A snow day literally and figuratively falls from the sky, unbidden, and seems like a thing of wonder. -- Susan Orlean

Monday, February 29, 2016

Slight Chance for Delays Wednesday

We're still paying attention to the Tuesday night/Wednesday morning weather event, but our confidence is waning as the storm appears to be taking a track that will lead to snow to our north and just plain rain for the Berkshires. Rats. Foiled again.

We will see some snow initially. The first hour or two of precipitation--around midnight Tuesday--will come down in the form of snow. But the temperature will rise quickly throughout the night and creep up all the way to the low 40s by 7 AM. That is definitely not what we want to see if you are jonesing for a delay of any kind, as most of us are.

The streak of near misses continues into March. Thanks to Accuweather, for the image.
There's a very far-to-the-outside shot that the storm will track more to the east than the models are predicting. In fact, the last few storms have strayed from their predicted tracks. That's really the only good news we can provide for you with this forecast.

Evening school activities should be spared from the inclement weather on Tuesday night. We see no need to cancel any tournament games or school concerts or performances as the brief period of snow will come later that evening.


Even further evidence the storm will miss us to the north. This map shows the forecasted snow totals by 6 PM Wednesday.

You may remember we also were looking at a possible snowy Friday. We still are, but accumulations look to be very light. This storm will track well to our south, so any snow accumulations will be limited to southern Berkshire County. Again, we're watching the track of it intently and hoping for changes.

Two items for the next two days: 1) Vote tomorrow and 2) Get out your galoshes for Wednesday!

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Two More Chances

Okay. Let's try this again. We have identified two weather events for the upcoming week that could impact the length of school on Wednesday and Friday. But given the way this winter has gone, you might say we're a bit bear-ish on these possible snow/frozen precipitation/rain storms.

Here's what our hopes are hanging on: a Tuesday night into Wednesday storm and a possible Friday storm. The Tuesday night/Wednesday morning scenario has more potency. Once again, the models are not in agreement. A more easterly track of the storm favors snow and ice; a more westerly track will yield plain ol' rain. The models are, of course, in disagreement. Thus, we can only put the chance of delays on Wednesday at 15% on the True North Confidence Meter.

Friday's snow event is even less certain. There's some evidence that a coastal low will form from an Alberta Clipper, but again the models are not seeing eye-to-eye. The best case scenario for Friday's event would be 3-5 inches of snow. If the timing is right, we could be in business for more delays, but that seems like a reach at this point in the proceedings.

Thank you, Accuweather.
The GSD Staff is much more intrigued by the Tuesday night/Wednesday storm. The timing is perfect, and the models do actually agree on the timing right now. (That's a first!) So, we're really, really hoping the storm A) starts around midnight (so we can get the Western Mass playoff basketball games in on Tuesday night) and B) it impacts the morning commute and C) it tracks to the east so that it's all snow and mixed precipitation. We're not asking too much, are we?

Check in regularly here to stay updated. We'll provide more info tomorrow night (but not as late as tonight).


Thursday, February 25, 2016

Thunderstorms in February

We don't think it's just us. Something is seriously wrong with the weather. Coldest February on record (2015). Warmest year ever (2015). Sixty degree days in December (2015) and February (2016). Thunderstorms in February (2016).

It's rare to find a year where at least some weather record is broken, but to have so many extreme weather events clustered together suggests that something is amiss and it's going to take an incredible amount of effort, restraint, and change in our thinking to try to slow down the forces that seem to be spiraling our weather patterns out of control.

There may come a day when Greylock Snow Day becomes Greylock Weather Event Day. Superstorms, tornadoes, flooding, power outages--perhaps these are the kinds of events we'll tracking as part of our delay/day off/early release predictions in the future.

...

As for good, ol' fashioned snow, we may see some on the back edge of this storm tonight. Expect to see snow showers later in the evening as the temperatures drop down to more seasonal norms. Locations with higher elevations are the more likely candidates for accumulating snow.

Next week's models continue to show a potential snow/mixed precipitation/rain storm for Wednesday into Thursday. This refrain is starting to sound familiar, which means we will likely see all rain. Still, the GSD Staff is tracking it and will let you know.


Wednesday, February 24, 2016

On to the Next Storm

Congratulations are in order for Southern Berkshire. They are on the board as the first public school district in the Berkshires to post a delay this year (that is, if our records are correct; let us know if that's not the case). They actually called in the delay the night before.

MCLA and Southern Berkshire are our clubhouse leaders with one delay each with just over a month to go in the season.

We've really been snakebitten this season. We've had a few delay- or snow-day-level events, but mostly they've fallen on weekends and during vacation. Yesterday, though, was just a near miss. Had the storm tracked 50 miles to the west...

Brace yourselves for heavy rain on Wednesday night and moderate and light rain on Thursday. Temperatures will soar into the 50s. The winds will also kick up on Thursday. We might catch a few snow showers on the back end of the storm, Thursday night and during the day Friday, but that's about all we'll see for snow from this bigger storm.

We are picking up signals for a moderate snow event next week, most likely in the Wednesday/Thursday (March 2-3) period. We've been down this road many-a-time, but the forecasting weather tools are showing the possibility of a measurable, plowable snowfall. It will not be a blockbuster (4-6 inches), but it will give us a chance of a delay or snow day.

Keep hope alive. The forecast for the next few weeks is lower than average temperatures, which means any precipitation that falls will have the potential to remain frozen. March still is considered "winter," so we can't rule out a random big storm at some point in the month.

Wednesday Delays

Very light frozen precipitation is still moving through the Berkshires, so we are pleased to report a few delays. We'll update this post as they come in. 

Southern Berkshire
Mohawk Trail
Hoosick Falls (NY)
Berlin 

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Storm Update

Some of our staff were out and about in Berkshire County tonight, and the storm just doesn't seem to have much oomph. Sadly, we're not feeling very good about delays tomorrow. Certainly that will change if we get a patch of sleet around 5:00 AM tomorrow, but the lack of energy and organization to the precipitation just doesn't appear to be there.

The bulk of the snow and sleet has slid to our east. There's a patch of rain down around New York City that is headed our way, but we think it will arrive in the Berkshires too early for it to shorten the school day. When it does arrive, though, it will bring a period of sleet and/or freezing rain.

The 9:15 radar. The green blob there over NYC is hopefully headed our way.
So...we're lowering our True North Confidence Meter a few points. We're still holding out hope for a few delays in our region, but chances are good that you or your children will have a full day of school tomorrow.

Our cold streak continues...

Update for Feb. 23/24 Storm

We use the term "storm" very liberally here, but evidence continues to mount that we will see an extended period of frozen precipitation tonight into the morning commute. Delays are possible for some schools. We think more schools will be in session for a full day than schools with delayed starts.

 But first a word from Debbie Downer:

1) The surge of moisture--and it really won't be that much of surge--could come too early. 2) We also do not like the current temperature readings, which are in the mid-30s. If we want the rain to hold off, we need to see the temperatures drop by about five degrees. 3) The track record for meteorologists is often to over-play their hands when it comes to ice.

And now a word from Positive Pete:


This map shows how much snow (up to 3 inches) we'll get by noon on Wednesday. This is a best case scenario map. If it proves to be correct and the timing is spot on, then delays will be the order of the day tomorrow.

Travel safely tonight if you're driving around the Berkshires. The snow will be light; eventually, though, it will coat the roads. The sleet and freezing rain shouldn't kick in until after midnight.

Winter Weather Advisory for Tonight

NOAA has announced a Winter Weather Advisory for all of the Berkshires, with snow, sleet and freezing rain to impact our area this evening. Don't get too excited, though, as only a few inches of snow will fall tonight.

Of course the first question is: will this minor storm impact the length of the school day? The official GSD position is that a few schools tomorrow have a chance of a delay, but most schools will have a full school day. Districts with schools in higher elevations and schools in North County will have the best chance of earning the coveted first delay of the year (!).

The snow should start during the evening commute. Extra cautious schools could postpone athletic events and arts performances this evening.

The changeover to sleet and freezing rain will take place after midnight. The longer the temperature stays below 32 degrees at the ground, the better chance we will have for widespread delays tomorrow. You should be rooting for the cold air to stay in place this evening.

We'll have a few maps and discussion about the heavy rain on Thursday later today.

Saturday, February 20, 2016

February 23-25 Storm Update

We wanted to pass along a few tidbits of information for you that the GSD Staff has unearthed in the past twenty-four hours.

*The Sunday night/Monday morning snow has predictably evaporated. We could see a few stray flakes in South County but those flakes will not make for hazardous travel.

*The "big storm" now has two parts to it. There will be a small piece of it that will bring a few inches of snow on Tuesday night. Are delays possible for Wednesday? Unlikely.

*The second piece--which has MUCH more uncertainty to it--will be considerably more powerful and could bring up to an inch of liquid precipitation to the Berkshires on Wednesday night into Thursday. The good news is that our feelings about the timing have done a 180, and it is now the strongest indicator of our chances for a snow day on Thursday.

*The bad news--and there's always bad news--is that the models are leaning more toward a mixed precipitation and rain event. Yay. A few models are still predicting mostly snow, but there is still far too much uncertainty for anyone to get excited about a possible snow day on Thursday.

Friday, February 19, 2016

Snow x 3

Greetings, Flake Followers! We have an exciting week ahead of us with not one, not two, but three opportunities for measurable snow.

The first occurs tonight. Expect some form of frozen precipitation starting around 9 or 10 PM. It should start as snow, and it will likely change over to sleet for a stretch as the temperatures actually warm up in the overnight hours above freezing. The best case scenario is 2 inches for the Berkshires. The worst case scenario is a dusting and then rain showers. Driving around later tonight could be hazardous, but town crews should be able to make the roads safe by Saturday morning.

We're also paying attention to the possibility of snow for Monday morning. Especially in South County, delays will be a possibility. The timing looks very good. It will be a southern storm, so we'll see a half inch or so north of Pittsfield with up to 3 inches near the Connecticut border. With all the excitement of next week's big storm dominating the weather news, we need to keep on eye on this sneaky little fellow for Monday morning.

Here's our potential snow for Monday morning, as captured by the NOAA Probabilistic Winter Weather  Guidance team.
And then the main event. Here's what's going on: Meteorologists were thinking all rain for the big east coast cities initially, but then a new run of the models showed much colder air in place, which means a snow/mixed precipitation event for us. The track of the storm is still in question. If the track is just east of the Appalachians--one projected track right now--then we'll be in the mixed precipitation/rain zone. If the storm tracks just off the coast--the other projected track--we'll be in the snow/mixed precipitation zone.

Either way, the GSD Staff is giving two very large thumbs down to the timing of the storm: during the day on Wednesday and into the evening. We fear that it won't be strong enough to merit a snow day or release on Wednesday, nor will it last long enough to impact the length of school on Thursday.

There's a lot going on and a lot to be determined still. Take it slow tonight, and don't sleep on the Sunday night/Monday morning quick shot of snow. We'll have more about that other storm tomorrow.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Hype-meter Reading is an 8 (out of 10) in Advance of Next Week's Storm

Fire up the hype machine as all of our weather insiders are talking about a moderate/heavy snowstorm for the Northeast that would lead to snow days on Wednesday for hundreds of thousands of youngsters.

This map is a forecast map for the middle of next week. That's a VERY attractive low pressure system off the coast of North Carolina. Thus, you can understand why meteorologists are buzzing with excitement already. Thanks to Ed Vallee, a meteorologist in Pennsylvania, for this image.

Consider the following as we break down why the hype-meter is high for this storm:

1. The Northeast is the center of the world.
2. Northeast meteorologists are bored.
3. Weather hype drives traffic, which drives ads, and ads still make money.

But here at GSD we are above the fray, which is why you can (usually) trust us to tell it like it is. There are a few people out there who play it close to the vest--we're looking at you, Bob Kovachik!--but most tele-meteorologists know that performance is nearly as important as content--hey there, Bernie Rayno!

But getting excited about a storm and hyping a storm are two different things.

So, what's on the weather docket for this week and next for the Berkshires? Here's what we have for you:

Wednesday (2/17): Possible snow showers, especially toward the evening hours. No accumulation.
Thursday: Seasonably cool (mid-20s) but dry.
Friday: Cold start but warming up to near 40. Chance of snow and sleet late on Friday. Little accumulation.
Saturday: Warm. Nearly 50. Rain showers.
Sunday: Almost as warm. Mid-40s. Still a few showers.
Monday: A cold front moves in with accompanying snow showers.
Tuesday: ??
Wednesday: ????

We'll see what develops. Enjoy whatever glimpses of the sun you get because they will be few and far between for at least the next week. We'll update about next week's storm as soon as we see a few more runs of the models.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

Two Hour Delay for MCLA; Break in the Rain Expected

Even though it's vacation week for most students in the Berkshires, we can officially report one of the first delays of the season. MCLA has decided to postpone the start of classes until 10 AM this morning.

This decision seems extra cautious as it is no longer raining and the temperature has risen all the way to 48 at the GSD Home Office at the time of this post (7:30).

We might see a much quieter day than we originally thought. Check out the 7:30 radar:



That big curve of precipitation is moving due north. The yellow and green clump down by Virginia and North Carolina is what will eventually hit us. This means that the morning will only present intermittent light showers; the heavy rain we were expecting all day will now only fall in the afternoon.

The GSD Staff suggestion is pick an Oscar-nominated film and go see it--several are sill playing in and around the Berkshires.

As for the rest of the week, it's pretty uneventful. Normal winter days (high 20s, low 30s) until Friday night when we might see some very minor frozen precipitation.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Winter Weather Advisory for Monday Night/Tuesday Morning

We have a big storm heading our way for Monday night and Tuesday. Once again, though, it will not fully cooperate and it will eventually turn to rain.

It's hard to fathom that we can go from a high of 2 today (Sunday) to a high in the upper 30s two days later (Tuesday), but that's the hand we will see dealt.

We will have a period of snow tomorrow evening that will make for messy travel in the Berkshires. Expect a few inches of snow--more in North County than South County this time--and then the changeover to sleet and freezing rain will take place around midnight. The precipitation will change to all rain by the morning commute.

Rain will come down heavy at times on Tuesday, making it a good day for indoor vacation activities. Unfortunately, the rain Tuesday will wipe out the few inches of snow cover we have right now. We might see a few snow showers as the storm exits Tuesday night, but there won't be much accumulation, if any.

A warm-up is around the corner--40s for highs starting during the weekend--so we're not sure when we'll see our next chance for a plowable snow event.




Thursday, February 11, 2016

Break Out the Facemask

You might want to familiarize yourself with this chart before the weekend:



We will be comfortably (!) in the -20 to -35 zones on Saturday afternoon and night. As the temperature nears zero in the afternoon, the winds will be gusting to over 20 MPH. There is no question that Wind Chill Warnings will be announced for Saturday and Saturday night.

Boston is supposed to see its coldest day in 12 years; NYC expects to see its coldest day in 22 years.

Also, we're continue to be intrigued by a Monday night/Tuesday/Tuesday night snow/sleet/rain storm. Current liquid precipitation predictions for this event are between half an inch and 1 inch. That's 6-12 inches if it stays all snow, which does not seem likely at the moment.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

Snow: From Intermittent to Less Mittent

Snow showers will continue for another 24 hours or so, but the snow bands are starting to lose their intensity. It's unlikely we'll see much accumulation overnight tonight and tomorrow.

So now that that's out of the way, what do we have to look forward to?

1. An Arctic blast over the weekend that will have you wondering why you've chosen to live in this climate. Single digit highs on Saturday and Sunday and it will be windy. Negative double digits Saturday night. Record low temperatures for this date (Sunday) are possible. Freeze delays would have been in play; alas, it's vacation. Foiled again.

2. Some form of messiness on Tuesday and Wednesday (February 16-17). Snow, ice, rain, back to ice, finishing with snow--it's all in play and possibly heavy at times. School-sponsored sporting events could be in jeopardy Tuesday evening. We'll know much, much more over the weekend.

Priority number one tomorrow is to get out there and make sure you have a little extra firewood for the wood stove--you're going to need it.


Tuesday, February 9, 2016

Big Flake Snows

As you can see from the map below, there's lots of snow activity around us. The band to our west will hit us tonight and could give us a quick inch. The snow flakes will be large, thus allowing the snow to accumulate very quickly. But the snow will be light and powdery and can be whisked away without any trouble.

The 9:30 PM radar for Tuesday night
Most New England drivers should be able to handle this light snow, so we don't think there will be any delays tomorrow. We'll leave 10% on the True North Confidence Meter, but that's just to cover our backside in case there is a random delay.

It's really hard to predict how much snow we'll get over the next 36 hours. We could see an inch tonight, an inch or two during the day on Wednesday, and another inch or two overnight Wednesday. Five inches sounds good, but not if it's spread over a 36-hour period.

Good luck. Maybe we'll get surprised Wednesday or Thursday morning.

More Light Snow to Come

Yesterday's storm exceeded expectations on one level. While it didn't generate any delays or snow days (but we did come close), it did drop almost twice as much snow on the Berkshires as expected.

So...what's going to happen over the next few days?

Unfortunately, not too much. We won't see much if any snow during the daylight hours today (Tuesday), but we could see a few accumulating bands after dark. We don't anticipate there being enough snow for delays tomorrow.

Throughout the day on Wednesday and into the early hours of Thursday, we'll see more snow showers. Over the course of the day and evening we could get an inch or two at the most. A few of these snow showers/snow bands could be more potent, but the experts are saying that the Berkshires are not in the target zone for moderate or heavy snow.

Here's a forecast map through Thursday night that shows where the heavy snow will be:



Once again, we miss out on all the fun.

We're not entirely ruling out the chance for delays Wednesday or Thursday, but it's looking more likely that we'll have to endure another full week of school this week.

Delays for New York Schools

A few New York schools have called in delays--Berlin, New Lebanon, Hoosick Falls--but so far no Berkshire County Superintendents have pulled the trigger. We'll let you know if they do.

A band of showers came through around 3:30 AM but road crews seemed to have dealt with it.

Look for intermittent snow showers throughout the day today with very little accumulation.

Monday, February 8, 2016

Snow's Hanging Around

For a "bust" of a storm, there's still a little fight left in this little guy. Check out the 9:20 radar:



We don't want to raise expectations too high, but we are intrigued by the rain/snow bands positioned in this map over southeastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey. The moisture from that band is heading our way and could hit us right before or around daybreak. So, we're going to nudge the True North Confidence Meter for a delay just a touch.

We still do not think we'll see many delays--especially for North County schools--but there is a chance a district's Superintendent could be making the district-wide robo-call in the morning to delays school by two hours. At most one or two districts would call in a delay. Let's hope it's yours.

Berkshire Snow Continues

The expected snow today is hanging on a little longer than we expected. We'll see light snow continue to fall up until 10 PM this evening.

We might see a few snow showers in the morning commute tomorrow. While the GSD Staff is expecting all schools to start on time, there is an outside chance that a random district could call in a delay.

Temps will be close to freezing tomorrow so the snow should last. Any melting we do get will be replaced with fresh snow (a few inches are possible) during the day on Wednesday.

Snowy Afternoon (Feb. 8)

While the east braces for its second heavy snowfall in four days, we sit and wait again for our meager few inches. Snow is just starting to move into Southern Berkshire County (as of 11 AM), and the entire county should see snow by 1 PM or so.

The 11 AM radar. The snow is moving north and west over our area.
The window of opportunity, as they say, is fairly short with this one, meaning that the snow will end well before midnight. The grand total will be about 2 inches. With that cheery news, the chances for delays on Tuesday have just gone out the window.

The Tuesday/Wednesday snow event is not shaping up either. We will see less snow from it than we will see today.

There are some rumblings about a more moderate snow event for Saturday. We've got our eye on it. That only thing that we do know for sure is that it will be VERY cold that day--highs in the low teens are likely.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

A Messy, Disappointing Forecast

The GSD Staff got a little excited last week that a possible coastal storm would impact the Berkshires. We tried to temper our enthusiasm and keep expectations low, but, given the non-winter we've had, that was REALLY hard to do. So, as expected, our "big storm" will not be coming to fruition and we will be left with the scraps of two storm systems that are going to skirt around us.



This map is a snow prediction map from NOAA for Tuesday evening. The big snow out in the Gulf of Maine that you see is the first low pressure system, which we wrote about last week and which was supposed to hit us Monday night. Another near miss to our east. The big green blob over Pennsylvania is the second low pressure system that we thought might move to the coast and reform there, giving us a potent nor'easter. That snow-making system will likely stay in the mid-Atlantic region.

So...the burning questions: Will we get any snow? Will we have snow day? How about delay?

The answers are: yes, no, and unlikely.

For part one of the storm, we believe we will see a repeat of Friday on Monday night. Boston and surrounding 'burbs and Rhode Island already have Winter Storm Watches already in effect. The storm could intensify--as it did Friday--and give the Berkshires a few outer bands of sustained snow. There is a slight chance that we could see delays on Tuesday morning, but we are not confident with that prediction.

Part 2 of the storm will be a dud. There simply isn't enough moisture for us to get a school-truncating weather event. Look for snow showers and perhaps a period of light snow during the day on Tuesday and Tuesday night. Any measurable snow that falls on Tuesday will be cleaned up in time for the commute on Wednesday. Dagnabbit!

But there is good news. This system is complex with lots of moving parts. This increases the likelihood that the forecast models and maps get this storm wrong. Things could change in a hurry in our favor for a number of complicated reasons. Keep hope alive.

The other good news is that a week of vacation is a mere five school days away. We've made it this long without a snow day; there's no reason we can't make it through another full five-day week.

Thursday, February 4, 2016

Light Snow After Midnight

The coastal storm that is expected to bring a moderate and/or heavy snow fall to the eastern part of the state is now slated to take a more northerly track. This means the Berkshires will fall under the outer edges of this storm.

From eastern Mass meteorologist Dave Epstein.
Especially in South County, snow will move in after midnight. Do not be surprised at all if it snowing when you wake up tomorrow. If it is snowing tomorrow morning, then we have to at least account for the possibility of a delay or two. We doubt there will be delays, but there is a slim chance a South County district will opt for a delayed start to the school day.

We'll have much more on next week's complicated forecast over the weekend.

Multiple Chances for Snow (and Snow Days)

All signs are pointing to a messy, snowy start for next week.

The first item of interest, though, is a developing coastal storm that will impact eastern Massachusetts and Rhode Island tomorrow. A storm that was supposed to go out to sea has turned inland and will drop up to half a foot on the southeastern parts of New England. There's a chance we could see a few stray flakes from this storm--especially in southern Berkshire County--so just be aware that a period of very light snow is possible during the day on Friday.

As for the excitement of next week, the computer models are all over the place, but a few certainties are starting to form. The first item of interest for us is that we will be dealing with two storms next week--one on Monday night and one on Tuesday night. The Monday night storm will come out of the Southeast and it could impact us if it turns inland (similar to what tomorrow's storm is doing). We could see a 2-4 inches out of the Monday night snow, which could delay school on Tuesday.

On Tuesday night the low from the Midwest (that we talked about yesterday) is expected to move to the coast and then reform there. This could set up a traditional coastal storm scenario where western New England is the big winner. The only problem with the Tuesday night storm that we're seeing is that there might not be quite enough precipitation with it. We've seen a long-range map that predicts only about a third of an inch of liquid precipitation, which would only yield us 4 inches of snow. If the timing were right, though, that could be enough to cancel school on Wednesday or at least give us a delay.

Despite how amazing the computer models are these days in their ability to predict the weather, next week's many moving parts will make it difficult for the models to get a real handle on the scenarios this far in advance of the storms.

So here is GSD's three-step method for getting ready for the possibility of snow next week: 1) Don't get too excited too soon; 2) Channel as much positive energy toward these storms as possible; 3) Wait until Sunday until we have more information.

Welcome these storms in your mind and good things will come. Believe, Flake Followers, believe.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Building Storm for February 9-10

Our feelers are out to all of our major and minor forecasting sources, and we're hearing from a number of parties that a storm is a-brewin' for next week.

The conditions are lining up for a not insignificant coastal storm (yes, a nor'easter) for Tuesday night into Wednesday. We know for certain there will be enough cold air for an all snow event. We're mostly sure a low pressure system will come from the upper Midwest and then transfer its energy to a coastal low. We also have been led to believe that the coastal low gain in strength as it makes its way in a northeast direction along the coast. Several forecasters feel that the main target area for this storm--should it develop--will be New England.

We like that Berkshires are more or less smack dab in the middle of the projected storm zone for this storm. Thanks, Accuweather, for the image.
The big X factor is the track of the storm. It could track more inland, which would allow warmer air to sneak in and change the snow to rain, thus leading to lower snow totals. It could also head out to sea and give us an even lighter snow event.

The initial models are encouraging, so we're going to keep an eye on it. There's no need to get too excited, but the preliminary reports and forecasts are the strongest we've seen this winter for a moderate to heavy snowfall for the Berkshires.

But given the historically poor winter we've had, we are going to proceed pessimistically and just assume that the storm will go out to sea. We're not giving up hope, but we'd rather be pleasantly surprised than have our hearts broken (again).

This map for next Tuesday shows the low from the upper Mississippi Valley transferring its energy to a coastal low. The position of the coastal low in this map is perfect for a major nor'easter. Thanks, NOAA, for the graphic.

We'll be updating regularly for this storm should it become more of a certainty.