Greater Boston, North Shore and Metro West: For those of you that are snow lovers this has not been an easy month as the unusually warm temperatures have prevailed for most of the month. There have been the occasional days when the cold winds and temperatures have paid a visit but those have been far and few between. As of Christmas Day the month of December 2015 sits as the warmest December ever here in Boston. The area is near 11 degrees above normal which pretty much guarantees this to be a first place finish, despite the colder temperatures that are forecast for next week. Normal temperatures for this time of year in Boston are highs near 40 degrees and lows in the upper 20s. Give or take a few degrees if you are in the suburbs. The colder temperatures next week only bring the area back to normal readings, however given the recent trend of spring like temperatures it will feel rather harsh. With the cold comes the chance of our first snow of the season which will probably bring a smile to some, especially the kids on school break.
Lets not get ahead of ourselves since we do have a few more days of unseasonably mild temperatures before the mercury crashes early next week. Although Saturday appears to be a dry and considerably cooler day those temperatures will remain above normal for late December. Then a wet and milder day follows on Sunday before the bigger changes arrive early next week.
High pressure is expected to be in control on Saturday keeping the area dry. A cooler air mass and shifting winds off the Atlantic will keep temperatures maxing out near 50 degrees as clouds increase through the day. With approaching low pressure out of the Ohio Valley the associated moisture arrives here later on Saturday night. Temperatures fall back to the low 40s, well above normal, with a chilly rain falling mostly after midnight. The associated warm front will also be approaching and should make its pass through our area by midday Sunday. Although showers are expected Sunday morning we should see the faucet shut off for several hours with the possibility of a few glimpses of sun in the afternoon. Once the front moves to our north we are in the warm sector and temperatures once again will climb significantly higher than normal, perhaps approaching 55 to 60 degrees. A cold front on the backside of this system will push through Sunday night drawing in drier and cooler air later at night. This will mark the first phase of cooler weather that should remain with us all of next week. Temperatures by Monday morning will have tumbled back into the low and mid 30s for most.
Next weeks weather headlines are likely to say things like colder temperatures and snow or ice on the way. Although the second storm is several days away it is looking to be a feature that does bring our first taste of wintry precipitation Monday night into Tuesday. Do not be surprised if snowfall totals range from near nothing on the immediate coast to several inches west of the Route 128 loop. This will be fine tuned by the various weather outlets in the coming days so it will be worthwhile to pay close attention especially for those of you that may be traveling home from your holiday visit.
What to expect early next week? Monday will be colder, sunny and dry but with increasing clouds late. Highs only near 40 at best. Then clouds lower and thicken Monday night as low pressure approaches from the Ohio Valley. With temperatures expected to fall into the upper 20s and low 30s any precipitation that develops will be in the form of snow. It then gets potentially complicated for Tuesday because a secondary low may develop just south of us. This will hold in the colder air and bring the area a continuation of snow, especially inland, with a mix to change to rain on the shore. If the secondary does not become reality we can expect a rain to snow line much further north and west, meaning a quicker change to rain and less snow potential.
Stay tuned because there could be a lot of waffling on this over the next few days. What will be a certainty is the spring conditions of late are done for now.