Breezy and chilly Tuesday leads into brief warm-up

finger lakes weather forecast tuesday november 16 2021 clouds sun lake effect chilly breezy
Temperatures will remain cool today but will rise for Wednesday and early Thursday before a strong cold front knocks them back once again. [Photo by Scott Montreuil]

Shifting Winds

A west-northwest flow of cool air remains locked in place across the Finger Lakes with low pressure northeast of Maine continuing to be the primary influence on the broad scale weather pattern.

This pattern will start to break down, but not until after another cool and rather cloudy day.

Some lake effect remains ongoing this morning, though most of the activity has shifted north toward the Onondaga-Oswego County line. The band will wobble around in that area, occasionally bringing rain and snow showers south into Wayne, Cayuga, and Onondaga counties.

Further south, a stray flurry or shower cannot be ruled out, but is much less likely. Some breaks of sun are likely between the clouds, especially across the southern half of the region, away from Lake Ontario.

West-northwest winds will increase to 10-15 mph by the afternoon with gusts as high as 30 mph. Temperatures will remain chilly, with highs ranging from the upper 30s in the highest elevations to perhaps some mid 40s from Rochester to Geneva to Penn Yan.

A small area of high pressure will pass through early this evening. Skies may clear for a brief time before new clouds build in from the west. Wind speeds will drop and the wind will swing around to the south.

Temperatures will range from the mid 20s to the low 30s this evening and much of the overnight, but most areas should gain a couple degrees before the sun rises.

Skies will be overcast on Wednesday, though the clouds may be thin enough at times to allow some sun to filter through. A couple of stray showers will also be possible, especially in the afternoon, as warmer air begins to surge northward.

South winds will blow at 10-15 mph with the strongest winds over higher elevations and along and north of I-90. A few higher elevation gusts over 30 mph are possible.

Temperatures will be unevenly distributed, with highs in the Rochester area in the mid 50s while much of the Southern Tier and the hills of Central New York remain in the upper or even mid 40s.

finger lakes weather 7-day forecast tuesday november 16 2021
This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected. Click to enlarge.

Strong Cold Front

Everything will hold steady into Wednesday night. Temperatures will only fluctuate a couple degrees, a few stray showers will be possible with cloudy skies, and winds will remain from the south at 10-15 mph.

The timing of the front on Thursday will be key to determining the fine details of the day. The models have been trending an earlier frontal passage, which somewhat ironically results in both lower high temperatures and a lower chance for snow behind the front.

With an early frontal passage, temperatures will add a few more degrees Wednesday morning for highs in the mid 50s. As the front moves through, temperatures will fall to the mid 40s within an hour or two and then into the low 40s over the course of the afternoon.

Rain would increase through the morning and come to an end before the sun sets for most areas. That should keep it just warm enough to prevent snow from mixing in.

If the front is slower, though, the precipitation could linger into the evening, when temperatures will drop further with the loss of daytime heating.

Regardless of the speed of the front, lake effect will kick up Thursday night and persist through Friday. Rain and snow showers will be likely, first off Lake Erie with west winds, and then off Lake Ontario with northwest winds.

Temperatures on Friday will be similar to yesterday, with most areas in the upper 30s to around 40 degrees.

High pressure will build in for Saturday and possibly Sunday. Expect low 40s Saturday and mid to upper 40s on Sunday.

The weather pattern for the first half of next week is extremely complex, with one or even two strong coastal lows possible. Be wary of premature predictions and weather hype. It is far too early to speculate about specifics with this setup a week in advance. Stay tuned.

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finger lakes weather 7-day forecast tuesday november 16 2021
This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected.

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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.