Scientific Forecaster Discussion

Return to Local Conditions & Forecast

Without Abbreviations
With Abbreviations

Area forecast discussion 
National Weather Service Mount Holly New Jersey
614 PM EDT sun Aug 30 2015

a weakening cold front will arrive tonight, otherwise high pressure
will remain centered mainly near the middle Atlantic region through
much of this week. A weak cold front should slide south through
our region Thursday night or Friday. Thereafter, high pressure
will reside along the eastern New England coast through Sunday,
probably providing a little relief from the heat this coming


Near term /until 6 am Monday morning/...

A short wave trough will arrive into the northeast tonight and as it
does it should tend to weaken. A weak cold front at the surface is
tied to this feature, and with some increase in moisture some
showers and a thunderstorm are ongoing near or in our northwestern
zones. The overall lift, shear and instability looks weak enough to
keep any convective cores from getting to robust. The initiation
early on appeared to be driven by terrain in northeastern
Pennsylvania, and visible satellite imagery this afternoon shows the
main cumulus development mainly over the higher terrain. The flow
below about 10000 feet is 15 knots or less, therefore this activity
will slowly shift eastward and decay through this evening.

We therefore kept low probability of precipitation probability of precipitation going for a time through early to
middle evening. Some guidance wants to hang onto some isolated
activity overnight, however that may be overdone. Clouds may
increase from time to time but a partly to mostly clear night is
expected and the sky grids were decreased slightly for the
overnight with the latest update. The one exception is the
Poconos where thunderstorms have led to a local increase in clouds
for the next few hours.

It will be a warmer night across much of the area as the dew points
tend to hang near the muggy level. Some faster cooling this evening
though should occur mainly along the coast with a sea breeze, which
will weaken. As for the low temperatures, we used a MOS blend then
made some local tweaks.


Short term /6 am Monday morning through 6 PM Monday/...
an upper-level trough is forecast to amplify some across New England
on Monday. The southwestern extent of this feature reaches into the
middle Atlantic region. This provides some cyclonic flow aloft, while
at the surface weak high pressure generally remains nearby. A weak
surface front or trough looks to be draped across our area, and
while a shower or thunderstorm cannot be ruled out this is of low
confidence. The model guidance overall does not have a strong signal
for convective development, and since the chance looks rather low we
opted to leave out any mention at this time. It is possible a few isolated
cells are around to start the day as some forecast soundings do show
some increase in middle level instability around daybreak.

Otherwise, a decent amount of middle to high level clouds should be
around which will combine with some cumulus development. A rather
warm to hot afternoon is expected given the southwesterly flow and
any notable cooling aloft is mostly across New England. As a result,
we leaned closer to the warmer GFS MOS for most places regarding
high temperatures.


Long term /Monday night through Sunday/...
500 mb: in general, a fairly strong Summer ridge of high pressure
will prevail along the East Coast through next Sunday with only a
minor weakening of this ridge over our area late Wednesday into
Friday, as a strong short wave dives southeastward toward the Maritimes
(55n/55w). That permits a little more northerly component aloft
late this coming workweek and so an associated surface boundary
slips southward. Its cooling effectiveness felt primarily on the
coastal plain.

Temperatures: August through the 29th was averaging near or above
normal. Kmpo and kged were the only two of the 8 climate sites
below normal. Kttn kacy and kphl were averaging ~1 to ~2f above
normal and will warm these last two days of the month.

Calendar day departures Tuesday through Thursday will be 6 to 12
degrees above normal with the largest positive departures north and northwest
of kphl over east PA and the northwest half of New Jersey. Thereafter, Friday
through Sunday should still average 5 degrees or more above
normal, possibly still 10 degrees above, especially northwest of I-95.
How much cooling occurs Friday and beyond is dependent on the
strength of onshore flow. It appears the greatest impact of
cooling onshore flow will be the southern New Jersey and Delaware coasts.
Sst's are well above average so the cooling effectiveness is less.

Forecast basis: unless otherwise noted, 12z/30 GFS MOS was the
primary guidance Monday night-Tuesday night, 12z/30 mex MOS
Wednesday through Thursday, then the 1521z/30 wpc gridded
elements of maximum/min temp, 12 hour pop, 6 hour dewpoint- sky-wind
from Thursday night Onward. The exception here...was mex and wpc
min temperatures were blended 50 50 Friday night and Sat night.


A heat wave will be in progress through Thursday for the I-95
corridor eastward to near the coasts, its duration should be at
least 4 days whether or not it begins this afternoon or Monday.
The question, does it break anytime Friday-Sunday or just go on
and on through early next week in the interior near and northwest of I-95.
It is possible the I-95 corridor could see an extended heat wave
beyond 6 days (today-Sunday through Thursday look solid for 90-95f
and Friday looks like a better than even chance of 90 plus). Maximum
heat index values in this heat wave so far are forecast to be in
the middle to upper 90s. There is a slim chance we will need a heat
advisory for the urban corridor either of any three afternoons
between this coming Wednesday and Friday.

Thunderstorm drenching rains? Near the cool front Friday but overall
as per wpc, the dry spell is going to last quite awhile, possibly
through the start of Labor Day week.

The dailies...

Monday night-Thursday...fair and hot afternoons with patchy fog
possible late at night over the Countryside, mainly northwest New Jersey and east
PA. Light winds tend to be west-northwest during each afternoon. Small chance
of convection east PA and nnj Wednesday afternoon and Thursday afternoon per instability
indicators including ki.

Thursday night-Friday...a southward moving cold front may spawn heavy southward
moving convection but only in a precipitable water of 1.6 inches. Slow movers-
Gully washers where they occur but little predictability at this time except
most of the activity should remain just inland. Potentially still
90f vicinity kphl southwestward and westward on Friday. Dewpoints higher,
around 70f and 1400j ml cape. 0-6km bulk shear is poor for any
severe. Stratus fog potential at night and in the morning, especially I-80

Next weekend...fair and very warm. Slight chance for afternoon/evening
convection Poconos to the Lehigh Valley and krdg per European model (ecmwf) ki and
a tendency for upslope flow-lift.

Overall confidence these next 6 days: above average.


Aviation /22z Sunday through Friday/...
the following discussion is for kphl, kpne, kttn, kabe, krdg,
kilg, kmiv, kacy and surrounding areas.

Rest of this afternoon...VFR with some cumulus around 5000 feet,
along with middle to high level clouds moving through. Southwesterly
winds up to 10 knots, which should turn more southerly at kacy and
kilg due to a sea/Bay breeze. A few showers and a thunderstorm
will be near the kabe to krdg areas by late afternoon.

Tonight...VFR overall. A weakening cold front should allow a shower
or thunderstorm to arrive mainly near the kabe and krdg areas this
evening, however coverage is expected to be low. Southwesterly winds
5-10 knots, becoming light and variable at many of the terminals.

Monday...localized MVFR due to fog is possible early, otherwise VFR.
While a shower or thunderstorm is possible, the chance appears to be
rather low at this time. Light southwesterly winds increasing to
around 10 knots.

Monday night through Wednesday...VFR conditions expected though
localized MVFR/IFR conditions with fog/St possible each morning,
mainly near kabe-krdg. Light wind, tends be northwest each afternoon.

Thursday...mostly VFR conditions. Isolated thunderstorms possible
late. IFR ceilings/visibility possible north of I-80 late Thursday night.

Friday...mostly VFR with brief IFR conds possible in thunderstorms. MVFR
or IFR ceilings developing in northeasterly flow near and north of I-80 with
possible IFR visibility in fog at night.

Overall long term aviation forecast confidence: above average.


the conditions are anticipated to remain below Small Craft Advisory
criteria through Monday. High pressure generally remains near the
middle Atlantic which will keep a southwesterly flow across our area.
An increase into this evening is expected due to mixing and a sea
breeze circulation, and gusts to 20 knots are possible. The seas
overall are anticipated to be in the 1 to 3 foot range across our

Monday night through Thursday...winds and seas should stay well
below Small Craft Advisory criteria. Water temperatures are above

Friday...Atlantic seas may increase as an easterly flow develops but
attm, below Small Craft Advisory criteria.


Rip currents...
a long period east to southeast swell, 10-11 seconds, continues to
roll in along the coast. This combined with increased southerly
winds will result in tricky conditions at times within the surf zone
especially during tide changes. As a result there is a moderate risk
for the development of dangerous rip currents through this evening
along the New Jersey shore and the Delaware beaches.

The outlook is for generally low enhanced conditions this week with
a slightly subsiding 1-2 foot 10 second southeast swell. Its possible we
will still need to carry a MDT risk on Monday based on the very slow
to subside swell of today-Sunday.

Next Friday Onward may see the risk increase, with a chance of moderate
next weekend or Labor Day depending on the eventual development
of offshore low pressure and its westward sweeping swells. Lots of
uncertainty next weekend.

In the meantime, swim safely within the watchful safety view of
our beach patrols.



August: kphl (por 1872) and kacy (por 1874), barring any more rain
this month, will be 10th driest on record with 0.98 and 1.25"
respectively. The kilg 1.54 inches is 13th driest on record
provided no more rain falls before 1 am Tuesday.

Listing the seasons 90f or warmer days as information for you to add onto
as the week progresses.

These totals as of the 29th and do not include todays 90 plus.

Kphl 28, mean 21. If we add 5 more days 90f between now and sept
9 (total projected at least 33) and kphl will have the 18th
highest seasonal total of 90 or higher. Por to 1872

Kabe 12 por mean 17
kacy 16 por mean 10
kilg 11 por mean 20

Sampling of other location totals for 2015 are below.
Kpne 30
kvay 15
krdg 17
kttn 20
kged 18
kfwn 6

Records: none posted through Thursday. The records are more
vulnerable Friday-Sunday but at this time not Worth posting.

The closest possible near record potential appears at kacy on
Wednesday/Thursday of this week with a 94 in 1980 on the 2nd and 95 in 1994
on the 3rd. Again, coastal sea breezes will probably preclude.

Otherwise many records near 100f were established in 1953 between
August 31 and September 3rd.


Phi watches/warnings/advisories...
New Jersey...none.


near term...Gaines/gorse
short term...gorse
long term...drag
rip currents...

National Weather Service Glossary of Abbreviations