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March 08. 2013 11:47AM

Storm brings nearly a foot of snow, big waves to NH


A spectator snaps photos as waves splash over the sea wall on Ocean Boulevard in Hampton Friday morning. (Jason Schreiber/Union Leader Correspondent)

Another powerful nor'easter dumped nearly a foot of snow on some parts of southern New Hampshire and brought massive waves that pummeled coastal areas during high tide Friday morning.


The slow-moving storm closed many schools in southern New Hampshire and made for a treacherous morning commute.


The bulk of the snow fell in southern areas where snow totals ranged from 4.5 inches in Northwood to about 10 in Londonderry and closer to a foot in places such as Atkinson and Seabrook.


The amounts were higher in some areas than forecasters had expected, but they said it was a tricky storm to predict.


"It went up dramatically almost for every mile south you go. It was one of those very sharp delineating lines. To get it exact was a difficult thing to do," said Bob Marine, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Gray, Maine.


The strong storm passed south of New England but strong winds over the past two days generated waves of 20 to 25 feet, Marine said. Large waves crashed over seawalls along Route 1A in Hampton, sending water, rocks and other debris into the street. Concrete park benches were even lifted up and pushed into the middle of the road – part of which was closed during high tide.


While the storm forced plow drivers back onto the roads and many residents to haul out their shovels and snow blowers, John Hauschildt of Exeter took it in stride. He grabbed his skis and skied through downtown Exeter and made a stop at Me & Ollie's Café.


"I stayed mostly on the street because the sidewalks were too piled up with snow," he said after removing his skis and leaning them against the side of the café.


Marine said the snow was expected to wind down in extreme southern Rockingham County by noon.


For those looking for a break from the cold and snow, Marine said temperatures this weekend are expected to rise into the mid-40s to near 50. Rain could be in the forecast next week with a southerly flow, but Marine warned not to be fooled by warmer spring-like weather.


"It's too soon to call it quits yet. There's a lot of time left in March," he said.


jschreiber@newstote.com


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