Cold Conditions (Dec 4-6)

Jonathan Carr
By December 4, 2020 14:59

Cold Conditions (Dec 4-6)

Discussion: Model guidance indicates a very meridional jet pattern over the next few weeks with ample below-average geopotential height anomalies. At the surface this means colder temperatures and an active pattern. Whether or not one of these systems times with the cold in a favorable track for NJ snow is yet to be seen but you know I’m watching. Our current storm system is just starting to drop some rain across NJ. The surface low is about to form over the interior Carolinas/TN area around 1008mb. It should then eject into the Atlantic over the S Delmarva/VA area around 999mb (early Sat AM) and then bottom out between 980-985mb near the 40N/70W benchmark (~noon Sat). By the time it gets to the benchmark, it should pull the precipitations shield away from NJ. During this time (about sunrise to noon on Saturday), rain could change to snow before precipitation ends however accumulations are not likely. Winds should be the bigger story especially for the immediate coast. Since winds will be strongest as they are blowing out of the N/NE, coastal flooding is still likely capped at the “minor at most” category. It all blows out by Saturday afternoon and we drop in temperature with cold NW flow. NW flow should be strongest Saturday night and gradually subside through Sunday. The cold should spill over into much of next week. On Tuesday, there should be another intensifying storm system in the Atlantic Ocean but all precipitation is currently modeled too far out to sea. I’ll let you know if that trends closer. If it did, there will be adequate cold air over NJ to support snow. Otherwise, the next long-range signal is Dec 14-15. Again, an active pattern heading into winter!

Note: Unless specifically mentioned by location (Example: NNJ elevations, SENJ immediate coast, Interior CNJ/SNJ, etc.) assume the following forecast language is statewide for New Jersey. When I say “from elevations to sea” I mean from NWNJ mountains spreading down to immediate ECNJ/SNJ coastal areas. Directions are shortened (N = North, S = South, W/SW = West/SouthWest, etc.).

Friday (Dec 4) high temperatures are topping out in the low-to-mid 50s, closer to 60 near the coast. Rain is gradually moving in and will continue to spread throughout the entire state by this evening. Winds should gradually increase out of the E/SE. Overnight lows should fall into the 40s for most areas as rain and winds persist.

Saturday (Dec 5) high temperatures should be achieved in the early AM hours and gradually drop throughout the day, especially after precipitation ends (by noon). Snow could mix in with rain at the very end of the rainfall (NNJ favored most for this) but likely without snow accumulation. Skies should improve from afternoon-forward. Winds should be breezy-to-gusty (most gusty along immediate coast) during AM hours then switch to a stiff wind out of the NW for all during PM hours. Overnight lows should range from near-20 to near-30 from elevations to sea.

Sunday (Dec 6) high temperatures should struggle to escape the 30s for most of NJ NW of the I-95/NJTP corridor. SENJ might just break 40 for a high. Skies should be partly-to-mostly sunny. Winds should be breezy out of the W/NW. Overnight lows should fall into the teens for NNJ elevations and interior Pine Barrens. The rest of NJ should easily drop into the 20s.

An early look at next week indicates colder conditions lasting through at least Wednesday, maybe Thursday. Highs in the 40s, lows in the 20s/30s type stuff. The next storm signal to watch is Tuesday but as of right now the storm system is modeled a little too far out to sea to impact NJ. Have a great weekend and please be safe! JC

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Jonathan Carr
By December 4, 2020 14:59