If you see me with gray hair this weekend, just know that it’s almost exclusively from this forecast.

Buckle up for this one! The pattern certainly looks like it could deliver the biggest winter storm of the season, but we still need a few key pieces to come together.


I know, I know…usually, I would have a fancy map with storm tracks. However, there’s just too much uncertainty to do that today. For now, let’s jump right into the “what we know, and what’s to be determined” section of the column.

What we know

There is a large, strong storm system that will form off of the Carolina coastline on Friday.

It will move north, impacting New England either late Friday or early Saturday. Should it hit New England, it may not wrap up until Sunday morning.

The cold air that this storm has to work with will favor light, fluffy snow. Some signals point to a widespread area of at least a foot of fluff in Maine.

Wind gusts will be strong, coming out of the northeast. That could cause a bit of coastal flooding during high tide, similar to the storm a couple of weeks ago.

What we don’t know

The exact track of this storm is still far from set in stone. Any shifts in track will also shift where the heaviest snow falls. Areas Down East are most likely to end up with jackpot totals from this storm.

That’s why the specific snow totals and start/end times are in the “to be determined” category.

Blizzard conditions are independent of snowfall totals, but fluffy snow and strong wind gusts could certainly lead to blowing snow. For now, to be determined. However, odds are increasing that at least some areas in Maine could see blizzard conditions.

There’s also an outage risk, depending on how strong the wind gusts get. With a frozen ground, that helps to mitigate issues, but it will not help enough if the gusts are strong enough.


As it stands, I don’t see a big argument to really change this snow map. Lower end totals for Portland should still be several inches. With a bit of a “fluff factor” and favorable snow growth temperatures, 10″ is where we’ve set the lower end for the entire coastline.

Upper end totals could reach or even exceed 20″ in some spots, depending on the storm track.

Lower totals are expected over the western mountains, but plowable snow still seems likely.

On the bright side, this does seem like an ideal track to cut down on mixing at the coastline and also help keep snow pretty light and fluffy.

As we get more data in tonight and tomorrow, we should have a better idea on exact storm track. That will allow us to tweak the snowfall forecast as necessary and give some more specifics. Check back for an update tomorrow.

Mike Slifer, @MikeSliferWX

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