Although a few snow showers accompanied an upper level disturbance Monday morning through the mountains of Northern New England, the trend for our Monday has been toward sunshine with dry air in charge, at least for now. Wispy cirrus clouds – high altitude clouds that portend an approaching storm – will gradually increase Monday evening and night, slowly lowering and thickening through the morning Tuesday. The next storm system, migrating east from the Plains States to New England, crosses our six-state region on Tuesday, but enters air only marginally supportive of snow rather than rain, and too warm for snow in much of Southern New England. It’s all about timing for this one – after the last few storms arrived overnight or during predawn hours during the coldest time of the day in an extended relatively mild winter pattern – this storm arrives after daybreak, giving the atmosphere a chance to warm a bit during the morning. In Vermont and Western New Hampshire into the Berkshires, precipitation arrives first, starting during the morning commute while the air is still cold enough to support snow. As the snow expands east, Northern New England will remain cold enough for mostly snow with only some sleet mixing in late in the day before ending, resulting in over half a foot of new snow for the mountains and a general three to six inches in Northern New England: music to the ears and eyes of skiers and snowmobilers, particularly those on vacation with kiddos on February break. Farther south, perhaps the happy news is temperatures will be mild enough for a mix of snow, sleet and rain when the storm sets in during middle to late morning, with above-freezing temperatures allowing any road treatments to work effectively from Southern New Hampshire through Central Massachusetts and perhaps an inch or two on colder surfaces, with mostly rain expected farther south. Rain, sleet and snow will wrap up during late afternoon to early evening, gone by dinner and giving way to a breezy but milder-than-normal day Wednesday. Wednesday wind may be gusty enough for some chairlift holds, particularly during the morning, to the summits of Northern mountain ski resorts. By Thursday and Friday, the wind quiets a bit but cold air will be in place, also dry in nature and assuring a dry forecast for most of us, even as temperatures moderate this upcoming weekend. By next week, moisture increases ahead of a strong storm in the nation’s midsection, increasing our chance of rain and northern snow showers with temperatures – perhaps not surprisingly at this point – expected to continue running above normal in our exclusive First Alert 10-day forecast.