Where is winter? NJ’s next storm system likely another rainmaker
The Bottom Line
So far this winter season, we have had two snow events in New Jersey. Both limited to NW NJ, and only putting about 2 or 3 inches on the ground. Newark Airport has only netted 0.1" of total snow accumulation this season — the slowest start to winter there since 2006-07.
Although we do have some snow (and rain) showers around the Garden State early on this Monday morning, it is not amounting to much. And there are no significant winter storm signatures on the horizon. As the headline of this post suggested, our next storm system in the Thursday-Friday time frame will carry warm air and plain rain only.
We had some snow and rain push through New Jersey overnight. But surface temperatures are mainly above freezing, especially where steadier precipitation fell in central and southern NJ. So road conditions are really just wet — I am more concerned about ongoing visibility issues than slushy and/or icy travel.
There are some widely scattered pockets of heavy-ish snow/rain out there to start the day. One more band of showers will push from west to east between about 6 a.m. and 9 a.m.
After mid-morning, showers will be done. And skies will start to clear. I'm optimistic that skies will turn quite bright by Monday midday and afternoon. Let's call it mostly sunny.
Monday's high temperatures will reach the lower to mid 40s. Pretty close to seasonal normals for this time of year.
As darkness falls on Monday night, skies will stay mainly clear and our weather will remain quiet. (Other than a little breeze.) Low temperatures will bottom out around the 30-degree mark.
While Tuesday will start with sunshine, clouds will thicken up again soon enough. But that's about the most interesting element in Tuesday's forecast. High temperatures will be similar to Monday, around 40 to 45 degrees.
Again, a quiet weather day. Under mostly cloudy skies, highs will reach the lower 40s.
I had previously included a chance of showers in Wednesday's forecast. But that potential precipitation seems to have fizzled out.
Our next storm system comes into view by the end of the week, a reasonably strong area of low pressure that will slide toward and along the coast. As we've seen several times this season, however, this setup will carry relatively warm air into New Jersey. That means this looks like another rainmaker.
During the day Thursday, a few spotty showers and sprinkles may pop up. Skies will be cloudy. But temperatures should rise into the lower 50s by Thursday evening.
The steadiest, heaviest rain will drive into New Jersey late Thursday night through early Friday morning. Over an inch of rain is possible. And that band of rain could become pretty convective, with thunder and lightning a possibility.
Our weather should settle down and dry out shortly after daybreak Friday morning. And that's it — I don't think this is going to be a case of showers lingering all day.
We will, however, fall under the influence of a cold front on Friday. So while the day will start in the 50s, a chilly breeze will push thermometers downward through the afternoon and evening.
The Extended Forecast
Even though we'll see partial clearing, Saturday might be a touch blustery with a cold westerly breeze. High temperatures will only make it to around 40 degrees. Yet again, a typical January day.
Sunday looks mostly sunny with lower 40s.
Despite the seasonable temperatures, there is no deep cool of frigid air building to our northwest. So when a storm system comes along, it's just too warm to produce widespread winter weather. Even for next week, long-range forecast models show only rainy storm systems instead of snowy ones.
There's still a lot of winter left to come. But I'm sure ski enthusiasts and snow plow drivers are getting pretty antsy at this point!
Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.