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Rain On The Way? Parched Northeast Hopes To Fend Off Budding Drought

A rainy weekend could be in the cards as AccuWeather meteorologists look ahead to the next rain across the generally dry area
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A wet holiday weekend could be in the cards for parts of the Northeast as AccuWeather meteorologists look ahead to the next chance for rain across the generally dry area.

After a very dry mid-May, the start of the weekend was soggy for some across the Northeast, but especially in New England. Rainfall amounts in excess of 1 inch fell on Saturday and were widespread from eastern New Jersey to New Hampshire and Maine. Some areas even reported more like 2 inches of rain.

After a mainly dry morning on Saturday, Boston reported 1.83 inches of rain in the afternoon and through Saturday night, while Portland, Maine, reported 2.16 inches of rain. One of the highest rainfall reports was in Providence, Rhode Island, where 3.02 inches was reported, a value nearing the historical average for the entire month of May, which is 3.37 inches.

The second half of the weekend is expected to be much drier, and better for both travel and outdoor plans. Sunday will also be the start of yet another spell of dry weather for the area.

Moderation of temperatures is forecast as the week closes out and the holiday Memorial Day weekend approaches. However, the impending warmup does not mean that the holiday weekend will stay dry for those celebrating. (Photo via AccuWeather)

“Prior to the weekend rain, rainfall had been 10% of the historical average or less in a number of major cities in the Northeast including Boston, New York City, and Washington, D.C. Rainfall for much of the region as a whole is generally 25% of the historical average or less,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.

The recent dryness is also reflected in the drought status across the eastern U.S., where half a dozen pockets of abnormally dry areas can be found, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor.

While mostly dry conditions are likely to persist this week, AccuWeather meteorologist caution not every location will be rain-free.

A few waves of atmospheric energy will push into the Northeast during the first half of the week. The air mass in the region will be so dry that it will be hard to get much in the way of precipitation.

“On both Monday and Tuesday afternoon, a few sporadic showers and thunderstorms could pop up in the higher elevations of Pennsylvania, New York, and southwestern New England,” said AccuWeather Meteorologist Brandon Buckingham.

Additionally, a front is expected to sweep from the Great Lakes to the Atlantic Coast on Wednesday, bringing a few rounds of showers.

Behind the rainfall, a new Canadian air mass will move into the region, bringing another round of dry air, but also some cooler conditions.

Temperatures on both Thursday and Friday are forecast to be below historical averages for late May. High temperatures in Pittsburgh are expected to be in the middle to upper 60s F. In Albany, New York, one afternoon may even struggle to reach the 60-degree mark.

Early morning low temperatures across the region may be the most extreme. Widespread temperatures in the upper 30s and lower 40s are likely Thursday and Friday morning from Virginia to Michigan and Maine, but some spots could see temperatures approaching freezing at least one morning.

It’s not out of the question that some of the normally colder spots could see areas of frost or freeze, in the final days of May.

“Residents across the Northeast who have already planted more sensitive vegetation may need to protect their crops and flowers Wednesday and Thursday nights,” warned Buckingham.

The same coastal storm, and possible tropical rainstorm, that is forecast to bring rounds of drenching rainfall to the southeastern U.S. and Florida this week is likely to track up the Eastern Seaboard throughout the Memorial Day weekend.

Should the storm stay closer to the East Coast, rainfall will be more likely to douse beaches from the mid-Atlantic to New England. If the storm were to track farther east, the majority of the Northeast could stay dry for the holiday weekend.

Those hoping to make outdoor plans for Memorial Day weekend are urged to keep checking back with AccuWeather as meteorologists monitor the weather forecast for the holiday.

Produced in association with AccuWeather

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