The Bottom Line

The first weekend of October was ugly, as the remnants of Ian blew in rain and wind.

The second (extended) weekend of October was beautiful, with plenty of sunshine and awesome autumnal temperatures.

Most upcoming days also look great. There is one wrinkle in the forecast — Thursday. The brief, but potent, arrival of a cold front will lead to a couple periods of rain. There could be some strong thunderstorm cells along the way. (Hence the "yellow alert" icon on the 5 Day Forecast.)

And then, for the third weekend of October, we'll flip back to (mainly) pleasant weather.

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Tuesday

Rinse, lather, repeat. Just like Monday, we'll have a chilly start to the day, followed by a mild finish.

With high pressure firmly in control of our atmosphere, expect sunny skies, dry air, and dry weather throughout Tuesday. Although you might need a jacket in the morning, you can probably shed that layer by lunchtime. High temperatures today should reach the lower 70s.

Tuesday night will not be as cold as the past few nights. We lose the chill for the rest of the week, in fact, thanks to a warming trend and a subtle increase in humidity. Lows will dip to around the 50-degree mark by Wednesday morning.

Wednesday

Another beautiful day. Having said that, skies will progress from sunny to partly sunny by the afternoon. With a light southerly breeze kicking in, high temperatures will hold steady in the lower 70s.

The NAM forecast model suite does paint some sprinkles and even spotty showers over New Jersey, especially the later Wednesday gets. I'm not totally convinced of these rain chances, especially during the daytime hours. But I suppose it's worth a mention.

Thursday

The one not-nice, unsettled day in this forecast.

The culprit is a cold front, combined with some warmth and humidity surging into our atmosphere. We face a couple rounds of showers and thunderstorms — likely scattered light stuff in the morning, followed by a heavier "main event" in the afternoon and evening hours.

GFS model forecast as of late Thursday afternoon, as a band of heavy rain and thunderstorms sweeps west to east across New Jersey. (College of DuPage Meteorology)
GFS model forecast as of late Thursday afternoon, as a band of heavy rain and thunderstorms sweeps west to east across New Jersey. (College of DuPage Meteorology)
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Is it going to rain all day? No, probably not. But everyone in the Garden State will get wet eventually, with most rainfall totals in the half-inch to an inch range. (FYI, that's about what we need to see every week this fall to avoid falling into a rainfall deficit again.)

Otherwise, Thursday will be mostly cloudy. And winds will increase as the day goes on, gusting to 30 mph, initially blowing out of the south and then the northwest.

The new air mass behind the cold front will not be much different than the old one. So I don't think temperatures will necessarily plummet. Thursday night will probably bottom out around 50 degrees. Comfortably cool, but not overly chilly.

Friday

As sunshine returns, so too does nice weather.

A northwest breeze will keep temperatures at bay on Friday. Highs in the mid to upper 60s will be pretty close to normal for this time of year.

The Weekend & Beyond

Saturday looks phenomenal. Terrific news this time of year, since corn mazes, hayrides, pumpkin picking, apple picking, football games, and marching band competitions are so popular. With a mix of sun and clouds, high temperatures should push back to around 70 degrees.

I'm less optimistic about Sunday, especially as skies become mostly cloudy. And there are some hints that an isolated shower may threaten early and late Sunday. But temperatures will still be seasonable and comfortable in the upper 60s to around 70.

Rain chances bubble up again Monday into Tuesday. We'll put a finer point on that forecast as it gets closer.

There are no tropical concerns at this time. And we're still almost three weeks away from the start of snow season.

Dan Zarrow is Chief Meteorologist for Townsquare Media New Jersey. Follow him on Facebook or Twitter for the latest forecast and realtime weather updates.

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