Mild, mostly dry today but potent storm developing for Thursday into Friday

Storm to bring rain, wind, some snow end of week

TODAY: Some sunshine giving way to clouds but still mild. High: 58

TONIGHT: Mostly cloudy with a slight chance of a shower mainly to the north. Low: 41

THURSDAY: Cloudy followed by some rain in the afternoon. Heavy rain at night. High: 53 Low: 38

We have been enjoying some very pleasant conditions for this time of the year for the last couple days thanks to a large area of high pressure building atop the region. Tuesday was a spectacular blue bird day with hardly a cloud in sight. To go along with that, high temperatures Tuesday soared well into the 50s, even close to 60 in some spots, after a chilly start in the morning. This large high pressure system making for the very nice weather is currently centered just east of Virginia Beach this morning and that made for mostly clear skies this past night. Temperatures once again fell to somewhat chilly levels, although still a little above normal for this time of the year. Many of us are starting with temperatures in the low to mid 30s but some isolated upper 20s are not completely out of the question. We have seen some high clouds increase, but all-in-all, it’s a quiet start to the morning with mostly clear to partly cloudy skies.

High pressure will keep our weather quiet for one more day today as it slowly pushes further east off the Mid-Atlantic Coast. With a southwest wind flow today on the backside of this high pressure system, our high temperatures this afternoon should once again be able to climb into the upper 50s with a few 60-degree readings not out of the question. We will likely see a little bit more cloud cover today, certainly later in the afternoon, as a weak cold front moves down from the north. This cold front may spark an isolated shower later this evening and tonight, mainly across the Poconos. For the most part though, many of us should stay dry tonight with increasing clouds and milder overnight low temperatures…upper 30s to low 40s.

Things certainly become much more interesting with our weather as March begins on Thursday. An area of low pressure will take shape across the Lower Plains States and track northeastward into the Midwest during the day. As this low pressure system does so, it will drag a warm front northward in our direction. As the warm front and low pressure system get closer, clouds will thicken and lower and we can expect rain to work from southwest to northeast across the area as we progress through Thursday afternoon. We will initially be on the mild side of things with this storm system with high temperatures still expected to top out in the low 50s. Rain may become heavy at times Thursday night as low pressure crosses Pennsylvania and transfers its energy to a coastal low somewhere just east of the Jersey Shore or around Long Island by first thing Friday morning. As the coastal low rapidly intensifies the winds will pick up out of the northwest wrapping in colder air, which will eventually work its way to the surface and allow rain to mix with snow, and even changeover entirely to snow in some spots. We can expect this transition to occur just before dawn Friday, and then progressing through the day Friday. Any snow will be a wet snow. A few slushy inches of accumulation are definitely possible north and west of the I-95 corridor, especially in the higher elevations of northern Pennsylvania and New Jersey. Areas along and south and east of the I-95 corridor will likely remain mostly rain for this event. Precipitation totals (liquid equivalent) look to be on the order of three-quarters of an inch to as high as two inches, with the heaviest amounts expected to be across northern areas such as the Poconos and northern New Jersey. With the ground already being fairly water logged and some streams and creeks still a bit swollen from previous rains, we will certainly need to watch for the potential of some flooding.

Gusty winds will be another impact of our late week storm, but just how gusty will be determined by the strength of the storm. Right now, it looks like northerly winds will become the strongest working through the day Friday and going into first thing Saturday morning. Sustained winds over 20 miles-per-hour are certainly possible during that period with gusts between 30 and 40 miles-per-hour very well possible. We will need to monitor the potential for some tree and powerline damage. Strong winds, coupled with a full moon on Thursday, will cause some issues along the entire Northeast and Mid-Atlantic coast with some tidal flooding, rough seas, and beach erosion all possible Friday into Saturday. 

Our potent coastal storm should slowly be departing out to sea Saturday but it may remain close enough that we see a few flurries very early in the day. Otherwise, clouds should slowly thin out working through the day but it will be brisk and chilly. An area of high pressure will be slowly building southeastward from Hudson Bay in Canada, and the pressure gradient between this feature and our departing coastal storm will help keep a stiff breeze blowing perhaps right into early Sunday. A northerly breeze will also ensure our high temperatures run closer to seasonable levels…low to mid 40s…as we work through the weekend. Expect more in the way of sunshine with slightly lighter winds working through the day Sunday as high pressure to our north inches closer.

High pressure builds right atop the region for Monday leading to mostly sunny skies and much lighter winds. Our weather looks to turn a bit unsettled again Tuesday into Wednesday as a cold front initially approaches Tuesday bringing some rain and snow showers later in the day. That front then looks to slow down overnight Tuesday into Wednesday as a continued blocking pattern to our north doesn’t allow these storm systems to just exit stage right very quickly. With the front slowing down as it approaches the coast, some coastal re-organization is possible, and this may keep some rain and snow going into Wednesday. It looks like beyond the middle of next week, our weather pattern will remain seasonable with regards to temperatures.

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Allentown, PA 18102




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