ITHACA, N.Y. — The weekend may close out grey and rainy as the remnants of Tropical Storm Ophelia peter out, but much of the week ahead is looking pleasant for any early autumn outdoor plans you might have. High pressure over Ontario and Quebec will keep the local column of atmosphere stable and shunt storm systems away from Tompkins County this week, and cool air advection and weak winds will result in mild daytime highs and chilly overnights.

Your Weekly Weather

Bands of light to moderate rain are pushing northwestward across the area as the remnant low-level circulation of Tropical Storm Ophelia decays over Eastern Pennsylvania and New Jersey. About 0.25-0.50″ of rain is likely through sunset this evening, enough for a good soaking as bands pass through, but unlikely to stir any flash flooding worries. The thick clouds and periods of rain will also result in a fairly cool September Sunday, with highs only in the lower 60s today. Tonight will see another 0.10-0.25″ of rain as the bands wither away with the continued degradation of the remnant low. Skies will partially clear towards morning, and lows will be in the lower 50s, propped up somewhat by the ambient moisture from the daytime rains.

The remnant low shifts east by Monday morning, and rain showers will come to an end. High pressure will begin to build in from the northeast. It’ll be a nice day from morning on, with partly cloudy skies and highs in the upper 60s. Monday night will be partly cloudy with lows in the upper 40s.

The high remains in place over Quebec for Tuesday. It will be partly cloudy, with perhaps fewer clouds later in the day as Ophelia’s remnants shift further east, with highs in the upper 60s. With mostly clear skies and calm winds Tuesday night, continues will be quite favorable for radiational cooling, with overnight lows in the low to mid 40s.

High pressure holds largely stationary over Ontario and Quebec Wednesday, so another day of mostly sunny skies and highs in the upper 60s is expected. Wednesday night will host partly cloudy to mostly clear skies with lows in the low to mid 40s.

Thursday will see a weak storm system run up against the edge of the high to our southwest, but it won’t penetrate Tompkins County as the high holds firm. Another day of mostly sunny skies and highs in the upper 60s is expected. The storm might enhance weak southerly winds Thursday night, however, which will result in slightly warmer overnight lows, in the mid to upper 40s with partly cloudy skies.

The high, with slightly enhanced south winds over Ithaca, will stay in place Friday as well. Temperatures will perks up a little bit, into the low 70s with mostly sunny skies. Friday night will be partly cloudy to mostly clear with lows in the upper 40s.

Heading into next weekend, the current expectation is for the high to shift southward and center itself over Upstate New York. Sunny skies are expected both Saturday and Sunday, with highs in the lower 70s and lows around 50.

Graphics courtesy of the NOAA Climate Prediction Center.

Extended Outlook

Moving into the start of October, the large-scale weather pattern calls for a jet stream trough over the Western United States, and a pronounced ridge over the Central and Eastern U.S. This pattern will usher in warm continental air into the Eastern Great Lakes and Northeast, and divert storms far to the northwest of Tompkins County. Barring a tropical cyclone organizing over the Carolina coast as Ophelia did, it appears likely we’ll have an unseasonably warm and dry spell to kick off spooky season.

Brian Crandall reports on housing and development for the Ithaca Voice. He can be reached at