Forecast discussion: Despite the cloudy skies, Boston did see some sunshine on Wednesday, as we await a cold front to our west. With the help of the sunshine, we reached a high temperature of 81 degrees in the capital city. The high pressure ridge that has kept us dry for the last few days will weaken this evening, allowing that cold front to approach eastern Massachusetts.
This front has produced a lot of rainfall, and that will be the case for us on Thursday. We will see the first raindrops during the overnight, as a few spotty showers pass over the area. The precipitation will increase by the morning commute, and we will see light to moderate rain into lunch time. By the afternoon, the heavier rainfall, along with some isolated thunderstorms, will bring widespread rainfall. There is the chance of some areas may see up to two or three inches of rainfall before the system departs. Also, thunderstorms may be accompanied with strong, gusty winds and some lightning.
We will see the precipitation taper off during Thursday night, with all precipitation ending before the start of the morning commute. From there, high pressure coming down from central Canada will provide us with great weather for Friday, as high temperatures will be near 70 degrees. A weak disturbance may provide us with an isolated shower or two while we sleep Saturday night. However, by Sunday, the warmth in the air will disappear, as colder air begins to filter over Southern New England.
As you can see from the extended forecast, we are going to see dry weather, but high temperatures will only be in the 50’s. I will also be watching the models over the weekend, as there is a discrepancy within the models. On Tuesday, the American model develops a low pressure system well offshore in the Atlantic. But, the European model develops it over the Mid-Atlantic, and keeps it hugging along the coastline for Wednesday. So, we may see some isolated to scattered showers by Tuesday night, if I go with the European. Also, it will be quite breezy, as a high pressure system moves closer to the east coast. This will strengthen the pressure gradient, and therefore increase the surface winds. For now, the American model has been more consistent with moving the low out to sea. Until I see some subtle differences or a change in the thinking of the American model, I will keep the front half of next week dry.
Meanwhile, Hurricane Gonzalo continues to churn in the Atlantic. As of 2 p.m. EDT, Gonzalo is centered at 23.8N 68.3W, or 625 miles south-southwest of Bermuda. Maximum sustained winds are at 130 mph, which would make it a Category 4 hurricane. It is the first Category 4 hurricane since Ophelia in 2011. It is moving northwest at 12 mph.
The biggest question right now is how much damage could Gonzalo do to Bermuda? Bermuda was grazed by Fay just last week. At this time, the forecast track has Gonzalo passing west of the island by late Friday morning. But, the island will probably see at least tropical storm winds and heavy rainfall. But, Gonzalo will quickly increase speed, limiting the damage done to the island. The system will move off to the north-northeast, and will not affect the east coast, except for some high surf this weekend.
72 hour forecast:
Tonight: Overcast with isolated showers by 3 a.m. Patchy fog is expected by 10 p.m. We will see a low of 65.
Thursday: Showers turning to light to moderate rain by 7 a.m. Heavy rain and thunderstorms expected after 11 a.m. There may be some patchy fog in isolated areas. We will see a high of 73 with east-southeast winds of 10-13 mph. Thunderstorms may create wind gusts up to 35 mph.
Thursday night: Rain/thunderstorms tapers to showers by midnight. before all precipitation ends by 4 a.m. We will see a low of 59 with winds shifting to the west-southwest at 9-12 mph by 5 a.m. Patchy fog is expected through the overnight.
Friday: A leftover shower during the morning commute expected before becoming mostly sunny in the afternoon. We will see a high of 70.
Friday night: Partly cloudy with a low of 54.
Saturday: Mostly sunny skies with increasing clouds by the early afternoon. We will see a high of 69.
Saturday night: Mostly cloudy with a possible shower during the overnight. We will see a low of 49.
Sunday: Partly to mostly sunny. Highs 55-58, lows 39-42.
Monday: Mostly sunny. Highs 55-58, lows 41-44.
Tuesday: Partly sunny. Highs 55-58, lows 41-44.
Wednesday: Mostly cloudy and breezy. Highs 53-56, lows 42-45.