How much snow will we have? – NBC Boston

For the occasional cold snaps that February brought to the Boston area, that just wasn’t enough to break the influence of exceptional heat, such as the record high temperature of 69 degrees on February 23.

In the end, February was 1.3 degrees Fahrenheit warmer than normal – a healthy margin, and counteracting January’s cooler than normal performance, but it was really January that was the outlier. , marking the only colder-than-normal month for Boston since July 2021.

February snowfall totaled 15.3 inches, slightly above normal snowfall of 14.4 inches for the month.

It should be noted that not all of New England reflected the same pattern as Boston: Burlington, Vermont, recorded warmer than normal high temperatures, but overnight lows were so much colder than normal than normal. monthly average was 0.1 degrees Fahrenheit colder than normal – really what I would call “near normal”.

Nonetheless, most of New England ended up warmer than normal, similar to Boston. Will the trend continue in March?

How hot will March be in Boston?

In my monthly forecast for the first weekday of each month on NBC10 Boston and NECN, I start with the temperature. In a warming climate, you’d expect to find warmer than normal temperatures far more often than near or below normal, and that’s certainly what we’ve found the majority of months over the past few years. , so a common sense approach is to lean warm unless you have a high inclination otherwise.

For March, there’s still some pretty awesome cold bottled up in Canada and sitting very close to the US border – although that cold managed to make it into New England in January, it just wasn’t enough to get the job done in February and with signals for Mars looking even less impressive for southern incursions of cold than February, I see no reason to stay cold this month.

The story is different, in my opinion, in the northern part of the central and western United States, where an active but relatively flat and fast flow of Pacific storms will likely carry some of the Canadian cold south to every pass, but in the eastern United States, the heat building up under a ridge of high pressure off the southeast coast of the United States will likely be too strong to overcome. This should not only set a pattern of relative heat over the southeastern third of the nation, but allow that heat to bleed north to the east coast, possibly pushing far southern New England into warmer than normal territory with near normal temperatures further out. north and possibly the best chance of recording colder than normal conditions found in Maine’s crown, although confidence is limited in this solution.


Will March be a stormy month in New England?

Temperature is often closely related to the jet stream – the fast-moving river of air high in the sky that flows between the cold air in the north and the heat in the south – but, of course, the jet stream is also d critically important to precipitation because it directs the storm systems that determine the rain and snow pattern across the country. The part of the jet stream forecast that I’m most confident in is the steady stream of Pacific storms in the northwestern United States, which means wetter than normal conditions there.

Even afterward, however, it seems very likely that we would find blooming rainfall in the Ohio and Tennessee valleys as energy discharges eastward and has the opportunity to pick up moisture from the Gulf of Mexico, when available. This would do two things: the counter-clockwise airflow around the centers of the storm would further encourage the heat to move up the east coast in line with the temperature forecast, and the moisture would flow north with it, along with the lower precipitation. heaviest on the northern edge of the heat where it encounters persistent cool air in the northeast, and the forecast area of ​​above normal precipitation follows this pattern.


Is Massachusetts Expecting More Snow in March?

Snow is the wild card: in this pattern, rain would certainly be more likely, but knowing that it is very cold in Canada, the Gulf of Mexico will open up with heat and humidity on occasion and a steady stream of energetic disturbances will pour in from the Pacific.

Coupled with the tendency of a changing climate over the past few years to favor powerful March storms capable of very heavy snowfall, it would be foolhardy to ignore that potential this month.

So while the pattern favors more rain events than snow events, I can tell you that our first-alert team will follow the trend of the past few years and be on their toes for stronger storm indications then as we develop our 10-day forecast in the coming month. .


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