Logan’s Latest First Freeze?

If you live in Boston and have plants outside that are still living – you can thank one of the latest first freezes in recorded history.

In fact, so far this fall, the coldest temperature at Logan was 34F on October 18th (when 0.1″ of snow fell as well!). The record for latest first freeze (32ยบ) is December 2nd, 1975. The average date of the first freeze is November 4th. They will be very close to breaking the record!

In fact all the first order climo sites in southern New England are looking at one of the top 10 warmest Novembers in the last 100 years. You can check out the AFD from the NWS in Taunton and they have some good info on the specific numbers.

Tonight at work I’m going to look at the seasonal snowfall that followed an unusually warm November.


Howling Winds for Saturday

The weather service posted a High Wind Warning for north central and northeastern Connecticut through midday today. This is probably overdone (the criteria is winds >58 mph) but even though most of us will fall short of the “warning” threshold it’s still going to be damn windy today.

The strongest pressure rises and strongest pressure gradient have passed us to the north but as the atmosphere becomes better mixed in the boundary layer, momentum transport will improve. These two factors will essentially “offset” one another so I expect wind gusts in the 30-40 mph range and occasionally between 40-50 mph to continue through early afternoon. Some of the ridge tops and exposed areas may briefly gust to 55 mph.

So far most wind gusts have been under 40 mph with the exception of a 40 knot wind gusts at BDL and a 44 knot wind gust at MMK at 10:30 this morning.

After peaking at 7,000 customers in the dark earlier, CL&P reports power outages have fallen some to 4,000 customers. Still, some isolated power outages are likely later today.

Enjoy your Saturday!


Flurries in Litchfield County/Snow in the Berkshires

Just saw a report of 1.8″ of snow in Savoy, MA (the snow jackpot of Massachusetts!) thanks to some solid upslope snow. With a piece of upper level energy swinging through the snow should pick up in intensity across the Berkshires. I wouldn’t be surprised to see 4 or 5″ around Peru or Savoy.

In Connecticut Norfolk reported flurries and I expect a steadier snow later tonight (after 1 or 2 am). Up to an inch is possible above 1000 feet. Some flurries, but no accumulation, are also possible in Tolland/Union/Stafford Springs as temperatures drop there as well.

Wind continues!


Litchfield County Upslope Event; Strong Winds Elsewhere

An impressive comma head has developed from a mature and intense mid latitude cyclone off the coast of Maine. Buoys indicate the pressure has dropped to below 975 mb and on the backside of the storm strong northwest winds (gusting >30 mph) are common across the northeast. Models indicate a strong burst of winds continuing as the pressure gradient tightens. I think the strongest winds will be around daybreak as some boundary layer mixing takes place and we mix some strong winds to the surface. I think gusts in the 40-50 mph range will be common.

Up in Litchfield County, there’s the potential for some accumulating snow thanks to a relatively moist atmosphere, strong “upslope winds” blowing from the Hudson Valley in New York up and over the Litchfield Hills, and a deformation zone developing and pivoting south in the storm’s cold conveyor belt. You can see some of the cold cloud tops over western Massachusetts rotating south and I think this in conjunction with strong upslope will be enough for some minor accumulating snow tonight along the spine of the Litchfield Hills (Cornwall, Goshen, Litchfield, Norfolk, Colebrook, Canaan, North Canaan). Mesonet readings show temperatures already in the low/mid 30s in portions of Litchfield County and these should continue to drop. As of 9 p.m. I do have some reports of snow in Norfolk (though light) and it should get somewhat heavier later tonight. Not a big deal by any means but a coating to an inch of snow is possible. The 18z NAM shows this perfectly with a tongue of upslope snow coming down from the Berkshires into north central Litchfield County after midnight tonight (QPF of about 0.15″).

Big time upslope snows tonight/tomorrow morning in the Green Mountains where 1-2 feet is possible about 2500 feet to the north!!! Killington should pick up 6-12″+ and Mt Snow/Stratton should get 3-6″ at the summit. This is fun to watch develop tonight! If you want to enjoy the slopes tomorrow I think you’re going to have trouble with very strong winds which should significantly limit lift operations. Some places may open Sunday (Jay Peak???).

As far as precipitation totals this storm underperformed in a big way! The models closed the mid level low off way too fast and the result was disorganized rainfall that never materialized in part of the state.