Wednesday afternoon thunderstorms rumble into the Finger Lakes

finger lakes weather wednesday june 1 2022 scattered showers thunderstorms
Numerous thunderstorms will develop throughout the afternoon and early evening, a few of which may become severe with strong winds. [Photo by Meteorologist Drew Montreuil]

Thunderstorm Outlook

A cold front approaching the region will help touch off showers and thunderstorms this afternoon.

Thunderstorms left over from development to our west last night are moving across Lake Ontario and into northern New York this morning. A couple stray showers and rumbles of thunder are moving across the eastern Finger Lakes as well.

Outside of those stray showers, this morning will be a mix of sun and clouds with temperatures quickly warming. Many places should reach the low and mid 80s by the early afternoon without any rain.

Dewpoints will climb into the mid and upper 60s, resulting in sufficient low-level moisture and contributing to an unstable environment with fuel for thunderstorms. These should both contribute to thunderstorm development during the afternoon hours, with multiple rounds of storms possible.

The biggest limiter in the severe weather risk today will be the support of the winds throughout the layers of the atmosphere. This factor is only modestly strong today, meaning it will be more difficult for individual storm cells to organize and persist at severe levels for extended periods of time.

Still, the winds are not a complete detriment, so some scattered severe thunderstorms will be a possibility. Given the atmospheric setup, damaging winds are the primary concern as small clusters of storms form and strengthen sufficiently for small periods of time.

I estimate that chances are a little better than a coin-flip for a severe thunderstorm watch being issued today. A handful of severe thunderstorm warnings are possible, but many areas will probably not need a warning. I do not expect any tornado warnings.

In addition to some locally damaging wind gusts, some of the storms may tap into the rich moisture and produce heavy downpours. There could be a small flood risk if a given location sees more than one of these downpours, or a particularly heavy downpour.

Since multiple rounds of storms are possible, the window for thunderstorms will be long. Any time from about 2 PM to 9 PM, there will be a chance for thunderstorms. The late afternoon and early evening have the highest chances for rain and thunder, though.

After 9 PM, the thunderstorm activity should quickly wane, though a few showers may linger as late as midnight.

finger lakes weather 7-day forecast wednesday june 1 2022
This graphic represents an average over the entire Finger Lakes region. Localized variations should be expected. Click to enlarge.

Near-Average Temperatures

The front associated with this system will stall out near or just east of the Finger Lakes for Thursday. Nonetheless, the heat and humidity will be reduced. Highs on Thursday should be in the low 70s with dewpoints in the 50s.

Another disturbance riding along the frontal boundary will make its way into our area late Thursday. The models seem to be having a particularly difficult time with this feature. Some models bring a swath of heavier rain across portions of the area Thursday afternoon and evening, while others have nothing more than a few stray showers.

If an area of heavier rain develops, it will move through during the mid and late afternoon with the core roughly between I-90 and the NY-PA state line. Rainfall amounts over an inch would be possible.

Hopefully, the chances for this will become more evident by tomorrow morning. In the meantime, those with outdoor plans may want to plan as if it will rain and hope that it doesn’t.

The weather will be much more straightforward through the weekend with high pressure building in. Dry conditions are expected Friday, Saturday, and Sunday.

All three days should have plenty of sunshine, though some thin clouds on the edge of the first tropical system of the season could sneak into our area on Sunday.

Temperatures will be near or even a touch below average, with highs in the low 70s Friday and Sunday with upper 60s more likely for Saturday.

The temperatures will remain in that general range for the foreseeable future, though some daily fluctuations are always expected within the broader pattern. Even with the cooler temperatures, the weather also looks as though it will stay on the active side with rain chances at least every few days.

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finger lakes weather 7-day forecast wednesday june 1 2022
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.