BOSTON (CBS) – Get ready.
Friday is going to be one of those April days when you want to crawl back into bed and forget it ever happened.
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The conditions will be very different from place to place.
For Coastal MA: A windy, wet northeast coast
For Inland, Eastern MA: A cold rain to a mix of sloppy rain and wet snow
For central and western MA, especially at high altitudes: A real snow storm in the late season
This storm is the real business … a slow moving powerhouse in the upper levels of the atmosphere. If this were in the middle of winter, or maybe just a month before, we’d be talking about a lot of snow in southern New England.
April snow is anything but unusual. In fact, Boston has accumulated snowfall for 4 of the last 5 years and 6 of the last 10 years in April, including 0.7 inches on April 18 last year (4.7 inches in Worcester). But given the mild, dry weather we’ve had since March, it just seems wrong.
On the positive side, we really need precipitation. For the first time today, 20% of Massachusetts is affected by “moderate drought”. We have an average deficit of 5 inches a year which is not a great way to start the typically wet spring season here.
Let’s get to the details …
Thursday through midnight – The rain spreads eastward and the intensity increases. Just before midnight, some snow mixes through the Berkshires and northern Worcester County.
Friday 1:00 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. it rains steadily in east MA, the rain changing primarily to snow in Worcester County, facing west. By early Friday morning, several centimeters of heavy wet snow will accumulate in the higher elevations of central and western MA.
Friday Daytime – The storm is shaking around East MA all day and temperatures above the ground will be dangerously close to freezing. This means we will likely see periods of rain (with lighter rainfall) and snow (when rainfall is heavier) in east MA there will be some snow on Friday.
Friday evening / early Saturday – Much light precipitation when the storm begins to die over us … only with a few rain and snow showers, no additional accumulation.
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Saturday during the day – on Saturday morning we are left with drizzle, especially near the coast. Otherwise a mostly cloudy, cool day that dries up.
Coating on 1 ” Southeast New Hampshire (including Nashua and Manchester), the 495 belt from Lowell to Marlboro and points 5-10 miles west of 495 … that snow will come on Friday and will likely be mixed with rain, meaning most scattered coatings or almost won’t see anything
1 to 3″ Most of Worcester County’s lower elevations, including most of southern Worcester County
3 “to 6” + Highest elevations (mostly over 1,000 feet) in northern Worcester County and most of the Berkshires, including the Monadnock area. There is high potential here for some shabby limbs and power outages due to the heavy weight of the snow.
Rainfall levels (or the equivalent of liquid water in snowy areas) are generally between 1.0 and 2.5 inches, a good soak!
WINDS / COAST:
East-northeast wind gusts between 30 and 50 miles per hour are expected along the coast late Thursday evening through Friday.
Those winds will roll north into the North Shore, New Hampshire and the Maine coast later on Friday as the center of the storm moves over the eastern fair.
The winds turn north-northwest on Friday evening into early Saturday, gusting between 20 and 40 miles per hour in East Mass before slowly waning during the day on Saturday
No major flooding problems on the coast as the tides are astronomically low.
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Stay tuned to WBZ-TV, CBSBoston.com, and CBSN Boston for updates on and during the storm.