Through the weekend and next week, all eyes will be on Sandy. The forecast track (as of Friday night) still takes Sandy's center to somewhere near southern New Jersey, to the Del Marva region. Assuming this, or even a jog a bit farther north which I anticipate, our Sky Tracker weather team expects a high wind event across our region. Wind will likely be a large impact across our region, with flooding a secondary thought.
By Monday afternoon and Tuesday, the strongest winds will develop. As you've no doubt heard, the storm is expected to really intensify as it approaches the northeast. By deepening, I mean that the storm's pressure will drop dramatically. As a result, the pressure gradient increases, causing the wind to pick up. The wind field that will expand outward from the storm center is likely to be massive, due to the overall intensity of the system. Unlike Irene (and tropical systems in general) when winds tend to come more sporadic and in bands, this storm will have an expansive high wind field surrounding the center. Tropical storm force gusts (over 39mph) will likely extend several hundreds of miles from the center, and for some with terrain, hurricane force gusts (75mph+) will exist within the same radius.
Locally, I expect wind gusts of 50 or 60mph to be completely realistic, and rather widespread. Anyone could get gusts of this strength across Vermont, New York, and interior New Hampshire. This magnitude of wind may even extend into southern Quebec as well by Tuesday. One particular area of interest (meteorologically) lies in a core of even stronger winds, poised to curl in to New England. The Friday evening GFS model (albeit is bullish), brings in a core of 100 mph winds to elevations of around 4000' on Tuesday, particularly southern & eastern VT and NH (as well as the rest of southeastern New England). As this core of high winds screams across our region, the mountain tops with no doubt experience hurricane force winds perhaps in excess of 80mph, sustained. This may also be realized in some other locales as wind gusts...mostly through central and southern portions of Vermont along the western sides of the Green Mountains, in the western edge of the White Mountains, and through the Northeast Kingdom. This for sure will spell power outages. Luckily, we've spoken with local power crews, and they are ready! Ready to repair.
As for rain, again, assuming the current forecast track and location of moisture, our region will likely see 1-3" of rain rather widespread. Some higher totals to 4 or 5" may occur in some parts of southern Vermont, and along the mountainous terrain of VT, NH and NY. Given the duration of precipitation, I don't anticipate widespread flash flooding to be a problem this time around. This will not be an Irene repeat, I feel. Flash flood guidance shows that we need over 1.2-1.4" of rainfall in a 1 hour period to see flash flooding. While this is certainly possible in a few places of heavier rain bands, and along some of the southeastern slopes of the Green Mountains (particularly around Windham and Windsor counties), I feel the overall rainfall that we get will be spread out over a much longer time frame, reducing our risk of widespread flash flooding.
We reiterate, you should still be prepared for power outages and the chance that you may need to evacuate your home. Be sure to check in with our news coverage of Sandy (click here) and how you should prepare, and how the state is preparing.
Oh, and one final point...this is all just rain, no snow...sorry skiers