Steady Rain, Gusty Winds, and Cool Temperatures for NJ Monday
It's a potential washout, as bands of moderate rain will persist through at least Monday afternoon across the Garden State, keeping temperatures seasonably cool.
Here are your weather headlines for Monday, March 14, 2016...
Happy Monday! And it's our first workday since changing back to Daylight Saving Time! Monday's sunrise doesn't happen until after 7 a.m. while the official sunset time is now after 7 p.m.
Monday's weather forecast is all about steady rain, which could get pretty heavy at times. It's going to make for a wet, slippery ride on the roads across New Jersey all day. Low visibility is going to be a problem too. While I suppose isolated flooding is possible from the heaviest downpours, our mostly dry ground will be able to soak up most of the rain that falls.
The heaviest rain is forecast for the morning hours, before breaking up Monday afternoon and evening. Most models show the rain will end completely across New Jersey this evening, although the NAM does extend showers through Tuesday morning. Whether showers continue or not, fog will be a good possibility during the overnight hours. Temperatures won't waver much, only falling a few degrees to the lower 40s. That's warm enough that freezing temperatures and icy conditions will not be a problem for Tuesday morning's commute.
Meanwhile, gusty winds will persist for most of the day. Look for sustained winds from 15 to 25 mph today, with the potential for occasional gusts to 40 mph.
I don't think any day this week will ultimately end up "picture perfect", but at least the entire week won't be as soggy as Monday.
On Tuesday, we could still see a shower or sprinkle around the Garden State, but conditions will certainly become much drier than on Monday. Skies will clear, winds will calm, and temperatures will warm. We should see highs in the upper 50s to around 60, upwards of 10 degrees above normal for mid-March.
The warming trend continues for Wednesday, with highs in the lower to mid 60s. (The hot spot in my current forecast is far South Jersey, at 67 degrees.) Wednesday will feature partly sunny skies and reasonable winds. The only problem is that I can't rule out a stray shower around the late afternoon and evening hours on Wednesday, as a very weak atmospheric wave passes overhead.
Forecast confidence drops significantly through the second half of the week, leading up to our next significant storm system next weekend.
Thursday looks very similar to Wednesday with sun and clouds and a stray shower. Models show a slight cooldown, with forecast highs ranging from the upper 50s to lower 60s.
Friday and Saturday get even cooler, as a northerly wind carries in slightly cooler air and keeps temperatures at bay. Look for higher in the 50s (potentially some 40s in North Jersey) with mostly sunny skies heading into the weekend.
Our next big storm system is currently forecast to arrive Sunday morning. Heavy rain and gusty winds could make for a downright nasty day. I am also concerned about the potential for some wintry weather from this storm. The GFS model solution currently shows some snow or wintry mix would be possible as temperatures drop at the very end of the storm on Sunday evening. The European model takes the center of this system further out to sea, putting us on the "cold" side of the storm. That could lead to an even more wintry situation on Sunday.
However, with precipitation onset still 6 or 7 days away, it was way too early to add details to this forecast. There's a chance it heads out to sea or dissipates, and misses New Jersey altogether. Similarly, there's a chance the timing changes and this storm affects New Jersey on Saturday or Monday, instead of Sunday. Just know that we're watching it carefully - and you will similarly need to carefully consider your plans for this weekend as the forecast becomes clearer later in the week.