Just days after the official end of one of the snowiest winters on record, a massive snowstorm smashed into Cape Code and eastern Maine early Wednesday and is expected to hang around for much of the day, forecasters said.
"There will be blizzard conditions in place across much of Cape Cod, Nantucket and Martha's Vineyard in Massachusetts," said the Weather Channel's Kevin Roth.
(Read more: Don't blame stocklosses on the weather, pro says)
Bruising winds could buffet parts of the East Coast, but the majority of the storm remains over the Atlantic Ocean — meaning that much of the coast will only receive a glancing blow from the huge weather system, Roth said.
"Luckily the snow forecast for northeastern cities doesn't appear to have materialized, especially in Boston," he added. "They're only getting flurries, rather than a dump."
The National Weather Service also warned of coastal flooding and significant beach erosion along the Massachusetts coast and wind gusts causing scattered power outages in eastern Maine. As of 4 a.m. ET there were no reported outages.
It's not unusual to have storms so late in the year, spokesman Bill Simpson, adding that the Boston area got more than two inches of snow in an April storm last year and was blanketed with almost two feet the same month in 1997.
While this storm is expected to blow up into the Canadian Maritimes another one is expected come out of the Rockies early Thursday, prompting Roth to warn of a severe thunderstorm threat for Missouri, East Texas and Louisiana, Roth said.
—By Henry Austin of NBC News. The Associated Press contributed to this report.