Oh, what a beautiful Wednesday: Sunny, warm, and not humid
Dry air will lead to very comfortable conditions over the next 24 to 36 hours, but the next wave of extreme heat is right around the corner.
Here are your weather headlines for Wednesday, July 20, 2016...
A Simply Beautiful Day
It's a rare but incredibly welcome treat to get such low humidity during the summertime here in New Jersey. With widespread dew points in the 50s (maybe even 40s), the atmosphere will be bone-dry and incredibly comfortable for Wednesday.
Of course, dry air warms up much better than humid air. So sunshine will help temperatures warm quickly into the lower to mid 80s. We'll see light winds, and fading rain chances. Again, all around, a glorious summer day. I literally can't find anything to complain about.
Wednesday evening and Thursday morning will remain comfortable. And Thursday is looking good too, albeit a bit warmer and slightly more humid. (Dew points will climb into the 60s by Thursday afternoon.) Look for early sunshine, with increasing clouds later on. Highs will reach the upper 80s to around 90 degrees.
By Friday morning, you'll start really feeling the sticky humidity once again. And some hot air will start sliding up the U.S. East Coast, pushing our highs mostly into the lower 90s yet again. The southwest breeze could become gusty at times, up to about 35 mph.
Friday will also bring a cold front through New Jersey. But the name is misleading - there's nothing "cold" about our weekend forecast. However, the front will likely spawn a round of thunderstorms at some point on Friday. Timing is still a bit uncertain - the NAM model puts the rain in the morning, while GFS and others hold the storms until the afternoon and evening. The latter solution would almost certainly lead to strong or severe thunderstorms, given the heat and humidity in the atmosphere. Heavy rain, hail, and damaging winds would be the big threats.
Our Next Heat Wave Oh boy. Upon looking at the latest numbers and doing the heat index math this morning, I was tempted to book a flight to Antarctica this weekend. Heh, and you thought our last heat wave was oppressive...
The heat will continue to build on Saturday, as high temperatures return to the lower 90s for most of New Jersey. (I expect the usual exceptions, NW NJ and the Jersey Shore.) The forecast for Saturday includes moderate humidity, sunshine, and dry weather.
For several days, models have agreed that Sunday and Monday will be the peak of the heat. Part of New Jersey could see thermometers reach the upper 90s for both days. This morning's forecast includes some downright tropical dew points too. Generally at this latitude, we either see extreme heat (temps at or above 100) OR extreme humidity (dew points at or above 75). This is a rare situation where both will increase simultaneously.
Not gonna lie... The worst-case scenario puts the heat index ("feels like" temperature) above 110 degrees on Monday. Yuck.