Autumn is a season of transitions. And boy is this week the perfect example of that. Sunday was soggy. Monday was sunny. And for Tuesday, clouds and rain return as a cold front approaches New Jersey. But don't worry — we'll flip back to sunny, dry, pleasant weather again for Wednesday.

All's quiet so far on this Tuesday morning. Clouds have been on the increase overnight, and we're starting the day with temperatures in the 50s throughout the state. As of this writing (5:30 a.m.), radar is picking up on some raindrops about 50 miles west of the Delaware River.

Throughout the daytime hours Tuesday, you'll find mostly cloudy to overcast skies and spotty (hit-or-miss) showers. Kinda dreary, occasionally damp. High temperatures will reach the lower to (maybe) mid 60s — slightly cooler than Monday.

The big push of steadier, heavier rain will hold off until Tuesday evening. I estimate the rainfall intensity will start to pick up around 5 p.m. in southwestern New Jersey, spreading northward and eastward through about 8 p.m. That band of rain should exit the Garden State shortly after Midnight.

Following along recent model trends, we have upped our rainfall expectations. Most of New Jersey will probably see a half-inch to an inch of rain in the bucket — again, most of that will come in the evening hours. Totals along the Jersey Shore look to stay a bit lower, between a quarter-inch and half-inch.

This will be the third time in a week (Wednesday, Sunday, Tuesday) with healthy rainfall in the Garden State. Just what the Drought Doctor ordered!

As rain comes to an end Tuesday night, we'll get a brief period of gusty westerly winds (as high as about 30 mph). Blame the cold front for that, as our new air mass arrives.

By the time you wake up Wednesday morning, the rain will be long gone and sunshine will resume. While we'll keep a stiff breeze in the forecast Wednesday, I think it will be a pleasant fall day overall. Most high temperatures will end up in the near-normal 60 to 65 degree range.

Thursday looks great too, with more sunshine and dry weather. Highs should be firmly in the mid 60s.

Clouds return Friday, although the daytime hours don't look bad. Temperatures will hold steady peaking in the mid 60s Friday afternoon.

Our next next storm system is still showing up in the late Friday-early Saturday time frame. Although the window of most widespread rain has shifted a bit later. That raises concerns for an overall wet Saturday, at least for the first half of the day. However, this is far from a slam dunk forecast — the Euro model in particular shows a much drier solution for the start of the weekend.

In any case, if you're already making weekend plans, Sunday currently looks to be the better day. Again and as usual, we'll put a finer point on the forecast for the last weekend of October as it gets a little bit closer.

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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