The sky looks threatening across most of New England Tuesday, but the gray clouds will fail to produce anything more than a few sprinkles near the South Coast and some flurries in the North Country of New England. Nonetheless, the abundance of clouds indicates New England continues on the edge of two very different airmasses – cold Canadian air to the north and warm air over the Mid-Atlantic United States. Of course, a battle zone of temperature also can mean a ripe storm-breeding ground and a couple of storm centers are forecast to develop for the middle and end of the week. Thursday, a storm center passing to our south in the morning will focus a burst of snow, sleet and rain for New England, expanding from southwest to northeast late Wednesday night into early Thursday morning, dropping anywhere from one or two inches of snow for interior Southern New England to three or four inches from Southern to Central New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine. The Thursday burst of wintry mix comes on the leading edge to somewhat warmer air pushing north, likely to throttle the wintry mix back to scattered rain showers by Thursday midday and afternoon. By Thursday night, warmer air will be so evident that temperatures in much of New England may actually rise during the overnight into Friday morning, assuring when the next storm center ripples through we’ll see mostly rain with the exception of the North Country where snow and sleet will continue to fall. Later Friday, colder air will settle back south again, but that cold surge happens as moisture is ready to pull away from New England to the northeast, so it’s likely only the North Country sees additional snow accumulation while the rest of us probably don’t see more than either tapering rain showers Friday or showers ending as a few snow showers. Colder, drier air takes hold for the start of the weekend on Saturday with sunshine and cool temperatures, but as a storm center ramps up south of New England Sunday, there’s a chance Southern New England may find ourselves on the northern fringe of the storm, in a shield of accumulating snow…so this is a setup we’ll watch carefully. Nonetheless, our exclusive First Alert 10-day forecast shows no big cold air outbreaks next week, either, as the warmer-than-normal pattern we forecast in our February monthly outlook unfolds, with frequent disturbances every couple of days bringing recurring chances for rain, mix and, from time to time and especially north, snow.