NJ weather: First weekend of December starts wet, ends dry
The Bottom Line
Friday will be unseasonably cool, but otherwise fine. The big weather headline here is a storm system that will drive in another round of rain and wind, making for a damp n' dreary start to the weekend. But there's nothing overly concerning or extreme. Definitely no snow. And the entire weekend will not be a washout.
Our normal high temperature here in early December is within a few degrees of 50. That's what we're looking for on a daily basis. 50 degrees is a "nice" day this time of year.
Friday's high temperature? Upper 40s. Hey, that's pretty close to normal!
It is a very cold start to the day, with only barrier islands at the Jersey Shore at or just above the freezing mark. Most thermometers are deep in the 20s Friday morning.
We will do better Friday afternoon. Compared to Thursday, Friday will be sunnier, calmer, and slightly warmer. Again, highs in the upper 40s.
Friday evening, an influx of moisture and clouds will prevent temperatures from falling more than a few degrees. In fact, thermometers may begin to rise by daybreak Saturday. Look for lows in the 40s. Patchy fog is a possibility too.
The first weekend of December is obviously a popular time for tree lightings, winter festivals, shopping, and other holiday festivities. And yes, much of Saturday isn't looking too pretty. But let's lay out the timeline and try to find the bright spots.
—Early Morning (4 a.m. to 9 a.m.)... Spotty showers may creep in from the west.
—Mid Morning through Early Afternoon (9 a.m. to 2 p.m.)... A band of steadier, heavier rain arrives. This will be the wettest part of the day.
—Mid to Late Afternoon (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.)... Drying out, but mostly cloudy and windy. High temperatures should mainly reach the mid to upper 50s.
—Early Evening (4 p.m. to 7 p.m.)... One more quick shower is possible, as the cold front itself passes through the state. Still windy.
—Evening & Overnight (after 7 p.m.)... Skies quickly clear out. Drying out with calming winds overnight. Lows will dip to the lower to mid 30s.
Total rainfall is forecast to reach about a quarter-inch to half-inch statewide. Top wind gusts will hit about 30 mph. The chance of snow is zero. The chance of thunder, severe weather, and/or flooding is low. No coastal flooding to worry about.
So I do not need to ring alarm bells for Saturday's storm system for anything overly hazardous or extreme. It will just be a period of lousy, inclement weather.
The brighter and drier day of the weekend. But also the cooler one.
We should wake up to sunshine Sunday morning, with only fair weather clouds dotting the sky later on (especially south and coast). It will be dry, with lighter winds. High temperatures will only reach the mid 40s — running about 5 degrees below seasonal normals.
Quite possibly the nicest day of the next stretch. But don't expect any intense warmth — it's just going to be a seasonable early December kind of day.
Most of Monday will be mostly sunny, with some extra clouds late-day. It will be another dry day with light winds. High temperatures should hit about 50 degrees.
The Extended Forecast
Forecast models are consistent in showering another storm system arriving in New Jersey on Tuesday. However, whether it's going to be a stagnant period of unsettled weather (GFS) or a quick hit of rain (Euro) is unclear.
I think the atmosphere will then be primed to deliver a burst of cold air. As we have discussed, a deep freeze is the first ingredient in producing wintry weather. So by this time next week, we may have to both bundle up in more layers and watch the horizon for potential snowflakes too.