Big Autumn Cooldown Coming for NJ This Weekend
While Friday will be very warm once again, the Garden State will turn toward cooler, more typical fall weather this weekend.
The weatherman is wearing a t-shirt, shorts, and sandals. That should be a hint of the summerlike weather that we'll enjoy for one more day!
After Thursday's beautiful weather, we'll enjoy more sunshine on Friday. Some patchy morning fog and low clouds are possible along the south coast, but we should stay dry during the daytime hours across the entire state. High temperatures will be in the mid to upper 80s - that's 10 to 15 degrees above normal. I wouldn't be surprised at all to see an isolated 90-degree reading in South Jersey Friday afternoon. Record highs are between 93 and 97 today, and should remain safe.
The changes begin Friday evening. As a cold front approaches, clouds will quickly increase across the Garden State. We could see a few showers and sprinkles, especially in the northern third of New Jersey. But don't expect much (if anything) in the rain gauge. (That's a shame, as half the state remains in "Moderate Drought" despite the rainfall earlier this week.)
You'll know when the front moves through by early Saturday morning, as cooler and drier air arrive on a brisk northerly wind.
By Saturday morning, skies will start to clear once again. We'll hold onto the stiff breeze through at least the early afternoon hours. And high temperatures will be limited to the lower 70s - that's near or just below normal for late September. Definitely more autumn like.
Hopefully you'll have a jacket on standby for Sunday morning, as we become even more fall-like (read: even cooler). I suspect thermometers across much of NJ will fall into the 40s, thanks to our cool and dry air mass, light winds, and clear skies. ("Radiative cooling" is the technical term for such typical fall/winter/spring conditions.)
Could part of New Jersey experience the first frost of the season? Possibly. My lowest forecast low temperature for Sunday/Monday morning is 41 degrees. If the thermometer ends up just a few degrees cooler - down to 38 or 37 degrees - we could have patchy frost develop. Best chance would be in the "usual" coldest spots of NJ, the northwest corner and the Pine Barrens.
Sunday's highs are forecast to peak only in the upper 60s to around 70 degrees. It will be a sunny, early fall day.
Temperatures will stay on the cool side for early next week, with highs on Monday expected to once again reach around 70 degrees. Beyond Monday, the forecast gets a bit muddy, as models diverge on a wet vs. dry and cool vs. mild forecast. A period of steady rain is possible in the Tuesday-Thursday time frame, but it's too early to pinpoint potential timing and totals. We'll put a finer point on that as next week gets closer.
Have a great weekend!