We're also watching another potentially significant rain and wind threat on the horizon.

Here are your weather headlines for Wednesday, October 25, 2017...

Weather Improvements

Tuesday was pretty yucky. Despite a few breaks of sunshine and warm temperatures in the mid 70s, drenching rains and gusty winds kept the day mostly miserable. Rainfall totals mostly fell in the half-inch to one-inch range, as expected. The top wind gust over inland New Jersey was 49 mph at Fortescue, Cumberland County.

The front that drove that wet weather through New Jersey has now pushed through the entire state, so our weather will generally improve throughout Wednesday.

However, the front is hovering about 30 miles east of the Jersey Shore — that's a bit too close for comfort. That front will continue to act as a "superhighway" for shortwaves (little storm systems) riding northbound. If one of those shortwaves has a radius greater than 30 miles, we'll see some rain along the coastline. It's not a guarantee — the NAM model says wet, but the GFS model says dry. At the very least, the Shore will be the cloudiest spot in the state Wednesday.

Early morning fog was spawned by the soaked ground. Visibilities have fallen to a half-mile for part of the state. The fog should burn off quickly as dew points drop and temperatures rise.

As sunshine breaks out to the west, we'll actually experience above-normal temperatures for yet another day. (Yes, even as cooler and drier air arrives — we'll talk about that in a sec.) Wednesday's forecast high temperatures range form the mid 60s in North Jersey and along the Jersey Shore, to near 70 degrees in inland South Jersey.

Wednesday night will be chilly, as thermometers dip into the 40s across most of the state, under partly cloudy skies. Most of us will have to dig out the jacket again for Thursday morning.

Delightful Fall Weather

And you may want to keep that jacket handy all day Thursday, as autumnal air really settles in. Thursday will be a bit breezy, with gusts to about 20 mph. Even as early clouds give way to sunny skies, temperatures will get stuck within a few degrees of 60. That's actually a hair below normal for late October.

Friday reads like a pleasant fall day. Expect sunshine, light winds, and seasonable high temperatures in the lower 60s.

Saturday looks good too! That is, as long as you don't mind increasing clouds and wind speeds. (Call it breezy.) Look for thermometers to climb into the upper 60s — we may very well touch 70 degrees in the southern half of the state on Saturday.

Next Weather Maker

Our next cold front is scheduled for sometime on Sunday. There's a bit of uncertainty regarding the exact timing: the GFS model says the rain will begin Sunday morning, while the European holds the steady, heavy rain until later on (mostly Sunday evening). Obviously, that's a big difference that may impact your weekend plans, so we'll keep an eye on it.

Sunday's weather forecast will be heavily influenced by a storm system currently over the western Caribbean Sea (currently called Invest 93L). This disturbance may intensify into a tropical storm or hurricane in the coming days — it's a wait-and-see kind of situation. By the way, the next name on the Atlantic hurricane list is Philippe.

Whether it gets a name or not, the consensus track for that low parallels the U.S. East Coast through the weekend. Any time tropical moisture is in play, my mind jumps to the possibility for very heavy rainfall. Maybe a few inches? And wind gusts. Maybe to 50+ mph? And the coast. Could we experience surge and/or coastal flooding?

All very good questions, that we'll be able to answer in the coming days. Stay tuned!

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