas that face south.  As the sun continues to increase in strength, any sunny days will bring some melting.

The forecast not only includes snow, but generally cold temperatures as well.  I have to say although most meteorologists love a big snow storm. I would like nothing better than to be completely wrong with this forecast. I’ll gladly suffer the wrath of social media if the atmosphere would throw us a curve ball.  Alas, it’s not going to happen, more snow and cold is almost a sure bet Wednesday morning and a strong possibility again late in the weekend.

Overview

A low pressure area will move rapidly from the mid-Atlantic region to south of Maine Wednesday night. The track of this system will keep the cold air in place across all of southern and central Maine. I am not concerned about a rain/snow line with this system.  The snow won’t be very heavy and wet, but won’t be the dry powdery stuff we saw in January either. 

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Timing

I expect the snow to break out just prior to sunrise Wednesday.  This is horrible timing for commutes as it means snow will begin accumulating as folks are heading to work.  The snow will be heaviest from 9AM until about 4PM.  During this time the bulk of the accumulation will fall.  The snow will continue lighter in the evening and should be over completely after the evening commute.  I will refine the timing on the start and end of the storm later Tuesday.

Amount of snow

The map below shows the amount of snow I am forecasting to fall.  It’s very much in line with most other forecasters.  Here’s what can change. The ultimate track of the storm will determine how my projected snow bands ultimately play out. If the storm tracks further south, the lighter amounts forecast north of Portland would push further south.  If the storm tracks north or is a bit stronger, the heavier snow amounts will move north and west into the mountains. 

I have a high level of confidence in at least 5 inches in Portland.  It’s possible if everything came together just right (or wrong) even the city could reach 10 inches of snow.   I will refine the forecast further during the day Tuesday.

Storm number 3

It turns cold and dry for Thursday through Saturday and even much of Sunday.  Later Sunday and the first part of Monday another storm will threatened. This storm has the potential to be the largest of the three, but like so many nor’easters we see, the rain/snow line and track of the storm are going to be critical to forecasting amounts of snow and other precipitation.  There are some models showing this storm missing our area, so let’s wait a few days before getting completely depressed about this one.   I know some of you love the storms, but I think there are more of us who would like to see winter be little less active at this point.

With a stormy forecast this week, I recommend listening to latest forecasts often and keep in mind your plans are going to need to be flexible.  Anytime we get into an active weather pattern, there are lots of rumors about the forecast, so listen with a grain of salt and follow me on Twitter and here for the latest updates this week.

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About the Author

David Epstein has been a meteorologist for more than 25 years. He spent 16 years in Boston and currently freelances at WGME13 in Portland.

In 2006, David founded GrowingWisdom.com, a business producing educational and marketing videos for the green industry. He currently is a professor at Framingham State College, teaches Jan Plan at Colby College and owns Bloomscapes Inc., a landscape design business.

David authored "Gardens Of New England" and his work has been published in Grolier's Science Annual for 10 years. He lives in South Natick, Mass., and has a summer home in Harpswell.

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