Friday NJ weather: Drying out and cooling down
The Bottom Line
Our weather over the past has been rather unusual. Thunderstorms? Temperatures in the 50s? A touch of humidity in the air? It's January, for crying out loud!
We are still under the thumb of this storm system through Friday morning. Following one more push of (generally light) rain, a cold front will once again open the door to cooler air. Temperatures tank heading into the weekend, with a nuisance chilly breeze the common thread in the forecast.
Things look seasonable and pretty quiet through next week. Our next chance of rain showers is expected on Tuesday.
Friday the 13th
As of this writing (6 a.m.), temperatures are in the mid 50s and we have a blob of light to moderate rain centered over New Jersey. So it is a damp and dreary, although relatively warm start to the day.
As one final piece of energy comes through, I have to keep lingering rain showers in the forecast until about 9 or 10 a.m. Friday. And then the rest of the day looks dry, although skies will be very slow to clear.
Once the rain wraps up, a chilly northwest breeze will start to gust over 20 mph. That wind will carry colder air into New Jersey. So expect temperatures to decrease through the afternoon. I estimate we'll be in the lower to mid 40s by sunset (just before 5 p.m.) Back to jacket weather.
Thermometers will continue to spiral downward Friday evening. We'll bottom out around 30 degrees by Saturday morning — a light freeze for most of the state. The wind chill (the "feels like" or "apparent" temperature) will be closer to 20 degrees, adding a bite to the cold air.
An important factor in this weekend's forecast is a powerful area of low pressure that will re-form off the coast on Saturday.
And that's where it will stay. That system will lead to enhanced cloud cover and wind throughout the wind. But raindrops should stay away.
We'll see a mix of sun and clouds on Saturday. (For the record, I initially typed the word "fun" instead of "sun" there — hopefully that also describes your weekend plans!) The thickest clouds will be found 1.) along the coast, and 2.) early in the day.
A brisk wind will continue to blow out of the northwest, up to about 20 mph. HIgh temperatures will only reach about 40 degrees. Definitely chilly. But right on the normal high for mid January.
Winds on Sunday may be a little stronger, pushing past 20 mph. But skies will be brighter, and temperatures slightly warmer.
Highs should push into the lower 40s on Sunday. Again, we can call that seasonable.
Monday (Martin Luther King Jr. Day)
Many New Jersey students (and some adults) have a three-day weekend. And Monday will probably be the best of the bunch.
We'll keep sunshine on Monday. And the wind will finally calm down. High temperatures will reach the mid to upper 40s. Not too shabby for January.
The Extended Forecast
There is still zero snow in the forecast. A few rain showers creep in on Tuesday, as temperatures approach 50.
Another late-week storm system could be more impactful, in the Thursday-Friday time frame. Too early for timing and impacts details at this time though.
Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.