Rain Tonight After Sunny Start
The sun is shining in the Finger Lakes this morning for a pleasant change from the near constant clouds.
A gentle southerly flow kept temperatures mostly in the upper 20s overnight despite the clearing skies.
That south wind will increase throughout the day today as a cold front begins to encroach on the region later on. Winds may gust to 30 mph over the higher elevations this afternoon before more widespread gusts over 30 mph tonight.
The sunshine should last through the morning but will be eroded away from west to east during the afternoon as the front approaches.
High temperatures this afternoon should reach the mid 40s thanks to the sunshine and south wind.
A few scattered rain showers could enter the western Finger Lakes as early as 4 pm this afternoon, but generally speaking, the rain will hold off until well into the evening hours. The eastern Finger Lakes may not see steadier rain move in until 10 pm or later.
Cold Front Moves Through
A couple hours of steady, light rain is likely overnight before the precipitation becomes more off and on for Thursday morning and afternoon.
Temperatures will hold steady around 40 degrees during the overnight period and will likely rise a couple of degrees Thursday morning into the low 40s.
The cold front will then pass through and temperatures should slowly retreat during the afternoon.
During this time, the wind will remain breezy with gusts between 30-40 mph. A gradual turn from the south to the west, then northwest will take place throughout the day on Thursday.
By Thursday evening, most of the precipitation will be pulling out of the Finger Lakes. A spray of light lake effect snow will likely develop southeast of Lake Ontario. As temperatures drop into the low 30s during the evening, some of the higher elevations south of Syracuse and east of Cayuga Lake could get a fresh coating of snow, or even an inch or two.
Hyped “Events” Becoming Clearer
Behind Thursday’s front, another sunny day is expected on Friday. Clouds will thicken again late in the day as the next system approaches.
This system is one that has generated a fair amount of hype. Low pressure is expected to develop across the Great Lakes, passing north of the Finger Lakes Saturday into Sunday.
This low is not looking as strong and powerful as it did on the models a few days ago. At longer ranges, weather models tend to be more extreme and often enough will moderate to a more reasonable solution as the event draws near. That seems to be the case with this system.
Rain is likely on and off throughout Saturday along with some gusty winds. The big hype with this storm has been the potential for lake effect snow behind it.
While lake effect does seem likely, temperatures on Sunday are expected to be well above freezing. This should limit snow accumulations significantly. A few inches of snow could still fall somewhere in the triangle between Rochester, Ithaca, and Syracuse Sunday night into Monday, but a significant storm level event seems questionable.
The second point of hype has been a nor’easter in the days leading up to Thanksgiving. This has been an idea perpetuated by Accuweather for over a week and one that still remains a mystery to me. I see no indications of such an event on the European model or its ensemble suite.
In fact, my current forecast for next Tuesday is sunshine and low 50s.