Thursday NJ weather: Cool start, warm middle, wet and cool finish
Let's start this edition of the CMDZ weather blog with a forecast verification note. Wednesday was a few degrees warmer than expected (I said 73 to 78, but we did see some lower 80s). Thursday morning is a few degrees cooler than expected (I said 57 to 65, but there are many 50s out there). Not far enough off to call it a total bust, but I did have to pause during my forecast creation process to ponder what went wrong. And, more importantly, consider how to tweak things accordingly for the next few days.
As the headline of this post suggests, your Thursday is starting cool, then turning warm. We face a brief hit of wetness and wind, before temperatures fall once again.
Early sunshine Thursday morning will give way to increasing clouds. It will be warm, somewhat humid, and somewhat breezy throughout the day. Thermometers should top 80 degrees for most of the state.
And hey, here's a piece of great news! After an extended period of rough surf, our rip current risk has dropped to low for Thursday!
Our cold front will begin its pass through New Jersey around 3 p.m. Thursday afternoon exiting around 9 p.m. Thursday evening. Remember that a cold front is simply the leading edge of a cooler, drier air mass — the lift associated with that density difference is usually enough to form some precipitation. In this case, models are showing some spotty rain passing through North Jersey. I wouldn't rule out rumbles of thunder, given our warm and humid air. Meanwhile, central, coastal, and southern NJ will face quick isolated showers. No matter where you are, a quick burst of wind will mark the frontal passage, with gusts over 20 mph.
As showers exit Thursday night, skies will clear and temperatures will fall quickly. It's tough to pinpoint just how cool it will get, but I'm guessing overnight lows will range from the mid-upper 40s in NW NJ to the upper 50s in South Jersey.
On Friday, we flip back to beautiful weather. Skies will be mostly sunny, weather will be dry, and southerly winds will be light. High temperatures are forecast to reach the mid 70s, slightly above-normal for late September.
The weekend will begin with yet another warmup. You'll feel some stickiness on Saturday, as high temperatures soar into the lower 80s. You'll see a mix of sun and clouds overhead — some models have been painting a mostly sunny day, which would give the day a very summery feel. As another cold front slides through the Garden State late Saturday, a round of showers and thunderstorms is possible. As it stands now, the best chance of rain will be at night.
Lingering clouds will hang around through Sunday morning, and I wouldn't rule out an early shower. Then clearing skies take over once again, as we cool down too. Highs will return to the pleasant mid 70s to end the weekend.
A southeasterly wind — an on-shore flow — is expected Monday. That will lead to even cooler temperatures, in the lower 70s for most (especially along the Jersey Shore). High pressure will be in control of our atmosphere though, so we should maintain a sunny, dry sky.
A southwesterly wind takes over Tuesday. That's a warming wind, so thermometers bounce back to around 80 degrees Tuesday afternoon. Once again, I'm seeing abundant sunshine.
Next week's warmup is expected to get a bit out-of-control starting on Wednesday. Widespread 80s? Maybe even 90 degrees at some point? Quite unseasonable for the first week of October. Near-record, in fact.