Feb 16, 2011: Warm For Now, But Cold To Return

Today brought mostly sunny skies to the area along with mild temperatures warmer than those of yesterday, reaching the lower to upper 40s across the area with the lowest temperatures inland and along the immediate coast, with Newark reaching 50 degrees. Temperatures will continue to warm tomorrow and even more on Friday, however will crash down by the weekend along with a windy Saturday, as yet another cold spell affects the area with the potential for snow on Monday night into Tuesday.

Tomorrow’s Outlook:

Tomorrow will be a partly cloudy day across the area with a southwest wind expected. As a warmer air mass continues to push into the region, temperatures will warm up more than today, reaching the lower to mid 50s inland, mid to upper 50s for the immediate NYC area, with the lowest temperatures near the immediate coast with at least mid to upper 40s expected.

Tomorrow night, mild conditions are expected, with low temperatures above freezing for the entire area, reaching the mid to upper 30s inland and the upper 30s to mid 40s for the immediate NYC area. These mild overnight lows will help to melt the snow cover even more.

Friday And Weekend Outlook: Warm, Then Cold And Windy

Friday will be the warmest day of this warm spell, with partly cloudy skies becoming mostly cloudy as a cold front approaches, bringing the risk of an isolated shower in the late afternoon/evening hours. Except for the immediate coast, high temperatures will peak well into the 50s across the area, with a few lower 60s possible inland and lower to mid 60s expected for the immediate NYC area. With the passage of this cold front, however, conditions will quickly change.

On Friday night, temperatures will drop back into the 30s for most of the area with increasing winds, and Saturday will bring generally steady temperatures, only rising slightly to peak in the upper 30s to mid 40s across the area. Windy conditions are expected, with the potential for wind speeds between 20 and 30 mph and gusts between 40 and 50 mph, potentially above 50 mph especially near the coast. A Wind Alert will likely be issued with tomorrow’s update.

Sunday And Beyond: Increasing Uncertainty, But Snow Potential Exists

Sunday will bring slightly colder temperatures, generally in the mid 30s to lower 40s across the area, however from this point there is increasing uncertainty with what happens, with some models such as the GGEM showing a strong cold air blast for Sunday night and Monday, with the GFS only showing weak cold air. What there is confidence with, however, is that a storm is expected between Monday and Tuesday and has the potential to bring snow to the area.

While the storm will likely track towards the Ohio Valley at first, there is expected to be a strong high pressure along with cold air to the north of the storm, making it likely that precipitation type in the northern side of the storm will be snow and the storm will be blocked from tracking too far north. The possibility is there, however, that the high pressure and the cold are so strong that the storm is completely suppressed, staying to the south of the area. The in between solution would bring snow to the area, with the potential for a moderate snowstorm.

At this time, the GFS is the northernmost model, though it still shows at least some wintry precipitation for the area, with its latest run bringing a moderate to heavy snowfall to the northern parts of the area. The GFS, however, is an outlier compared to the other models, which keep most of the snow to the south of the area, and the GFS is also much faster, bringing in precipitation already by Monday morning/afternoon with the storm already having cleared the region by Tuesday, while the other models that do bring precipitation starting the storm on Monday afternoon/evening and lasting through Tuesday. At this time, I am leaning more towards the other models with a more suppressed solution, and it is possible that the storm misses the area to the south, however there is still time for changes with the expectations, and it is possible that the storm may either bring little to no snow for the area, a moderate snowstorm, or a mixed rain/snow event for the area. Stay tuned for more information on this storm and how it may affect the area.

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