A word from the weather wise. Although recent storms have been more or less trifling, winter is a long way from over, and a pair of back-to-back storms should bring that message home in a big way. 

“While Old Man Winter has been relatively quiet around here outside of the recent sleet bomb and the parade of junk storms,” warns Mike Haggett, of Pine Tree Weather, “he’s humming a tune and clearing his throat and is about to unload.” 

The first storm was expected to get underway late in the day Thursday, coming in as a wintry mix before changing over to snow overnight. The National Weather Service in Gray was calling for six to eight inches of snowfall by the time it ends Friday, although some forecasters were expecting lesser amounts in coastal and central areas — it was a hard storm to predict because of the expected mix of snow and pure water. 

No matter how much falls, the snow is expected to be wet and heavy, and with cold temperatures moving in for the weekend, the worry is that falling tree limbs and power lines may bring outages. 

One way or another, this late-week storm is promised to be a tough tone. 

“Things for your to-do list,” Haggett wrote. “Check the washer fluid in your car, make sure you have plenty of salt and sand stocked up, back pain medication, and have your storm supplies well stocked.” 


Snow will continue for much of the day before tapering off toward this evening. National Weather Service graphic

The storm will give most people the weekend to clean up. And just as they get it wrapped up, another storm, which one forecaster deemed “a corker,” is expected to barrel in Sunday and into Monday. Although that storm was still being tracked Thursday night, there was potential for more than 6 inches of snow to start the week and a chance of a foot or more in some areas. 

On Thursday, parking bans were being put into effect just about everywhere in advance of the coming storm. Public safety officials warned of slick travel conditions. School students were eyeing the possibility of a four-day weekend, thanks to the wrath of winter. 

Also rather thrilled with the forecasts are those running the ski resorts, which have suffered a paucity of snow throughout the early winter. With the storm Thursday night to be followed by the late weekend storm — and possibly another later next week — the ski enthusiasts were downright giddy.

“Time to break out the snow dances,” according to a message on the Sugarloaf Mountain Facebook page. “With a storm on track for tonight and two more projected to hit within the next week, the skiing is on its way from great to spectacular.” 

Also giddy? Snowmobilers.

“Looks like there’s finally some snow heading for Maine’s 14,000 miles of trails!” the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries & Wildlife wrote on their Facebook page. “Hooray!”


According to CMP officials Thursday, crews are preparing for both coming storms. The company is bringing in extra power restoration crews to provide additional coverage and plans to stage teams as the weather forecast dictates regionally. 

“As we head into the weekend, we are keeping a close eye on two storms, each of which could bring wet snow and gusty winds to our region. If these winter conditions result in power outages, we are prepared to restore service as efficiently and as safely as possible,” CMP spokesperson Jon Breed said. 

In Lewiston, at Calvary United Methodist Church at Sabattus and Bartlett streets, Bill Reed and some helpers were setting up a storm shelter. The space, at the basement of the church, opened at 4 p.m. Thursday and was to remain open for 24 hours. 

By 5 p.m., Reed, a church board trustee, and some volunteers had coffee brewed and prepared some snacks for anyone who wandered in off the streets. But outside, the weather was still calm and the chairs inside the shelter were empty. 

“I think once it gets to snowing and blowing,” Reed said, “they’ll come in.” 

He planned to check in with local police, hoping that if the patrol officers come upon anyone stuck outside in the storm, they would direct them to the shelter. 


Reed also plans to maintain a warming shelter for the remainder of winter to help folks escape the bitter cold and to revive themselves with nourishment. 

“We may be serving breakfast, some mornings if we’ve got the stuff and the volunteers to do it,” he said. “Once we get going. I think they’ll probably be breakfast most mornings.” 

The warming shelter at Calvary United is being funded by Androscoggin County. 

About 5 p.m., the National Weather Service expanded its winter storm warning, covering New Hampshire and Southern Maine, to include southern Oxford and Franklin counties. The warnings went into effect at 7 p.m.

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