Dec 1, 2012: Fall-Like Start To Winter

Forecast Highlights:

The region has been under a cold pattern for the last week of November, with the 2nd snowstorm of the month on the 27th. Following another cold day today, a warm front is moving through the region, removing the cold air mass from the region as much warmer temperatures briefly return. Behind a cold front on the 5th, temperatures will cool down briefly before returning to slightly above average, with stormy weather potentially returning by the 9-11th.



Sunday – Tuesday: Much Warmer, 60+ Degrees

Today is the first day of meteorological winter, and conditions definitely proved to be winter-like across the Northeast, continuing the cold pattern from the end of November, with widespread light snow and wintry mix north of the area while temperatures in the NYC area were also cooler than average. This cooler pattern, however, is currently ending, with a warmer fall-like air mass to start the winter after today.

A warm front is currently moving through the region, with winds expected to switch to the southwest as a much warmer air mass enters the region. The cold will still stick around especially for interior areas tonight, however, with light freezing drizzle possible for SE NY and more likely towards Connecticut, which may cause hazardous road conditions. Temperatures will then surge into the upper 40s to mid 50s across the area on Sunday, with the warmest highs in the immediate NYC area and coolest highs in the interior northern areas.

A weakening cold front will move through the region on Sunday night with light rain expected, but temperatures will fail to cool down behind the front, with highs on Monday slightly warmer than those of Sunday, reaching the low to mid 50s inland and the mid to upper 50s for the rest of the area, approaching 60 degrees in NE NJ. The warmest temperatures are expected on Tuesday, reaching the lower to mid 60s for most of the area except for Long Island and parts of southern CT, which should be slightly cooler in the mid 50s to low 60s with a SSW wind. A stronger cold front will then move through on Tuesday night into early Wednesday, with additional showers expected.

Wednesday – Beyond: Slightly Cooler, Then More Rain

Colder temperatures will briefly return behind the cold front, with overnight lows dropping into the mid 20s to low 30s for Wednesday night away from NYC and the immediate coast, which will be slightly warmer. Highs on Thursday will reach the upper 30s to low 40s inland and the low to mid 40s for the rest of the area with mainly sunny skies expected. These chilly temperatures will be short lasting with warmer temperatures returning for Friday, with highs back into the mid 40s inland and mid to upper 40s for the rest of the area, perhaps approaching 50 degrees near NE NJ.

Towards next weekend, around the 8-9th, there will be some changes in the pattern, most notably with the weakening of the trough in the Gulf of Alaska at least during this specific time frame, along with some ridging towards eastern Greenland. At this time, the GFS is the boldest with these changes, with a strong ridge off the western US coast sticking around for a while, while the ECM only has a short lasting ridge followed by another strong trough in the Gulf of Alaska. The model guidance is still struggling with handling this time frame, although there appear to be two storm potentials within the December 8-12 time frame. There remains a considerable spread with the model guidance regarding this time frame, although the potential is there for one or two storms to affect the area in this time period. Stay tuned for more information on this time period.

2 thoughts on “Dec 1, 2012: Fall-Like Start To Winter

  1. Anonymous Reply

    Uhhh…Sir, I have one question, Is it very rare to see Severe Weather in December in NYC?

    • NYC Weather Reply

      Severe weather in December is not unheard of; a recent example is a severe weather outbreak on Dec 1st, 2006. This is generally an exception, however, as severe weather outbreaks are uncommon in December in NYC, although there can be occasional non-severe thunderstorms; last year, there was a line of heavy thunderstorms on 12/21.

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