One more hot and humid day – rain and big cooldown Thursday night
Here we go! After six days in a row of above-normal temperatures and uncomfortable humidity, a big change is just around a corner. A strong cold front is charging toward New Jersey, which will spark one more round of thunderstorms and then open the door to cooler, drier air.
With big weather changes imminent, this forecast is very much "timeline" based. So let me try something a little different, and express what to expect over the next 36 hours by time frame.
—Through 5 p.m. Thursday... Just plain hot. And humid too, of course. High temperatures will pop to about 90 degrees away from the hilltops of NW NJ and the Jersey Shore. The heat index ("feels like" or "apparent" temperature) could reach the upper 90s.
—5 p.m. to 9 p.m.... A thunderstorm may creep into North Jersey (above I-78). Given the heat and humidity, any storm that does form could be strong to severe. Lots of lightning, localized heavy rain, and possibly gusty winds.
—9 p.m. to Midnight... Our main event begins, as rain and thunderstorms arrive in northwestern New Jersey. Cooler, drier air will start to arrive in North Jersey.
—Midnight to 6 a.m. Friday... Scattered rain and thunderstorms sweep across the entire state. Central Jersey will begin to taste cooler, drier air.
—6 a.m. to Noon Friday... Still some lingering showers around throughout the morning. Still a sticky start for South Jersey, but dew points will really drop off by midday.
—After Noon Friday... Partial clearing. Maybe a residual shower, especially to the south. Turning cooler and not as humid. High temperatures will end up between 75 and 80 degrees.
So by lunchtime on Friday, it's going to feel incredibly refreshing. Those temperatures are more typical of mid-September — so it's probably fair to call it a taste of early Fall.
Saturday morning looks nice and cool, thanks to bone-dry air and clear skies. My latest forecast shows low temperatures ranging from 53 (north) to 63 (urban/coast) degrees. It is worth noting that some models put a shower clipping South Jersey early Saturday morning — I'm not sure I buy it (too dry and too far south), so I'm leaning toward a dry forecast.
We will enjoy a sunny, mild, and dry Saturday afternoon, with highs in the upper 70s to around 80 degrees.
On Sunday, it looks like a weak backdoor front will shift our winds from a northerly to northeasterly. That weak on-shore breeze will be just enough to introduce some cloud cover — let's call it partly to mostly cloudy. I also don't want to completely rule out a sprinkle as those clouds thicken up. With highs limited to the mid 70s, we'll end up almost 10 degrees below-normal for this time of year.
The sea breeze intensifies Monday, setting up a mostly cloudy day. Again, there will be a chance for a shower or sprinkle at some point.
Our forecast gets a little muddled through the middle of next week. My low confidence is based on the fact that temperatures and rain chances continue to flip-flop with every model run. Keeping that in mind, we should warm back up to 80 degrees or better. But it will come with some rain. At the moment, late Tuesday to Wednesday looks like the wettest period of next week — but again, there's a lot of uncertainty here.
As you may know, I hate humidity. So I can't wait for our big cooldown and dry-out! Hope you enjoy it too!