Another Coastal Storm May Bring More Northeast Snow Next Week

January 12, 2018

Another Northeast snowstorm is possible next week, just days after Winter Storm Hunter leaves its wintry mess behind. 

(MORE: Winter Storm Central)

Typical for the world of winter weather meteorology, there are a lot of aspects to this forecast that are not in focus yet.

However, the general weather pattern setting up next week does have our attention. 

Here's what we know and don't know at this time.

What We Know: The Setup

The general weather pattern will feature upper-level energy originating from the Canadian Arctic plunging southward, reinforcing a sharp, U-shaped trough in the jet stream over the eastern half of the nation.

In response to this, a fast-moving low-pressure system and reinforcing cold front will spread mainly light snow from the Plains into the Midwest Sunday into Monday.

There could be enough mid-level energy and moisture at the tail end of an associated cold front to produce some non-rain precipitation across portions of the South, too. 

(MAPS: 7-Day U.S. Weekly Planner Forecast

Tuesday or Wednesday, a second area of low pressure should form somewhere near the Northeast Seaboard in response to that arriving jet-stream energy.

With cold air in place in the wake of Winter Storm Hunter, snow is possible in at least parts of the Northeast and New England beginning Tuesday.

(MAPS: 10-Day U.S. High/Low Temperature Forecasts)

Possible Setup Jan. 15-17

What We Don't Yet Know: The Details

Given the Canadian Arctic upper-level energy is still about 2,700 miles and four days away from impacting the East, it's not surprising that we can't yet hone in on any details about this potential coastal storm.

In general, bigger Northeast snowstorms typically result when some combination of an intense, slow-moving low tracks close enough to the coast, with enough cold air either in place or being reinforced from eastern Canada.

(MORE: First Week of 2018 Was the Coldest on Record in Dozens of Cities)

This far out in time, though, it's too soon to tell how much moisture the early, more southern energy will have to work with, and where the coastal low will track, how strong it will become and how fast it will move.

Because of that, we can't yet determine:

  • How much snow will fall and where
  • If any rain may fall near the coast
  • How much wind may occur
  • How far south wintry precip may fall

(MORE: Where Winter Weather Has Been Most Extreme So Far)

In short, this system could be anything from a light snow event moving quickly to a more impactful snowstorm for at least parts of the Northeast and New England. We could also see either rain or snow fall in parts of the South, or nothing at all. 

For the time being, our forecast maps below indicate the areas where we generally expect snow Tuesday and Wednesday. There is also some potential for snow to linger into Thursday if the system moves slower.

This isn't something you need to alter plans for yet.

Rather, keep it in mind and check back with us at in the coming days as the forecast details become clearer. 

Tuesday's Outlook

Wednesday's Outlook

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