Dominick Reuter / Reuters

More snow for Boston and Northeast

Boston and the Northeast brace for up to 2 more feet of snow through early Tuesday as the West Coast gets wet

Boston and other areas of the Northeast, already buried under about a yard of snow, braced for up to 2 more feet through early Tuesday while more rain and high winds were in store for parts of the Pacific coast, forecasters said on Sunday.

"I'm frustrated. The last thing I want to be talking about is another 24 inches of snow. I want to move on to something else," Boston Mayor Marty Walsh said at City Hall. "It's unprecedented.”

The National Weather Service predicted a “long duration snow event” in Boston and surrounding areas. The snowstorm is the third to hit the region in fewer than three weeks, not that Boston was alone in its pain. 

The National Weather Service issued winter storm warnings for central New York, the western Catskills and much of New England through early Tuesday. A winter weather advisory was issued for the New York area, with 4 to 8 inches of snow and a quarter inch of ice possible through Tuesday morning, the weather service said.

“We’re in this pattern now,” said Bill Simpson, a weather service meteorologist in Boston. “The cold air comes flying down here from Canada and interacts with moisture from the ocean. When those ingredients get together, you get enough energy for a snow event.”

Snowy conditions contributed to nearly 200 flight cancellations in and out of Boston's Logan International Airport on Sunday, according to the FlightStats website, which tracks air traffic nationwide.

Boston public schools announced classes are canceled for Monday and Tuesday.

Over the weekend, the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority said crews were doing everything they could, including deploying massive jet-powered snow blowers, to clear tracks before the storm. Baker said Boston's subway lines will operate on an abbreviated schedule Monday and he encouraged residents to work from home and avoid travel. The MBTA said it will try to keep commuter trains on a normal weekday schedule, but delays are likely.

Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker ordered state offices closed and that nonemergency state employees stay home on Monday.

School was also closed for Monday in Providence, Rhode Island, and the weather service forecast up to a foot of new snow in the vicinity by Tuesday.

On the West Coast, more heavy rain was forecast for Northern California and farther up the U.S. coast, according to the National Weather Service. Twelve inches drenched parts of Northern California, Oregon and Washington state Thursday to Saturday.

A downed tree limb in San Francisco, Feb. 8, 2015, after a storm with high winds soaked the Bay Area overnight Saturday and early Sunday morning. (Jessica Christian / San Francisco Chronicle / AP)

A strong cold front approaching the coast will trigger the moisture on Sunday evening in the Pacific Northwest that will then spread over the Rocky Mountains, the weather service said.

Along with rain, sustained winds of 20 to 30 mph with gusts of 45 mph were forecast for the San Francisco Bay and Monterey areas, according to the weather service.

The heavy rains over the weekend won't make a significant dent in the state's historic drought, but it's a welcome change after six dry weeks in the Bay Area. For the first time in recorded history, there was no measurable rainfall in downtown San Francisco in January, when winter rains usually come.

It would take 150 percent of the average rainfall for California to recover from the dry period, state water resource officials say. Rain has been nearly nonexistent across much of California and Nevada since Dec. 20. 

But snow is more important than rain for California reservoirs to meet demand in summer and fall. Snowpack supplies about a third of the water needed by residents, agriculture and industry. California's second snow survey this winter found the Sierra Nevada snowpack is far below normal after a dry, unusually warm January. 

Friday's storm dropped 10 to 15 inches of snow at higher elevations of the Northern Sierra, according to the National Weather Service. Sunday's storm system was expected to add much as another 14 inches of snow.

Water resources managers said heavy rain and cooler temperatures in the next three months would be required for the snowpack to build and give Californians hope for beginning to recover from the drought this year.

Wire services

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