A springtime nor'easter will drop 1-3 inches of snow on the Hudson Valley on Monday, potentially dusting morning commuters and setting the stage for a heavier snowfall during the evening rush hour, forecasters said.

The storm, with expected gale-force winds over the Atlantic Ocean, is expected to save its heaviest punch for New York City and Long Island, where accumulations could reach 2-4 inches. In the Hudson Valley, southerly Westchester County is likely to take the biggest hit.

"Low pressure will come off the mid-Atlantic tonight into tomorrow," said Joe Picca, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. "In response, we'll see snow across the tristate region, including the Hudson Valley."

Picca said the precise track of the band of low pressure will be critical in determining which areas get higher snow accumulations. He said northerly areas of Orange and Putnam counties would fall in the lower range of snowfall totals.

The storm follows a cold but clear Palm Sunday and is expected to deliver a rare snowy start to Passover, which begins at sundown Monday.

Sustained winds in the Hudson Valley Monday are likely to range from 15-20 mph, with gusts to 30 mph. Winds on Long Island could go as high as 40 mph, Picca said.

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Scattered snow showers are not expected to begin until 7 a.m. and are forecast to gradually build before taping off in the late evening or overnight hours.

After a frigid start in the upper 20s or lower 30s Monday, temperatures are expected to slowly rise to the mid- to upper 30s. Monday's storm will mark the end of the week's precipitation, but temperatures are forecast to remain in the mid- to upper 40s through Friday.