As we count down the final days of July, our weather is going to feel like stereotypical July. We have some heat and some thunderstorms to talk about as we prepare to turn the calendar page to August.

Monday's forecast looks very similar to Sunday's weather. Skies will be mostly sunny, and temperatures will be hot. Look for highs in the upper 90s for most of New Jersey, with mid-upper 80s along the coast thanks to the sea breeze. As we've discussed, I would not call humidity levels high or steamy or oppressive, so we don't need to talk about the "heat index" now. But you are going to sweat!

The NJ Department of Environmental Protection and National Weather Service have posted a "Code Orange" Air Quality Alert for Monday. The hot, stagnant air will increase the concentration of ground-level air pollution (particulate matter and ozone). That might cause breathing difficulties for sensitive groups, including the very young, the very old, the very pregnant, and those with respiratory or cardiac issues. If you fall into any of those groups, you'll want to limit outdoor activity during the hottest part of the day.

A moderate risk of dangerous rip currents is posted along the Jersey Shore for Monday too, for the second day in a row.

In addition, there are a couple of opportunities for popup showers and thunderstorms through Monday afternoon and evening. Possibility #1 will be in northwestern New Jersey, as a weak disturbance rides through PA/NY. Option #2 will be popup showers firing off the sea breeze front, closer to the Jersey Shore. So we'll have to keep an eye on both sides of the state, as isolated pockets of heavy rain and a bit of lightning will be possible. Best chance of raindrops will be between about 3 p.m. and 9 p.m.

The rest of Monday night looks clear and warm. Lows fall into the lower 70s.

Tuesday promises to be the hottest day of the week, as high temps statewide soar into the lower to mid 90s. Skies will be partly sunny, and at least we'll have a south-southwesterly breeze keeping the hot air moving around. Again, an isolated shower or thunderstorm can't be ruled out.

Wednesday looks like the wettest, stormiest day of the week, thanks to an approaching cold front — but it's not going to be a total washout. Spotty showers and sprinkles Wednesday morning will be followed by a line of potentially strong thunderstorms Wednesday afternoon. High temperatures should come down to the 80s.

That front will probably stall south of New Jersey, and could keep our weather a bit unsettled through the upcoming weekend.

August begins on Thursday, and it looks like a reasonably nice day. Partly sunny and warm, with seasonable highs in the mid to upper 80s. There is a slight chance of a shower, but there are model solutions out there (namely the GFS) that keep the Garden State completely dry.

I'm seeing scattered showers and thunderstorms around Friday and Saturday, with highs in the 80s. Right now, Sunday appears drier, with partial sunshine and highs back to around 90 degrees.

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