The final weekend before the official arrival of spring will end on a wintry note in the northeastern United States with snow and slick travel in store for some areas.
A repeat of the Blizzard of 2017 will not occur. However, enough snow can fall to disrupt outdoor plans and hinder blizzard recovery efforts.
The zone of wintry weather will first affect a corridor from Green Bay, Wisconsin, to Detroit and Columbus, Ohio, on Friday. Areas to the north and east of Chicago will be at most risk for snow and slippery travel.
Snow, sleet and rain will then extend eastward from the Great Lakes to the upper part of the mid-Atlantic and the southern New England coast spanning Friday night to Sunday morning.
“This storm will bring a quick accumulation of snow to parts of the mid-Atlantic and New England,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Kyle Brown said.
A few inches of snow can accumulate across portions of Pennsylvania, southern New York, northern New Jersey, Connecticut, Rhode Island and Massachusetts from Friday night to Sunday morning.
Enough of a wintry mix can fall in Pittsburgh and Philadelphia to quickly coat elevated surfaces and lead to isolated slick spots.
“While this feature will be not nearly as intense as the snowstorm earlier this week, snow on pavement will certainly lead to some travel delays,” Brown said.
The greatest risk for slick travel will be during the nighttime and early morning hours. Still, roadways can become slippery and snow-covered where the snow falls heavily enough to overcome natural melting during the middle of the day.
The greatest chance of 6 inches of snow will be from portions of Long Island and along the southern coast of New England as the storm strengthens while drifting offshore during Saturday night to early Sunday, according to Brown.
Precipitation will begin as rain and mix with or change over to all snow in some areas. In other locations across the northern edge of the storm, all snow will fall. Along the southern edge, all or mostly rain is in store.
Temperatures will moderate enough in Baltimore and Washington, D.C., for precipitation to fall mainly in the form of rain showers on Saturday. The best opportunity for snow showers in this corridor will be on Saturday night as cold air is pulled southward in the storm’s wake.
The wet weather could put a damper on those heading to Washington, D.C., for a first glimpse of the National Cherry Blossom Festival on Saturday.
The opening date of the renowned festival was pushed back from Wednesday, March 15, “due to setup delays caused by the storm,” organizers announced on Twitter.
Brutal cold will not follow immediately in the wake of the storm. Temperatures will climb into the 40s and even the 50s F across the region early next week.
However, another blast of cold air will not be far behind.
Snow to threaten slippery travel in northeastern US this weekend – AccuWeather.com