Starting with tonight, skies should gradually clear, as cold high pressure over Southeastern Canada builds in- a position more typical with mid-winter. Temperatures will be a bit tricky, because low-level clouds may hang around longer than forecast. This would keep temperatures higher, but given the air mass about to enter, any areas that clear certainly have frost, and maybe even freeze concerns. For now, I'll forecast low temperatures to range from near 30 in the cold spots to near 40 along the south coast. For those who live in the colder areas, I'd recommend covering up or bringing inside any delicate plants.
For tomorrow, it will be sunny, but a bit chilly for the time of year. High pressure will be in control, so we won't have to worry about any adverse weather conditions. Even with the cool air mass in place, the sun is strong this time of year, so temperatures will approach, but probably come up a few degrees short of 60 in most places. A sea breeze may develop, producing even cooler temperatures in the Southeast.
For tomorrow night and Thursday, the next system will have to be watched. This is a coastal low. Like most coastal lows in the winter, we're not sure on the exact track of it right now, and this will determine where the heavier precipitation is. Temperatures will also be determined by who gets heavier precip. Right now, it seems like the south coast has the best chance of getting into heavier precipitation. Another fly in the ointment is timing. If the rain waits until later to arrive, and some sun breaks through, temperatures on Thursday will be warmer than currently forecast. For now, a good compromise would be to leave Thursday's temps very similar to those of Wednesday. Working backwards for a second, Thursday morning's lows should range 30-35 in the colder locations to near 40 along the south coast. As far as timing this event, the best chances for any rainfall would be from late in the afternoon on Thursday through Friday morning. (There is still a distinct possibility that this low goes further south and no rain falls in the state at all, and if it tracks further west, rain could linger longer into Friday).
Looking into the longer term, Friday will once again be determined by the fate of the coastal low. At this point, since the forecast is a brush, we'll assume that any rain pulls out by dawn, but this could definitely change in future shifts. Even if this happens, Friday will be a chilly day, with cooler temperatures along the south coast, due to clouds from the coastal low, and warmer temperatures further north. Highs should range from the 50-55 degree range on the south coast, to closer to 60 further north.
Saturday we'll be in between systems. Although we should see more clouds than sun, no rain should fall, and high temperatures should be close to 60.
The next system will then approach as we get into later in the weekend and early next week. This system will be a bit more complex, and likely consist of a series of slow-moving lows passing to our south. Most likely, the systems will be close enough to bring rain to the state, but south of the area, keeping the state in the cold sector. As far as the sensible weather goes, here's what I'll forecast:
Sunday- Rain arrives in the southwest late in the day, but waits until nighttime in the northeast. Temperatures should range 55-60.
Monday: There could be a period of steadier, heavier rain in the morning, and then light rain lasts all day. High temperatures in the mid 50s, and could be even lower than that.
Tuesday: For now, we'll assume skies clear, and it's a fairly nice, but chilly day, with highs in the low 60s.
All of this is subject to change.
Longer Range: Some ensemble guidance breaks down the cool, rainy pattern around the 8th-10th time frame for several days and may offer a preview at summer. However, I generally use guidance that far out with a grain of salt, since it can change patterns too fast.
Now, here are some graphical looks into today's forecast:
Here is a look at the coastal low for later Thursday: