NJ rides the temperature roller coaster this week: From summer to fall
The Bottom Line
As we wrap up the impacts of a pesky coastal low — clouds, sprinkles, and coastal flooding — we look ahead to a wide variety of temperatures through the rest of the week.
Summer lover? We could see a few decent beach days, with air temperatures near 80 degrees. (Ocean temps are holding in the upper 60s, akin to early-mid July.)
Autumn lover? A strong cold front will bring our next "temperature tumble" next weekend.
Very similar to Monday. A storm system is still sitting and spinning just southeast of New Jersey, throwing some clouds and raindrops toward the coast. I don't see anything more than spotty sprinkles and light drizzle on Tuesday, limited to southern and coastal New Jersey. Farther inland, skies will be considerably brighter and drier.
High temperatures should reach the lower 70s for most of the state. The Shore will be the cool spot, with some locales only hitting upper 60s.
The coastal flooding picture looks better for Tuesday too, after significant water issues on Monday. Winds surrounding that coastal low are now blowing out of the north-northeast, rather than a straight easterly on-shore direction. Less water means a lower flooding risk. We still face one more "high" high tide cycle around midday Tuesday, with widespread minor flooding possible. A Coastal Flood Advisory has been issued for Atlantic and Cape May coastal areas. Remember to never attempt to drive, walk, or swim through flooded areas.
We'll see some clearing Tuesday night. Although with some humidity in the air, patchy dense fog may become "a thing" by Wednesday morning. Overnight lows will bottom out around 60, give or take.
Probably nice and mild. As long as that coastal low shifts out-to-sea, skies will become partly sunny and our warming trend begins. I'm seeing mid 70s for Wednesday afternoon, which is 5 to 10 degrees above seasonal norms.
There is one forecast model — the NAM — that keeps showers and sprinkles over southern New Jersey through much of Wednesday. As much as a quarter-inch of additional rainfall. Given the trend of our present weather and of other guidance, I've leaned away from that wet and pessimistic forecast.
Dry and warmer. Partly sunny skies will allow high temperatures to push into the 75 to 80 degree range. Nice!
Summerlike warmth. With abundant sunshine, dry weather, and a light southerly wind, temperatures should top out around 80 degrees. That's 10+ above normal, and close to record highs for mid October.
The Extended Forecast
I wouldn't be surprised to see lower 80s early Saturday, with a stiff southerly breeze gusting to 30 mph. But Saturday will also be our big transition day, as a strong cold front arrives from the west.
At the moment, that frontal passage looks to happen Saturday late afternoon through evening. But 108 hours in advance, that timeline is not set in stone, and is subject to "wiggle" either earlier or later.
A period of steady to heavy rain will accompany that frontal boundary, followed by a burst of much cooler and drier air arriving Saturday night.
By Sunday, highs will only reach the upper 60s. Much more typical of the middle of October.
Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.