Front passes, coastal low threatens late week

Cooler, less humid and more crisp air settled into the area on Tuesday behind a strong cold front which steamed through on Monday evening. The humidity and instability on Monday, which helped lead to strong to severe thunderstorms and a few damaging wind reports in New Jersey and New York, was a distant memory as it was swept seaward with the frontal passage. The new airmass is characterized by a large high pressure system, which stretches from the Mississippi Valley to Northern Maine and into parts of Canada. Pleasant, fall-like weather is expected on both Tuesday and Wednesday with highs in the upper 60’s to near 70 and chilly evenings and mornings.

A wrinkle in the forecast later this week is the development of a coastal storm system, which forecast models have been hinting at for several days. A weak mid level disturbance (the remnants of TS Karen) shifting northeastward will eventually track near the Mid-Atlantic Coast, developing a weak surface low offshore. The north/northwestward extent of the storm system, and associated precipitation shield, remains in question — and has significant impacts on our areas forecast. A farther northwest track would mean the potential for more significant rain in our area, while a weaker or farther southwest track (as a result of the strong high pressure holding its ground over New England), would mean unsettled weather but no heavy flooding rains.

NAM model showing an offshore coastal low producing unsettled weather and periods of rain throughout the area on Friday.

NAM model showing an offshore coastal low producing unsettled weather and periods of rain throughout the area on Friday

Regardless of the systems eventual track, unsettled weather looks likely to return by the tail end of this week beginning on Thursday with increasing clouds and a chance of showers. Periods of rain are likely, especially along the coast, from Thursday through Saturday — and depending on the northward progression of the system, the rain may be steady or heavy at times. Stay tuned for further details, and refining of the forecast, as we approach the event.

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