The winter storm headed for the Northeast early today could bring the city 3 to 7 more inches of snow, capping a winter in which a few more inches hardly seems to matter anymore.
But this one will be different from the earlier storms - in fact, it's one of the most complicated and unusual winter systems seen in quite a while. Maryland remains mostly on the western fringes of the blast, which is expected to pound portions of New York and New England with heavy snow, tropical storm-force winds and flooding. Philadelphians were told yesterday to expect 8 to 12 inches and New York City could receive 7 to 13 inches.
Forecasters expect the tempest will drift up the coast today, intensify, head inland into southern New York state, then turn west onto some kind of bizarre meteorological cloverleaf. From there it will move west, then south into Pennsylvania, then east again before it finally heads out to sea off the New England coast.
Along the way, it looks as if the storm will offer Baltimore rain; a rain/snow mix; then snow; then a lull in the action for a time this afternoon; then more snow into Friday, with a big helping of high winds.
For Baltimore-Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport, the National Weather Service expected the storm would begin late Wednesday as rain and snow, turning to all snow after midnight as temperatures dropped to freezing, leaving 1 to 3 inches of wet snow on the ground this morning, with more to come.
Winter storm watches, which mean 5 inches or more possible by Friday morning, remained posted for Carroll, Baltimore and Harford counties, and Baltimore City.
> Read Frank Roylance's blog on MarylandWeather.com