It's no trick, and whether it's a treat or not depends on who you ask. But major cities along the I-95 corridor including Philadelphia, New York and Boston might be in for a rare October accumulating snowfall Saturday.
Inland areas of the northeast are expected to get the brunt of the storm, with total of six to 12 inches of heavy, wet snow falling northwest of I-95, from Pennsylvania to New York and Massachusetts. Cities in the heaviest snow forecast area Saturday include Allentown, Pa., Poughkeepsie, N.Y., and Worcester, Mass.
Tree damage and power outages are likely for the area, forecasters say, due to the nature of the heavy, wet snow that's expected to fall into warm surface temperatures.
But rare accumulating snow could fall Saturday closer to the northeast coast, in cities including Philadelphia, New York and Boston, forecasters at The Weather Channel said -- claiming the season's first nor'easter targets I-95 corridor.
On Saturday night in New York City, rain is expected to turn to all snow late with one to three inches of accumulation expected and winds from the north-northwest at 15 to 25 miles per hour.
Precipitation will start as rain in these locations, but may change over to snow. How quickly this occurs and how much snow falls is dependent on the availability of enough cold air, which is difficult to forecast early in the season.
The forecast high for New York City on Saturday is 45 degrees, but if cold air aloft is deep enough for snow to arrive at the surface without melting snowfall could occur, with rain potentially changing completely over to heavy, wet snow. A difference of just a few degrees could mean either some flakes mixing with rain for New York City or one to three inches of accumulation on grassy areas like Central Park.
Also, when the low pressure system is strong, as models indicate for the one approaching the northeast Saturday and into Saturday night, dynamic cooling can increase the odds of snow by cooling the air more than current forecast models show. Also, Saturday night's low is forecast to reach 32 degrees.
If measurable snow falls on New York City, it will be a rarity. According to The Weather Channel, measurable snow has only been recorded three times in New York during the month of October. The earliest measurable snow occurred on October 15, 1876. Philadelphia is similar, as measurable snow has only been recorded in the city five times during the month of October.