Warm weekend ahead for NJ, but watch out for thunderstorms
It's not a terrible weekend forecast for the Garden State, but it's not perfect either.
Here are your weather headlines for Friday, August 19, 2016...
Friday: Pretty Nice Summer Day
Despite a few showers and a bank of thick clouds passing through New Jersey overnight, our weather should improve rapidly by late morning Friday. From that point forward, it should turn into a nice, warm summer day.
Skies will become mostly sunny for the majority of the day, although a few extra clouds will probably creep in for the late afternoon hours. I also can't rule out an isolated shower or thunderstorm popping up through the afternoon hours. Meanwhile, temperatures on Friday will be warm and similar to Thursday, in the upper 80s to around 90 degrees. At the Jersey Shore, a light sea breeze will keep temperatures a bit cooler, close to 80 degrees.
Friday night looks fairly comfortable and uneventful, with partly cloudy skies and lows around 70.
Saturday: More Sun than Clouds?
Saturday's forecast is actually shaping up pretty nicely, and looks to be the better day of the weekend. Having said that, it's not going to be perfect.
The latest models suggest skies will feature more sun than clouds for Saturday, with seasonably warm high temperatures in the mid to upper 80s. Taken alone, that would be a stellar forecast for a summer weekend. However, there will be a chance for widely scattered thunderstorms on Saturday too. Now, the forecast spread and strength of these storms have wavered widely as this week has progressed. So confidence is a little shaky here. I am leading to a mostly dry forecast for Saturday, so I think your outdoor plans can stay intact. You'll just have to keep an eye on the sky during the heat of the day - if that sky starts to darken up with cumulonimbus clouds, it's time to head indoors.
Sunday: Ending the Weekend with a Bang
Sunday should start off OK. However, as a southeasterly wind picks up (coming off the ocean), cloud cover will increase. I think Sunday will become mostly cloudy for at least the Jersey Shore, and it's probably going to be a bit cooler and windier than you may like. Inland highs should climb into the mid to upper 80s again.
The big problem of the weekend will come late-day Sunday, as a cold front approaches. That front looks to provide plenty of lift to form a line of strong thunderstorms. Current thinking limits those rain chances to between 5 p.m. Sunday and 8 a.m. Monday, with the best chance in the Sunday evening-nighttime hours. A period of heavy rain and gusty winds is possible, if not likely. We could pickup an inch of beneficial rainfall in a short period of time (especially in northern and central New Jersey).
After any residual showers come to an end early Monday morning, skies will rapidly clear and the humidity level will drop. And by drop, I mean it's going to plummet dramatically. While dew points this weekend will be around 70, they may end up in the 40s by next week.
This new, ridiculously dry air mass will lead to some gorgeous, almost-fall-like weather through most of next week. Sunny, dry afternoons will top out in the lower 80s at the highest. Morning temperatures may dip into the 50s across much of the state! Our next chance of rain will hold off until late-day Friday.
Have a great weekend!