Temperatures across New Jersey will slowly warm through the 70s and even 80s by the end of the week.

Fall is a season of variability for New Jersey. I often refer to the autumnal temperature forecast as "riding a roller coaster". This week has been a pretty boring theme park attraction, with consistent sunshine and seasonable temperatures. The ride is about to get a bit bumpier, with a warmup and (maybe) a few raindrops on the way.

A big dome of high pressure continues to dominate the atmosphere throughout the Northeast U.S. This dry, comfortable air mass is the culprit for the chilly mornings and blue-sky afternoons of late. But that air mass is about to shift, causing the aforementioned changes to the forecast. (You knew the gorgeous weather couldn't last forever!)

Tuesday is starting with clear skies and cool temperatures, in the neighborhood of 50 degrees. Instead of perfect sunshine, we will see a few clouds build into the sky by Tuesday afternoon. I believe that will be just enough to keep temperatures a few degrees cooler than yesterday, with most of the state topping out in the lower 70s. (Monday's high temps were 75 at EWR, 74 at TTN, and 74 at ACY.)

As moisture subtly returns to our atmosphere, the next several nights won't be nearly as cool as the past few. Tuesday night should be comfortably cool, with low temps generally in the lower 50s. (A few 40s in the usual cool spots, with mid 50s in the urban corridors.) Skies will remain mostly clear, and patchy fog will be possible by Wednesday morning.

As our winds become southwesterly on Wednesday, we'll start to warm up. Highs will bump into the mid to upper 70s by Wednesday afternoon, with a mix of sun and clouds. It will be another gorgeous weather day.

On Thursday, a cold front will approach New Jersey. But it is pretty weak, and I expect it to dissipate or "wash out" before it makes it all the way through the state. (This might even happen before it even enters the state.) While there could be a rain shower around North Jersey Thursday morning, I think the vast majority of the state will stay dry. And, because the cold front gets stuck, we'll stay on the warm side of the world. Highs on Thursday will top out near 80, about 10+ degrees above normal for early October.

The forecast begins to get muddled and somewhat unsettled as the weekend approaches. As a couple of shortwaves (read: weak atmosphere disturbances) rich through New Jersey on Friday, we might feel a few raindrops at some point. Because of that, and because skies will remain partly to mostly cloudy on Friday, I suspect temperatures will be a bit cooler again. We're presently putting forecast highs for Friday afternoon in the lower to mid 70s.

The early look at the weekend shows good news for Saturday, and meh news for Sunday.

Warmth returns by Saturday afternoon, as high temperatures once again make a run for the lower 80s. It will be a partly sunny and breezy day — maybe even a bit gusty at times.

Clouds will increase and we'll introduce a chance of showers to the forecast by Sunday afternoon. Winds will remain elevated. Temperatures will be a bit cooler because of the clouds and the rain potential, but still above normal in the upper 70s to around 80 degrees.

The current forecast shows a pretty wet day on Monday. That timing is very much subject to change, so we'll see how things develop in the coming days.

Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.

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