Feb 12, 2016 1:21 AM
NH1 Weather Insider with Joe Joyce: Arctic Blast!
NH1 Chief Meteorologist
The cold air has arrived and we are just getting getting started. Temps have dropped into the single digits overnight with wind chills below zero. It is a cold start to the morning with clear skies. Highs will climb into the lwr 20's this afternoon as skies will increase with clouds during the afternoon with a lighter wind from the WSW. An Arctic front arrives tonight with more clouds and temperatures not as cold as Thursday night. This front will push through early on Saturday morning with the potential for a scattered snow showers or snow squalls. A storm will be strengthening well off the coast of New England Saturday. As it deepens, and the front pushes off the coast, winds will be picking up from the NW and true Arctic air will be directed right into New England. Highs on Saturday will likely come in the morning in the Lwr teens, because temperatures will begin to fall rapidly as the wind and cold air comes charging in! The wind chill will become more and more noticeable during the afternoon and evening.
Subzero wind chills will dominate through the course of the weekend, but it is Saturday night where the peak of the wind and the cold will combine to make for dangerously cold conditions. Temperatures will drop to -12 to -20 in the NW mountains and valleys. Lows will drop below zero across the entire state overnight, with wind chills feeling about -25 to -35 below from midnight through the easily morning of Sunday. Mt Washington could have wind chills ranging from -100 below zero. No joke. This goes to show how extremely cold it will be on the mountains this weekend. I am not one to say these kind of things...but this just may be too cold for venturing out for skiing...even for the most die hard enthusiasts.
This will be the kind of cold where it will be possible to get frostbite in 10-15 minutes or less if your skin is exposed to these conditions. It will be critical to be prepared for the cold and not take this lightly. Have the hats, gloves, heavy coasts ready if you are venturing out. This will be a cold that will kill batteries in you car, so getting that car started could be a real challenge Sunday morning. Makes sure your tank has gas in it, also fill the antifreeze. Also make sure you have extra hats and gloves or blankets in the car in case somehow you get in accident or the car gets stranded somewhere. So when we say life threatening cold, it is very real...especially if by chance you are caught out in it NOT prepared. It will get you.
Sunday will be sunny and very cold with highs in the single digits and Lwr teens. Wind chills will be brutal, but winds will gradually diminish during the afternoon as high pressure builds in. The Arctic air will begin to lift out Monday with high pressure cresting over the region with more sunshine. Meanwhile, we will have to watch Tuesday very closely for a storm coming up the coast. Trends are for this low to hug the coast and track up right over New England. A more western track will mean a better chance of rain, a more eastern track will give a better chance of snow. There is the concern the cold heavy Arctic air will be slow to retreat at the ground and could make for ice across some interiors with cold air damning. So at this early juncture, I would expect a burst of snow Tuesday, mixing over to an icy mix, and then eventually over to rain with temps eventually rising into the 40's. BUT that could all change very easily with a slight jog farther east. Then we could be dealing with a more sizeable snow storm for the interior which could be more problematic.