The soaking rains from Tuesday and Wednesday gave way to a mostly clear Thursday, and New Jersey won't get any more help for its drought situation this weekend or into early next week.

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With Dan taking a long weekend, it's a very, very straightforward forecast -- which I appreciate -- for this, the first weekend of December. Mostly sunny skies are expected Friday, with gusty winds developing in the afternoon and statewide highs in the lower 50s. Tonight, skies remain fair with overnight lows dipping into the 30s, though the Jersey Shore could see the number 40 pop up in some spots.

Saturday brings that well-loved phrase "abundant sunshine," with temperatures ranging throughout the 40s, and Sunday is generally more of the same, just fine-tuned a bit: sun turning over to partial cloud cover, and highs in the mid-40s.

Monday continues a rain-free string that extends at least to the middle of next week, with lots of sun once again and high temps mostly in the mid- to upper 40s. South of the Atlantic City Expressway, highs could even reach 50 or above.

It's a very nice start to the final month of the year, but these sunny, clear days won't help advance the cause that was started earlier this week -- steady rainfall beginning to refill reservoirs currently operating around 50 percent capacity. reported the state Department of Environmental Protection and state climatologist Dave Robinson at Rutgers agree that while Tuesday and Wednesday were a step in the right direction for drought concerns, many more weeks like this one are needed to get us back to normal.

Drought warnings remain in effect in 14 New Jersey counties, the report said.

Earlier this week, I asked Dan for his prediction of what the rain might mean in the long term for the state's reservoirs. At the time, he was holding out hope that next week's drought monitor update might paint a clearer picture of this week's effects, since the data collected this week would have been incomplete (updates are released every Thursday). But as far as we know, there will be no additional rain between now and the release of that next report.

Meteorologist Dan Zarrow is off today and will return Monday, Dec. 5. Patrick Lavery produces “New Jersey’s First News” and is New Jersey 101.5’s morning drive breaking news reporter.

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