Cold front brings significant change to the Finger Lakes

finger lakes weather forecast thursday september 6 2018 cold front rain chances
A cold front will bring clouds and showers to the Finger Lakes early Thursday. [Photo by Helen Heizyk]

Heat & Humidity End

A strong cold front will push through the Finger Lakes today resulting in some significantly different weather.

The front itself, as of 7am, extends from northern New York, across Lake Ontario, and across Lake Erie.

South of the front, it is still muggy and mild. Temperatures and dewpoints are in the low 70s.

There are some scattered showers and perhaps a rumble of thunder along and ahead of the front. These will continue throughout the morning, though many areas will see little to no rain.

The front should clear the area by noon with winds turning to the north. Gusts over 25 mph will be possible at times this afternoon.

Dewpoints will gradually fall back into the 60s and temperatures will hold steady in the mid 70s.

Skies will start to clear some during the second half of the afternoon with some sunshine possible.

Overnight temperatures today will fall back into the 60s. By Friday, the dry air will start to really filter in. Expect highs in the mid 70s, but with dewpoints only in the 50s.

Friday should be partly cloudy and dry, as should Saturday. High temperatures Saturday will be around 70 degrees.

Gordon & Florence

This weekend, a large area of high pressure will pass over southeastern Canada and then out over the northern Atlantic Ocean. This high pressure will be crucial in the movement of both the remains of Tropical Storm Gordon and Hurricane Florence.

Gordon, which is no longer a tropical system, will be slowly meandering northeast through the Mississippi and Ohio Valleys over the next couple of days. Confidence is relatively high that a batch of heavy rain and some gusty winds will then make its way into the Finger Lakes.

Most likely, the high will be strong enough to prevent the rain from arriving until Monday. Should the rain arrive Monday morning, Monday will be a rainy day with a solid 1.5-2.5 inches falling for most of the region.

If the interplay between the high and Gordon is slightly different, however, the rain could start to move in as early as Sunday afternoon and only slowly move through over the course of Monday. This would be a more troublesome scenario as it would prolong the rainfall and introduce the chance for amounts over 3 inches.

Again, this is less likely, but still a scenario that bears watching.

Meanwhile, Hurricane Florence has made it about half way across the Atlantic. Florence is fluctuating in strength and briefly was a category 3, Major Hurricane yesterday. The overall expectation is for more strengthening to occur.

As this high pressure builds into the North Atlantic, it will block Florence from turning north. This does not mean a US Landfall is likely — the storm is still 7-10 days away from the East Coast. However, the likelihood that Florence passes between the US and Bermuda is now very high, which significantly narrows the path it could take to not impact land.

All interests along the East Coast, from New England to northern Florida, should be watching Florence and not buying into frenzied hype by not repeating forecasts naming specific states where Florence may go.

Locally, obviously an absolute worst case scenario would be heavier-than-expected rain from Gordon followed by the remains of Florence within a week later. This is extremely unlikely to happen, but is something to keep in the back of your mind as we continue to watch everything unfold.

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Follow Meteorologist Drew Montreuil:
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.). Drew and his wife have four young boys. When not working or playing with the boys, he is probably out for a run through the countryside.

  1. Denise Clappier

    Thanks Drew. I’ll be watching the storms as I’m travelling to Myrtle Beach by car next week.