Clouds stream in ahead of Halloween Weather System

finger lakes weather forecast wednesday october 30 2019 halloween forecast rain wind storm
Wednesday will remain quiet in the Finger Lakes before a potent weather system plows in for Halloween. [Photo by Helen Heizyk]

Rain Holds Off Until Tonight

A large storm system is organizing itself over the Gulf States while a weak cold front has slid into the Finger Lakes.

This front should not make any more eastward progress today and should retreat to the northwest by this evening.

There is little moisture for this front to work with locally with precipitation contained well to the west over the Upper Great Lakes and Mississippi River Valley. A stray shower cannot be completely ruled out, but they will be few and far between.

Clouds will be with us much of the day however, gradually becoming thicker as the day goes on. Winds will remain light during the daytime hours.

Temperatures should still get near or just above 60 degrees this afternoon after starting the day in the 50s. Mild temperatures will continue overnight with lows in the low and mid 50s.

Showers will increase this evening with most areas seeing a little light rain before midnight. This initial batch of rain should move out after midnight with just an isolated shower or two in the area at sunrise Thursday.

Winds will increase tonight but will not yet become strong.

Halloween Storm

Much of Thursday morning will be dry with low chances for isolated showers. South winds will gust as high as 30 mph. Some breaks of sun may even be possible.

By the afternoon, temperatures will be well into the mid 60s. Rain chances will increase with a few localized downpours. There may be a brief lull in the late afternoon before heavier rain moves in for the evening.

As the storm system’s cold front plows into the region between sunset and midnight, a little thunder and lightning may even be possible. Several hours of steady, moderate to heavy rain will fall through the evening and overnight.

Rain total over an inch will be common, but a few places are bound to see less, depending on how the heavier downpours ahead of and along the cold front evolve.

During the late afternoon and evening, winds will also increase further with widespread gusts of 40-45 mph and localized gusts of 50-55 mph. These winds will continue to come from the south until the cold front passes, after which they will quickly turn to the southwest.

Evening temperatures will remain in the mid and upper 60s. The cold front should move through between 8-11 PM with a sharp drop into the 40s and then 30s.

The bottom line for trick-or-treating is that it will be a wet and windy experience. There is a small amount of hope for a lull in the precipitation during the late afternoon. The worst combination of heavy rain and wind, however, should come after the trick-or-treating time.

Stepping Towards Winter

Wintry weather has already spread across much of the nation, starting early in October in the Pacific Northwest and northern Plains and more recently invading the central and southern Plains and Midwest.

The Halloween Storm will bring us a step closer to wintry weather, but our first real taste of winter like cold and snow chances will hold off another week.

A few higher elevations in the Southern Tier may see the first flakes of the season on Friday, but rain showers will be all that falls in the Finger Lakes. Most of the Finger Lakes will remain mostly dry Friday with the only showers coming off Lake Erie.

Friday will remain windy though with gusts of 35-45 mph continuing throughout the day. Stronger winds will be possible west of Rochester.

High temperatures will only reach the low 40s on Friday. A few higher elevations may not even reach 40 degrees.

Saturday will be a dry and sunny day. Morning lows will start in the 20s and 30s with afternoon highs ranging from the mid 40s over the higher elevations to near 50 in the typically warmer areas of the northern Finger Lakes.

A few lake effect showers off Lake Erie will be possible Sunday morning. A couple wet flakes could mix in, mostly before sunrise, over the higher elevations. The rest of the day looks tranquil.

Quiet weather will continue into Monday and Tuesday before a mid-week system moves through. This does not look to be as impactful as the Halloween system or last weekend’s rain and wind event. However, it will reinforce the cold air.

By late next week, temperatures will be in the 30s which will open us up to the possibility for some light snow.

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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.