Storms are expected this afternoon and evening, with some gusty winds and heavy downpours possible; the payoff for this wet week will be a dry, pleasant weekend.

There’s a lot to talk about as we transition from wet/cool to wet/warm to dry/mild in this forecast, so let’s break it down by time period...

Friday Morning

We’ve already had some scattered showers and thunderstorms pushing through New Jersey this morning, dumping some cold rain over parts of the state. So roads will be wet, and it’s possible these pockets of rain continue through your morning ride to work. If it’s not raining, there could still be some fog and drizzle depositing tiny water droplets onto your windshield.

Friday Midday

From late morning through early afternoon, some breaks in the rainfall action and even breaks of sun are expected. Additionally, a warm front will be traversing the state from south to north, bringing some welcome warmer air to the state through this afternoon. As the front passes, winds will switch from easterly to southwesterly and temperatures will quickly rise. Inland portions of South Jersey should make it to the lower 70s today. For North Jersey and along the coast, temperatures will be cooler (but still much warmer than yesterday), in the 60s.

Friday Afternoon & Evening

Today's severe weather outlook places a chance for thunderstorms over all of New Jersey, and a "marginal risk" of severe weather in far South Jersey. (Storm Prediction Center)

The aforementioned peeks of sun, the warmer temperatures, and an approaching cold front will combine to bring New Jersey one more round of showers and thunderstorms this afternoon and evening. The best chance for stormy weather will happen from about 2 p.m. through 10 p.m. Some of these storms may become strong or even marginally severe - the chance is definitely there for heavier downpours, gusty winds, and even small hail. The most likely location for the strongest storms will be the southern half of the state (below Interstate 195). But everyone should remain vigilant today, as any thunderstorm can be potentially hazardous. Additionally, the afternoon/evening timing of these storms will specifically affect the evening rush hour.

Friday Night & Early Saturday Morning

As that cold front sweeps through tonight, our rain will quickly end from west to east by around Midnight. A few lingering showers will remain possible through the overnight hours, but I do expect skies to clear quickly in the drier and slightly cooler air behind the front. By morning, temperatures will be in the 40s under partly sunny skies.

Saturday & Sunday

Literally all week long, I’ve been promising a great Spring weekend. And it still looks to come true!

Saturday will clear from partly to mostly sunny skies. It will be a bit breezy (gusts over 20 mph), but high temperatures should be near or just above average in the lower to mid 60s.

On Sunday, winds will become lighter, and I think skies will be beautifully blue and sunny. Highs should improve slightly to the mid to upper 60s.

With the potential for strong or severe thunderstorms in the forecast today, weather conditions can change very quickly. Even though the severe weather potential is low, and likely limited to South Jersey, convective storms can produce dangerous wind gusts or heavy downpours without warning. It is exceptionally important to keep an eye on the sky and an ear on the latest forecast and watches/warnings today.