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Flooding Possible This Weekend For Northern New England

A storm will pass through New England this weekend, likely bringing primarily rain to all of New England, including the mountains. This storm will produce a steady rain for nearly all of the region, with a quarter inch to half inch of rain possible. In areas of northern New England, particularly Vermont, this storm could lead to some flood issues in areas that still have a healthy snow pack.

New England's recent nor'easter dropped three plus feet of snow across areas of Vermont and New Hampshire, which has led to a healthy snow pack after a winter that did not see a large snow pack. Northern New England has also seen a couple quick hitting events dropping additional snow since the nor'easter.

Snowmelt, combined with rainfall, could lead to some flooding problems. While a major flooding event is not expected, flood risk is something that will need to be watched as this week continues to progress. Vermont is the greatest area of concern.

The National Weather Service of Burlington has launched surveys to assess the snow-water equivalent (SWE) in the snow pack. How much water content is in the snow pack will have a big impact on flooding. The more water content, the bigger the contribution melting snow will have during the storm. Previous soundings have shown that the SWE is slightly above average in Vermont.

Right now, models are indicating as much as a 75% chance of Otter Creek reaching minor flood stage this weekend. Otter Creek is in central-west Vermont and is over 100 miles long. The National Weather Service of Burlington states:

"MMEFS off the NAEFS indicates a 75% chance of Otter Creek reaching at least minor flood stage at that point, a fairly strong signal for something 5 days out. Mesoscale guidance will also tell us more about the level of terrain enhancement, convective potential, and thermal profiles for this event. So there will be fluctuations in the exact likelihood as more data comes in."

Flood risk is not as high at this point for New Hampshire and Maine, but there remains a risk. Areas of New Hampshire and Maine that still have a decent snow pack will likely see dew points remain at or below 40 degrees. This will lead to a more controlled snowmelt. Despite this, some rivers are expected to reach action stage this weekend.

There will likely be a large temperature gradient across northern New England during the day on Saturday. Southern Vermont, along with St. Lawrence and Champlain river valleys and Southern New Hampshire will likely push toward and even pass 60 degrees Saturday afternoon while the Maine mountains could stall out in the low 40s. A warm front will be lifting through the region Friday and into Saturday.



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