Nov 2, 2010: Rain, Some Snow, Then Very Cold

The last two days brought very chilly temperatures to the area, with lows even reaching the upper 10s in isolated spots in NW NJ! Low temperatures were generally below freezing this morning across most of the area, leading to widespread frost. Both yesterday and today brought sunny skies, with yesterday’s high temperatures generally in the mid 40s to lower 50s across the area and today’s highs in the upper 40s to mid 50s.

A storm is expected to affect the area for Thursday, bringing rain and even potentially some snow for the higher elevations of Sussex/Orange counties, which will be followed by a strong trough, bringing even colder temperatures than those we saw yesterday and today.

Tonight and Tomorrow’s Outlook:

Tonight will be another cold night across most of the area, with lows in the lower to mid 20s inland, mid 20s to lower 30s for the N/W suburbs of NYC, and in the mid to upper 30s for NYC.

The cold air mass over the area is expected to weaken tomorrow, leading to slightly warmer high temperatures, in the lower 50s inland, lower to mid 50s in the immediate NYC area, and in the lower 50s for Long Island/S CT. A south wind is expected.

Wednesday Night – Friday: Storm Brings Rain, Some Snow

A storm expected to form on Wednesday off the coast of the Mid Atlantic will start to intensify while moving northeast, staying offshore. At first, the storm was shown to be offshore, and I went with rain and highs in the 40s in my forecast. As the models trended much more west as there was more phasing, I went slightly further west with my forecast, putting much warmer temperatures, but yesterday’s models completely backed away from that idea, and some were even so far offshore that they did not bring rain to the area. This did not seem like a likely solution, and the models are going back to the original coastal storm idea, with moderate rain and highs in the upper 40s to mid 50s.

There is uncertainty on how far west the low pressure will be, but it will bring rain to the area directly. Precipitation will start to fall in the form of rain late on Wednesday night, and intensify on Thursday, ending on Thursday night. At least 1/4 to 1/2 inch of rain will fall inland, with 1/2 to 1 inch for the rest of the area.

On Thursday night, it is possible that another storm could affect the area, mainly the eastern parts, however this is still uncertain, as it only recently started showing up on the models. For now, I went up in between, expecting light to moderate rain for the NYC area on Thursday night, but if the solution above does verify, heavy rain could fall in Long Island late on Thursday night, with moderate rain in NYC, and light rain in NW NJ. More details on that will come tomorrow, as well as a detailed discussion with maps for the time frame.

Friday Night – Sunday: Very Cold, Snow Flurries Possible

On Friday night, as the storm exits and the trough moves in, widespread light precipitation is expected across the Northeast, which will mainly be in the form of light snow, with lake effect snow bringing accumulating snowfall to western New York. As a result, mostly cloudy skies are expected for the area on Friday night, and some of this precipitation could reach the area. Combined with the cold temperatures, some places away from NYC could wake up to snow showers on Saturday morning.

Saturday will continue with the mostly cloudy skies, with an isolated rain or snow shower possible, but high temperatures will be much colder with 850 mb temperatures below -5c, likely in the lower to upper 40s for most of the area. As skies clear on Saturday night and the air mass is at its coldest, very cold temperatures are expected, with upper 10s possible in NW NJ if there are clear skies. At this time, I went a little conservative with the forecast lows due to potential cloud cover, with low temperatures in the lower 20s inland, mid to upper 20s north and west of NYC and for Long Island/S CT, and lower to mid 30s in NYC, but low temperatures could end up slightly colder if there are mostly clear or clear skies.

As the trough starts to exit on Sunday, there will likely be high temperatures slightly cooler than those of Saturday, in the lower to mid 40s for most of the area with a few upper 40s possible towards the immediate NYC area. Sunday night will still be cold, but nowhere near as cold as Saturday night.

Longer Range: More Warmth?

There is still a lot of uncertainty on the longer range, as model solutions vary from keeping a cold pattern in the NE to a much warmer pattern setting up for the East Coast, but it is likely that the pattern becomes warmer, with slightly above average temperatures possible, and I am tracking a storm on the models for Tuesday-Thursday, November 9-11, which at this time is modeled to be well to the north/west of the NYC area but could end up affecting the area.

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