It’ll feel like summer in N.J. this week. How long will it last?

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The big warmup we’ve been promising arrives today. Is it finally safe to put away those winter gloves?

You know that annoying chill you felt in the air when you walked outside Monday morning and early Tuesday morning? Forecasters say it will be gone in the next few hours, and is likely staying away the rest of this spring.

That means it’s safe — finally safe — to toss those winter gloves into the back of your closet, grab your cargo shorts and bid farewell to Old Man Winter.

Spring has sprung, with the mercury climbing into the 60s in the late morning and into the 70s Tuesday afternoon. And it will soar into the summer-like 80s on Wednesday, Thursday and Friday as a dome of high pressure swirls around off the Atlantic coast, pushing warm air up from the Southwest into our neck of the woods.

How long will it last?

“This should be the end of the cold air, although it does look to cool down during the weekend,” said Mike Mihalik, a meteorologist at the WeatherWorks forecasting company, based in Warren County. 

Don’t let those words “cool down” fool you into thinking another blast of wintry weather — like the snow showers seen in Morris and Sussex counties Monday morning — is making a comeback. Mihalik actually means it’ll be going from hot back to warm — where it’s supposed to be this time of year. 

Those readings in the 80s on Thursday and Friday are forecast to drop down to the upper 60s and low 70s by Saturday and Sunday. 

In early May, New Jersey’s temperatures usually top out at 68 degrees in the afternoon. But later this week, they could be running as much as 15 to 20 degrees warmer than that. Even the morning lows will be in the 50s and 60s, much warmer than the normal lows of 45 to 46 degrees.

One big exception: People living in coastal areas of New Jersey won’t see as much warmth as the rest of the state, because water temperatures in the Atlantic and in the big bays are still on the cool side this time of year. The ocean breeze should keep temperatures about 10 degrees lower along the Shore than in inland areas. 

Long-range forecasters from AccuWeather and the National Weather Service say we might not see another blast of summer-like heat until the end of May. So enjoy this week’s summer tease.


Dreary April is finally gone

Most New Jerseyans probably are saying “good riddance” to April. After all, it turned out to be an unseasonably cool month — the coolest April since the mid 1970s — and one with lots of rain and substantial cloud cover.

All three New Jersey climate stations operated by the National Weather Service measured more precipitation (rain plus melted snow) than average during the month of April.

Newark Liberty International Airport had the biggest precipitation surplus, with 5.81 inches recorded as of the morning on April 30. That’s 2.6 inches wetter than average. Climate stations in Trenton and Atlantic City had only a slight precipitation surplus in April. 

However, all three stations have a substantial surplus during the first four months of 2018, according to weather service data. The largest surplus is in Atlantic City, where almost 19 inches of precipitation has fallen this year, compared to the April average of about 14 inches.

Flashback to winter?

This is NOT a flashback to winter. The video clip below shows a snow shower that hit the high-elevation Sparta Mountain on Monday morning, April 30.

Snow flurries were also reported Monday near Wantage in Sussex County and in Jefferson in Morris County.

Len Melisurgo may be reached at Follow him on Twitter @LensReality or like him on Facebook. Find on Facebook.