Rainy Start. Cold Finish (Jan 4-6)

Jonathan Carr
By Jonathan Carr January 4, 2019 12:55

Rainy Start. Cold Finish (Jan 4-6)

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Discussion: A cut-off upper level low will track from Texas over Virginia into the Atlantic Ocean. A corresponding surface low will track just to the north of the ULL through Kentucky, Virginia and ultimately over New Jersey. The upper-level flow is still zonal and progressive so it will be a quick mover in tonight and out tomorrow. During the period of most significant rainfall (early Saturday AM into Saturday PM) NJ should expect manageable synoptic winds. The strongest winds look to occur once the system moves out into the ocean (Saturday PM hours). Skies should clear for Sunday but the wind will likely stick around during the day. I expect winds to subside as temperatures drop significantly for Sunday night. I still believe the models are not handling the stratospheric warming and Polar Vortex split correctly for the tropospheric mid-to-late January impacts. The zonal Pacific jet is likely responsible for delaying the Arctic cold’s arrival but I think Jan 20-forward (possibly slightly earlier than that) will undergo a much colder pattern chance. Dropping Southern Oscillation Index (SOI) values over the last few days indicate we’re likely 1-2 weeks from the start of the pattern change. But if you want to know a simple reason for the lack of cold and snow so far, it’s the raging Pacific jet’s influence on the current zonal pattern. Once that relaxes then the coldest air on the planet has nowhere to go but spill over the NE US quadrant including the Mid-Atlantic US. Snow haters rejoice for at least 1-2 more weeks. Snow lovers be patient, we’re in the 3rd inning of a baseball game.

Friday (Jan 4) high temperatures should reach the mid-to-upper 40s for most. Skies should gradually increase in cloudiness. Winds should be light out of the SW. Overnight lows should range between mid-30s and mid-40s NNJ to SNJ as rain and wind pick up during early the AM hours of Saturday.

Saturday (Jan 5) high temperatures should range from near-40 to near-50 NNJ to SNJ. Rainfall should continue through AM hours, possibly into afternoon hours, before tapering off during the evening. Breezy winds should rock in-direction around the storm from E to NW.  Overnight lows should range from mid-30s to mid-40s as NW winds, possibly gusty at times, continue through clearing skies.

Sunday (Jan 6) high temperatures should range in the 40s statewide. Skies should be mostly sunny. Winds should be breezy, possibly gusty at times, out of the W/NW. Overnight lows should range from teens to 20s NNJ to SNJ as winds relax.

An early look at next week indicates slightly above-average temperatures in-general with Tuesday being well-above average. Some wintry precipitation is possible for NNJ elevations midweek. Let’s dive into that on Sunday with more confident data.  I hope you are enjoying the new Weather NJ mobile app on Apple and Android. Have a great weekend and please be safe! JC

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Jonathan Carr
By Jonathan Carr January 4, 2019 12:55

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