Thunderstorms chances increase late Monday into Tuesday

finger lakes weather forecast monday july 16 2018 tuesday july 17 2018
The chance for a thunderstorm will increase late this afternoon, but the most widespread rain will come Tuesday morning. [Photo by Meteorologist Drew Montreuil]

Hot Ahead of Afternoon Storms

Thunderstorms will become likely over the Finger Lakes, but not before yet another hot day unfolds.

Temperatures will rocket upwards this morning under a combination of mostly sunny skies, south winds, and a pocket of very warm air aloft.

Many areas will be near or above 90 degrees this afternoon with dewpoints uncomfortably near 70 degrees. This combination of heat and humidity will make it feel close to 100 degrees in many areas.

Cumulus clouds will eventually start to build during the afternoon. A couple scattered showers and thunderstorms will develop over Western New York and move east into the Finger Lakes.

While winds aloft are not very supportive of organized severe storms, with all of the heat and humidity in place, frequent dangerous lightning, locally heavy rain, and a couple strong winds gusts will be possible.

The peak time for storms will be between 2-5 pm. After that, the cool air outflowing from the storms will start to disrupt the processes involved in thunderstorm development and storms should weaken.

A few showers and rumbles of thunder will persist into the evening and overnight hours.

More Widespread Rain Early Tuesday

A cold front will approach the region from the west early Tuesday. Showers and thunderstorms will begin to develop along this front even before the sun has risen.

If all goes according to how the models are unfolding, these showers and storms will congeal into a cluster of widespread rain and thunder that will move through the Finger Lakes during the morning hours.

The peak time for this area of rain and thunder will be between 7-11 am. Severe weather is not expected with these thunderstorms, though some heavier downpours and frequent lightning will be possible.

As is always the case with thunderstorms, even in a widespread cluster, rainfall amounts will vary greatly from location to location. Some areas could see as much as an inch fall, while others see less than a quarter inch.

The rain should clear out of the region by the afternoon with increasing sunshine. With the sunny skies and the cool air behind the front not fully arriving, temperatures should reach the low 80s during the afternoon.

Some areas of fog may develop Tuesday evening and persist into Wednesday morning, though a northwest wind may disrupt some of the fog development.

Dry Late Week

Beyond the rain today and Tuesday, the Finger Lakes will not see any chances for rain again until Sunday or Monday at the earliest. However, there is hope for a rainier pattern to set up early next week from a slow moving low pressure system and some possible weak tropical development.

Until then, high pressure will start to build in behind the front on Wednesday. Northwest winds will deliver some cooler, less humid air, with highs Wednesday in the mid 70s.

Thursday and Friday look sunny as well, while Saturday will be dry, but a bit cloudier.

Temperatures Thursday will be close to average, with highs mostly at or just above 80 degrees.

Friday will start to get rather warm again, but the humidity will be lacking, so it will not feel too unbearable.

Finger Lakes Weather Radar

As many of you have noted, the radar display on Finger Lakes Weather has undergone some changes recently. Many feel that these changes are not for the better, and I agree.

The radar widget I use is purchased from another company, so these were not changes that I had any control over.

However, I do plan to contact the company to see what options may be available for returning to the old style. I will also be looking for an alternative solution if necessary.

I suspect part of the problem may be with a change in policy from Google regarding the use of Google Maps, namely a transition from free services to a paid subscription.

In the meantime, we will have to use what we have available. Rest assured, though, that I am looking into improving this unfortunate “upgrade”.

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Meteorologist Drew Montreuil
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Meteorologist Drew Montreuil has been forecasting the weather in the Finger Lakes region since 2006 and has degrees in meteorology from SUNY Oswego (B.S. with Honors) and Cornell (M.S.). When not forecasting, he can be found working at the local library, making goat milk soap, running until his legs burn, or playing with his three young boys.