NJ weather this week: Warm, then wet, then wintry
The one thing missing from the forecast for the Garden State this week: widespread wintry weather.
Here are your weather headlines for Monday, January 22, 2018...
Warm for Now
I promised a lovely springlike weekend, and Mother Nature over-delivered! We saw widespread 50s across New Jersey on both Saturday and Sunday, making it the first mild, dry weekend in over a month.
Monday is beginning with a splash of rain, as some very light showers and sprinkles have moistened up roads and windshields across the state. A bit more light drizzle will pass through the state for the rest of the day, with mostly cloudy to overcast skies overhead.
Such conditions make the high temperature forecast quite challenging. Even our forecast models suggest two schools of thought regarding Monday's temperatures: the HRRR and GFS warm us into the 50s for a third day in a row, while the NAM and Euro declare the clouds and raindrops to be the "winners" holding highs in the 40s statewide.
My on-air forecast presents the entire range of possibilities, suggesting high temperatures in the mid 40s to upper 50s. What's my gut telling me? Over-performing temperatures continue, putting most of us in the glorious 50s for another day.
Tuesday: The Wet Day
A pretty powerful storm system is working across the central U.S., delivering significant winter weather to much of the Great Plains and Great Lakes regions. But not here in New Jersey! As the center of low pressure passes well north of us, we'll see rain showers and thunderstorms — wet weather, not wintry weather.
The first half (i.e. morning hours) of Tuesday looks pretty wet. And yes, there could be rumbles of thunder along the way. (Although there won't be enough instability/energy to cause severe weather.) By Tuesday afternoon, only lingering showers should remain. Amidst the raindrops, it will be breezy and pretty warm — we'll make a run for 60 degrees on Tuesday.
There are two issues to keep in mind from this wet and warm weather: 1.) Visibility may be low at times, due to rain/fog, and 2.) Ice jams may once again cause flooding issues along rivers and other waterways.
Wednesday: The Cooldown Day
Sometime Tuesday night, winds will flip to blow from the west-northwest, once again opening the door to cooler air. But, as I've been advertising since last week, this one is not going to be an "arctic blast". Just a (temporary) cooldown to more seasonable weather through the middle of the week.
Wednesday's high temperatures will be limited to the lower 40s, with a stiff breeze up to about 20 mph. Not really arctic cold, not really ferocious winds — so not too terrible.
Thursday looks to be the coldest day of the week, with highs in the mid to upper 30s. That's only a few degrees below normal for this time of year, and we should see plenty of sunshine with lighter winds.
While Friday's forecast remains seasonable, I'm seeing another warmup in the cards for the final weekend of January. More mild 50s will accompany a chance for showers, currently scheduled from late Saturday to early Sunday. Depending on timing and temperatures, there could be (limited) icing potential from this weekend storm system.