Mar 23, 2012: Winter’s Cold Not Gone Yet

Forecast Highlights:


– Colder with scattered showers this weekend
– Windy and colder early next week; lows in 20s possible inland
– Next light rain potential returns next Thursday

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Record highs on Friday, March 23, 2012:


Central Park, NY
76 degrees (tied record: 76 degrees – 1923)
LaGuardia, NY
74 degrees (previous record: 70 degrees – 1994)
JFK Airport, NY
77 degrees (previous record: 69 degrees – 1994)
Islip, NY
75 degrees (previous record: 69 degrees – 1994)
Bridgeport, CT
71 degrees (previous record: 68 degrees – 1990)

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Today’s Observations:

As a back door cold front moved through today, the last record warm day was observed across the region, with partly to mostly cloudy skies and highs reaching the lower to mid 70s across most of the area with mid to upper 70s in northern NJ, NYC, and parts of Long Island. Temperatures near the northern parts of the area were close to the forecast, but northern NJ, NYC and SW Long Island ended up a few degrees warmer than expected.

As a cutoff low in the central US approaches, a cloudy and colder weekend is expected, with scattered showers resulting in at least 1/4 to 1/2 inch of rain across parts of the area. As the storm moves offshore, a relatively strong trough compared to the other cool spells this winter will drop into the region for the first half of next week, bringing highs down into the 50s and lows possibly into the upper 20s inland. Temperatures will slightly warm up for the second half of next week, but no additional significant warm spell is in sight through the medium range.

Tomorrow’s Outlook:

With the cutoff low moving into the region, cloudy skies are expected tomorrow with SE winds and a colder air mass, resulting in much colder temperatures compared to those of today. Highs are expected to reach the upper 50s to lower 60s from NYC and further north/west, possibly getting close to 65 degrees in parts of northern NJ, with mid 50s to 60 degrees across most of Long Island and southern CT. Isolated showers are expected tomorrow, mostly towards the evening hours, but only light rain amounts are expected, up to 1/4 inch in places where rain does fall.

Sunday – Next Week: Cold Returns One More Time


The cutoff low will continue to produce scattered showers amounting up to 1/4 inch, locally 1/2 inch, throughout the day on Sunday and into parts of Sunday night with highs again in the 50s to lower 60s, although by Monday the storm will move offshore and intensify as it moves towards Newfoundland. This will allow for a stronger trough to drop into the region, with partly sunny skies and windy conditions expected on Monday, with gusts up to 40 mph, if not locally higher, possible. Highs will reach the mid to upper 50s across most of the area.

With the trough moving in, temperatures will quickly cool down on Monday night with lows in the lower to upper 30s across the area; the interior parts of the area may even drop into the upper 20s for lows. Mainly sunny skies are expected on Tuesday with highs in the upper 40s to lower 50s across most of the area, possibly near the mid 40s inland, with another cold night expected. Temperatures will slightly warm up on Wednesday as the cold air mass weakens.

The next weak storm will approach the region on late Wednesday into Thursday, once again bringing light rain but not enough to end the dry pattern. There is expected to be enough suppression to prevent temperatures from spiking into the 60s on Thursday, with a more likely scenario including highs in the 50s once again. Depending on the development of the storm and the cold air ahead of it, parts of northern New England may even see snow. Temperatures will slightly cool down by the late week, but although this is not a sustained cold pattern, it also does not appear that sustained warmer-much warmer than average temperatures are on the way through the medium range, with highs likely staying in the 50s and 60s. More updates will be posted on the longer range as details become clearer.

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