Thursday, May 31, 2012

May 30, 2012: Storms Return Friday Night


Forecast Highlights:


- Temperatures to gradually cool down through Saturday
- Cold front brings heavy rain, strong storm risk Friday night
- Partly cloudy skies, scattered showers stick around into next week


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Today's Observations:


Behind yesterday's squall line, which affected parts of the area with heavy thunderstorms, temperatures cooled down for today with less humidity. More cloud cover than expected was observed today with Beryl passing to the southeast of the area, with its heavy rain currently staying offshore, with temperatures peaking in the upper 70s to lower 80s from NYC and further north/west and the mid to upper 70s in Long Island/S CT.

Mostly sunny skies will briefly make an appearance on Thursday, although an approaching cold front will result in widespread thunderstorms and possible severe weather on Friday night, with partly cloudy skies and isolated showers possible for the weekend into next week as a low pressure remains stuck over the region.


Thursday's Outlook:


Mostly sunny skies are expected on Thursday along with less humidity but temperatures just as warm as those of today, peaking in the upper 70s to lower 80s across the area. Light NW winds are expected.


Friday - Beyond: Stormy, Then Cooler


A low pressure will move into the Great Lakes region on Friday, with a warm front moving through the region. At this time, the warm front is likely to stay close to the area but still south of NYC, which will keep the best risk of thunderstorms in the southern and central Mid Atlantic, where widespread strong/severe activity is possible later in the day. Temperatures will reach the lower to mid 70s for highs across the area. The cold front will move through later overnight, with a line of heavy rain and thunderstorms expected to move through, especially after 12 AM. The strongest storms will stay west and SW of NYC, where some storms could be strong or perhaps severe, with the potential for 1/2 to 1 inch of rain. The rain will end early on Saturday morning, with clearing skies expected and highs reaching the lower to mid 70s for most places. Sunday will be similar to the second part of Saturday but with partly cloudy skies and the risk of scattered showers, especially in the afternoon.

A strong block is currently located near Greenland, and will begin to shift slightly south around the late weekend into the early week. As a result, the system will be blocked from quickly moving out, and instead another low pressure will develop off the coast, getting stuck near eastern New England while a trough remains mostly stationary over the region. With no high pressure coming in, partly/mostly cloudy skies and scattered showers are likely for early to possibly mid next week. Temperatures will remain below average, in the 70s for highs.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

May 29, 2012: Cooler Pattern Develops


Forecast Highlights:


- Cooler pattern develops starting Thursday
- Heavy rain potential Friday Night - Early Saturday
- No heat in sight through mid next week


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Today's Observations:


Today was the last hot and humid day across the area as a cold front approached, bringing a squall line through the region with widespread severe storms in Pennsylvania/New York and isolated strong/severe storm activity in parts of the NYC area. Temperatures were once again warmer than average, peaking in the lower 90s from NYC and further north/west except for Sussex and Central Park, which peaked at 89 degrees, and in the lower to upper 80s in Long Island and southern CT, which was slightly warmer than expected.

Another very warm day is expected tomorrow but with less humidity as the cold front comes through. Temperatures will gradually cool down, only reaching the 70s for highs on Friday. The next rain event will affect the area on Friday night into Saturday morning, but no warm spell is expected to build in anytime soon as a trough remains stuck over the region into early next week.


Wednesday - Friday Outlook:


Partly cloudy skies are expected on Wednesday with a risk of scattered thunderstorms north/west of NYC in the afternoon and evening hours. Warm temperatures are expected again, reaching the mid 70s to lower 80s in Long Island/S CT and the lower to mid 80s from NYC and further north/west, passing 85 degrees in some areas.

By Thursday, mostly sunny skies are expected with highs in the mid to upper 70s across most of the area. Increasing cloud cover is expected on Friday as a low pressure develops in the Ohio Valley region, with a risk of thunderstorms later on in the day. Highs will cool down into the upper 60s to mid 70s for most of the area.


Saturday - Beyond: Chilly Temperatures Continue


With the intensifying low pressure moving into the Great Lakes, where an unseasonably chilly rain will fall, a cold front will move through the region, providing a period of heavy rain and perhaps thunder on Friday night into Saturday morning. At least 1/2 inch of rain is expected, with locally up to 1 inch possible. Some clearing in the cloud cover is expected for the afternoon and evening on Saturday with a risk of isolated showers; temperatures will fail to warm up significantly, peaking in the upper 60s to lower 70s across most of the area.

A strong block near Greenland will keep a trough in place over the region, with the cold front slowing down once passing through the area, redeveloping offshore with an area of low pressure likely to remain stuck near eastern New England as the Greenland block expands into Canada and slides further south. As a result, a solid area of high pressure will fail to build in behind as an area of low pressure remains in place near New England, resulting in partial cloud cover, isolated showers, and temperatures in the upper 60s and 70s from Sunday through the middle of next week, although no widespread heavy rain event will take place. Beyond early next week, uncertainty increases, although with the strong ridge in Canada, any significant heat spell is unlikely to take place at this time.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

May 29, 2012 Storm Updates


Below, updates will be posted on the severe weather expected across the region today.

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*Short term forecast graphics will be posted to the left of each post, including a radar image. Click on the images to view them in a larger size.*






9:25 PM: Additional Strong Storms


Since the last update, although the original storms in Morris County weakened, additional strong storm development took place over the last hour focusing over NYC and the north/west suburbs. A low-end severe thunderstorms is currently located near Manhattan, and will move NNE to affect Bronx and south Westchester counties over the next 1/2 hour, producing strong winds and possibly small hail. An additional heavy storm in eastern Bergen will move into SE Rockland county. Another strong storm is located near SW CT and is moving to the northeast.

Although these storms were not present earlier this evening, most of these storms are still below severe criteria. Earlier this afternoon, it appeared that there was a higher risk of severe weather, but the original storms failed to hold together.






7:55 PM: Severe Storms Weakening


The squall line affected the westernmost parts of the area over the last hour with heavy thunderstorms. As the storms moved further east, however, the original area of strong storms in N NJ fell apart, and activity has struggled to pick up. The only strong/severe storms remaining in the area are near southeastern Orange county, moving east into northern Rockland and northern Westchester counties, and near Morris county, moving NE into east Passaic and western Bergen counties. These storms are capable of producing heavy rain, gusty winds and possibly small hail.

It was originally thought that despite the lack of shear, the storms would still be able to maintain themselves, especially with decent instability, but the storms failed to maintain their intensity once reaching the area. With instability quickly decreasing, the development of widespread severe storms is no longer expected for the rest of the area. For the remainder of the evening, occasional thunderstorms, locally strong, will move into the rest of the immediate NYC area between 8-10 PM, with some of the storms ending up strong in SE NY and SW CT, where gusty winds are possible with the storms. The storms are likely to continue weakening as they move into Long Island and the rest of southern CT later tonight.

If any unexpected additional development takes place, an update will be posted here. Otherwise, the next update will be posted later tonight, discussing the upcoming heavy rain event for Friday night into the first half of Saturday.






6:50 PM: Two severe thunderstorms have just entered the area. The first is located near NW Sussex county and is slowly moving to the NE, and will affect western Orange county over the next 1/2 hour. This storm contains heavy rain and is capable of producing gusty winds and small hail. Another storm is located near the NW edge of Warren county, and will move into portions of Sussex county over the next 1/2 hour, also producing heavy rain and potentially gusty winds/small hail.




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5:00 PM: Severe Storms Approaching


Current Observations:

Over the last few days, a hot, humid, moist and unstable air mass was in place across most of the region, and as a result, widespread severe storms are forming across the interior parts of the region ahead of the approaching cold front. Plenty of severe weather has been observed so far in western PA and northern NY, and a strong squall line, focusing over central NY as seen on the regional radar to the left, is about to move into the rest of eastern NY, which is where the worst of today's storms are expected to take place with widespread wind damage, hail, and perhaps isolated tornadoes.


Up until now, the area has observed mainly sunny skies especially away from the coast, with temperatures quickly warming up into the 90s for parts of the immediate NYC area. With humid conditions, heat index has even reached 100 degrees in some places. There is enough instability and moisture to support thunderstorms in the area tonight, although the bulk of today's activity will focus over New York and Pennsylvania, with the squall line weakening and becoming more elevated as it enters the area tonight. The worst of the storms in the NYC area will be towards NW NJ and Orange county, NY, which I placed under a 30% risk of severe storms. The 30% risk also extends into NYC, although the best risk of severe storms is further north/west.

In the western parts of the area, the squall line will enter in the evening, likely after 6-8 PM, with heavy thunderstorms, some of them severe with strong wind gusts and hail. In the immediate NYC area, slightly weaker storms are expected, with heavy thunderstorms expected, some of them strong with a few severe storms. The main risk will be heavy rain along with gusty winds and small hail, although some, if not most of the storms will remain below severe levels. Further east into Long Island and S CT, the line will become weaker, with heavy showers and thunderstorms, a few storms severe but with no widespread severe activity expected.

Stay tuned for additional updates later tonight as the storms enter the area.

Monday, May 28, 2012

May 28, 2012: One More Day of Heat, Humidity


Forecast Highlights:


- Scattered storms, possibly strong, expected on Tuesday
- Cooler pattern develops starting on Thursday
- Additional rain expected on Friday, Saturday


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Today's Observations:


With a large ridge still stuck over the region, another hot and humid day was observed, with the hottest temperatures of the year so far. High temperatures reached the upper 80s to lower 90s from NYC and further north/west, peaking at 92 degrees in Teterboro, NJ, and the upper 70s to mid 80s across most of Long Island and southern CT, which verifies yesterday's forecast for today. No storm activity was observed across the area, although today wasn't expected to bring more than isolated activity at most.

Tuesday will be the last hot and humid day as a cold front approaches, resulting in strong/severe storms in Pennsylvania and New York, slowly moving into the area by the late afternoon and overnight hours. Temperatures will then gradually cool down, with highs on Friday struggling to reach the 75 degree mark. Thursday is expected to be drier, although the dry conditions will not be prolonged as another storm approaches for parts of the weekend.


Tuesday's Outlook:


Partly cloudy skies are expected on Tuesday, increasing by the second half of the day. Hot and humid conditions are expected again, with temperatures reaching the upper 80s to lower 90s from NYC and further north/west, and the upper 70s to mid 80s in Long Island and southern CT. Heat index may approach 95 degrees again in parts of the immediate NYC area.

With the approaching cold front, a line of thunderstorms, some of them strong/severe, is expected to develop over Pennsylvania and New York during the afternoon hours. The line will then move east, affecting the area in the evening and first part of the overnight hours. Although the storms will reach the area, they are expected to weaken by the time they do so, with a risk of locally heavy storms, especially north/west of NYC. If needed, storm updates will be posted tomorrow evening.


Wednesday - Beyond: Cooler Pattern Develops


Over the next day, a strong ridge will spread into Greenland, but unlike the last few times ridging in Greenland attempted to become sustained, this ridge will be firmly established over Greenland over the next week, if not more, making this the first prolonged period of blocking of the entire season and signals a continuation of the pattern change which started in March, when the stubborn progressive pattern began to fall apart. Considering the time of the year, this blocking pattern is unable to result in a cold pattern, although temperatures are expected to end up closer to average, possibly below average at times.

The cold front will move through the region on Wednesday, ending the heat and humidity. Depending on the timing, there is still a risk of isolated storms, locally heavy, in the afternoon along the Interstate 95 corridor, although at this time no widespread storm development is expected. Temperatures will reach the 80s across most of, if not all of the area, with highs in the mid to upper 80s in the immediate NYC area expected. Thursday will be noticeably cooler, with mostly sunny skies and highs peaking in the upper 70s in the immediate NYC area.

By late Friday into the weekend, however, another low pressure will approach from the west, resulting in a return of clouds and rain. The low pressure is expected to approach the region from the Ohio Valley, ending up either in the Great Lakes or the western Northeast. Friday is expected to be mostly dry but with increasing cloud cover and highs ending up again in the 70s. Afterwards, however, the models differ with the timing; there are two main solutions at this time, the ECMWF which quickly brings the rain through on Friday night with partly sunny skies and scattered shower/storm activity for the rest of Saturday and Sunday, and the CMC/UKMET which show a stronger and slower storm, resulting in widespread rain throughout the weekend. Given the CMC's typical bias of exaggerating storms as well as the lack of consistency with the two models showing the latter solution, I am siding towards the somewhat weaker/progressive GFS/ECM but with slower timing, with shower and storm activity, possibly heavy, expected on Friday night and into Saturday, perhaps Saturday night as well. When the main round of rain ends, partial cloud cover with scattered shower activity is likely, with highs ending up below average, peaking in the upper 60s to mid 70s across most of the area. Temperatures will warm back up into the 80s next week. Stay tuned for more information on the Friday and Saturday storm potential.



May 27, 2012: Additional Storms Through Tuesday


Forecast Highlights:


- Hot, humid on Monday and Tuesday away from coast
- Scattered strong storms on Monday, more widespread Tuesday night
- Additional rain possible on Friday, next weekend


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Today's Observations:


Partly sunny skies were observed in parts of the area today as the second day of very warm and humid conditions affected the region. Isolated thunderstorm activity was observed in parts of the area today, most notably affecting northern NJ, where amounts locally near/above 1 inch were observed, but no widespread strong storm activity was observed. Temperatures were warm but not as warm as yesterday, with highs reaching the lower to mid 80s from NYC and further north/west and the mid 70s to lower 80s in Long Island and southern CT, which was slightly warmer than expected yesterday.

Monday will be another hot and humid day with a risk of isolated storm activity, although an approaching cold front will result in a more widespread thunderstorm potential on Tuesday, followed by drier conditions and cooler temperatures. The dry conditions won't last for long, however, as there is another rain potential for late in the week into next weekend.


Monday's Outlook:


Partly sunny skies are expected on Monday with warmer temperatures, reaching the upper 80s to lower 90s from NYC and further north/west and the lower to upper 80s in Long Island and southern CT. Parts of the immediate coast may fail to reach 80 degrees. There is a risk of isolated thunderstorms, especially in the afternoon hours, although no widespread storm activity is expected. Should any widespread activity develop, an afternoon update will be posted, otherwise the next update will be posted on Monday night. With humidity expected, heat index is likely to reach the lower 90s in parts of the immediate NYC area, possibly getting close to 95 degrees.


Tuesday - Beyond: Rain Continues, Temperatures Cool Down


Tuesday will be the last very warm and humid day as a cold front approaches from the west, resulting in widespread strong/severe thunderstorm activity across the region. During the day, most of the severe storm activity will focus to the west of the area with a risk of scattered strong thunderstorms west of NYC in the afternoon. Temperatures will peak in the mid to locally upper 80s from NYC and further north/west and the mid 70s to lower 80s in most of Long Island/S CT, getting near the mid 80s closer to NYC. Storms, locally strong/severe, are then expected to affect the area later in the afternoon into the evening and parts of the overnight hours. Drier conditions are expected for Wednesday with partly sunny skies and less humidity but with warm temperatures still sticking around, reaching the lower to mid 80s across most of the area.

Behind the cold front, with a strong block developing and persisting over Greenland, a somewhat cooler pattern with troughs more frequent than ridges will develop. Thursday is also likely to be dry with highs cooling down into the 70s and the remnants of Tropical Storm Beryl staying southeast, although by Friday and parts of the weekend another low pressure will approach from the west, bringing another risk of rain and thunderstorms.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

May 26, 2012: Heat, Humidity Continue


Forecast Highlights:


- Heat, humidity last through Tuesday
- Risk of scattered storms continues through Tuesday
- Cooler, drier ending to next week
- TROPICS: Beryl Approaches Landfall


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Today's Observations:


With a large ridge building into the region, warmer temperatures were observed across the region today, with temperatures peaking in the mid to upper 80s from NYC and further north/west and in the upper 70s to lower 80s in most of Long Island and southern CT, verifying yesterday's temperature outlook for today. Scattered strong thunderstorm activity formed today, affecting mostly places north and west of NYC. The biggest activity was in northwestern NJ and Rockland county in NY, where slow moving storms dumped over 1-2 inches of rain.

Heat and humidity will continue through Tuesday, with additional scattered strong storms north/west of NYC on Sunday and Monday. A cold front will move through between Tuesday and Wednesday, resulting in more widespread thunderstorm activity, some of which could be strong/severe. A cooler air mass will return behind the cold front, although there is still no prolonged break from the rain as there are additional signs for an additional rainstorm late in the week, possibly into the weekend.


Sunday - Monday Outlook:


The warm air mass will remain over the region for the next few days, resulting in additional heat and humidity. Temperatures on Sunday will be slightly cooler, reaching the upper 70s to mid 80s from NYC and further north/west and the mid to upper 70s in most of Long Island/southern CT, reaching the lower 80s in some spots. Scattered thunderstorms, locally heavy, are likely north/west of NYC especially in the late afternoon/evening hours.

Warmer temperatures are expected for Monday, with SW winds and partly cloudy skies. Temperatures will reach the mid to upper 80s from NYC and further north/west and the upper 70s to mid 80s in Long Island and southern CT. Depending on the amount of cloud cover and the timing of the scattered storm activity in the afternoon, parts of NE NJ may reach the lower 90s. Humid conditions are expected again, resulting in a heat index higher than the actual temperature.


Tuesday - Beyond: Rain Continues


The cold front will affect the region on Tuesday and Wednesday, with more widespread thunderstorms, possibly strong, expected. Hot and humid conditions are still expected for Tuesday, with highs reaching the mid to upper 80s away from the coast, with storm activity more likely towards the second part of the day and into the overnight hours. Warm but less humid conditions are likely for Wednesday with temperatures still reaching the 80s away from the coast, with isolated storm activity possible but likely ending up less widespread than that of Tuesday.

Drier conditions are likely on Thursday as well with subtropical storm Beryl's remnants passing to the southeast of the area. By later in the week and into parts of the weekend, however, another low pressure will approach from the west, likely resulting in increased storm activity. Temperatures are expected to be cooler, cooling down into the 70s for most of the area for highs from Thursday into the weekend. Stay tuned for more information on the longer range.


Tropics: Beryl Approaching Landfall




Subtropical storm Beryl continued to slightly intensify throughout the day as it approached the coast of northeastern Florida, and as of NHC's 11 PM update had 50 mph sustained winds with a minimum pressure of 998 mb. Beryl is currently located southeast of South Carolina, and is moving SW at 7 mph. Beryl is expected to make landfall in NE Florida late on Sunday, weakening to a depression overland. Afterwards, Beryl is expected to move back northeast and offshore, although by the time that it does so around Tuesday/Wednesday it will begin to gain extra-tropical characteristics, with the remnants of Beryl accelerating NE parallel to the coast but mostly staying offshore.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

May 26, 2012 Storm Updates


5:10 PM: Scattered strong thunderstorms affected the interior parts of the area earlier this afternoon, affecting NW NJ and SE NY over the last few hours. A strong storm developed over SE New York in Rockland county and stalled in place, producing heavy rainfall and areas of flash flooding. Since these storms developed, activity has decreased over the area while increasing around the area, with increased activity in Pennsylvania and southern Connecticut. Isolated storms are possible again later tonight, although the activity earlier this afternoon was the peak of today's storms.

For tomorrow, there are still indications showing that an area of strong storms may develop over Pennsylvania and affect the western half of the area during the late afternoon, evening and early overnight hours. Otherwise, hot and humid conditions will continue with temperatures surging well into the 80s from NYC and further north/west on Sunday, Monday and Tuesday. Scattered strong storms are possible again in interior areas on Monday and Tuesday.

Late May 25, 2012: Hot, Humid, Then Stormy


Forecast Highlights:


- Heat, humidity for Saturday-Tuesday
- Cold front brings strong storm potential mid next week
- Cooler, less humid end to next week
- TROPICS: Subtropical Storm Beryl develops (more info in bottom)

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Today's Observations:


Another mostly cloudy day was observed across the area today, although shower coverage was less widespread than the last few days. With less rain, warmer temperatures were observed, peaking in the mid to upper 70s from NYC and further north/west and the upper 60s to lower 70s across most of Long Island and southern CT. Humid conditions were observed as well.

With a strong ridge building over the region, the warmth will continue to intensify, with heat and humidity expected from Saturday through Tuesday, when a cold front will approach, bringing a risk of strong thunderstorms. Cooler temperatures and drier conditions will return behind the front, although a risk of rain may return again by the end of next week or next weekend.


Saturday - Monday Outlook: Hot, Humid; Stormy For Some


Hot and humid conditions are expected for this year's Memorial Day Weekend. Saturday will bring SW winds with very warm temperatures, reaching the mid to upper 80s from NYC and further north/west and the upper 70s to mid 80s in Long Island/S CT away from the immediate coast. Temperatures may reach 90 degrees in parts of NE NJ. Humid conditions are expected as well, resulting in heat index potentially reaching and/or passing 90 degrees in parts of the immediate NYC area. Partly cloudy skies are expected, with a risk of scattered strong thunderstorms north and west of NYC during the late afternoon and evening hours.

Sunday will be partly to mostly cloudy with slightly cooler temperatures, reaching the mid 70s to lower 80s across most of the area. Scattered strong thunderstorms, locally heavy, are expected north and west of NYC, especially in the afternoon and evening hours. Although there were originally signs of a back door cold front moving through, the cold front is now likely to be delayed until Monday night or Tuesday, if it even does come through at all, with SW winds and partly cloudy skies on Monday resulting in what may be the hottest day of this time period. Temperatures are currently expected to climb into the mid to upper 80s from NYC and further north/west, possibly the lower 90s in the warmer case scenario, with cooler temperatures near the coast. Humid conditions are expected again, with a risk of isolated storms inland during the late afternoon/evening hours.


Tuesday - Beyond: Cold Front Comes Through


Regardless of whether a back door cold front does come through around Monday night or Tuesday or not, there is a risk of thunderstorms on Tuesday afternoon and night; depending on the timing of the approaching cold front from the west, there is a risk of strong thunderstorms. Temperatures will depend on the back door cold front, although temperatures are expected to reach the 80s again from NYC and further north/west. The cold front will clear the region on Wednesday, with drier conditions and temperatures in the 70s returning for the second half of the week.


Tropics: Subtropical Storm Beryl Develops




Invest 94L became more organized throughout the day, and as of NHC's 11 PM update, is listed as Subtropical Storm Beryl, with sustained winds of 45 mph and a minimum pressure of 1001 mb. Having two named storms develop in the Atlantic before the official start of the hurricane season is very unusual; most seasons did not even have a single named storm develop in May. While the hurricane season is off to an active start, it does not mean that the season will be very active, however; more information on this will be discussed in my hurricane season outlook, which will be posted on June 1st.

Beryl is currently located southeast of North Carolina and is slowly moving north. Beryl is expected to move more towards the southwest over the next two days, slowly intensifying while gaining more tropical characteristics. Beryl is expected to make landfall around Georgia or northeast Florida on Sunday, weakening to a depression afterwards. This post will be updated with more information on Beryl on Saturday morning.

Friday, May 25, 2012

May 24, 2012: No End To Stormy Pattern In Sight


Forecast Highlights:


- Cloudy/Partly Cloudy and Stormy Pattern to Continue
- Warm and Humid Memorial Day Weekend Expected
- Risk of Severe Weather Next Week
- TROPICS: 2nd Named Storm of Season May Form


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Today's Observations:


Today ended up as the fourth consecutive mainly cloudy and stormy day across the area, with scattered thunderstorms resulting in locally heavy rain, especially near NYC. Early this afternoon, locally heavy storms affected NYC and parts of western Long Island and NE NJ, with additional scattered heavy storms affecting NYC and Long Island this evening. Temperatures were cooler than those of yesterday, peaking in the upper 60s to lower 70s for most places. Temperatures from Montauk, NJ; Andover, NJ; and Westhampton Beach, NY were not included in the graphic due to gaps in the observations.

The active pattern is expected to continue, with a risk of scattered storms lasting through this weekend and going straight through most of next week as well. In addition to the risk of thunderstorms, especially on Tuesday and/or Wednesday next week, temperatures will also warm up, with warm and humid conditions expected, especially on Saturday and around Tuesday with temperatures warming up into the mid to upper 80s away from the coast.


Friday - Weekend Outlook:


Friday will continue the trend observed over the last few days, with mainly cloudy skies, possibly becoming partly/mostly cloudy in the afternoon north/west of NYC, along with isolated storms. While the whole area will not be affected by storms, any storm that does move through may be heavy. Temperatures will reach the mid to upper 70s from NYC and further north/west, and the upper 60s to mid 70s in Long Island and southern CT.

The active pattern is expected to continue through Memorial Day Weekend; in addition to a risk of storms, heat and humidity will begin to increase as a strong ridge moves into the region. Influence from a back door cold front will be felt around Sunday and Monday, although temperatures will still remain in the 70s and 80s for highs. Saturday appears to be the warmest day, with highs warming up into the 80s away from the coast, perhaps passing 85 degrees in parts of the immediate NYC area. Partly cloudy skies are expected with potential thunderstorms in the evening and overnight hours, although storms are not expected to be widespread. There is also a risk of scattered storms on Sunday, especially north of NYC, with slightly cooler temperatures expected. Monday is expected to be similar to Sunday.

Looking forward into next week, a cold front will move through either on Tuesday night or Wednesday, resulting in a risk of strong or severe storms in parts of the region. Warmer temperatures are likely as well, perhaps surging well into the 80s again away from the coast. Cooler temperatures are expected for the second half of the week with less humidity, although any break from the stormy pattern is not expected to last for long.


Tropics: Tropical / Subtropical Storm Beryl Up Next?


The season of 2011-2012 has had some odd weather events; winter 2011-12 began unusually early with an October snowstorm, but ended up otherwise mild with almost no snow, and just as winter ended the pattern began to resemble a more winter-like one in April with a blocking pattern. The hurricane season also had an interesting start, with the first year on record that both the Atlantic (Alberto) and Pacific (Aletta) hurricane seasons started earlier than the official start dates. The Pacific season continued to develop interestingly with a major hurricane, Bud, currently active and headed towards Mexico; considering the time of the year, Bud is a notable storm, making it the last time since 2007 that two named storms formed in May in the East Pacific and the 4th time this has happened on record, with Bud only the 3rd major hurricane recorded in May.

The Atlantic season is also off to an active start. Tropical Storm Alberto formed last week, making it the earliest tropical cyclone to form since Ana in April of 2003. Invest 94L is currently developing near the southeastern US, and although it is not surrounded by a very favorable environment for development, it is possible that within the next few days, Invest 94L develops into a subtropical or tropical storm, making it the 2nd of the season. A strong ridge will build on top of 94L, forcing it west/WSW towards the Southeast US.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

May 23, 2012 Brief Update


Wednesday, May 23 Observations:


Cloudy to mostly cloudy skies were observed throughout the day, with slow moving heavy storms affecting interior parts of northern NJ and SE NY where locally heavy rain amounts were observed. High temperatures ended up in the mid to upper 70s across most of the area, with a few lower 70s further east.



Forecast Overview:


- Thursday and Friday are expected to have conditions similar to those of Wednesday, although Thursday will be slightly cooler and cloudier with a lower risk of storms. Friday appears to include another risk of locally heavy slow moving storms north/west of NYC.

- Weekend outlook: Saturday is expected to be mostly dry, with partly cloudy skies, a potential for an isolated thunderstorm, and temperatures surging into the 80s away from the coast, passing 85 degrees in parts of northern NJ. Humid conditions are expected throughout the weekend as well. The latest models continue to signal the potential for heavy thunderstorms on Sunday associated with storms moving in from the north central US on Saturday night. Tonight's forecast continues to mention a risk of scattered storms on Sunday, although heavy and/or strong thunderstorms are possible. The exact location of these storms though is still somewhat uncertain and is subject to some changes.

- Early-Mid Week: Depending on how far south the back door cold front drops, temperatures on Monday may be slightly cooler than those of Sunday, but will still stay in the 70s and possibly in the 80s inland. With a cold front approaching on Tuesday as the ridge weakens, the possibility is there for warmer temperatures, possibly getting up to 90 degrees, along with a risk of thunderstorms, possibly strong/severe depending on the specific set up of the low pressure and the cold front. Cooler temperatures and less humidity are expected for the second half of next week. Stay tuned for more information.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

May 22, 2012: Cloudy, Wet Pattern Continues


Forecast Highlights:


- Scattered showers/storms last through Friday
- Hot, humid conditions develop by weekend, next week
- Additional thunderstorms expected next week once again


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Today's Observations:


Following yesterday's heavy showers, occasional showers fell throughout the day today, although no widespread washout was observed. Temperatures were slightly warmer than those of yesterday but still ended up cooler than average, reaching the mid 60s to lower 70s in Long Island/S CT and the lower to mid 70s from NY and further north/west. The majority of the rain over the last 2 days continued to focus over the immediate NYC area, with radar estimates showing 1-3 inches in most of the immediate NYC area, and less than 1/2 inch for most of Long Island and S CT.

Temperatures will remain in the 70s throughout the rest of the week with additional scattered shower and thunderstorm activity expected at times throughout the days. A ridge will build into the region by the weekend but with a back door cold front affecting the region as well, resulting in a combination of moderate heat with temperatures in the 80s, humid conditions, and potential thunderstorm activity for the late weekend into next week, keeping the mainly cloudy and wet pattern in place through next week once again.


Wednesday - Friday Outlook:


The next few days will continue with the mostly cloudy skies and scattered thunderstorms, although breaks in the cloud cover are expected to be slightly more frequent, especially on Wednesday and Friday. Temperatures are expected to reach the upper 60s to lower 70s further east and the mid to locally upper 70s from NYC and further north/west. Locally heavy showers are possible, with most of the models indicating that Wednesday has the best potential for heavy thunderstorms, especially north and west of NYC during the mid to late afternoon hours.


Weekend - Next Week: Warmer, Humid And Stormy


A large ridge developing in the central US will spread into the region on Saturday, with temperatures warming up into the lower to possibly mid 80s away from the coast. Saturday has a lower risk of rain; although a few isolated storms are possible late, the day will otherwise be partly cloudy. Model differences remain for Sunday into next week, as the GFS' earlier runs as well as the latest DGEX continue to show no back door cold front resulting in a stretch of a few days of 90-95 degree temperatures, while the ECM and the latest GFS runs show more influence from the back door cold front. While the ECM may have overestimated the back door cold front to some extent, the cold front solution is more reasonable than the large heat wave given the pattern in place. The operational GFS also received an upgrade today, and this upcoming active time period will test how well it performs.

With the back door cold front near the region, temperatures in the upper 70s to mid 80s away from the coast are possible on Sunday and Monday, followed by another brief surge of heat possible sometime around Tuesday or a bit later; depending on the timing and intensity of this surge of warmth, temperatures may perhaps get to 90 degrees away from the coast. There is also a risk of thunderstorms depending on where the back door cold front sets up; this afternoon's models are in agreement with showing the potential for thunderstorms, possibly strong/severe, on Sunday into Sunday night. For now, I placed a risk of scattered storms on Sunday, although some changes are still possible with the forecast due to uncertainty and the lack of agreement on a single solution for this time period. Stay tuned for more updates on the Memorial Day Weekend outlook.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

May 21, 2012: Week Of Rain/Storms Begins


Forecast Highlights:


- Scattered showers, storms last through Friday
- Warmer weekend; slight risk of storms
- Warmth possible next week


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Today's Observations:


With a cutoff low pressure approaching from the south, scattered showers and thunderstorms affected the area throughout the day. Earlier this morning, an unexpected band of heavy rain and thunderstorms affected the immediate NYC area, with rain amounts locally as high as 2-3 inches. Temperatures were steady in the 60s across the area, with the coolest temperatures in the immediate NYC area, where highs reached the lower to mid 60s. The warmest temperatures were observed in southern Connecticut.



The latest radar posted to the left shows that additional rain is approaching from the southeast, with scattered showers, locally heavy, lasting throughout the night and into Tuesday morning. Most places are expected to receive up to 1/2 inch of rain tonight, with isolated amounts up to 1-2 inches, likely focusing over the immediate NYC area. Even after this round of rain ends, an upper level low will keep partly-mostly cloudy skies and a risk of thunderstorms in place throughout the entire week, with somewhat warmer temperatures for the weekend but with a slight risk of isolated storms still in place.



Week Overview:


Cloudy skies are expected on Tuesday with scattered showers/thunderstorms, with highs reaching the upper 60s to lower 70s across most of the area with some mid 70s further inland. Partly to mostly cloudy skies are expected on Wednesday with another risk of scattered storms, with temperatures reaching the mid to upper 70s from NYC and further north/west and the upper 60s to lower 70s in Long Island/S CT.

At this time, it appears that additional cloud cover will move in for Thursday, with slightly cooler high temperatures likely along with another risk of showers and/or thunderstorms. Friday will be another partially wet day with temperatures slightly rising into the upper 60s to mid 70s.


Next Weekend - Next Week:


By next weekend, likely focusing on Saturday, a brief surge of warmth will move through, with highs reaching the 80s away from coastal areas. Depending on the timing of the cold front, which is still somewhat uncertain, thunderstorms may be possible for Saturday night and/or Sunday, although this potential is still uncertain and it is possible that little, if any rain falls during the weekend.

The models once again show large differences for Sunday and next week, with some such as today's earlier GFS runs bringing a well defined cold front through, resulting in slightly cooler temperatures for Sunday/Monday followed by another surge of warmth, while others such as the latest 0z GFS and the 18z DGEX keep building the heat up, with 2+ days of 90 degree weather before a cold front moves through. Given typical trends this spring and the current pattern, I am siding with a solution leaning towards more cold front influence than the latest 0z GFS has, but likely not to the extent of a strong cold front clearing the region entirely, keeping temperatures potentially in the mid 70s to mid 80s range through early-mid next week. Stay tuned for more information as details become clearer.

Monday, May 21, 2012

May 20, 2012: Showers, Storms This Week


Forecast Highlights:


- Showers, Storms This Week
- Temperatures Staying In 70s
- Prolonged Heat Appears Less Likely For Long Range


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Today's Observations:


As a cutoff low pressure to the south slowly approached, today was the last sunny and warm day before clouds and showers return. Temperatures inland were similar to those of yesterday, slightly warmer in some areas, peaking in the upper 70s to lower 80s from NYC and further north/west. The immediate NYC area was slightly cooler than yesterday, with Long Island and southern Connecticut reaching the lower to upper 70s for highs.

With the cutoff low to the south, not related to Alberto, drifting towards the region, clouds will increase tonight, with more clouds and scattered showers/thunderstorms through most of the week. Beyond the late week, a brief surge of warmth is still possible, although the probability of a significant warm spell is much lower than previously thought due to a strong east based -NAO block developing.


Week Overview:


Mainly cloudy skies are expected for Monday with highs in the mid to upper 60s from NYC and further north/west and the lower to mid 60s further east. Scattered showers are expected throughout the day as well. Some models, including the NAM, are inconsistent with the rain forecast, noticeably moving the axis of heavy rain around with each run, making it harder to determine exactly where the heavier rain totals end up, although at this time the eastern half of the area appears to be more favored for locally heavier rain totals over 1/2 inch. Temperatures on Tuesday and Wednesday will gradually warm up, reaching the 70s in parts of the area on Tuesday and most of the area on Wednesday, getting close to 80 degrees near NYC on Wednesday. Scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected on both days with partly to mostly cloudy skies. Partly cloudy skies and a risk of isolated thunderstorms will continue through Friday with high temperatures in the 70s except for coastal areas.


Next Weekend - Next Week: Warm At Times


Slightly Edited on 5/21 Morning

Over the last few days, there has been a strong signal for heat on the models for the Memorial Day Weekend time period and beyond. The latest trends, however, point to an east based -NAO developing along with a polar vortex near SE and/or central Canada. With the core of the ridge in the central US, this supports the potential for a back door cold front to move through the region. A brief surge of warmth is expected around Saturday and/or Sunday, with highs well into the 80s for parts of the area possible, with somewhat cooler temperatures for Sunday and parts of early next week. The back door cold front potential will not stick around the entire time, however, as another surge of heat may be possible later on next week. The possibility for thunderstorms is also in place for the late weekend/early week; this type of set up supports a NW flow aloft, which results in a potential for strong to severe thunderstorms in parts of the region, although there is not enough confidence on the weekend set up at this time to go into more detail regarding precipitation chances. Stay tuned for more information.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

May 19, 2012: Tropical Storm Alberto Forms


Forecast Highlights:


- Tropical Storm Alberto To Stay Offshore
- Scattered Showers, Storms Monday Through Thursday
- Warm Temperatures Return By Memorial Day Weekend


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Today's Observations:


Sunny skies and mild temperatures were once again observed across the region with a high pressure in place. High temperatures were warmer than those of yesterday, peaking in the lower 80s from NYC and further north/west, and in the lower to mid 70s in Long Island and southern CT, getting into the upper 70s closer to NYC, verifying yesterday's temperature forecast for today.

There are two apparent lows to the south of the region; the first is near eastern North Carolina. To its south near South Carolina, Tropical Storm Alberto, the first tropical storm of the year, formed this afternoon. Alberto will stay offshore, although scattered showers will affect the region between Monday and Wednesday. A large ridge will build into the central US by the late week, and although the hottest temperatures will stay to the west, a brief surge of warm temperatures perhaps up to 90 degrees is expected around or after Memorial Day Weekend.


Tomorrow's Outlook:


Sunny skies are expected to start the day, although cloud cover will increase later on in the day as the cutoff low from the south approaches. Warm temperatures are expected again, reaching the lower 80s from NYC and further north/west, although temperatures further east in Long Island and southern CT will end up cooler than those of today, likely peaking in the upper 60s to mid 70s, due to an eastern wind.


Monday - Wednesday: Cloudier, Some Showers


Increasing clouds are expected on Sunday night, with cloudy skies and occasional showers expected for Monday and Monday night. Locally heavy showers are possible in parts of the area. High temperatures will be cooler due to the cloud cover as well, peaking in the mid 60s from NYC and further north/west, and the upper 50s to lower 60s across most of Long Island and southern CT. During Tuesday and Wednesday, scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected, with locally heavy showers on both days. Temperatures will gradually warm up, starting to reach the 70s in parts of the area on Tuesday and in most of the area on Wednesday.


Late Week - Beyond: Temperatures To Warm Up


Another upper level low is expected to move into the region by the late week, although this ULL will not provide much rain, with partly sunny skies expected for the late week with temperatures again in the 70s. Meanwhile, a strong ridge will build into the central US. With the current pattern, the hottest temperatures and the greatest temperature departures will stay in the central US, with a trough in Canada resulting in more back door cold front influence over the region. Temperatures around the Memorial Day Weekend and the following week are expected to end up above average, generally in the 70s and the 80s, with a few days in this time period likely including temperatures surging well into the 80s and perhaps even 90 degrees for some. Stay tuned for more information on the long range outlook.


Tropical Storm Alberto: Storm To Stay East




Earlier this afternoon, Tropical Storm Alberto formed southeast of North Carolina, becoming the first named storm of this year's Atlantic hurricane season. The hurricane season officially begins on June 1st; in addition to Alberto forming prior to the official start to the season, Alberto also became the first May named tropical cyclone since Arthur in 2008, and the earliest forming Atlantic tropical cyclone since Ana in 2003. Last week, Tropical Storm Aletta formed in the East Pacific; as Aletta formed prior to the Pacific hurricane season's May 15 start, as the latest National Hurricane Center discussion for Alberto notes, this is the first year in recorded history that both the Atlantic and Pacific hurricane seasons started before their official start dates.

Alberto reached a peak of 60 mph and 995 mb, Alberto started a weakening trend late this evening, and as of NHC's 11 PM update, is down to 50 mph sustained winds. Alberto's appearance is becoming more disorganized, and some weakening is likely to continue over the next few days as Alberto remains stationary at first, then begins to move NE towards eastern North Carolina before becoming extra-tropical.

Saturday, May 19, 2012

May 19, 2012 Noon Update


**Edited on May 20 to correct a minor mistake**

4:15 PM: South of the cutoff low currently developing near the southern Mid Atlantic that has been mentioned for the last few days, another low pressure has increased in organization and intensity, and is now Tropical Storm Alberto, making this the first tropical cyclone of the Atlantic hurricane season, forming 13 days before the official start to the hurricane season and making this the first named Atlantic tropical cyclone in May since Tropical Storm Arthur in 2008.

As of the latest data, Alberto is a 45 mph tropical storm with a minimum pressure of 1007 mb located southeast of South Carolina. Alberto is expected to slowly drift NNE/northeast, moving towards eastern North Carolina, before moving NNE from there and staying mostly offshore. The formation of Alberto has little impact on the forecast for the NYC area, as Alberto is still expected to stay mostly offshore, with scattered shower activity on Monday and Tuesday, locally heavy in the eastern parts of the area. Stay tuned for a more detailed update on Alberto with this evening's discussion.

Friday, May 18, 2012

May 18, 2012: Memorial Day Heat Potential


Forecast Highlights:


- Sunny, mild conditions last through Saturday
- Clouds, scattered showers to gradually return Sun Night to Wednesday
- Somewhat drier/mild ending to next week
- Heat surge possible around/after Memorial Day Weekend


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Today's Observations:


Today was the 2nd mainly sunny day in the row for the area, with mild temperatures observed close to average. High temperatures ended up slightly cooler than expected, reaching the mid to upper 60s in Long Island and southern CT, and the lower to mid 70s from NYC and further north/west.

Sunny skies and mild temperatures are expected again tomorrow, as well as Sunday for interior areas, although an approaching cutoff low will result in increased clouds and scattered showers for the first part of the upcoming week. There is uncertainty with another potential cutoff low afterwards, although the potential exists for a significant warm spell around or after Memorial Day Weekend.


Weekend Outlook:


Mainly sunny skies are expected to continue tomorrow, with NE/ENE winds expected again. High temperatures will reach the upper 70s to lower 80s from NYC and further north/west, with lower to mid 70s expected in most of Long Island/southern CT. Places closer to NYC may see highs in the upper 70s, with eastern areas failing to pass 70 degrees.

By Sunday, a cutoff low pressure to the south will begin to move north, with a sunny start to the day expected but with increasing clouds. I am currently siding with the slower timing for the low, with showers reaching the region by Monday with clouds developing later in the day/evening on Sunday. As a result, temperatures inland are likely to reach the lower 80s again, with similar temperatures to those of Saturday near NYC and slightly cooler temperatures possible in Long Island/S CT.


Next Week: More Clouds, Some Rain


The cutoff low pressure to the south will move into the region on Monday and Tuesday, producing mostly cloudy skies and scattered showers, although the main low pressure is expected to stay to the east of the area. No heavy rain totals are expected, except for perhaps isolated heavy amounts in the eastern parts of the area. Otherwise, most places are expected to see up to 1/2 inch of rain. Temperatures on Monday are expected to reach the upper 60s to lower 70s from NYC and north/west and the lower to upper 60s in Long Island/S CT, with temperatures on Tuesday slightly warming up into the mid 60s to lower 70s in Long Island/S CT and the lower to mid 70s for the rest of the area.

Behind the cutoff low pressure, a trough will approach from the west, with another upper level low likely to get stuck over the region as a result. Wednesday, Thursday and Friday aren't expected to be as cloudy, cool and rainy as the first half of the week, although partly to mostly cloudy skies and a risk of scattered showers is likely to persist through Thursday and/or Friday. Currently, the GFS model quickly pushes out the upper level low, although given how it also quickly pushed out the cutoff low for this weekend, a somewhat slower solution is likely to take place.


Memorial Day Weekend: Strong Warmth Potential


With the ULL (upper level low) near the region and a trough dropping into the western US, a large ridge is expected to build into the central US starting late next week. Given the recent pattern, the core of the heat will stay in the central US, where there is a high probability of temperatures reaching the 90s for highs. The models are still struggling to handle the specifics of this time period due to differences with the ULL and the pattern in Canada, with some dropping a back door cold front through the region, others such as the 12z ECMWF bring a short lasting heat surge into the region, and finally there's the 12z GFS/18z DGEX, which developed a very strong ridge with temperatures exceeding 95 degrees for 2+ days. The GFS/DGEX solution is exaggerated, although given the pattern in place, there is a reasonable possibility that at least a brief surge of heat moves through the region around or after Memorial Day Weekend, when temperatures have the potential to reach 90 degrees for parts of the region. Stay tuned for more information on the Memorial Day Weekend outlook.

May 17, 2012: Clouds, Showers Return Next Week


Forecast Highlights:


- Sunny skies, mild temperatures last through Saturday
- Mostly cloudy, occasional showers Sunday night-Wednesday
- Warmth potential for Memorial Day Weekend


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Today's Observations:


With a high pressure moving into the region, mostly sunny skies were observed today along with slightly cooler temperatures, reaching the lower to mid 70s across the area except for Danbury, CT and Montauk, NY which reached 69 degrees. Yesterday's temperature forecast for today was nearly spot on.

The high pressure will keep mainly sunny conditions and highs in the 70s through Saturday, and until Sunday for parts of the area away from the coast. By Sunday night and Monday, a cutoff low will drift north into the region, with mostly cloudy to cloudy skies and scattered showers lasting through at least Wednesday.


Friday - Sunday Outlook:


Mainly sunny skies are expected to continue through Friday and Saturday along with temperatures steadily warming. Friday will be similar to today except for a NE/ENE wind instead of a NW wind, keeping the eastern areas cooler. Temperatures are expected to reach the lower to mid 70s across most of the area again, staying below the 70 degree mark in parts of eastern Long Island/SE CT, and perhaps reaching and/or passing 75 degrees in parts of the immediate NYC area.

Saturday will also have mainly sunny skies with a NE wind, although temperatures away from the coast are expected to end up warmer, with widespread upper 70s and a few lower 80s in northern NJ, SE NY and interior southern CT. Coastal parts of CT and Long Island are expected to stay in the lower to mid 70s with some areas closer to NYC getting into the upper 70s. As a cutoff low to the south slowly drifts north, increasing cloud cover is likely on Sunday, especially towards the second half of the day. There is some minor uncertainty with the timing of the clouds and the eventual showers, although siding with the slightly slower solutions, interior parts of the area are expected to reach the lower 80s, with places closer to the coast likely having temperatures similar to those of Saturday.


Next Week Outlook: Clouds, Showers For Early-Mid Week


Clouds are expected to move in towards Sunday night, with showers spreading in by Monday. Occasional showers are expected on Monday and Tuesday, although it will not rain the entire time in the entire area. Monday is likely to be the cooler day, with highs in the mid 60s to lower 70s across the area, possibly in the low 60s further east in parts of Long Island. Slightly warmer temperatures are expected on Tuesday, reaching the upper 60s to mid 70s for most places, ending up cooler again near coastal areas. Less cloud cover is likely on Wednesday with temperatures possibly ending up slightly warmer.

Uncertainty increases with the forecast going into next Thursday and beyond, although drier conditions are likely to return. A ridge is apparently becoming more likely to spread into the East by Memorial Day Weekend; most of the latest models currently focus the warmth well to the north/NW of the area, although considering that there is more than a week left, the models are likely to change the solution for next weekend. Stay tuned for more information on next week's outlook.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

May 16, 2012: Sunshine Lasts Through Sunday


Forecast Highlights:


- Mostly Sunny, Mild Conditions Through Sunday
- Cutoff Drifts North; Rain Returns Early-Mid Week
- Temperatures To Stay In 70s Next Week
- Memorial Day Weekend Warmth?


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Today's Observations:


Scattered thunderstorms continued to affect the area last night, with most places ending up with at least 1/2 to 1 inch for the storm total. Today's thunderstorm activity stayed to the north of the area, with most of the severe storms affecting the eastern half of New York state. After a dense fog overnight, partly to mostly cloudy skies were observed later on in the day, with highs reaching the upper 70s to lower 80s from NYC and further north/west and the upper 60s to mid 70s in Long Island/S CT. Yesterday's temperature outlook verified for NYC and further north/west and eastern LI, although temperatures ended up a few degrees cooler than expected in western/central LI and CT.

With the cold front moving through, a high pressure will provide the region with sunshine and mild temperatures through Sunday. By Monday, however, a cutoff low pressure is likely to drift into the area, resulting in more widespread clouds and some shower activity for early-mid next week. Afterwards, there is more uncertainty with the outlook, but depending on where the cutoff low ends up, the potential is there for warmth towards Memorial Day Weekend.


Tomorrow's Outlook:


With the high pressure moving in, mainly sunny skies and seasonable temperatures are expected for tomorrow (Thursday), starting a 4-day stretch of sunshine and mild temperatures. High temperatures are expected to reach the lower to mid 70s across most of the area; although the graphic to the left shows widespread low-mid 70s, not all places in the 70-75 degree area are expected to pass 70 degrees.


Friday - Sunday: Sunny, Warmer


The high pressure will remain over the northern Mid Atlantic with temperatures slowly warming up. A developing cutoff low pressure further south, will keep more of an east/NE wind in place, preventing temperatures from getting too warm. Overall, for the Friday-Sunday time period, sunny to mostly sunny skies are expected with temperatures slowly warming up, with most of the area expected to reach the lower to mid 70s on Friday, mid to upper 70s on Saturday, and the upper 70s on Sunday, perhaps getting to 80 degrees inland. Coastal areas will likely be a few degrees cooler with slightly more cloud cover and ENE/NE winds.


Next Week: Clouds And Some Rain Return


There are some differences with the models for next week, as the GFS does not show any organized cutoff low, instead resulting in sunshine and highs in the 80s lasting through mid next week. The other models, however, show more of an organized cutoff low drifting north into the region. Based on recent trends, I am considering the sunnier/warmer GFS an outlier solution, instead expecting the cutoff low to drift north into the region, with mostly cloudy to cloudy skies developing by Sunday or Sunday night, with clouds and occasional showers lasting through at least Wednesday. At this time, however, it does not appear that any widespread heavy rain is expected. Tomorrow's update will discuss next week's outlook in more details.

Going forward into the late week and Memorial Day Weekend, there are more differences with the models as each one handles the cutoff low differently. Other than the CMC, however, the rest of the models show the potential for a larger warm spell towards Memorial Day Weekend, although it is too early to focus on any specific outcome at this time. Stay tuned for more information on the Memorial Day Weekend outlook.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

May 15, 2012: Seasonable Temperatures Continue


Forecast Highlights:


- Warm on Wednesday; highs may approach 85 degrees
- Scattered strong storms possible north of NYC
- Mostly sunny skies, highs in 70s to last through weekend
- Scattered showers/storms return next week


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Today's Observations:


After heavy rain affected Pennsylvania yesterday, the axis of rain moved east through the NYC area during the first half of the day. The rain moved through faster than expected, however, ending by 2-5 PM for most places. Rain totals generally ended up near 1/2 inch, locally higher in some spots, such as near Bridgeport, CT. There was little variation in temperatures throughout the day, with highs peaking in the mid to upper 60s for most of the area, getting near 70 degrees towards central NJ, where some sunshine was observed in the afternoon.


Tonight's Outlook / Forecast Overview

(Updated as of 10:50 PM)
Looking at the latest regional radar, this morning's heavy rain has moved to the northeast and is currently in eastern Massachusetts. Cloud cover has partially cleared in some areas to the west/SW of the city, and isolated heavy thunderstorms are slowly spreading east in the western parts of the area. These scattered storms will continue to affect parts of the area, especially near NYC and further west/SW, through parts of the overnight hours, containing locally heavy rain. An area of heavy storms is currently located near Morris County, and will slowly drift east to cover most of NE NJ and NYC over the next 2 hours.

Partly sunny skies are expected to return for tomorrow with highs in the low 80s and the potential for scattered strong thunderstorms late in the afternoon north of NYC. A high pressure will then move into the region, keeping mostly sunny skies and highs in the 70s in place until early next week, when clouds and some rain will return.


Tomorrow's Outlook:


After the possible isolated storm activity tonight, cloud cover is expected to clear late in the morning for most of the area except for coastal areas, where low clouds should persist. Except for the coast, partly to mostly cloudy skies will continue through the afternoon with a SW wind and temperatures warming up into the upper 70s to lower 80s. Depending on the amount of cloud cover, temperatures in NE NJ may get near 85 degrees. Long Island and southern Connecticut are expected to reach the lower to mid 70s, with upper 70s further west, closer to NYC, and in the upper 60s near the immediate coast.

As a cold front approaches from the west, some instability is expected across the region, with a squall line producing strong to severe thunderstorms developing further north towards New York state during the afternoon hours. Most of tomorrow's storms will stay to the north of the area, although it is not out of the question that a few storms may affect the northern parts of the area during the late afternoon hours. Any storm that does so will be capable of producing locally heavy rain and strong wind gusts.


Thursday - Weekend: Mostly/Partly Sunny, Mild


As the cold front moves through the area, a cooler air mass will move into the region, although the cold front will fail to bring any significant cool down, with temperatures staying close to average. With a high pressure moving into the region, mostly sunny skies are expected from Thursday through Saturday with temperatures reaching the lower to mid 70s across most of the area. An eastern flow is expected to set up, and although a high pressure overhead will likely prevent a cloudy weekend, it is possible that there could be more cloud cover than currently expected, especially further east.

By Sunday, a relatively strong low pressure will pull a warm air mass into the Midwest and Great Lakes region, while a weak cutoff low gets stuck south of the high pressure over the region. As a result, fair weather is expected to continue through Sunday and perhaps Monday as well, with highs still likely reaching the lower to mid 70s, although the significant warmth with highs in the 80s will stay well to the north, over the northern parts of New England.


Early-Mid Next Week: With the high pressure moving out, the cutoff to the south is expected to drift into the region, resulting in widespread showers returning for early-mid next week, although no widespread washout is expected at this time. Beyond early next week, uncertainty increases with the specific scenario, although temperatures are likely to stay generally in the 70s.

Monday, May 14, 2012

**No Update Posted 5/14/12**


Due to a busy schedule, no discussion was posted tonight, although the 5-Day Forecast page has been slightly revised. The next discussion will be posted on Tuesday afternoon, 5/15.

May 13, 2012: Warmer Temperatures To Persist


With a warm air mass still covering the region, today was another warm day for the region, with partly sunny skies and highs reaching the upper 70s to lower 80s from NYC and further north/west, peaking near 84 degrees in Newark, and the mid to upper 70s in Long Island/southern CT. Temperatures will cool back down into the 60s to lower 70s for the early week as occasional showers, locally heavy on Tuesday, move through the region, although temperatures in the 70s are expected to occur more frequently starting on Wednesday and beyond.


Monday - Tuesday: Showers, Locally Heavy


Areas of showers in the Southeast will move up the East Coast, providing for another two mainly cloudy and occasionally wet days. Temperatures will peak in the upper 60s to lower 70s across most of the area on Monday with mostly cloudy skies and isolated showers. During this time period, most of the rain is expected to focus over Pennsylvania, where amounts locally up to 3 inches are possible. The axis of heavier rain is expected to shift east on Tuesday, with occasional showers, locally heavy, affecting the area on Tuesday and Tuesday night. The heaviest totals are expected to end up north and west of the city, where amounts could end up above 1 inch in some areas. Locally heavy showers are also possible east of NYC, but lower amounts are expected, generally up to 1/2 inch with locally higher amounts. Most of the rain will end by late Tuesday night.


Wednesday - Next Weekend: Warmer, But Not Very Warm


As a cold front approaches, warmer temperatures are expected on Wednesday, with highs reaching the mid 70s to lower 80s across the area again. There is the possibility of isolated thunderstorms north and west of NYC, but at this time it appears more likely that little or no rain should fall during the day.

A cooler air mass will move in for the late week, with highs dropping slightly into the upper 60s to mid 70s for most places, with mostly sunny skies expected. A large warm air mass will spread into the Ohio Valley, although at the same time a cutoff low pressure will likely develop south of the region, preventing the stronger warmth from spreading in while keeping temperatures closer to average. Little, if any rain is expected at this time for the weekend, although with the cutoff in place, any potential for a more widespread warm spell will likely wait until after the 7-10 day range at the earliest, with temperatures until then staying somewhat closer to average.

Sunday, May 13, 2012

May 12, 2012: Locally Heavy Rain This Week


With a weak trough moving out, a warmer air mass moved into the region with WSW winds, resulting in temperatures warming up into the mid to upper 70s for most places for highs, with Central Park reaching 78 degrees and Newark reaching 81 degrees.

Due to the lack of an active pattern recently, there is not a lot of detail to go into regarding the forecast. The only highlight of tonight's discussion is the Monday-Wednesday time period, when locally heavy rain and flash flooding is possible. Otherwise, temperatures are expected to remain near to slightly above average, with no warm or cold temperature extremes expected.


Sunday's Outlook:

Sunday will be the warmest day of the month so far. With 850mb temperatures near 10-12C, partly sunny skies, and SW winds, temperatures will rise into the upper 70s across most of the area, with mid 70s towards coastal areas. The immediate NYC area is expected to reach the lower 80s, with NE NJ getting close to 85 degrees. Isolated thunderstorms are possible in the evening, but no widespread rain is expected.


Next Week Overview:


The highlight of this upcoming week is between Monday and Wednesday, when moisture moving up the East Coast from the Gulf of Mexico will result in areas of locally heavy rain. The heaviest rain is expected to stay to the west of the city, likely focusing over Pennsylvania while extending into the western parts of the area. The exact location of the heavy rain axis is still uncertain, however, resulting in a bust potential in terms of rain; amounts could end up locally as high as 2-3 inches of rain especially west of NYC, although it is also possible that the rain stalls further west with less than 1 inch. Most of the rain is expected to fall between Monday night and Wednesday, with high temperatures generally in the 60s to low 70s.

By the end of next week, less cloud cover is expected with temperatures warming up into the mid to upper 70s for most of the area. There is the possibility for another cutoff low pressure to end up south of the area, which may keep cloud cover in place through the weekend with temperatures remaining in the 70s for highs.

Saturday, May 12, 2012

May 11, 2012: Warm, Partly Sunny Weekend


Forecast Overview:


- Partly sunny weekend, highs in 70s to low 80s
- Clouds, storms return for early-mid week
- Lower rain risk by late next week; no heat surge in sight


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As a high pressure stayed to the south, partly sunny skies were observed today with highs in the upper 60s to lower 70s across most of the area. The temporary break from the cloudy and wet pattern will continue through this weekend, with sunny skies on Saturday and partly cloudy skies on Sunday with temperatures rising into the mid 70s to lower 80s for most places, making this the largest warm spell since mid April when highs nearly reached 90 degrees. The warmth won't last long, however, as more clouds and locally heavy thunderstorms return next week.


Weekend Outlook:


Sunny skies are expected on Saturday, with west winds and a warmer air mass resulting in temperatures warming into the mid to upper 70s across the area, with lower 80s in parts of the immediate NYC area, especially near NE NJ. Similar temperatures are expected on Sunday but with more cloud cover along with a risk of isolated thunderstorms in the evening west and south of NYC.


Next Week's Outlook:


Moisture will move up the East Coast from the Gulf of Mexico early-mid next week, resulting in mostly cloudy skies, highs in the 60s to lower 70s, and occasional showers/thunderstorms, some of them heavy. At this time, it appears that the heaviest rain may end up to the west, but locally heavy storms are still expected to affect the area, with the potential for 1 or more inch in some areas. By the late week and weekend, temperatures will warm back up into the 70s with less cloud cover, although the possibility is there for another cutoff low to form, perhaps keeping the cloud cover and shower risk through next weekend as well. Saturday's update will include more details on the outlook for this upcoming week.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

May 9, 2012: 80 Degrees This Weekend


Forecast Highlights:


- Rain ends tonight, partly cloudy and breezy end of week
- Mostly-partly sunny and warm weekend; 80 degrees possible
- Clouds, highs in 70s return next week


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As a cold front is moving through the region, an area of moderate rain is currently affecting the area, with widespread light to moderate rain along with locally heavy showers, especially near NYC. There appears to be somewhat of a dry slot over northern NJ, which may slightly limit rain totals tonight, although the light to moderate rain will continue falling across most of the area through at least 2-4 AM. Clearing skies and breezy winds are expected for the late week, followed by a mostly sunny and warm weekend with high temperatures perhaps reaching 80 degrees for the first time since mid April.


Thursday - Friday Outlook:


Mostly cloudy skies are expected on Thursday with breezy NW winds, locally gusting up to 30 mph at times. High temperatures are expected to reach the lower to mid 60s inland (NW NJ, interior SE NY) and the mid to upper 60s across the rest of the area. Temperatures will drop overnight into the 40s across most of the area, perhaps even dropping slightly below 40 degrees further inland towards Sussex and Orange counties.

Mostly sunny skies are expected for Friday with highs also in the mid to upper 60s, getting to 70 degrees in parts of the immediate NYC area.


Weekend Outlook: Mostly Sunny, Warm


Last weekend was originally expected to be mostly sunny and mild; instead, however, mostly cloudy to cloudy skies were observed with highs in the 60s, almost 10 degrees colder than expected. There was no organized high pressure nearby, however, with a low pressure to the south of the area. For this weekend, however, the low pressure currently near the central US will gradually move east, ending up south/SSE of the area for Saturday and Sunday. With the high pressure to the south but still extending into the region, a WSW wind will set up, allowing for mostly sunny skies and warm temperatures.

Highs are expected to reach the mid to upper 70s across most of the area on Saturday, including most of Long Island and southern CT except for coastal locations, getting very close to 80 degrees in parts of NE NJ. A weak cool front will approach on Sunday, with a few showers possible later in the day but with otherwise partly sunny skies and highs again reaching the mid to upper 70s for most places. Depending on the timing of the clouds and rain, there may be a better chance of NE NJ getting to 80 degrees.


Next Week: Highs In 70s, Occasional Showers


Behind the cool front on Sunday, a warmer air mass will settle across most of the US as the last signs of cool air from the winter continue to gradually disappear. Despite the warmer air mass, however, the core of the warmth is not expected to shift east to the area. While no organized low pressure appears to develop at this time, there is a risk of widespread showers in the Mid Atlantic, extending into the area at times, such as the early-mid week time period. High temperatures are generally expected to stay in the 70s. Stay tuned for more information on next week's outlook.

May 9, 2012 Storm Updates

Below, updates will occasionally be posted regarding today's rain event.

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10:30 PM: Heavy Rain North Of NYC


Since the last update, a long lasting thunderstorm stalled over portions of northern Rockland/Westchester counties, with radar estimates showing isolated amounts of over 3 inches of rain over the last few hours in that area. Over the last hour, another slow moving storm developed near Ramsey, NJ (Bergen county), and is currently extending to the southeast, affecting eastern Bergen and Westchester counties with heavy rain. The storm continues to extend southeast, and will affect most of NYC with moderate-locally heavy rain over the next 1-2 hours as well.

The main rain from the storm continues to slowly approach from the southwest; while most of the rain will stay to the south and east of NYC, with over 1 inch of rain possible towards eastern Long Island/SE CT, another round of light-moderate rain and thunder is expected again later tonight but covering a more widespread area, with up to 1/4 inch north/west of NYC, near to locally above 1/4 inch in NYC and above 1/2 inch further east. The rain will end later in the overnight hours, with dry conditions for Thursday.

Unless any large changes with tonight's storms take place, tonight's discussion will be posted by 12 AM, with an update on the forecast.




5:00 PM: Steadier Rain Approaches


Throughout the late overnight and morning hours, steady rain fell across parts of Long Island and southern CT, with cloudy skies and isolated showers across the rest of the area. Breaks in the cloud cover have been reported west of NYC, with places further east still under cloudy skies.

As a cold front continues to slowly approach NYC, additional showers currently near Virginia will continue to expand while moving ENE/NE. Scattered thunderstorms will develop west of NYC from now until the evening hours, with a steadier rain developing by the evening and the first half of the overnight hours. Most of the rain will focus to the east of NYC, with locally heavy rain in Long Island and southern CT, while western parts of the area likely see a period of light-moderate rain. Additional rain amounts are expected, up to 1/4 inch inland, 1/2 inch in the immediate NYC area, and 3/4-1 inch in Long Island/S CT, ending up locally higher east of NYC and lower in some spots west of NYC. Most of the rain will clear by early Thursday morning as a developing low pressure moves into New England, with a breezy NW wind developing for Thursday and Friday, gusting up to 30-35 mph.

A few more updates will be posted later today, otherwise the next update will be posted tonight, including an update on the 80 degree weather this weekend along with mostly-partly sunny skies and an explanation of why this weekend won't end up cloudy and chilly as the previous weekend did.

May 8, 2012: More Rain Tomorrow


Forecast Highlights:


- Uncertainty for tomorrow's outlook
- Gradual warm up throughout late week, weekend


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Forecast for tonight and tomorrow:


A coastal low is expected to develop tomorrow south of the area, moving NE towards New England. Until now, most models kept this coastal low mostly to the east of NYC. The latest 18z GFS run, however, significantly shifted west, bringing well over an inch of rain for Wednesday evening/night for NYC and over 2 inches further east. Currently, the GFS is the westernmost model, although the other models have been gradually shifting slightly more west. This increases the uncertainty with tomorrow's forecast even more; the coastal low is barely 24 hours away, and should the storm end up well to the west of where most models have it, this would reflect a large bust with the models, which haven't done too well recently in several cases including the failed thunderstorm potential on Friday and the weekend, originally supposed to be partly sunny but instead ending up mostly cloudy and colder.

At this time, I think that the 18z GFS may have taken this too far west, although based on the scenario I expect at least some moderate rain to affect the area. Confidence is not high for tomorrow's outlook, although based on the latest information, I am siding with the western outcomes but not to the extent of the 18z GFS, with periods of light-moderate rain and possibly some thunder developing late in the afternoon hours for most of the area, with locally heavy rain possible east of NYC. The rain is mostly expected to end late on Wednesday night, with mostly cloudy skies and a few showers on Thursday. Rainfall amounts are the most uncertain, depending on the low pressure track, although at this time I expect 1/4 to 1/2 inch inland, 1/2 to 3/4 inch in the immediate NYC area, and near 1 inch, higher in some areas, in Long Island/S CT. Amounts may end up locally higher, especially further east, although depending on the development of the heavier rain, western parts of the area may see less rain than currently expected. High temperatures will reach the mid 60s to lower 70s across the area, with the warmest temperatures north/west of NYC.

Stay tuned for an update on the forecast on Wednesday afternoon.


Late Week - Weekend Outlook: Mostly Cloudy, Few Showers


With the low pressure cutting off near New England, mostly cloudy skies will stick around through Thursday and Friday along with scattered showers, especially north of NYC, with highs in the mid 60s inland and the mid 60s to lower 70s across the rest of the area. Less cloud cover and warmer temperatures will return for the weekend, with highs likely warming back up well into the 70s.

As the pattern continues to gradually transition with time to a summer-like one, ridging in the Atlantic may extend closer to the region, with a weak trough persisting near the eastern US. While this still supports near-above average temperatures, this pattern doesn't support any persisting warmth, and more scattered rain may be possible at some point early-mid next week. Stay tuned for more information.