July 4th Special…Warm & Dry! 7/1/24

Hello! Happy July 1st! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Both Friday & Saturday featured mainly sunny skies and pleasant temperatures. Sunday was also warm, but with the addition of high humidity. During the afternoon, a line of showers & thunderstorms crossed the region. As is typical of afternoon summer thunderstorms, some received more than others. They were worse south of Boston, specifically across Connecticut. Overall, it was a decent summer weekend across the region. Sunday was not the best beach day, but it wasn’t bad to be near the water, or take a stroll in town. I guess anything is better than the blistering heat wave we felt back in June!

As has been the case for what seems like several years now, June was yet another month that featured warmer than normal temperatures across the region. Boston finished close to three degrees above average, thanks in large part to the three-day heat wave. We also reached 90 degrees 4 times last month, which is one above the average of three. By the way, this was the first heat wave in Boston in two years. There were no heat waves recorded in the city last summer. A heat wave is achieved when a location observes three consecutive days of 90-degree temperatures. While it wasn’t excessively wet, we did receive timely beneficial rainfall mainly in the form of heavy showers & thunderstorms.

Looking over some of the long-range information today, I am expecting July to be similar to June, perhaps even a bit more extreme. This means I am expecting warm to at times hot weather this month along with episodes of thunderstorm activity. Boston typically averages approximately 5 ninety-degree days in July. This July, I am expecting between 7 and 10. Despite the heat, rainfall will be plentiful, with no signs of drought conditions. Cooler air will at times filter into New England, bringing with it showers & thunderstorms along the boundary where the cool air meets the hot air. While I do not see a repeat of last summer’s deluge and flooding, there will be enough rain at times to keep an eye on rivers & streams. Hopefully the rain comes at times so many can enjoy outdoor activities this summer. Timing is everything!

Statistically speaking, Boston has its best chance for fair weather on July 4th. This means the city has its lowest chance of rain and cloudy weather on this date. Along with all the anomalies in weather patterns we have seen lately, this was not the case for the past two or three years! Boston fireworks display has been dodging showers and thunderstorms the past couple years. While not raining last year during the display, a sudden wind shift from off the ocean brought an illed timed fog bank into the esplanade from off of the ocean. This obscured the visibility, leaving muted colors, as the fireworks exploded in the thick fog above. Two years ago, the entire esplanade needed to be evacuated from the threat of severe thunderstorms. I can’t remember for sure, but there was another year, possibly three years ago when the entire event was postponed until July 5th due to a soaking rainstorm. Ugh!

Will our fortune change this year? I believe they will! Appropriately timed weather systems look to clear the coast this evening, bringing fair weather to much of New England for both tomorrow & Wednesday. Many coastal towns celebrate the 4th on July 3rd with fireworks displays lighting off from the beach. At this point, Wednesday evening is shaping up to be fine, with clear skies and warm breezes. Conditions on the 4th itself look similar. However, you will notice an uptick in the heat and humidity on July 4th. There will be a frontal boundary approaching New England on Thursday. Right now, I’m expecting this front to remain well north and west of the Boston area and Cape Cod. With that being said, there’s always a chance of some isolated thunderstorms as the atmosphere heats up. Isolated means about 5% of the area may see a storm, which means 95% of us will remain dry. No wash outs of any consequence are expected! In addition, with the increase in humidity, I’m slightly concerned some coastal areas could encounter some areas of fog. Fog is tricky to forecast, as it’s dependent on whether the dew point temperatures match the air temperature, and if winds turn onshore. I’m not expecting anything at this point, but just making you aware these things do occur in summer air masses like this.

Before I get to the forecast, I wanted to bring your attention to the southern Caribbean Islands, the lesser Antilles & Grenada. It was barely 48 hours ago a mere tropical disturbance was poised to become our second named storm “Beryl” in this very early hurricane season. Less than 24 hours later the storm rapidly intensified into a strong category 3 storm, with winds of 125 mph. Less than 24 hours later, Beryl is now a strong category 4 borderline 5 storm with winds of 150 mph! This intense hurricane is already breaking records for one of the strongest so early in the season, and as to how quickly it intensified. Being only the second named storm of the season, “B” storms are typically very weak tropical storms, barely lasting a day or two. This should be a huge warning signal for this upcoming hurricane season. June is barely over, and we already are on to the third name of the season, and one catastrophic storm in Beryl. Experts have warned that this season could be the most active hurricane season on record with up to 30 named storms developing. Ocean temperatures are at historic high levels. We have an incoming La Nina, which reduces wind shear, allowing storms to develop quickly. I mentioned it before, if there’s any hurricane season New England needs to be on guard, it’s this one. I will be closely monitoring the tropics this summer and will be sure to update everyone as conditions warrant.

Time for your weekly beach and boating forecast. After today, I am expecting good to excellent beach and boating weather from Tuesday through the 4th itself. Thereafter, the weather looks a bit more shaky, but again, no washouts are anticipated at this time. Friday the 5th looks like another warm summery day. There is an increased risk of an afternoon or evening thunderstorm, so be aware of that. Southwest winds mean there will be a chop on the water, especially off south facing beaches of Cape Cod. There’s another chance of thunderstorms on Saturday. Out of all the days, this may be the most unsettled. This is just a forecast at this point, not set in stone. It could easily turn out nice, with the rain arriving overnight, Sunday may start off murky, but I’m expecting some sun to burn through leading up to a fairly nice beach day. All the time, temperatures should warm into the lower 80’s, along east coast beaches and Cape Cod.

Now for your weekly outdoor summer activity & holiday forecast. I will rate this week a 7 out of 10.

A disturbance will be passing through New England today bringing with it a cold pool aloft. This is resulting in an unstable atmosphere. I have noticed a few showers and even thunderstorms pop up around the Greater Boston area. Albeit brief, don’t be surprised if there’s a quick downpour across some communities this afternoon. There may even be some small hail. This activity will diminish as the sun sets this evening. Skies should clear overnight.

Now for the good news. For the period of Tuesday through Thursday, I’m expecting generally fair weather with a warming trend. Watch for high temperatures to warm from the lower 80’s Tuesday, mid 80’s Wednesday, and mid to upper 80’s possibly close to 90 on 4th of July! There’s nothing like a warm summer’s night, as dusk slowly encroaches, awaiting spectacular fireworks! As I mentioned earlier, there will be a slight risk of an isolated thunderstorm on July 4th, but the majority of the regions should remain dry.

Friday, Saturday and Sunday will remain warm, but with a front in the area, there is an increased risk of a few showers and thunderstorms across the region. Highest chance for storms appears to be later Saturday into Sunday morning. Perhaps lingering on the Cape a bit on Sunday morning. Before that, you may sneak in a beach day on Saturday. As mentioned before, timing is everything! Let’s hope it all works out!

Next week may feature a few hot days alternating with seasonable ones. Overall, it’s looking warm to hot for the foreseeable future. Get your AC’s ready!

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post is tentatively scheduled for Monday, July 22nd. However, this is dependent on many factors such as work schedule, time off, and severe weather events. In my next post, I will be discussing in more detail our upcoming hurricane season. and what implications this may have on us here in New England. I will also be monitoring our summer heat, and letting you know how long it may continue for. In the meantime, put the umbrella away after today, and break out the beach gear! Nice Fourth of July weather is back in New England…we deserve it!

~Happy Independence Day, everyone! ~

Be safe!

Thanks for reading!







Summer Arrives…With A Vengeance! 6/17/24

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their Father’s Day weekend! After Friday’s thunderstorms, the weekend remained dry and warm. This is especially true on Saturday. Sunday featured onshore breezes which kept the beaches on the cooler side. Overall, we couldn’t ask for a much better weather for the last official weekend of spring. Remember last June was the start of the summer deluge, with weekend and holiday washouts throughout the summer. Just awful!! While Saturday featured perfect summer weather, some would of liked it a bit warmer on Sunday for beach and boating. As the saying goes, be careful what you wish for! By this weekend many will be requesting this weather back, as the whiplash temperature swings continue.

Last post featured my summer forecast. Looking over the latest data, I see no reason to make any significant changes. In fact, if I were to tweak anything, it would be to make the forecast hotter than what I’m expecting. I base how hot summers are with how many 90 degree days we observe. Yes, it may be very warm and humid with many days in the 80’s, similar to last year, but when temperatures reach 90 degrees plus, the heat reaches a different threshold.

After a couple scorching summers, last year Boston only observed five 90 degree days…well short of the average of 14. The reason for the cooler summer was partly due to the excessive rains we received, but also due to the incoming El Nino, Incoming El Ninos are notorious for cooler, wetter summers, and that’s exactly what we received. Still, with all the rainy days, and excessive cloud cover, we still managed to have an oppressively muggy summer, with many warm overnight low temperatures which continued well into autumn. This led to a summer which was much warmer than one would think.

This combination of record rainfall and warm temperatures extending deep into autumn, essentially ruined fall foliage season last year. Due to plentiful nutrients and warm temperatures, leaves remained green and on the trees well into October and in some cases November. Eventually, the warmth could not last, and colder temperatures arrived by mid-November, finally allowing the trees to drop their leaves. By Thanksgiving, all the leaves were off the trees. However, one of these years, I believe it’s going to be such a warm fall, the leaves are going to remain on the trees until December. Could it be this year?

This summer, we have an incoming La Nina. If you love cooler summer temperatures and crisp autumn weather, this is not what you want to see! Contrary, if you love building summer heat and drier weather patterns, La Nina is your go to! La Nina’s signature is strong ridges of high pressure in the eastern part of the U.S. During summer, this can mean heat domes developing (ridge of high pressure) with brutally hot weather under them. For this summer, computer models are forecasting this heat dome to be anchored across the Midwest, occasionally surging into New England. The potential is there for repetitive heat waves and drought. I hate to use the word drought after so much rain we have seen, but it only takes a month or two of below normal rain to see drought conditions return. If you don’t like hot weather, I would say book an extended trip to Alaska!

After studying the weather here in New England practically my entire life, I can tell you one thing with near certainty. Hot weather arriving near on or on the summer solstice only foretells of more hot weather in the coming months. My preliminary summer forecast made on May 20th called for between 14 and 17 ninety degree days in Boston. I am going to bump this up to between 17 and 20 days. I still feel this is a conservative range. But based upon many global factors, it would not shock me if this turns into the hottest summer on record in Boston. I’m not calling for that at the moment, but just wanted to let you know the potential is there. Record warm ocean temperatures, incoming strengthening La Nina and high solar activity is like the triple crown jewel for a seasonal summer forecast.

Not to get too far ahead of myself, but there are indications this pattern could persist into this upcoming autumn and winter. Some long range computer models are showing warm temperatures & below normal snowfall may continue through winter 2024-25. It’s still too early to tell for sure. La Nina’s are fickle, and could have a different look come winter, depending upon how ocean temperatures look globally. While La Nina’s typically mean a hot & dry summer, winter La Nina in New England could mean mild & dry or cold & snowy. I will look into those prospects in more detail come September. We are living in warm times, indeed!

The only fly in the ointment that *could* derail this summer forecast is the upcoming hurricane season. Similar to global factors I mentioned above, record warm ocean temperatures and incoming La Nina’s typically mean an active hurricane season is imminent. Computer models are forecasting a super active season, with possibly up to 30 named storms! Some computer models are indicating a large “fetch” of above normal precipitation across the Caribbean region, slamming into Florida and parts of the U.S. southeast coast.  The dilemma arises on whether some of this precipitation, or possibly even a tropical storm or even hurricane decides to make the turn and head north up into New England. Those same computer models do indeed show enhanced “wetness” across much of New England later this summer into September. This could possibly mean New England could be in line with enhanced tropical rainfall from either remnants of storms, or even a tropical storm or hurricane itself! I believed I mentioned it before, but if there’s any year we really need to be on guard from a tropical threat, it’s this year!

Regardless on whether we hit a record number of 90 days or not, this summer is going to be much hotter than last summer. We may have as many 90 degree days by the end of this week as we had all of last summer! By the way, the hottest summer recorded in Boston dates back to 1983, when the city observed a whopping 30 ninety degree days! The only question is how much rain are we going to see? At this moment, I would say we are going to see less number of rainy days. Already this June is much drier than last June. However, there’s that tropical signal that has me concerned. It may be that we have less rainy days this summer, but if one or two tropical storms hit, we could experience well above normal rain in a day or two leading to flooding across the region. Something I will closely monitor as we head deeper into summer.

Now for your weekly beach and boating forecast. I will rate this week a 9 out of 10 for these summer activities. Be prepared, it’s going to get hot! Expect hot weather from Tuesday through Friday this week throughout the New England region. Temperatures are expected to reach into the low 90’s tomorrow, mid 90’s on Wednesday, upper 90’s to near 100 on Thursday, and mid 90’s on Friday. There will be some showers & thunderstorms in the region trying to break the heat wave later on Friday and into the upcoming weekend. If you are looking for some relief, there may be some local sea breezes at are beaches which may keep the beach 5 to 10 degrees cooler. If the temperature is close to 100 Thursday, that would still mean 90 to 95 at the beach. Looks good to be out on a boat. Just monitor southwesterly winds on the south side of New England with an increased chop. Also monitor increased threat of thunderstorms on Friday heading into this weekend.

Here’s your weekly outdoor summer activity forecast.

Expect a mix of sun and clouds for the rest of your Monday. Enjoy the temperatures today, they will be the most comfortable of the entire week. With that being said, temperatures will be a good 10 degrees warmer than yesterday, with highs in the upper 70’s and low 80’s. Dew point temperatures will be increasing, so it may begin to feel a bit more uncomfortable as we move deeper into the afternoon and evening. Remember, the dew point temperature is the actual indicator on how much moisture there is in the air. The higher the dew point temperature, the more muggy it feels against our bodies.

Look for a warm evening across the region, It will be a pleasant evening for a walk in the park or neighborhood. It will begin to feel more summery as dew point temperatures begin to increase, and air temperatures remain warm. I’m not expecting any widespread rain, however, there is a slight chance for a brief shower or sprinkles as the the real warm air begins surging into New England.

Watch for heat wave conditions to overspread all of New England on Tuesday. With a gusty south to southwesterly wind, the only place you will find relief is along New England’s south coast, Cape & the Islands, and also parts of Cape Ann. Otherwise, expect very warm to hot temperatures to settle into the region. Many locations just west & north of Boston have heat advisories up for feel like temperatures between 100 and 105. This will only increase as we head into Wednesday and Thursday. Air temperatures should make it to 90 to 92 degrees in Boston, and mid 90’s just inland from the city. There may be a feeble sea breeze at Logan Airport for part of the day holding temperatures to just below 90. Just a technicality. It will still be hot everywhere else.

Not much relief Tuesday night or any other night this week, with overnight lows remaining in the low 70’s with high dew point temperatures.

This is an unusual heat wave in where the hottest temperatures may actually be felt across northern New England! Many locations may see their hottest June temperatures on record! Northern Maine has issued heat advisories and warnings for the first time on record. They are expecting air temperatures close to 100 degrees, and heat index between 105 and 110!

It’s not going to be much better around here Wednesday and Thursday. Expect hot temperatures as the heat wave peaks, with high temperatures between 95 and 100 degrees, with a heat index between 105 and 110 degrees. Thursday should be the hottest day, as we welcome the first official day of astronomical summer! These temperatures are incredibly hot any time of the year. However, when they occur on or around the solstice, it has a different bite to it. This is due to the extremely high sun angle on this day, making the heat feel worse. Boston could tie or eclipse the record high of 98 degrees. Boston has hit 100 degrees only three times on record, the last time was on the last day of June as recently as 2021.

Please check in on the elderly and pets. Make sure they have adequate air conditioning and hydration. Take care of yourself too!

There may be more clouds around on Friday as a cool front slowly approaches. There may be a chance of an afternoon or evening thunderstorm. Any storm in this type of air mass could turn severe, so monitor local forecasts. Temperatures may still soar to the low to mid 90’s. If clouds hold off, it could be even hotter than that.

At this point, I do not see any push of cooler & drier air anytime soon. Instead, we may be straddling the intense heat to our south, and slightly less hot air to our north. Therefore, I’m expecting slightly cooler weather for much of New England this weekend, with high temperatures in the mid to upper 80s. With a quasi stationary front in the area, there will be a chance of some showers & thunderstorms. Though I do not expect a complete washout, there will be wet weather at times. This is especially true across inland areas during peak heating hours in the afternoon and evening.

Whatever cooling occurs this weekend will be temporary and fleeting. I’m expecting additional hot weather to return several more times for the remainder of June into at least the first half of July. By the time I post again, Boston may already be approaching the yearly summer average of 14 ninety degree days!

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post is scheduled for Monday, July 15th. However, I am planning on a short special “4th of July forecast” post on Monday, July 1st with a forecast for the upcoming 4th of July holiday week and weekend. As always, if any severe weather or storm threatens before then, I will be sure to update everyone. In the meantime, enjoy the upcoming hot weather…the days begin to shorten the day after the solstice!

~Happy Birthday to my sister Pam!!~ (June 11th)

Go Celtics!!!

Thanks for reading!



Summer Forecast: Hotter…Not as Wet! 5/20/24

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! It was yet another cloudy, cold and rainy weekend across parts of Massachusetts. It may of not been raining where you live all the time, but I can assure you, many communities across the interior were soaked with between 1 and 2″ of rain on Saturday. If it wasn’t raining along the coast, stiff northeast winds and drizzle made it miserable just the same. Later on Saturday, the rain moved in close to Boston, making for a cold, wet evening. Sunday was still cloudy and drizzly, though most of the heavy rains were done.

I apologize for the lack of posts in recent months. As I mentioned a while back, the combination of mounting tasks at my store, and lack of overall weather events, have meant a prolonged spell of diminished posts. I’m still here, and I am still following our ever changing climate closely! If you love storms and exciting weather as much as I do, well, the past couple of years has not much of anything to write home about..at least here in the Boston area. Yes, I saw norther New England received a couple good late spring snowstorms this year to extend the ski season a few weeks. Other than that, it’s been all about the rain…and lots of it!

Many folks are asking me when all this rain is going to stop? I will try to answer this question to the best of my ability, but the true answer is only Mother Nature knows for sure. After a severe drought two years ago, last summer began with a bang, with heavy rain arriving on June 1st. In fact, last summer was the complete opposite of the previous summer. Rains that dried up on their approach two summers ago, intensified last summer, leading to multiple washouts and floods…mostly on holidays & weekends! It turned out being the wettest summer on record in Boston, and the second wettest in Boston! You would think it would of rained itself out? Mother Nature had other plans. Other than November and February, heavy rains continued through the winter, bringing streams and rivers beyond flood stage multiple times across the region. March was the wettest month, with many locations receiving between 10 and 15″ of rain!

I have no exact answers. However, what I do know is our area has seen a multi-year multi-decade precipitation deficit. You may of thought things were normal, but many towns & communities were running 2 to 4 ft deficits since about the mid 2000’s. The drought two summers ago seemed to be the peak of the dry spell in our region. Since then, it’s been pouring buckets seemingly every three days or so. Many of these rainstorms have been occurring during weekends and holidays. For example, the 4th of July & Labor Day weekends have been a washouts the past couple of years. Not good!

Is it ever going to end. Yes, Mother Nature will eventually balance things off. Longtime Boston area meteorologist Mark Rosenthal frequently says, “The extremes make the averages.” This is so true for our climate here in New England. Eventually, the rains will subside, and we’ll start the entire cycle all over again!

Same goes with the growing snow deficit in and around Boston the past several years. We all remember the epic winter of 2014-15? Boston nearly had three winters in one that season. Mother Nature may still be reverting back to the mean average after that season. In fact, Boston received three well above seasons in a row beginning with the 2012-13 year, culminating with the 2014-15 season. Since then, Boston has recorded two above years, and 7 below average seasons. Eventually, the cycle will change, and the snowy winters will return.

While the weather patterns have been somewhat dormant as of late, the same can’t be said for our solar system! From the epic solar eclipse to the recent northern lights event, the celestial skies are alive, picking up the slack for the dormant weather patterns. Did anyone catch the northern lights event early morning hours of May 11th? Unfortunately, I underestimated the strength of the solar storm, and figured I wouldn’t be able to see them here in Boston. As it turned out, the geomagnetic storm reached record strong levels. Apparently, the KP levels reached an astonishing level 9 that night. The chart ranges from 0 to 9. This was strong enough to bring one of the most intense northern lights shows to many locations in more than 20 years! Yes, colorful lights were strong enough to shine through intense light pollution to be seen in the Boston area! If you were up at Millennium Park, some people took some fantastic photos! Other notable sightings around our area came in from Cape Cod, Gloucester, Needham and many other towns around the area. My weather friend Scott Dunlop posted some amazing pictures from Connecticut! Up in northern New England, the sky lit up with greens, pinks and reds in New Hampshire and Maine. Of course Mt Washington was ground zero for this event, though spectacular photos were also taken at the Nubble Lighthouse in York, Maine.

What causes the northern lights? First, a massive sunspot formed on the southeast corner of the sun. They say this sunspot was 30 times larger than earth. This ejected a massive solar flare of geomagnetic electrons towards earth. It just so happened, the most intense matter collided with earth’s magnetic field at the darkest time of the night. As the electrons hit the magnetic field, it gets deflected towards the poles. These electrons then collide with gases as they enter earth’s atmosphere releasing the intense colors we see here on earth. Because this storm was so intense, the charged particles extended much further south than a typical event. It’s one of natures most fascinating shows! There may be another opportunity for a northern lights show in a couple of weeks as the massive sunspot faces the earth again. We shall see if it still has the energy it once had on the May 11th event.

Circling back to our summer forecast, I have some good news and not so good news this year. The good news is that I’m expecting this summer to be much hotter than last summer. If you recall, Boston only mustered 5 ninety degree days last summer. This was due to the excessive rainfall and incoming El Nino. On average, Boston receives around 14 ninety degree days. This summer, we have an incoming La Nina. Summers with an incoming La Nina typically start off cool, but then become hot to very hot second half of July and much of August. Therefore, I’m expecting many more 90 degree days this summer, possibly triple from last summer. For this reason, I’m expecting between 14 and 17 ninety degree days in Boston this summer. A steady northwest flow should keep the most intense heat away from New England centered in the middle of the country. However, should we get more of a west to southwest flow, we could experience some very hot days, especially in August.

While I believe it will be less wet this summer than last year, it won’t be totally dry either. The wettest month to me appears to be June and September. The driest months should be July and August. I do not see upper level low pressure systems parking themselves over New England bringing endless days of rain like what happened last summer. However, there will be rain from different threats. I’m expecting a higher than average number of thunderstorms this summer across much of New England. These in itself can bring drenching downpours with localized flooding. What will make this summer different is that systems are not going to stall over New England this summer. Thunderstorms will come, may be intense, but continue to move offshore. This should bring a happy medium of enough water for lawns and gardeners, but also bring much better weather for beach goers and summer vacationers this summer. As I mentioned earlier, August looks to be the driest and hottest month of the summer the way I’m seeing things right now.

What’s the bad news? With La Nina returning, volatile weather events may soon follow. Experts are forecasting a much higher than average Atlantic hurricane season this year. With low wind shear, expect storms to have very little trouble blowing up into large hurricanes. In addition, ocean temperatures are running at historic high levels across the MDR (main development region) across the south Atlantic and Caribbean Ocean. Some outlets are calling for between 25 and 30 named storms, with 7 to 10 majors. This is nearly triple the average. This does not automatically mean a devastating season is imminent. A few years ago we had a similar year, but very few storms made landfall.

However, as the saying goes, it only takes one storm to make landfall resulting in billions of dollars in damages. As for New England, it’s always a tough call. At this moment, the steering currents do not look conducive to bring hurricanes up the coast to New England. However, as the season progresses, tropical moisture from storms down south may surge up the coast resulting in heavy rains during September and October this year. I will keep a close eye on how this season evolves. The parameters are there for quite an active season, if not historic.

Time for your weekly outdoor summer activity forecast. This will include the outlook for the upcoming Memorial Day holiday weekend. I will give this week an 8 out of 10.

Expect fair weather and mild temperatures overnight with no weather issues.

Watch for mainly sunny weather and much warmer temperatures for both Tuesday and Wednesday. In fact, temperatures will finally reach 80 degrees in Boston for the first time this season tomorrow. Highs should be about 82 tomorrow, and possibly as high as 86 on Wednesday. Tomorrow should feature low levels of humidity, but as the temperatures rise on Wednesday, it will feel slightly more humid.

Temperatures will remain warm on Thursday. However, an approaching cold front will swing a line of showers and thunderstorms through the region sometime during mid to late afternoon.

As the front seeps off the coast, expect clearing skies and slightly cooler temperatures to settle into New England for both Friday and Saturday. Temperatures should still remain at comfortable levels in the low to mid 70’s with mainly sunny conditions.

Fair weather should continue into Sunday. However, I do see some clouds increasing Sunday afternoon into the evening. Temperatures should reach the lower 70’s once again.

A fairly progressive storm system may bring a period of showers to eastern Massachusetts later Sunday evening into Monday morning.

It’s a ways out, but hopefully that system will be progressive enough to allow for clearing skies during Monday afternoon and evening. If there are any delays in the upper air pattern, this would result in a slower exit of this system, and a more unsettled Memorial Day. Too difficult to say at this point. Check in with local media outlets for the latest weather updates for Memorial Day. Saturday & Sunday appear lovely at this moment.

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post will focus on an updated version of the summer forecast. If severe weather or major storms threaten, I will be sure to keep everyone posted. In the meantime, enjoy the Memorial Day weekend with family & friends. Please also remember veterans who made the ultimate sacrifice, and the courageous men & woman who help bring us the freedom we enjoy today.

~Remembering those we love this Memorial Day weekend~

Thanks for reading!




Solar Eclipse 2024 Is Here!! 4/8/24

Hello! It’s been a while! I hope everyone is fairing, well! Unexpected events has prevented me from updating the weather blog. Since we last spoke back at the end of February, Boston has accumulated a whopping .1″ of snow. To say it has been an underwhelming snow season along the I95 corridor is an understatement. In fact, if it holds, it will go down as the third least snowiest winter in recorded history in Boston. The least being the 1936-37 season when only 9.0″ fell. Second place was the dreadful 2011-12 winter, when the city recorded 9.3″. In third place is the 2023-24 winter, where we currently stand, and most likely will remain at 9.8″ of snow. The difference between the three years is so minor, you might as well say it was similar to the least snowiest winter on record.

Two massive late season storms brought close to 4ft of snow to ski country in late March & early April. It was a solid ending to an otherwise miserable ski season than began so promising back last November. For us here in the Boston area, the winter pattern arrived too little too late. There just wasn’t enough cold air to generate snowfall inside of I95 from Boston points south and east. Overall, I liked my ideas for my winter forecast. However when push came to shove, it just didn’t want to snow in Boston this winter, nor for any other major city in the lower 48. Only Anchorage, Alaska recorded above normal snowfall this winter! In my next post I will grade the winter forecast and try to explain what and why this happened. A little hint is has something to do with the record warm ocean temperatures being felt across the earth. Until this changes, I’m afraid winters along the coast are going to be hard to come by.

Time is once again short today. I wanted to focus a bit on the upcoming eclipse and the pattern for April. It seemed so long ago. Our last solar eclipse was back in August of 2017. The weather in Boston was not ideal that day, with considerable cloudiness. Though I do recall watching the eclipse with a friend at Millennium Park and catching a fascinating glimpse of the eclipse through the clouds. Due to the cloud cover, it was possible to look at the disk of the sun without any protective glasses. I would not recommend doing that today! You must have the special eclipse eye wear to view the eclipse! That eclipse featured 63% blockage of the sun here in Boston. While that sounds like a lot, it really isn’t in terms of seeing it turn dark. Perhaps it turned slightly less bright that day, but if you blinked you would of never known it occurred.

Solar Eclipse 2024 is different! If you want to see a dramatic event unfold, you really have to be where totality occurs. In New England, you have to be up in the Burlington, Vt region, northern New Hampshire, extending into northern Maine, in the Houlton, Caribou region. In Burlington, Vt. totality will occur at 3:27 pm. At this time for a few minute, the moon will completely obscure the sun, only leaving a corona of light, or ring of light from the sun glowing around the moon. Sky will turn dark, planets will be seen, birds will stop signing and an eerily silence will cast across the landscape. I have never experienced this first hand, but from what people who have seen it are saying, it’s something that you’ll never forget!

Down here in Boston, the effect will not be nearly as dramatic. However, this year Boston will see close to 93% coverage. Again, this sounds like a lot, and it is much more than back in 2017, but the difference is night & day, Literally! Here in Boston, total partial eclipse maxes out at 3:30 pm! At this time, the sky will darken somewhat, almost like a dark cloud is passing across the sun. This will last for approximately 5 minutes, until the shadow from the moon begins to pass by. You should not look at the sun directly during this process!! Please where the protective eclipse glasses if you have them. If you don’t, you can make a box and poke a hole through one side, place foil on the other side and look at the sun through the hole as the the shadow of the moon passes the sun. You will be able to see the reflection of the sun on the aluminum foil. If you miss this eclipse, the next total eclipse of the sun in our area will occur on May 1st, 2079! During this eclipse, totality will run right along the I95 corridor right through Boston! Anything is possible, but best chances to see it would be people who are less than 30 years old. Enjoy!

April began on a wet & stormy note! As mentioned above a massive nor’easter brought a windswept rain storm mixed with sleet in Boston. However, as you traveled north and west of Boston, snow was more involved. In fact, most of Maine, New Hampshire and Vermont received between 1 and 2 ft of heavy wet snow! The exception was along the immediate shore where ocean influenced less snowfall, but was a mess just the same. I don’t see any ending with our wet pattern here in New England. On a more optimistic note, it appears warmer weather will be more of the rule than the exception moving forward. This will get green up going here in southern New England. As a general rule of thumb, the grass will become totally green by April 10th. Mowing could commence shortly thereafter, but most areas mowing season begins on May 1st. Trees will begin to bud beginning after April 15th, and begin to leaf by the end of April . Leaves are typically completely bloomed by May 1th in the Boston area. Gardening can begin, but be aware frost can still occur especially outside of Rt 128 until May 1oth, sometimes later. Overall, I’m expecting periods of wet weather to continue through much of April. After a chilly start, it should warm up enough to see another above normal month in Boston after we average it all out. This does not mean we can’t have any chilly days. This can still occur straight on through May around here.


Here’s your weekly outdoor spring activity forecast. I will rate this week a 5 out of 10. Not bad today and tomorrow, it goes downhill thereafter,

Expect mainly sunny skies today and pleasantly warmer temperatures. It will feel like Florida compared to the bone chilling winds and cloudy weather we experienced the past few days! However, be on the look out for some high clouds entering the picture later this afternoon. Will these clouds obscure the eclipse to ruin it? They look on the thin side, so I wouldn’t be too worried about them. however, these things are out of our control. It only takes a thicker cloud at the wrong moment to ruin a celestial event. Let’s hope for the best! As mentioned earlier, temperatures will be quite pleasant, with highs between 60 and 65 across the region. A little cooler if you’re up north.

Clouds will tend to linger overnight. It should not be as chilly, with lows mainly in the 30’s and 40’s.

Clouds should tend to diminish on Tuesday, yielding more sunshine. Temperatures will be seasonable, mainly in the 50’s and 60’s, with perhaps a light sea breeze along the coast. It should be fine if you’re planning on going to the Red Sox home opener.

A warm front will be approaching the region on Wednesday. This will bring increasing clouds and the chance of showers. It will remain on the mild side, but with the lack of sun, it will feel more damp.

A strong cold front will be approaching New England on Thursday into early Friday. This will bring strong southerly winds, and heavy rainfall to parts of the region. Right now, I’m expecting between 1 and 3″ of rain. In addition, strong winds will introduce the risk of some scattered power outages and coastal flooding in vulnerable areas especially along the south coast.

Areas of rain and wind may continue into Friday. As the front crosses the region, expect improving conditions by late in the day. Overall, it still looks like an unsettled day.

Real improvement will arrive in time for this weekend. Expect brisk conditions, and cooler temperatures. I’m not expecting cold temperatures, just cooler. This means temperatures mainly in the 50’s during the day, and 30’s at night. With the wind, it may feel cooler than that. However, the strong April sun may offset that and make it feel warmer. It’s a funny time of year, weather-wise.

Well, that’s about it for now! My next blog is scheduled for April 22nd. However, time constraints and other commitments may delay this. I appreciate everyone’s patience! Believe me, if a severe storm threatens, I will update everyone. I keep a very close eye on storm systems. I have yet to see a severe storm to threaten us here in Boston this winter and early spring. The one last week in early April was oh so close! When I write my next post, I will update everyone on the spring timetable, take a peak into May, and possibly an early look at our upcoming summer patterns. In the meantime, if you enjoy celestial events, today is your day! Enjoy!

Thanks for reading!



Early Spring…Or False Spring?? 2/26/24

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Overall, it was a pleasant weekend region wide for any outdoor winter activities. Saturday was cold, but only seasonably so. After a cold start, Sunday featured less wind with temperatures a good 10 degrees milder during the afternoon. Whether you hit the slopes, took a drive along the countryside or just a walk in the park, it was a nice weekend to enjoy the outdoors!

As we count down the days to the end of meteorological winter, we are faced with the reality of yet another dud winter. The long anticipated pattern change to winter never materialized. This is the second such winter in a row, and 6 out of the last 9 with below average snowfall. Whether it’s climate change or low snow cycle, it’s been a very disappointing stretch for winter enthusiasts and for those who depend on snow for business.

Now that winter is almost over, we can see what happened. The problem is, back in November when making the winter forecast, the analogs and teleconnections were stronger, showing a change to wintry pattern beginning after the new year. As time moved along, these signals faded, leaving many wondering what happened. In the end, it didn’t matter whether it was La Nina or El Nino, the results were the same.

At this point, I don’t think it really matters. I have seen snowy winters with El Nino’s and La Nina’s. One warning signal for this winter was the strength of the El Nino. Boston has never had above normal snowfall during a strong El Nino. This El Nino was one of the strongest on record. Just as a reminder, my winter forecast did not call for above average snow. I did mention the possibility that if the El Nino weakened quickly enough, there was a chance snowfall could spike to above average. For the most part, I kept it consistent calling for near average snowfall in Boston this winter, which is generally between 40 and 50″. I also kept the door open that if certain parameters did not come together, we could be looking at a lackluster winter.

But the final call was the final call. I projected for between 40 and 50″ of snow, and it was way off. So much so that this could go down as the third least snowiest winter in Boston. Believe it or not, we’re running behind last years measly total of 12.1″. So far, Boston has only received a total of 9.7″ of snow! The least snowiest winter on record was way back in 1936-37 when only 9″ fell, which was followed by the blow torch winter of 2011-12 when the city only measured 9.3″. There are other low snowfall records either falling or about to fall. Boston has not received a snowfall greater than 4″ in close to 730 days running. Boston has also never gone in recorded history back to back years with less than 20″ seasonal snowfall. Something to place in the back of your mind moving forward.

For what it’s worth, I do not blame this on climate change. I believe we go through periodic cycles of boom years and bust years. This also does not mean I do not believe in climate change. The climate is most definitely changing. The climate is warmer now in New England than it was 50 years ago. However, that doesn’t mean it still can’t snow. I was chatting with my sister Pam the other night and mentioned to her how people have short memories when it comes to weather.

Back in the 1980’s Boston went through a terrible low snow cycle. From the years 1978-79 winter through 1991-92 winter, I believe that’s 14 years, Boston observed only two above average seasons, two close to average, and ten below to well below average season snowfall. That’s a snow drought! It all ended in the 1992-93 winter, when a string of severe winters hit with three out of four featuring well above average snowfall. It’s been on and off since then, leading up to the historic 2014-15 winter, when Boston received the most snowfall in recorded history in a little over a months time. If we are in a similar cycle of the 80’s, we would have approximately 5 more years to go with generally below average snow seasons. However this is speculation. Such cycles can begin and end without much warning.

With the low snow seasons, temperatures have been surging. A big difference from the 1980’s snow drought to today’s is that it was colder back then. So when it wasn’t snowing, it still was wintry cold. People could still enjoy pond hockey or makeshift backyard ice skating rinks as it was cold enough to sustain the ice. Over the past 10 or 15 years, especially the past 5, temperatures have been breaking records each consecutive year. There has been a lot of moisture past couple winters, it’s just that it’s been so warm, especially within 30 miles of the coast a lot of these storms fall as rain. Whether this is climate change induced by human industrialization or natural cycles is yet to be determined in my opinion. Whichever it is, it’s happening, and happening at an alarming rate. Some say it’s the ever increasing ocean temperatures. Judging by the amount of rainstorms compared to snowstorms in Boston over the past few winters, I would tend to agree with this theory.

Ocean temperatures may be at an all time high this upcoming summer. That in combined with a incoming La Nina may set the stage for what experts are calling a hurricane season from hell this summer and fall. Until the ocean temperatures cool off, we will continue seeing shorter, milder winters with more rain. When and if this ever happens is the big question. Experts have theories, but nobody has any solid answers. One thing experts have been able to show, is that ocean temperatures do evolve in 30 to 40 year cycles. You would think it takes years for ocean temperatures to change. However, as I mentioned to my sister, it can happen within one year! It is interesting to note ocean temperatures changed to warm back in 1990, just when temperatures began to rise globally. We are currently 34 years into the warm cycle. It will be interesting to see if oceans dramatically cool over the next several years, and what ramifications that would have on our sensible climate.

On another note, it’s not like it hasn’t been snowing anywhere this winter! Yes, overall it’s a low snow year across the United States. Many cities including Boston are running well below average seasonal snowfall. However, the western third of the nation has seen colder temperatures this winter along with plenty of snowfall. Not record amounts like last year, but good snows nonetheless. California, which had a very slow start to the season. has made up snowfall and precipitation deficits in a big way since the new year. In fact, more cold storms are lined up ready to barrel into the west coast and Rocky Mountain region with significant late season snows. Another region that has seen near record snowfall this winter is coastal Alaska and the city of Anchorage. With two months left to the snow season, I wouldn’t be surprised if they surpass their all time snow record of 134″. I believe they already have close to 120″ for the season. This was a big surprise in the weather community, as strong El Nino’s typically bring warm and wet winters to coastal Alaska.

In contrast, while a huge trough of low pressure sets up out west (cold & stormy) a huge ridge of high pressure (warm & dry) will be building across the east, including here in New England. The first 1o days of March look to be unseasonably warm around here, with high temperatures surging into the 50’s and 60’s. This undoubtedly will set off a case of spring fever across the region. Already, local meteorologists and even some snow enthusiasts have canceled winter and we’re fully onto “spring mode.” Some even mentioned we’re done with snow back on February 22nd!

Now, could this all happen? It’s entirely possible that this is may be one of those years when we don’t have a winter and we slide right into an early spring and it stays. I remember this happened back in 2012. Winter 2011-12 was similar to this winter. Very little snow,  2nd least on record in fact, and warm temperatures. In fact, when March arrived the weather patterns turned excessively warm. Does anybody remember going to the beach on St. Patrick’s Day that year? Yes, we had a whole week with temperatures in the mid 80’s during the middle of March! Whatever winter we had transitioned right to summer! I’m not forecasting this to happen, but I would say anything and everything is currently on the table.

For me, I’m very skeptical. I have lived in New England my entire life and have seen strange things happen as we approach spring. We’re still early in the season. I’m not saying the winter forecast is still attainable. I believe that ship has sailed for another day. However, computer models are still indicating one more stratospheric warming event to take place around mid March. This would mean Greenland blocking may develop and send colder temperatures back into the eastern third of the United States including us here in New England. Could this be the one that does us in? We have waited all winter for this pattern to arrive, it wouldn’t shock me if we revert back to a wintry type of pattern the second half of March into the start of April. This type of pattern would fall in line with a weakening El Nino.

Whatever forces that were holding the winter pattern back during winter, finally weaken. This allows the trough of low pressure and colder air to finally arrive along the east coast. If this does indeed occur, this would set up a false spring alert here in New England for the first 10 days of March. Nothing is guaranteed, but I believe there still is a chance of a late season snowstorm, especially for us here in New England including Boston. I have mentioned this before, it’s pay me now or pay me later. Eventually, winter will want to get one shot in before it leaves for another year. We would want this to come sometime in March or early April, rather in May or June. Sometimes, like last year, the winter pattern arrives in May or June, and can persist and really foul up the summer patterns. For fans of summer weather, you do not want that scenario to happen!

Now for your weekly ski and snowboard report. It’s early yet. There can be plenty left to the ski season in New England. After the Christmas meltdown, conditions have been fairly stable across ski country this year. We haven’t had as much natural snow as we would like, but temperatures have been cold enough for the snow guns to operate to make artificial snow. I am concerned for the first 10 days of March. Some resorts may take a big hit with melting snow and some rain. However, this time of the year, the warm weather is typically overly predicted by the models. There most always is a sneaky back door cold front to keep things in check up north. Yes, there will be melting and warm air, but the hope is it’s not continuous for days on end. After March 10th, I believe the pattern will break down for more wintry conditions heading into April. No major storms this week. However, there may be a burst of snow in the mountains Wednesday night as a strong cold front moves through. Thereafter, expect very cold conditions on Thursday, then a moderation trend as we head into this upcoming weekend. I will give this week a 7 out of 10 for conditions up north.

Time for your weekly outdoor winter activity forecast. I will give this week an 8 out of 10. Expect mainly sunny skies and indeed a touch of spring this afternoon! Temperatures are in the mid to upper 50’s across the area. It should be a great evening for a walk in the neighborhood or local park.

Expect mild conditions to continue with fair skies overnight. Lows should drop into the 20’s and 30’s across the area. Warmest along the coast and urban areas, coldest inland rural areas.

A mild southerly flow on Tuesday will bring cloudiness but generally dry weather. Temperatures should remain mainly in the 50’s. However, if we happen to break out into any sunshine, temperatures could warm up into the 60’s.

As strong storm and associated clod front will be approaching New England beginning Tuesday night. Winds will increase along with the chance of some showers. I’m not expecting any washout, but there could be some passing showers if your out and about. Temperatures will be mild, with lows mainly in the 40’s.

As the storm tracks to our west, this will place New England on the warm sector of the storm. Expect stormy conditions Wednesday with strong south to southeasterly winds. Most winds will be between 30 and 40 mph, however there could be some gusts up to between 50 and 60 mph, especially along the coast line and higher terrain locations. In addition, there will be some periods of rain passing through from time to time. However, the main focus with this storm will be the strong winds associated with the cold front as it barrels through New England.

Wednesday night will see a continuation of the stormy weather. In fact, it could become a bit stormier as the cold front approaches and passes through the region. Expect strong winds of between 40 and 60 mph across the region. A squall like line of rain will be crossing New England during the overnight. As the front passes through, winds will abruptly shift to westerly. This will usher in much colder temperatures and perhaps change the rain to a period of snow. There may be enough moisture left so higher terrain locations of the Berkshires and Worcester County could see one to two inches of snow with some slippery travel. Elsewhere, the dry air will simply sweep in too quickly for any accumulations. There may be a crusty coating on cars when you wake up to go to work on Thursday around the Boston area, especially west of I95.

Watch for a sunny but windy day for the last day of meteorological winter on Thursday. Despite the sunshine, temperatures will be hard pressed to get out of the 30’s. The wind will make it feel colder! Expect clear and cold weather Thursday night, though winds will subside.

Look for moderating temperatures for the first day of meteorological spring! With lighter winds and temperatures warming to the mid 40’s, it will feel much more comfortable outdoors.

As of this moment, the weekend is looking a bit iffy at this point. Some computer models are trying to bring a weak coastal storm up the coast to dampen our weekend weather. This would be all rain, as it will be much too warm to support any snow. However, there are other computer models keeping us mainly dry. If I would to make a call from now, I would lean mostly dry. However, I would check local forecasts later in the week in case you have any outdoor plans. Regardless, it does not look like anything serious, and temperatures look to remain on the mild side, mainly in the lower to mid 50’s.

Thereafter, I am expecting mild to warm temperatures to continue much of the first 10 days of March. Along with the warm temperatures, there could be some inclement weather at times. There is talk of gardening beginning across the area with the expected warm weather. It’s way way too early to begin any plantings. It’s still officially winter after all, and cold weather and most likely snow will return sometime before spring. Last year we had suburban frost well into May. If you feel the need to begin garden clean up, by all means move forward. Spring officially be here in a few weeks.

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post is scheduled for Monday March 11th, unless severe weather or major storm threatens. Vice versa if no severe weather threatens and my time is limited, it may have to wait until the following week. Regardless, whatever is happening with the weather, you can bet I’m keeping a close eye on it! In my next post, I will be discussing whether the relapse to winter is going to happen, or spring is here to stay! I will also have a recap of February and preview what March typically offers us. In the meantime, if we’re not going to have anymore winter…I say bring on spring!!

Thanks for reading!


Happy Birthday to my niece Nicole!!! (Feb 22nd)

Uncertainty Lies Ahead…2/5/24

Hello! Happy February! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! After 11 straight cloudy days, the sun made a glorious appearance on Saturday, and continued into Sunday! With the ever so slight increase in sun angle, it actually felt quite pleasant outdoors yesterday, with high temperatures around 40 degrees. Overall, it was a wonderful weekend to enjoy outdoor winter activities. Unfortunately, there is little to no snow cover down here in southern New England to enjoy. However, it’s a different story up north, especially the ski resorts. Many places received some natural snow last week, and along with the colder temperatures, they have been able to make tons of snow! I will have more details in my ski report and forecast shortly.

So I saw Punxsutawney Phil did not see his shadow a few days ago on Groundhog Day. I guess that means an early spring…correct? Well, not so fast! Last year the critter claimed 6 more weeks of winter. As we all know, winter was over before it started last year! Too bad Phil’s accuracy only stands at 30%! Yikes! You have a better chance at being correct throwing darts blindfolded! It’s all in good fun! I would love to head down to Pennsylvania one day to attend the festivities! Who knows…maybe Phil is on to something this year?

In many ways, I don’t blame Phil calling for an early spring. For sure, he’s on the right path. Contrary to what my winter forecast called for, this has been one of the most benign, uneventful, boring winters I can ever recall. Even last winter featured more storms and activity than this year. Yes, I realize we’ve had many storms this winter. However, most of them have been warm rainstorms, with sloppy mixes to start or finish. So far, Logan Airport has only received a little over 9″ of snow to show for it. This is less than last year at this point and some 2 ft below where we should be at this time of the year. I called for a slow start to winter, but this is getting ridiculous!

It’s not just Boston. The entire nation as a whole is seeing less wintry events this year. It started off very slow and that theme has continued. This is not to say there hasn’t been pockets of good snowfall. Some areas in upstate New York received large amounts of lake effect snows in December and January…but that’s expected. Just this past weekend and happening right now the Sierra Mountain range in California is getting crushed by a El Nino fueled storm, with many mountain tops receiving 5 to 8 ft of snow, along with winds gusting up to 160 mph! While this is an intense storm, Sierra’s are running below normal for snowfall this winter. This is not a big surprise, as last winter some locations received close to 800″ of snow! That was a historic record winter for them. It can’t be a boon season every year! With the strong El Nino this year, I’m surprised it took this long for a strong storm to hit California.

Of course the other part of the storm is the flooding rains occurring. A fire hose of torrential rains pointed towards southern California today is soaking coastal regions with up to 10″ of rain, and in some cases much more than that in the hilly terrain! This is leading to mudslides, creeks and rivers flooding and life threatening situations in that region. This storm is expected to continue in some capacity through Wednesday.

Shifting locations, a massive winter storm / blizzard absolutely crushed the eastern half of Nova Scotia this past weekend, specifically Cape Breton Island and Sydney locations. This storm, which began on Friday, actually stalled and intensified just south of this region, pinwheeling intense bands of snow off of the Atlantic Ocean back towards the coast. This brought several days of heavy snowfall and blizzard conditions to these locations, essentially burying them with up to 5 ft of snow and drifts nearly double that! It was still snowing last time I checked and may continue to do so into tomorrow!

This storm is so massive, the outer edge of the cloud shield and even possible snow showers is projected to retrograde and pivot in off of the Atlantic Ocean and effect some South Shore communities and Cape Cod later tonight and into the day tomorrow. This will not be a big storm by any stretch, however some communities may pick up a coating to an inch of snow with maybe some slippery roads developing during the overnight hours. Boston may also see some flurries from time to time.

I had a good chat with a Twitter weather friend Scott Dunlop last evening on whether New England could ever experience such a storm? The short answer to the question is, yes! In fact, we have seen similar storms in the past. Perhaps not to the degree Nova Scotia experienced, but similar nonetheless. The two storms I recalled was the Blizzard of ’78 and the 100 hour storm of late February 1969. These two storms buried eastern New England with between 2 and 4 ft of snow. In the 1969, storm the White Mountains of New Hampshire received a whopping 96″ of snow! Records are made to be broken. Some day, a massive nor’easter is going to stall somewhere off the New England coast and bring a record breaking snowfall to the region!

With all this being said, what I am I expecting for the rest of our winter? Remember my winter title? “Winter 2023-24…Slow Start;Strong Finish!” After a tranquil start to February, there remains many uncertainties in our weather patterns as we head towards March and beyond. In my opinion, the worst of winter still lies ahead of us. My winter forecast called for between 40 and 50″ of snow in Boston this winter. As I mentioned above we only have received approximately 9″ so far this season. Indeed, it would need to be a frantic finish to end up with this amount of snow I’m predicting in Boston.

How do we arrive there? Beginning next week, the winter pattern is going to shift. A Greenland block is going to develop. In fact, high pressure is going to build across much of Canada and Alaska. When this occurs, the jet stream buckles and is forced south into the mid latitudes. This allows colder air from Canada to settle down into New England and mid Atlantic region. While this is happening, an active sub tropical jet stream will continue streaming moisture across the southern regions of the U.S. Some of these storms may slip south of New England and head out to sea. However, there are some indications the northern jet stream may phase with the southern jet stream and develop a storm along the eastern seaboard. If this occurs, I’m expecting the possibility of a blockbuster blizzard to develop and sock the I95 corridor from D.C. to Boston. If this were to come to fruition, watch the time frame between February 20th to March 15th. It’s complicated, and many parameters need to fall into place. However, if you do the research, and study past El Nino seasons such as this one, many had at least one blockbuster storm in February or early March.

In addition, atmospheric scientist Dr Judah Cohen is monitoring the possibility of a polar vortex disruption or maybe even a collapse to the vortex. This has a lot to do with high pressure building across the pole region, which can disrupt and or even split the vortex. When this happens, it can result in a 4 to 6 week period of severe winter weather conditions. If it’s just a disruption, the vortex can stretch and elongate, resulting in the possibility of wintry conditions for a shorter period of time. Eventually, the vortex recovers with a rebound to milder temperatures. This is a big wildcard moving forward. If there is a major disruption or a split around the middle of February, there still could be a period of severe winter weather conditions from February 20th through March 15th. If it does not happen, we still may see a turn to colder and snowier weather, just nothing too severe. At the very least, it looks like we will be going into a much colder weather pattern from mid February onward. Whether the snow comes or not is still subject to interpretation. I believe it will. If it doesn’t, pond hockey and back yard ice skating rinks will be in high demand!

What I’m concerned about is if nothing happens, and we only experience weather similar to what we have been seeing so far this winter. Eventually the rubber band is going to snap. For those who enjoy spring and summer weather, it’s better for this pattern to snap now, and get the storminess out of the way. If it happens sometimes in March, it could essentially ruin spring and early summer. Believe me, it happened last year at the start of June, and we all know how last summer worked out!

Before I get to the forecast, I did want to briefly talk about weather history. The period of February 4th to the 14th is known as prime time here in Boston. This is when the climate is most conducive to produce a major snowstorm here in Boston. This is when the ocean temperatures cool off enough, and cold is at its strongest. Back on this date 46 years ago, Boston was preparing for one of its worst blizzards in history. The Blizzard of ’78 hit on February 6th and continued unabated through the 7th bringing snowfall rates of 2 to 4″ per hour, hurricane force wind gusts, and devastating coastal flooding. When the storm finally diminished, the Boston area was buried with between 2 and 4 ft of snow, many communities received were between 3 and 4 ft with drifts up to 12 ft high! There have been many storms since the blizzard. Some have come close, but to this date none have been able to match the fury of the Great Blizzard of ’78! Possibly a once in a lifetime storm!

After rough December, Ski and snow mobile conditions have settled down up north. They’re still having issues in parts of New Hampshire with lakes not freezing enough. Further north into Maine things are better in that regard. Ski resorts have received some natural snow in the past couple weeks. Temperatures have been colder, and we avoided the major thaw in most cases, so resorts have been able to make plenty of snow. Overall, it’s been a variable ski season. November started out strong, big meltdown in December, stabilized in January with decent snow. After a brief weekend thaw, temperatures look to turn colder than normal beginning next week and possibly remain cold for the remainder of February. I’m sure there’s going to be some natural snow. How much is still a question mark. It doesn’t look like much for this week, or next week for that matter. It may be the cold is so strong it suppresses the moisture to your south. It’s possible your best snows arrive in March this year. Spring skiing??

Now for your weekly outdoor winter activity forecast. I would rate this week a 8 out of 10. Not bad for mid winter! More good news! For those who enjoy more daylight and look towards spring, we have arrived at the first passage today. Today marks the end of solar winter and the beginning of solar spring. This means we have left the darkest period of the year and have entered the period when we gain the most daylight. In addition, we will be turning the clocks ahead on March 10th, making the days even longer.

Expect increasing clouds this evening. As winds freshen from the northeast, there may be some snow showers and flurries coming in form off of the ocean late tonight across South Shore communities and Cape Cod. Some locations may receive a dusting of snow. It will be cold with lows mainly in the 20’s.

Expect northeast winds and mostly cloudy skies across eastern Massachusetts tomorrow. Once again, there may be some snow showers around, mainly across southeastern Mass. There could even be a few spot flurries around Boston tomorrow. It will be chilly with highs mainly in the mid 30’s. The weather will be markedly different west of I95, with bright sunshine and chilly temperatures.

Clouds may linger into tomorrow night along coastal sections, with clear skies inland. Lows will be in the 20’s and 30’s, warmest along the coast.

As the storm loosens its grip, winds will relax along the coast and skies will partially clear on Wednesday. Temperatures should respond and warm up into the 40’s and lower 50’s.

For the period of Thursday through Sunday, expect warmer temperatures and generally dry conditions for Thursday and Friday. Weak disturbances may swing through over the weekend which may produce a chance of light rain showers. If we see any sustained sunshine, temperatures could make a run at 60! Otherwise look for widespread temperatures in the 50’s. You could call this a false spring alert! Don’t be fooled! Colder weather will begin moving back into New England next week and beyond!

Well, that’s about it for now! My next blog is dependent on time. If time allows, I will write my next post on February 19th. Regardless, if wintry weather or any severe weather threatens, I will be sure to update everyone. In my next post, I will be discussing where we stand in the evolution of this wintry pattern. I’ll also discuss the prospects of any major storms we should be aware of. I will also have a new ski and snow mobile forecast. In the meantime, the only certain thing about the future is it’s uncertainty!

~Thanks for reading!~




Snowy Mix…Then Colder! 1/15/24

Hello! Happy Martin Luther King Jr. Day! I hope everyone enjoyed their holiday season! Hard to believe it’s the middle of January, already! The last time we spoke was the week before Christmas during that violent windstorm. Thereafter, the weather turned benign for the remainder of the year. The new year began with similar weather to the old year, warm & wet! This past weekend featured an intense storm tracking west of New England. This brought a period of torrential downpours Friday night and into Saturday morning. The remainder of Saturday saw a mix of sun and clouds as we broke into the warm sector of the storm. Temperatures spiked to 60 degrees making it feel more like April than January! Another line of showers moved through the region later in the day which yielded a rare January double rainbow arched across the entire city of Boston!

Astronomical high tides and a new moon brought major coastal flooding to many coastal communities, especially the Boston area points north. The seacoast region of New Hampshire and the coastline of Maine were especially hard hit. Southeast winds from the storm only exasperated the situation. Just two days before, coastal communities were hit with more coastal flooding. Some may say it’s rising sea levels. This may be partly true. However, I have a different take on it. I believe this was a highly anomalous weather pattern across New England which led to the back to back coastal flooding events. Like in 1978, it was almost the perfect weather scenario. Normally, we think of strong nor’easters leading to coastal flooding events. However, in this case, they were strong southeasters! Strong blocking high pressure to our northeast, blocked the storm from tracking west to east. Instead, the storms developed to our south, and tracked north, northwest. This led to a strong warm front across New England. The pressure gradient between the storm to our west, and high pressure to our east, not only brought strong southeasterly winds, but also a surge of ocean towards our coastlines. Areas that were most vulnerable were the New Hampshire seacoast and much of Maine. This also brought tropical downpours and unseasonably warm temperatures to New England! This weather pattern has been persistent, bringing us a very unusually mild and nearly snow less first half of winter!

Otherwise, there has been only one winter event in Boston since the new year, and  since the start of December for that matter. It happened last weekend on the 7th, when a storm system tracked up the coast, and decided to stay offshore, rather than turning inland. This brought significant snow to many folks who live outside of Rt 128 points north and west. Inside 128, especially Boston towards the south shore, the first half of the storm was rain, which then changed to wet snow. This kept accumulations down below 4″ in these locations. My winter forecast called for a slow start, but strong finish. I had no idea the winter was going to get off to such a miserable start for snow lovers. True, I was expecting mid January to be the “starting point” for winter. Right on cue, we do have two winter events to track this week, along with colder temperatures. We also still have all of February and at least half of March to get through. It’s still early. Think of today being July 15th in the summer. We wouldn’t think summer is almost over at July 15th? We could say it’s the middle of winter.

One other weather event I wanted to mention occurred on Christmas night, when a thick pea soup fog enveloped southern New England, making for dangerous travel conditions for people returning home from Christmas celebrations. Hard to believe after Christmas Day featured sunny skies and temperatures warming to the low 50’s across the area. There was a moist air mass in place. Don’t forget, there was a heavy mist and even light rain falling on Christmas Eve. Christmas Day dawned with low clouds but the sun surprisingly burned it off leading to mostly sunny skies. As the sun set, the air temperature fell to the dew point temperature, making the air 100% saturated. Thick fog developed, and I mean thick! Many folks commented it was the thickest fog they have ever seen! Visibility was near zero!  This caught many forecasters off guard, including myself!

As mentioned earlier, we’re at the mid point of winter. Sadly, it hasn’t been much of a winter this year, especially here in Boston. Interior locations did receive a good snow back on January 7th. However, that was completely washed away by torrential rains and tropical like temperatures two days later. What’s in store for winter part II? My initial forecast called for between 40 and 50″ of snow in Boston this year. For what it’s worth, I still believe we are going to end up in this range. At this moment, I do not believe we are going to exceed this prediction on the higher range I also gave. It’s just too warm, and many storms are mixing with and changing to rain along the coast. I still believe we have a chance at one blockbuster storm this winter from DC to Boston sometime in February.

For this to happen, a bitterly cold air mass will need to anchor north of New England while a moisture laden storm tracks up the coast passing east of New England. If we do not receive this storm, our seasonal total is going to be well below what I initially anticipated. Even for tomorrow’s event, we had a perfect set up for a good 3 to 6″ event in the city. However, latest indications show the storm tracking much closer to the coast. Much like the last storm, this is going to introduce a warm tongue of air into the coastal plain from Boston points south, changing the snow to rain. Once again, this will reduce the amount of snow the city is going to receive tomorrow. It’s like a broken record, every storm wants becomes a little too warm along the coast to support an all snow event. Maybe in February, when the ocean cools off to their lowest temperature of the year, it may support a real snowstorm.

Computer models will always show patterns that are purely projections. In most cases, these patterns change and the weather does what the weather wants to do. Regardless of the projections for stormy and cold patterns. Computer models have been “projecting” cold and stormy weather in the east since mid November. As the time frame approaches, the patterns vanish, only to show up again a month in the future. Weather enthusiasts and snow lovers call this “pushing the goal posts back” or “kicking the can down the street”waiting for the snowy pattern to arrive.

Whether the pattern arrives or not is subject to interpretation. In the end, it’s entirely up to Mother Nature whether we receive decent snow this winter or not. At the minimum, I do see a fairly active February, which may include several wintry weather events. As we get closer to February, I will examine the pattern more closely and let you know whether I believe this is going to materialize or not.

Here’s your latest ski and snow board forecast. I will rate this week a 7 out of 10. So far, this has been a variable mixed season for skiers. Ill timed massive rainstorms, flooding and lack of snow has created icy conditions with little to no sustainable snow. Yes, last weekend delivered a great snowstorm to many resorts, even close to Boston, picking up between 12 and 18″ of snow. However, two days later the snow was wiped out with warm winds and tropical downpours. Northern resorts lucked out the past two storms, holding on to just enough cold air for dear life to produce a net gain of snow. Some of this snow turned wet, but groomers can stabilize this, bringing decent ski conditions to these locations. Bottom line, if you want decent ski conditions, you have to travel to the deep interior northern resorts. If you were lucky enough to be there after a fresh snowfall, it can be fabulous! Colder air this week will allow resorts to make snow. In addition, many ski resorts will receive between 5 and 7″ of snow tomorrow, with possibly more powder this Friday right before the weekend. This weekend could be the best weekend of the year for overall regional skiing and winter outdoor activities. Just bundle up & Enjoy!

Now time for your weekly winter outdoor activity forecast. I will rate this week a 5 out of 10.

Expect sunny and dry weather for the rest of your Monday. It will be seasonably cold, with highs hovering close to 32 degrees. You will notice some feathery cirrus clouds increasing towards sunset.

Look for dry weather for any outdoor plans this evening. However, clouds will be on the increase and begin to lower and thicken. According to latest information, snow will begin to develop across the region spreading in from southwest to northeast. Snow will begin falling in Boston sometime after 3:00 am. Snow should continue to steadily fall so everything should be coated in white by the time everyone wakes up tomorrow morning. I’m projecting between 1 and 2″ of snow to already have fallen by 8:00 am.

Precipitation should continue to fall throughout most of your Tuesday. After about 2″of  snow in Boston, the snow will transition to light sleet and freezing rain. Eventually, this will change to plain rain in Boston points south and southeast. South shore communities could see about 1″ of snow before it changes to rain. I’m not expecting much if any snow on the Cape with this storm. As the storm tracks east of our longitude, there’s a slight chance the rain may change back to some sort of frozen precipitation in Boston before it ends Tuesday evening. This could be light sleet or snizzle (mix of light snow and freezing drizzle). I’m not expecting any serious flash freeze, but there may be icy spots for the evening commute. One wildcard, if the warm air happens to not make it into Boston, snow and light sleet may persist throughout the day, leading to accumulations close to 3″ or 4”. I’m not calling for that at this time. Past storms have showed warm air having no problem penetrating into the city changing frozen precipitation to plain rain. I’m going with this scenario.

For locations north and west of Rt 128 away from the ocean, expect a moderate snowfall tomorrow, with light to moderate snow falling much of the day. By the time it winds down tomorrow evening, you can expect between 3 and 6″ of snowfall. Folks in the seacoast region of New Hampshire including Portsmouth and along the immediate coast of southern Maine can expect 3 to 6″ of wet snow tomorrow. There will be a jackpot zone further north into interior New Hampshire and Maine where 5 to 7″ of snow is likely to fall tomorrow. There is no chance of any mixing in this region.

By the way, it appears as if cities across the mid Atlantic region will finally be breaking their snow drought. After 700 days of not receiving an inch of now, cities such as Baltimore, Washington D.C. and New York look to finally break this streak. These cities should receive between 1 and 3″ of snow. Some already have received the snow!

Expect the storm to pull away from the region Tuesday night. Any slush or puddles from melting snow could re-freeze as temperatures drop into the teens and 20’s across the region.

Wednesday and Thursday will feature dry and cold weather. For a change, the snow will stick around for a few days this week! High temperatures will struggle to make it out of the 20’s across the interior and lower 30’s along the coast.

Another storm system will be approaching the region Thursday night into Friday. At this time, it’s looking to be disorganized and strung out. What this means is a weak storm, with limited moisture and no high winds. At one point, computer models were showing quite a storm with this system, maybe even reaching blizzard qualifications for coastal locations. However, latest computer model information shows the storm tracking south of New England, and not intensifying until it’s too late far out at sea. Therefore, it’s looking like mainly a light to perhaps moderate snowfall across the region. This would mean accumulations of 1 to 3″ or 2 to 4″ to possibly as much as 3 to 6″on the high end. However, looking at latest information, I would lean on the lower end of this scale. There’s even the chance the storm slips to our south and the northern edge of the precipitation never makes it up into southern New England, or dries up before it does so. Of course, I will be monitoring this storm closely this week, and will be sure to update everyone if I see any sudden changes.

Thereafter, expect this storm to yank down some real arctic air this weekend into New England, especially on Saturday, when air temperatures may struggle to reach 20 degrees across the region. Sunday may moderate somewhat back up to near 30 degrees. The weather patterns may change once again next week, leading to another mild period, before more cold air arrives to start February.

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post is scheduled for Monday, January 29th. However, my schedule may not permit me to post, and it may be delayed until the following week. If storms or severe weather threatens, I will be sure to make time in my schedule to update everyone! In the meantime, enjoy the winter weather while we have it, the days are beginning to lengthen and spring will be knocking on the door before we know it!

~Be safe & take care!~

Thanks for reading!



No Storms Through Christmas…12/18/23

Hello! It’s been a while! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Saturday was the brighter of the two weekend days, also seasonable. Sunday turned cloudy, but also warmer! Temperatures soared up into the 50’s ahead of the approaching storm. As we already know, Sunday night and Monday turned stormy, with torrential rainfall and in some cases, near hurricane force wind gusts along the coast. There were many reports of power outages and tree limbs down across the region.

It seems as if eastern Massachusetts and much of the state of Maine were hit particularly hard from the storm. Flash flooding was a major problem across northern New England where a snow pack had built up in the mountains. Unseasonably warm air combined with 3 to 6″ inches of torrential rain resulted in rapid snow melt and flash flooding, washing out roads in many locations up north. In the Boston area, winds gusted to between 50 and 70 MPH, bringing tree limbs and power lines down. Weather observer Matthew Douglas reported a peak wind gust of 90 MPH at the summit of the Blue Hill Observatory in Milton! This was the strongest recorded wind speed recorded so far since the turn of the century.

Overall, this storm was well forecasted by local and national meteorologists. It originated in the Gulf of Mexico, crossed Florida, then charged up the east coast. Some asked me if this was a nor’easter. No, this storm was not a nor’easter. Many times storms originating in the Gulf of Mexico due turn into nor’easters this time of year as they track up the coast. To be quite honest, this storm was unusual. In my opinion, this was a hybrid type of storm, containing tropical and late autumn characteristics. I believe it had tropical characteristics when it was developing in the Gulf of Mexico, crossing Florida with thunderstorms and torrential rains.

There was no cold air to found with this storm. As the storm tracked north, it merged with a piece of energy in the northern jet stream. As these two systems phased, it rapidly intensified like a winter storm would. However, the lack of a contrast of cold air and warm air, prevented the storm from turning into a Super storm Sandy of 2012 in my opinion. As the storm tracked west of Boston, it flooded the coastal plain first, then the rest of New England with record warm temperatures.

As it intensified, a tropical like warm front pushed in from the southeast and east, eventually flooding most of New England with record warm temperatures. Boston reached a record temperature of 62 degrees today. Warm temperatures and flooding rain encompassed nearly all of New England into adjacent southern Canada.  All ski resorts in New England took a devastating blow today, many losing a majority of the snow they have been building since November.

One may believe this is indeed global warming! Climate change! However, I would like to point out that these types of storms have occurred in the past. In fact, we had a similar December deluge back in December 2014. Before then, we had another hybrid type of storm back in 1994 which toppled the Boston Christmas tree right before Christmas. There have been many more in the past that can’t all be listed. With all that being said, I do feel disheartened to see such warm temperatures and heavy rains wiping out the winter activities in New England this time of year. While these storms may of happened in the past, the frequency seem to be increasing, and the warm spikes up into the 60’s are happening more often. When I was growing up in the 1970’s, temperatures reaching the 60’s this time of year was unheard of!

It’s now common for 50’s and 60’s to occur several times each winter. In addition, Boston would receive more snow during December in the 60’s and 70’s. I understand December is not Boston’s snowiest month, but the lack of snow in December in recent years is alarming! Blizzards in December are quite rare. However, a light to moderate snowfall was quite common at some point in December. Now, we either have some snow, or no snow. No in between! For instance, if we don’t see any snow this December, this will make the second straight December without any measurable snow, and I believe 3 out of the last 4 without snow. Back in 2020, we did receive a major snowstorm on December 18th, which promptly all melted by Christmas Day.

With the winter solstice approaching on Thursday, it’s time for my final update to my winter forecast, posted on November 20th. El Nino continues to be a major factor in determining the fate of our winter. As I mentioned back in November, there are also several other factors which may influence the eventual outcome. Just as a reminder, I did forecast a slow start to winter, with very little to no snow in December. This is a common theme with El Nino winters, and this December has proven that this was the right call. Looking over the latest computer data, it appears there’s very low chances for snow in the Boston area for the remainder of the year.

Things can change quite quickly this time of the year, so I can’t say this for sure, but this is how it looks at this moment. There may be another storm just after Christmas that we have to keep an eye out for. If a secondary storm can develop quick enough along the coast, it may lock in enough cold air for snow to fall across the interior of the region, especially if it tracks south of New England. There’s even a chance for some frozen precipitation close to the coast. Computer models keep changing the solution each run, so confidence is low at this point.

As mentioned above, El Nino winters are notoriously slow starters. I recall the epic winter of 2014-15 had a similar theme. Cold November followed by a very mild December with no snow. However, once the new year arrived, the pattern suddenly shifted to bitterly cold temperatures. Boston only had about 4″ of total snow through January 23rd that year! Everything changed on the 24th when our first snowstorm hit with 3 to 6″ of wet snow across the city. This was followed up by a massive blizzard on January 26th. Before the city could completely dig out from that storm, a major storm hit on February 2nd. Two more major snowstorms hit on February 9th, then on February 14th and 15th. When the snow finally stopped falling around the spring equinox, Boston had surpassed its all time snow record with 110.6″ of snow falling in just a little over six weeks time.

There are similarities to the patterns this year. However, as I mentioned before, there are more conflicting signals this year, compared to 2014-15. Because of this, I’m much less confident calling for an epic snow blitz this year. A major concern is that the pattern doesn’t flip in time, and we continue to receive rainstorms instead of snowstorms for the entire winter. I don’t think this is going to happen either. Therefore, I will continue with my original thoughts and take the average of the two. It’s the most sensible thing to do at this time. This is still an educated guess at best. There’s just too many factors that go into the equation to make an accurate call. If one thing is off, it could change the entire outcome.

Taking an average of the two extremes seems like an easy way out! However, I can tell you I placed a lot of time and effort into this forecast! It’s a very tough call! I can see how both extremes could verify. After a dismal 2023, I expect several snowstorms to impact the Boston area between January 15th and March 15th. There could be snow before and after, but the bulk of it should fall in that time period. As I mentioned in the last post, the potential for a crippling blizzard is higher than normal this winter, especially in February. This is especially true across the Mid Atlantic region, but could include all major east coast cities from Washington D.C. to Boston. Right now, I’m going with my original forecast for between 40 and 50″ of snow in Boston this winter. The extreme high end case would be for between 60 and 70″. If winter sputters and doesn’t get going, the low end range could drop to between 20 and 30″.

Here’s your ski report for the upcoming week and into Christmas week. As mentioned earlier, a devastating hit to ski areas today. It was a nuclear meltdown right to the Canadian border. Colder temperatures over the next two weeks will allow for ski resorts to stabilize the conditions with overnight snow making. Snow making has gone high tech, with many resorts able to pump out a foot or two of snow overnight in the right conditions! While no substantial natural snow is imminent, I believe many ski resorts will be in great shape heading into the Christmas holiday week. There may even be some snow showers this Saturday and the potential for a moderate sized snowstorm for ski country two days after Christmas! For this week, I would give the conditions a 5 out of 10. This could possibly increase to an 8 out of 10 if the storm hits mid next week. Not too shabby!

Now for your weekly outdoor winter forecast. I will rate this week a 6 out of 10.

Expect clearing skies overnight, with lows falling back into the 30’s.

Watch for a sunny start Tuesday. However, a pocket of cold air aloft will generate afternoon cloudiness, along with a brisk wind at times. Temperatures will be cooler, with highs mainly in the 40’s. Skies will clear and temperatures will fall back to seasonable levels tomorrow night with lows in the teens and 20’s. Perfect snow making temperatures!

Looking over the latest computer data, it looks like a massive area of high pressure is going to take control across much of the eastern part of the country. Therefore, I’m quite confident to forecast mainly fair weather for the period of Wednesday straight on through Christmas Day! Watch for sunny to partly sunny skies during the day and clear skies at night straight on through this period. This is quite unusual for this time of the year. The only changes you may notice is with the temperatures. Friday and Saturday may feel a bit colder with highs mainly in the 30’s. While Christmas Eve and Christmas Day itself will be a touch milder, with highs possibly reaching the lower 40’s. This will be Boston’s 6th straight green Christmas. Historically, it averages out to 1 and 4, but with a warming climate, it seems even less than that these days.

The next chance for a storm looks to arrive on Wednesday, December 27th. At this moment, this too looks to bring mainly rain to Boston. However, it could be cold enough for a wintry mix or snow across the interior. New Year’s Eve looks clear and cold at this time.

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post is tentatively scheduled for January 8th, unless a weather event threatens the region. If I do see a threat, I will update everyone though my social media outlets. In my next post, I will review December, and let you know what January will be like. Sneak preview…it looks like it will be cold!! I will also let you know if I see any changes to the ongoing winter outlook. In the meantime, fair weather this time of year can be a blessing for many! No snow removal for DPW crews, homeowners and businesses alike. This means more time to spend with family and friends!

~Wishing everyone a Happy Holiday Season! Merry Christmas, Happy Hanukkah & Happy New Year to all!~

~Happy winter solstice! December 21st~

Thanks for reading!









Winter 2023-24: Slow Start…Strong Finish! 11/20/23

Hello! Happy Thanksgiving week, to all! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! Overall, it was a classic November-like weekend weather-wise across much of New England. Saturday started off with rain and mild temperatures. As the coastal storm departed, winds shifted in the afternoon, bringing cooler and drier weather into the region. Sunday featured a good amount of sun, but was a good 10 degrees cooler than Saturday. I saw reports of snow showers in the White Mountain region of New Hampshire, but otherwise it was mainly a dry day. While driving home from New Hampshire last evening, I myself ran into some wet snow showers in Burlington/Lexington region of Massachusetts off Rt 128! Today is bright but chilly! Latest temperature in Boston has yet to reach 40 degrees.

At the very least, I want to post the first installment of my winter forecast. With so many conflicting signals, I will have to post a second final update at or around the winter solstice, as I have done in previous years. I will also elaborate more on the the forecast in the time leading up the the second update as more time permits. I have mentioned this in previous posts, but it seems the more we have answers in regards to long range forecasting, the faster Mother Nature changes the questions. Honestly, I have to laugh. There are brilliants minds working on these long range forecast ranging from NOAA, atmospheric scientists, local TV meteorologists, up & coming very knowledgeable amateur meteorologists, Farmers’ Almanac, squirrels, woolly bear caterpillars and more! Yet, the chances of nailing a seasonal forecast is low. At best, it’s still an educated guess!

I have been posting my seasonal forecast for 13 years now, and making one for friends and family a long time before that! I can tell you by personal experience that these forecasts have become more challenging over the years. Perhaps it’s outdated computer models? Climate change? Too many computer models? Even the experts agree these forecasts have become almost impossible to predict. Yet, here we are again, taking our best shot at predicting the future! It’s a lot of work, but I must admit…I love the challenge and the excitement!

Let’s get into the details! As I have mentioned in previous posts, we are solidly in El Nino this winter. What is El Nino? El Nino is a weather phenomenon which occurs every 3 to 5 years in the southern Pacific Ocean off South America. It is the opposite of La Nina, which is colder than normal water off the South American coast. In general terms, El Nino is warmer than normal ocean off the South American coast extending westward into the southern Pacific Ocean. It all has to do with trade winds. When winds are weak, warm water begins to pool across the eastern Pacific Ocean. If trade winds remain weak, the warm water grows, and begins spreading westward across the Pacific Ocean. If El Nino become established, it can alter global weather patterns, but especially across  North America and Canada.

In general, La Nina winters are cold & stormy in the northwestern part of the country, including Alaska, and warm & dry across the southeastern part of the country, sometimes including all the way up to Boston as it did last winter. El Nino is the opposite of La Nina, with warm & dry conditions northwest part of the country, and cold and stormy in the southeast, sometimes inlcuding Boston depending upon a variety of weather factors.

Overall, some of Boston’s biggest winters have occurred during El Nino’s. With that being said, El Nino’s come in various strengths and locations. The strength and location can determine what type of winter Boston is going to experience. There are many other factors which contribute to the patterns for the upcoming winter, but El Nino is the driver of the bus. In general terms, a weaker El Nino, that is centered more towards the middle of the Pacific Ocean means a snowier and colder winter for Boston. When it’s strong (very warm water) east based, with warm water piled up along the South American coast, we typically see mild winters with below, to much below average snow.

For this El Nino, it’s currently a strong El Nino, and recent data shows it has become even a bit stronger. Out of 10 El Nino’s with this strength, 8 have yielded below average snow in Boston. Two were slightly above. Currently, there’s great debate in the weather community about El Nino’s strength and position. Half of the people feel El Nino is weak to at most moderate strength and is migrating towards the central Pacific. While the other half believe it’s very strong and is east based.

After studying ocean temperatures, it does indeed appear the El Nino is migrating towards the central Pacific. However, it also appears its maintaining its strength as it does so. This is leading to a nearly full basin wide type El Nino, with the warmest water centered more towards the middle of the Pacific Ocean.

Yet, I continue to be very skeptical with this years El Nino. The last strong El Nino was back in 2015-16 winter. That turned into a very strong El Nino, and flooded the country with absurdly record warm temperatures for November and December. Do you remember the 70 degree weather New England experienced on Christmas Day 2015??? Many kids were playing outside with short sleeves enjoying the incredibly warm weather! Boston actually made a very respectable comeback that winter, finishing up with 36″ of snow with late season snows!

Aside from the El Nino, there are many conflicting signals that may or may not play a role in our upcoming winter. For this year, ocean temperatures in the Pacific are warmer than normal in areas where they should be cooler. At the same time, there are patchy areas of cold water in areas which make it conducive for east coast cold and snow.

The QBO (Quasi-Biannual Oscillation) is in easterly phase. This is a band of winds that travel high above the equator. These winds oscillate every 14 months from easterly to westerly. Last year they were westerly. This year they are easterly. When the QBO is easterly, research shows we see more high latitude blocking, a weaker polar vortex and stronger penetration of cold air along towards the east coast. In my opinion, this is the biggest wildcard this winter. How this interacts with the strong El Nino could make for a fascinating show.

I focus a lot of attention to November temperature & precipitation patterns to help me determine what kind of winter we might see here in New England, specifically Boston. If you like a lot of snow, here’s some encouraging signs.

First: An abrupt change to below average temperatures right before Halloween. This was coming off the 4th warmest October’s on record. This cooler than average regime has continued into November, and looks to continue through the remainder of the month. A near average freeze at Logan airport on November 12th.

Second: Some snow showing up in New England. We haven’t seen much along the coast, but the interior and mountains have already experienced a few snowfalls, with more coming over the next 10 days. It should be only a matter of time before the snow makes it to the coastal plain.

Third: A storm track that seems to be establishing along the east coast. There haven’t been many storms, but the ones that have occurred, have been more along the coast rather than “inside runners” that track up the St. Lawrence River Valley. These inside runners places southern New England in the warm sector of storms, mainly bringing rain and mild temperatures to our region. I believe last year there were at least a dozen inside runner storms possibly more.

Fourth: Talk of a Super El Nino may be overzealous. So far, this El Nino is not acting like a typical El Nino. Hurricane development has been robust in the Atlantic this past summer, which is contrary to what usually occurs. Precipitation patterns have been drier across much of the country, when it should be wetter. Temperatures have been below average across New England and Mid Atlantic region this November.

However, there are some anti-log snow signals as well. The incredibly wet pattern we experienced over the summer has seemingly vanished here in November. November is the month when winter precipitation values should be increasing not decreasing. So far, November is running well below average precipitation across much of the region. Has the atmosphere rained itself out over the summer? Computer models continue to predict above normal precipitation this winter along the east coast, but they have been wrong before, so we never know for sure until it happens. There are signs that the polar vortex wants to strengthen heading into December. If this happens, it could mean another extended period of warm temperatures for our first month of winter. This does fall in line with a strong El Nino.

Dr. Judah Cohen is an atmospheric scientist who studies the relationship between Siberian snowfall during the month of October, and the following winter along the east coast. His research claims the heavier the snowfall is during October, that it *may* translate into above normal snowfall along the east coast. What were this years results? According to his graph, Siberian snowfall was well below average this October. However, there was a late month surge that went above average heading into November. I’m not sure what this could mean? I do find it fascinating, and have followed his research for many years. There have been more years than not that has shown a correlation. You may ask, what were the numbers like in October 2014? It was a record breaking snowfall that October in Siberia. If you recall, Boston received it’s snowiest winter on record the following winter! Amazing!

Many weather enthusiasts on Twitter (now known as X) continue to post computer projections of weather patterns that could possibly feature severe winter weather conditions in the coming weeks, that simply don’t exist yet. While entertaining, these computer model runs are not reliable. Is it possible, yes, anything is possible. However, in many cases, we need to look at what is climatologically likely for our area. While computer models were projecting a possible blizzard around Thanksgiving time, it’s simply too early for this to happen around here, and may be a once in a hundred year or more event. Of course, computer models adjusted quickly, and the fantasy storm was gone the next run. Same is true for seasonal projections. While the accuracy level may be strong to start, the skill level diminishes the deeper into the season it goes. It’s also important to understand when NOAA issues a warmer than normal winter on the way, they’re taking the average of all three winter months and displaying the mean. This does not take into account a two week period of severe winter weather that sometimes occurs in a warm winter. Overall, it’s how people interpret these forecasts. Nobody wants to be wrong these days. So they smooth it out with probabilities. Even the Old Farmers’ Almanac does it!

So, trying to assemble all of this together, what are my first thoughts for the upcoming 2023-24 winter? In my opinion, there are too many conflicting signals to announce a severe winter is imminent for us here in New England this winter. With that being said, I’m expecting a tougher go of it compared to the last several, especially last year. It’s going to snow more this winter. People may perceive it as a tough winter, when only average amounts fell. Our winters go in cycles, and I still believe we are in a low impact cycle compared to some of the big winters we observed 8 or 9 years ago. We had a similar “dry” cycle back in the 1980’s, when Boston only observed two above normal winters out of 14! Wow!

Despite all of that, I believe there’s enough evidence to make this winter at the very least more exciting. Most computer models are projecting above normal precipitation along the east coast. The problem is, these same computer models are also predicting above normal temperatures for much of New England this winter. In these type of El Nino’s, the Mid Atlantic region typically receives more snow relative to average than locations in New England. Some cities down there have not experienced a winter storm since the January of 2016 blizzard. That year was a very strong El Nino.

In typical El Nino fashion, I believe we’re going to get off to a slow start with very little snow through the end of the year. Looking at the latest trends, it does indeed appear that December will once again feature above normal temperatures this year. Our best chance for any snow in December would be the first week or the very end of the month. I hope we don’t see another “torch-mas” this year! Those are awful! However, given the track record of previous El Nino’s of this magnitude, this indeed could be the case!

One may think another repeat of last years non-winter is on the way. Based on my projections, I don’t believe this will be the case this year. As we enter the new year, changing patterns could set us up for a colder and stormier second half to winter. Anytime after mid January through mid March, I’m expecting a volatile mixture of an active sub tropical jet stream and an energetic polar jet stream to deliver stormy and colder weather patterns to the east coast from the Carolina’s up through southern New England. Where these tow streams phase, will likely see the jackpot for snow this winter. In typical stronger El Ninos, the worst of the snow is normally focused in the Mid Atlantic region…shades of 2009-10? I’m actually more confident of above average snow this year in places like Washington D.C. Philadelphia, New Jersey and perhaps New York City than Boston. Once it starts snowing…we’ll know where the bulls-eye is going to be! Snow breeds snow in big winters. As they say, it snows where it wants to snow!

In an El Nino. the east coast is more susceptible to experience a blizzard. Some of our largest blizzards occurred during El Ninos. I’m fairly confident the Mid Atlantic region is going to see a blockbuster blizzard later this winter. The question remains whether a major storm or two can track close enough to Boston to include us in the heavy snowfall. This is going to be an issue here in Boston. El Nino’s favor a southern storm track, with storms tracking more east northeasterly, rather than north northeast up the coast passing east of New England then tracking into the Canadian Maritimes. For a blizzard to occur in Boston, I would like to see a weaker El Nino than this one. I’m not saying no, but odds father south of Boston rather than north this winter.

Placing all this together, here’s my best estimate for snowfall projections around the region. Boston averages 49″ of snow in an average winter. Starting in Boston I’m estimating between 40 to 50″ of snow this winter, so very close to an average winter is anticipated. Worcester 55 to 65″. Providence, R.I. 30 to 40″. Manchester, N.H. 45 to 55″, Portsmouth N.H. region, 50 to  60″, Portland, Maine 50 to 60″. Cape Cod should see between 20 and 30″. Keep in mind, El Nino favors heaviest snows in coastal regions along and east of the I95 corridor, where La Nina favors west of I95 corridor. Because El Nino favors coastal regions, ski resorts up in northern & western New England may not do as well as last season. If the storms start taking the southern route, northern New England may be on the outside looking in. This is not set in stone, I will explain some of the wildcards in my next segment.

What could go wrong? Plenty! This is why I will update this forecast around the winter solstice in case anything changes. Some wildcards to consider. If the El Nino continues to strengthen and remains robust and more east based, a milder and less snowy solution will verify. This is true, especially if the polar vortex remains strong and we get no high latitude blocking. If this happens, we can all deduct between 20 to 30″ of snow of the current projections. This would make for a rather bland, mild winter.

Conversely, if the El Nino does indeed migrate becoming more central based in the Pacific, and does not not strengthen further, I believe we will reach the projected numbers. However, if the polar vortex weakens this winter, and we have high latitude blocking with a strong sub-tropical jet stream undercutting across the country then up the east coast, well then, mid January through mid March could put on quite a show. If the QBO kicks in, and promotes high latitude blocking, someone along the east coast is going to get a crippling blizzard or two. If this happens, we can all add 20 to 30″ to the initial projections. That would make for quite a winter!

I wish I could be more definitive with these snowfall projections. I figured I can start here, and make any needed adjustments in my final call around the winter solstice. I should have much more information by then to determine which way the winter will be heading. Honestly, there are many more players on thee field this winter forecast than other years. It’s quite a volatile scenario with big bust potential either way.

Now for your Thanksgiving holiday week forecast! I will rate this week a 7 out of 10. Not bad at all!

For the rest of your Monday night expect clear and cold temperatures. Lows will be in the teens and 20’s region wide.

Tuesday will feature early morning sun, followed by increasing afternoon clouds. Towards lat afternoon, the sky will have the appearance as if it wants to snow. It will be slightly less cold tomorrow, with highs between 42 and 45 degrees.

An approaching storm will be arriving late tomorrow night across New England. As the precipitation arrives in western New England, across the interior and up north, there will be a brief bust of snow. This snow may accumulate an inch or two across the high terrain of Worcester County, maybe a bit more in the Berkshires. As you move into interior southern New Hampshire, up to 2 to 3″ may fall, especially across higher terrain locations. Further up north across the intrior of New Hampshire and Maine, a general snowfall will occur into Wednesday morning, north of Concord, N.H. into the White Mountains and western and northern Maine, where 3 to 6″ may fall. This is great news for ski resorts who plan to open up for the Thanksgiving holiday weekend! Any snow within 20 miles of the coast of New Hampshire and Maine will quickly change to rain and be washed away by Wednesday morning.

For the rest of us, expect heavy rainfall and gusty southeasterly winds Wednesday morning, which may cause travel delays due to urban ponding and poor visibility. The rain should diminish by midday or early afternoon at the latest, and be totally done by the evening commute. There may even be some breaks of sunshine before the sun sets Wednesday. Temperatures will be on the mild side, as the storm passes nearby to Boston. Highs may reach the lower 50’s during the morning hours, then begin to slowly drop as winds shift towards the northwest later.

If your traveling out and about Wednesday evening, expect fair but colder weather. A gusty wind will give a bit of a bite to the air. Temperatures will drop into the 30’s and 30’s region-wide.

Thanksgiving Day looks to be sunny and seasonable, perhaps slightly cooler than normal, with highs generally in the low to mid 40’s. There may be a gusty wind early in the day. If your planning on attending any High School football games, I would bundle up!

Dry and fair weather is anticipated now for the rest of the holiday weekend through Sunday. There may be increasing clouds on Sunday as our next storm system approaches for Monday. At this moment, this storm looks to be too warm to bring any snow along the coast. But it is seven days out and this could change.  As this storm tracks up the coast, computer models rapidly intensify it, bringing another round of snow to northern New Hampshire and western Maine mountains. I will closely monitor it during the week. Thereafter, the active pattern looks to continue with another storm possible towards the end of next week, with possibly an arctic blast to open up December?

Well, that’s about it for now! I hope everyone enjoyed reading my report! My next blog is scheduled on December 4th. However, if any significant storm threatens, I will update everyone as warranted. If there is no significant weather imminent, I may delay the post further, time permitting. In my next post, I will continue to discuss my winter forecast, and tweak it as necessary. I will also have your first ski and snow board forecast, as well as your weekly winter outdoor activity forecast. In the meantime, what’s the saying? It’s not how you start the race, it’s how you finish! This is what I’m expecting for this winter!

~Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends & family!~

Thanks for reading,


First Flakes…Then a Brief Warm Up! 11/13/23

Hello! I hope everyone enjoyed their weekend! After a fairly mild Friday, the weekend turned decidedly colder. Both days were dry, but featured daytime highs in the 40’s and overnight lows in the teens and 20’s. In fact, Boston’s Logan airport finally dropped below freezing Sunday morning, with a low temperature of 31 degrees, officially ending the growing season. Average date of first freeze at Logan airport is November 7th, so it was slightly behind schedule, but nothing out of the ordinary. This morning was even colder, with a low of 29 degrees. This was the coldest temperature observed at the airport since March 20th. Across the interior, it was even colder. Many locations set back from the coast had low temperatures between 18 and 25 degrees. Indeed, the warm days of October are a distant memory!

First frosts and freezes are a milestone as we progress to winter. For those who enjoy winter, having the temperature drop to 32 degrees before the first wintry precipitation event is critical! I can guarantee you, if it snows before you have the first freeze, a mild winter lies ahead. It’s almost the atmosphere is telling you something. There’s nothing scientific about this, just good old fashioned knowledge from a lifelong weather observer! You may ask, how can it snow if it isn’t 32 degrees out? Trust me, it can and does! If the upper levels of the atmosphere is below 32 degrees, the precipitation falls as snow. If the precipitation falls hard enough, it can reach the ground even if it’s 34 or 35 degrees or sometimes even warmer!

Back in 2011, there was a big storm before Halloween, where much of interior New England got socked with up to 24″ of wet snow. Along the coast, it snowed hard, but temperatures remained above freezing throughout the event. This meant only a few inches of slushy wet snow accumulated, much of which melted as quickly as it fell. The following winter was one of the warmest ever recorded in New England. People were going to the beach on Columbus Day weekend that year!

After a colder than average start to November, I have some good news! It looks like the pattern is going to relax somewhat later this week so we can enjoy a brief warm-up! In fact, with Boston officially recording temperatures below freezing, we can officially call this a brief taste of Indian Summer! What is Indian Summer? Many people have different interpretations of it, which is okay! Some people feel any warm stretch of weather after the autumnal equinox can be classified as Indian Summer. However, the official qualification for Indian Summer is a stretch of warm weather, preferably 3 straight days with clear skies and light winds…after the first frost. If you want to be technical, they say most of the trees should be bare. However, the main stipulation is to receive a first frost or freeze.

Some friends have asked me what the difference is between a frost and a freeze. A frost can occur even if the air temperature is above freezing. This is because if winds are calm, cold air is dense and settles to the ground. Temperatures can super cool to 32 degrees, while 6 to 10 feet above the ground it can still remain between 33 and 36 degrees. A freeze is when the layer of cold air is thicker and temperatures fall to 32 degrees or lower for three straight hours, essentially killing the growing season. A hard freeze occurs if temperatures fall further to 29 degrees or lower for three consecutive hours.

Over the past two November’s, Bostonian’s have enjoyed long stretches of Indian Summer weather. The last two November’s have featured well above average temperatures in the Boston area. So far, more than a third of the way into the month, this has not been the case this year. Temperatures have averaged close to 2 degrees below average so far this month in Boston, and for most of the northeastern part of the country for that matter. This has been a stark change to the relentless warm autumn weather we’ve been experiencing this year.

With colder temperatures, comes the threat for wintry precipitation. Right on cue, many communities are seeing their first snowflakes this evening! Some communities north and west of Boston may even see a small accumulation! This won’t turn into anything serious, it’s actually a small disturbance riding along the divider between the cold air over us, and warmer air trying to move in. This small disturbance will intensify once it moves into the open Atlantic Ocean. This will act to buckle the jet stream and send a reinforcing shot of cold air tomorrow night into Wednesday.

I have often mentioned the jet stream acts as a garden hose. Think of when you were a kid and you picked up the garden hose and began shaking it to make big loops with ridges and troughs. This is how the jet stream in simplest terms behaves in our atmosphere! We’re currently in the trough (cold & wet). However, beginning Wednesday afternoon, the ridge (dry and warmer) will begin building into New England. However, as has been this case so far this November, this too will not last long!

A hybrid like storm will be developing off the southeast coast this week. This storm will begin tracking up the coast on Friday and begin to interact with an approaching cold front. At this point, it appears the brunt of this storm is going to pass just east of New England on Saturday. Once it passes our latitude, the front and the storm are going to phase and rapidly intensify this storm as it tracks into the Canadian Maritimes. This will once again buckle the jet stream allowing cold air to plunge back into New England on the back side of this storm for the second half of the upcoming weekend. There’s even an outside shot some of the cold air catches up with the departing moisture for a brief flip to snow up in the mountains of northern New England.

Come next week, more important changes are on the way to New England! Recent computer models are showing a very volatile weather pattern heading into Thanksgiving Day. Computer models have been very erratic in handling the rapidly evolving pattern. Latest data is showing arctic air charging towards New England with moisture nearby. Should these two weather systems merge at the right time, and right location, we could have some travel problems on our hands. Right now it’s only speculation. If further data increases the potential, I will be sure to let everyone know! At the very least, a sharp cold front looks to send temperatures plummeting on Thanksgiving Day and beyond.

All these changes could have major implications to our upcoming winter. Right now, the weather community is split 50/50 on what type of winter we’re going to experience. Half say warm and rainy, while the other half believes cold & snowy. I’m still reviewing last minute data before I post my official winter outlook one week from today! Earlier in the fall I was leaning warm & rainy. However, recent changes in the Pacific Ocean, combined with other important factors have me leaning the other way. I take many factors into account when comprising my winter forecast, much of which is following my intuition, despite what computer models are saying.

For instance, last winter computer models insisted the cold and snow were coming to New England. We waited and waited and waited, and nothing ever arrived. It was showing it, but when push came to shove, winter unloaded its fury out west, leaving us with one of the warmest and least snowiest winters on record for us here in Boston, and up and down the I95 corridor for that matter. This year, computer models are insisting warm weather is heading to New England. However, when the warm is supposed to be here, it’s still cold! Now, the big warm up for Thanksgiving week that computer models were depicting, is being replaced with colder temperatures and perhaps storminess. Again, nothing scientific about it, just a careful observation.

Now for your weekly autumn outdoor activity forecast. I will rate this week a 6 out of 10.

If you are out and about tonight, don’t be surprised if you happen to see some snow flurries or even patchy light snow in some areas. Observations have been reporting most activity centered across the hilly terrain of central Massachusetts. However, weather guru himself Pete Lovasco reports flurries and light snow up in Gloucester! Over the next few hours, anyone could see their first flakes if you look out the window at the right time. Otherwise, expect mainly cloudy skies overnight, with lows mainly in the 30’s.

Tuesday should feature slightly milder temperatures, but with a brisk wind and mainly cloudy skies, it will feel colder than what it actually is. High temperatures should rebound into upper 40’s and low 50’s across the area.

Skies should clear tomorrow night and turn colder all over again. Lows will fall into the upper teens and 20’s across the region.

Wednesday will feature fairly tranquil weather conditions. As winds turn more southwesterly, expect slightly milder temperatures come afternoon. Pesky clouds may still blot out the sun at times.

Thursday and Friday should feature milder temperatures, with highs approaching 60 degrees both days. Everything is relative. Last year, we had a week with temperatures in the 70’s in November! Nevertheless, temperatures will be above average for the date, and a welcome change to the November chill we’ve been experiencing!

As mentioned above, a fast moving storm system will begin tracking up the coast later Friday and into Saturday. This storm may actually turn into somewhat of a nor’easter, especially if the center remains off the coast. Latest computer data has this storm now tracking slightly closer to the coast. Therefore, expect rain and winds to pick up especially along the coast along and inside of I95 corridor. The rain could fall heavily for a time the first half of Saturday then diminish during the afternoon. I don’t expect anything too severe, however an impactful storm may be heading our way for the first half of our weekend.

Expect windy and colder weather to arrive on Sunday, with a mixture of sun and fast moving stratocumulus clouds. Temperatures will be falling during the day from the 40’s dropping to the 30’s by sunset. Next week will start off cool & dry. I’m watching another storm for Thanksgiving Eve and into Thanksgiving day. Depending upon the exact track, this storm could bring either rain, snow or a mixture of both across the New England region.

Well, that’s about it for now! My next post is scheduled one week from today on November 20th! This post will feature my official 2023-24 winter forecast for Boston and New England region. I will also have your all important travel forecast for the upcoming Thanksgiving holiday! In the meantime, embrace the November chill…it may even feel like the holidays for once!

~Thanks for reading & be safe!~





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