The Bottom Line
A storm system spinning over New England will be New Jersey's main weather driver Wednesday. It will produce clouds. And spotty showers. And it will keep the surf churned up along the Jersey Shore too.
In the coming days, our attention will turn to rising temperatures and humidity levels — it's going to start feeling August-ish again soon.
Another rain chance pops up this weekend. But it won't be enough to make a dent in our drought status.
We had a cluster of surprise showers pop up early Wednesday morning, pushing through drought-stricken Central New Jersey. Top rainfall totals were around a half-inch. Those showers have since exited or fizzled — but if you see puddles on the ground, now you know why.
The rest of Wednesday morning will be comfortable and pleasant. Skies will average partly sunny, as temperatures start around 60 degrees. High temps should reach the lower 80s Wednesday afternoon.
The surf was rough along the Jersey Shore on Tuesday, and it looks even worse on Wednesday. A high risk of dangerous rip currents is posted for Monmouth and Ocean counties at least. (Technically, the risk is only moderate for Atlantic and Cape May county beaches.) Wave heights may climb as high as 4 feet. Although you will catch some decent beach weather Wednesday, yellow and red flags will be flying. This is a day to stay out of the ocean — it is stronger than you.
The last item on our Wednesday weather checklist is rain. Oh boy, do we need it.
That storm system will spit a round of spotty showers toward New Jersey starting around mid-afternoon (2 p.m.) until late evening (10 p.m.) These showers will move from northeast to southwest — a bit unusual. If all goes well, there will be some rumbles of thunder and localized downpours.
While overall rainfall totals will stay less than a quarter-inch, those downpours could produce inch-plus rain in a few spots. Good, healthy rain. It may slow down Wednesday evening's commute. But there is little threat of flooding or severe weather.
After showers fizzle out Wednesday evening, we'll see scattered clouds overnight. Maybe some patchy fog where it really poured. Low temperatures will end up in the comfortable lower to mid 60s.
Thursday's forecast reads like a beautiful summer day. Mostly sunny skies will meet seasonable temperatures, maxing out in the mid 80s. Humidity levels will remain low to moderate, with a nice light breeze. Our weather should stay dry too.
By the end of the workweek, it is going to start feeling noticeably warmer and stickier. Friday's high temperatures will push to around 85 to 90 degrees. It could be our first 90-degree day in over a week (since Thursday 8/11).
Amidst the slightly above-normal temperatures and moderate humidity, it should be another pleasant, dry summer day. Early sunshine will give way to late-day clouds.
We had been talking about some rain for the upcoming weekend. And that chance is still alive. But again, it's not a washout, not a soaker, not a drought-buster.
It looks like the best chance for some showers will be Saturday morning, primarily in South Jersey. (Even that may be generous — some model guidance now paints an almost entirely dry solution for the state.) Skies will probably stay mostly cloudy on Saturday, with high temperatures in the mid 80s.
Sunday looks similar to Friday. Sun and clouds. Highs 85 to 90 degrees.
The Extended Forecast
Early next week could get interesting, as long-range models are settling on an unsettled solution. Meaning wet. Our next chance for a healthy soak would be Monday into Tuesday. A lot can happen between now and then, as we have seen several times this summer. But fingers crossed we can help our drought status a little bit with some good August rainfall.
Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.