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An ice-encased walkway and railings generated from spray from Great Falls (background) in Paterson (Passaic County) during the cold January outbreak (photo courtesy of Liz Reilly).
An ice-encased walkway and railings generated from spray from Great Falls (background) in Paterson (Passaic County) during the cold January outbreak (photo courtesy of Liz Reilly).

The first month of 2024 provided a potpourri of weather happenings, including excessive rainfall and flooding, multiple snowfalls, frequent strong winds, frigid days, occasional warmth, and culminating with persistent dismal (aka damp, cloudy) conditions. Something for anyone or perhaps not favored conditions for most people. Totaling up the multiple precipitation episodes, this month emerged as the 6th wettest January on record dating back to 1895. It was the wettest January in 25 years and follows this past December, which was the wettest on record. The statewide 6.39” of rain and melted snow was 2.90” above the 1991–2020 normal. The northern climate division averaged 6.70” (+3.20”, 5th wettest), the southern division 6.18” (+2.71”, 7th wettest), and the coastal division 6.48” (+2.97”, 6th wettest).

January snowfall averaged 7.0” across NJ. This is just 0.2” below normal and ranks as the 53rd snowiest January of the past 130 years. Snow divisions include the north, which averaged 8.9” (-0.5”, 52nd snowiest), central coming in with 5.9” (-1.8”, 65th snowiest), and south with 6.6” (+0.9”, 43rd snowiest).

Temperatures fluctuated throughout the month, ultimately averaging 34.7° statewide. This was 3.0° above normal and ranks as the 20th mildest January. The north averaged 32.3° (+3.4°, 17th mildest), south 36.1° (+2.7°, 22nd mildest), and coast 36.9° (+2.5°, 24th mildest). The statewide average maximum of 42.0° was 1.7° above normal, ranking as the 30th warmest. The statewide average minimum of 27.4° was 4.2° above normal, ranking 16th mildest.

Latest Extremes

City, State Temp
Atlantic City Marina, NJ 40
Harvey Cedars, NJ 39
Fortescue, NJ 38
West Cape May, NJ 38
Little Egg Harbor Twp., NJ 37
City, State Temp
Woodbine, NJ 25
West Deptford, NJ 25
Howell, NJ 26
Hopewell Twp., NJ 27
Basking Ridge, NJ 27
most current information as of Feb 26 1:55 AM

Latest Conditions & Forecast

New Brunswick, NJ

Rutgers University Meteorology Program

31°F

Wind

1 mph from the S

Wind Gust

7 mph from the SW

Scattered Flurries
29 °F
Scattered Flurries
57 °F
Partly Cloudy
35 °F
Partly Sunny then Chance Rain
62 °F
Rain Likely
54 °F
Rain and Breezy
63 °F
Rain and Breezy
36 °F
Mostly Sunny and Breezy
47 °F
Mostly Clear
27 °F
Sunny
46 °F
Partly Cloudy
33 °F
Partly Sunny
54 °F
Mostly Cloudy
40 °F
Mostly Sunny
60 °F

Overnight

Scattered flurries after 4am. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 29. Southwest wind around 5 mph.

Monday

Scattered flurries before 10am. Partly sunny, with a high near 57. Southwest wind around 5 mph.

Monday Night

Partly cloudy, with a low around 35. South wind around 5 mph becoming calm.

Tuesday

A chance of rain after 1pm. Partly sunny, with a high near 62. South wind 5 to 10 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Tuesday Night

Rain likely. Cloudy, with a low around 54. South wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Wednesday

Rain, mainly before 1pm. High near 63. Breezy. Chance of precipitation is 80%. New precipitation amounts of less than a tenth of an inch possible.

Wednesday Night

Rain, mainly before 1am. Low around 36. Breezy. Chance of precipitation is 80%.

Thursday

Mostly sunny, with a high near 47. Breezy.

Thursday Night

Mostly clear, with a low around 27.

Friday

Sunny, with a high near 46.

Friday Night

Partly cloudy, with a low around 33.

Saturday

Partly sunny, with a high near 54.

Saturday Night

Mostly cloudy, with a low around 40.

Sunday

Mostly sunny, with a high near 60.

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Flooding from the nearby Pompton River in Wayne (Passaic County) on December 19th, 2023. Photo by Julian Leshay/NJ Advance Media.

It was a wet December, of this there is no doubt. In fact, it was New Jersey’s wettest 12th month on record, dating back to 1895. On multiple occasions, rainfall arrived in multiple-inch increments, leading to episodes of minor to major stream and river flooding. Though hardly maliciously, Mother Nature certainly left the tap flowing far too long and often! Monthly rainfall (with a little melted snowfall added to the mix in some locations) averaged 8.20” across the state (Figure 1). This was 3.93” above the 1991–2020 normal and was 0.33” above the previous wettest December in 1996 (Table...

Wildfire smoke blankets downtown Paterson (Passaic County) on June 7th. Photo by Steve Hockstein/NJ Advance Media.

For the 15th consecutive year, we in the state climate office have evaluated the myriad daily, monthly, and annual observations gathered across New Jersey during the course of the year to choose what we feel were the most significant and impactful 10 weather and climate events of 2023. More about each event can be found in the monthly narratives posted on our website. You might be tempted to rearrange the rankings, particularly as some of the events on the list may have affected you more than others ranked higher. Or perhaps you best recall one that didn't make the list. That's the...

Steam rising from the cooling tower at the Hope Creek Nuclear Generating Station in Lower Alloways Creek Township (Salem County) on the afternoon of November 11th.

The dry first three weeks of November kept everyone waiting and wondering if a record dry month might be at hand along with increasing drought concerns. To the rescue came two rain events on the 21st–22nd and 26th to bring the monthly average precipitation to a rather respectable total. The statewide average of 2.68” was 0.68” below normal, ranking 52nd driest of the past 129 Novembers. Unlike recent months, it was the coastal northern counties that were driest, while the central north was wettest. The northern division (Hunterdon-Somerset-Union counties northward) averaged 2.92” (-0.55”,...

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ONJSC's Top 10 NJ Weather and Climate Events of 2015

January 1, 2016 - 4:33pm -- Dave Robinson

Listed below is the Office of the NJ State Climatologist’s ranking of the top 10 weather and climate events of 2015. More about each event can be found in the monthly narratives posted on njclimate.org. You might be tempted to rearrange the rankings, particularly as some of the events down the list may have affected you more than others ranked higher. Or perhaps you best recall one that didn’t make the list. That’s the enjoyment (and frustration!) of lists. While there are a variety of events that made the list, the variable that more often than not took center scene in 2015 was the temperature. Be it warm or cold, the thermometer had stories to tell. Unless stated otherwise, observations are based on an average of several dozen stations. The period of record for monthly and annual departures is 1981–2010; while for extremes and rankings it is from 1895–present.

Will the Present Strong El Niño Event Have a Major Impact on New Jersey’s Weather?

December 18, 2015 - 12:24pm -- Ariel Schabes

Roughly every two to seven years, a joint ocean – atmosphere phenomenon known as “El Niño” occurs. Right now happens to be one of those times and this event is showing every indication of being one of the three strongest El Niños of the past 65 years. An El Niño is defined as the prolonged warming of sea surface temperatures (SST) over the central and eastern equatorial Pacific and associated anomalies of atmospheric variables such as winds, clouds, and precipitation. According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), to be categorized as an El Niño, a 3-month SST anomaly of at least 0.9°F (0.5°C) above average must be observed in the central and eastern equatorial Pacific. There are related atmospheric anomalies elsewhere around the globe that are associated with conditions in the tropical Pacific. Do these anomalies extend to New Jersey, especially during a strong event? This article discusses the current El Niño episode as of mid-December and speculates as to whether NJ is already being impacted by this event and may continue to be into spring 2016.

Unseasonably Mild and Dry: November and Fall 2015 Recaps

December 4, 2015 - 4:11pm -- Dave Robinson

Sunset picture

The climatological fall season ended on a mild note, with the statewide November average temperature of 49.3° coming in at 3.7° above normal. This ranks as the 5th mildest November on record, tied with 1948. Observations go back 121 years to 1895, yet five of the nine warmest Novembers have occurred since 2001. The month had an abundance of sunny days, during what is commonly a rather cloudy time of the year. Precipitation averaged 2.33” across NJ, which is 1.31” below normal and ranks as the 41st driest November. Only two significant rain events occurred during the mid-month interval.

On Average, Rather Average, Bookended by Stormy Conditions: October 2015 Recap

November 6, 2015 - 4:58pm -- Dave Robinson

Waves picture

There were many sides to New Jersey’s October 2015 weather, however, when temperature and rainfall observations were averaged, conditions were quite close to long-term (1981–2010) means. The statewide average temperature of 54.4° was 0.4° below normal. This ranked as the 53rd coolest since 1895 (121 years). Precipitation averaged 4.17", which is 0.24" above normal and ranks as 44th wettest. October was bookended by events that dumped the vast majority of the month’s precipitation, with an extended period of very dry weather in between. This led to a continuation of moderate drought in the northeast, with nearby areas remaining abnormally dry. The late-month rain, which for the first time in many months was heaviest over the driest areas, staved off the need for any further drought deterioration, at least for the time being. The major weather event of the month extended over the first five days, when incessant onshore winds generated the worst beach erosion and back bay flooding since Sandy three years ago, though not nearly in the same ballpark of what Sandy wrought.

Near Record Warmth and Quite Dry…until the 30th: September 2015 Recap

October 4, 2015 - 3:30pm -- Dave Robinson

Wildfire photo

The ninth month of 2015 served as a bookend of sorts to an extended warm season. The average statewide temperature of 70.7° was 4.5° above the 1981–2010 normal and ranks as the 3rd warmest on record (since 1895). This ranking is the same as that achieved in May, with the intervening months all above average, though not nearly as much so as these shoulder months. Five of the ten warmest Septembers have occurred since 2002. A look back at the past five months finds that this most recent May through September interval was the third warmest on record. Even more notable than the recent run of warm Septembers, eight of the top ten warm seasons occurred within the last 18 years and four within the last six years.

What had been a rather dry month with drought concerns ended on a damp note on the 30th with a wet episode that extended into early October. Through the 29th, the month ranked as the 14th driest. However, an approximate statewide-average rainfall of 1.50” on the 30th brought the monthly average to 3.44” (-0.63”) and with it the rank of 63rd driest.

New Jersey Smart Lawn Watering Initiative: Conserving Water Starts With You!

September 15, 2015 - 4:49pm -- Jessica Raff

Grass photo

About 70% of the fresh water used around the world is devoted to irrigation, and a similar figure holds true with respect to New Jersey’s water use. Much of this in New Jersey is put towards lawn watering. It is apparent to anyone paying attention to the frequency and timing of when lawns are watered that, just as research suggests, many New Jersey homeowners are over-irrigating their lawns. This wastes precious water that could be conserved wisely by employing more efficient irrigation methods. This article outlines a simple way that you can participate in our New Jersey Smart Lawn Watering Initiative without investing in new sprinkler equipment or devoting large amounts of time to lawn management. By following the instructions discussed below, you can save water and money, while keeping your lawn green and beautiful.

Consistently Warm and a Mixed Distribution of Precipitation: August & Summer 2015 Recaps

September 2, 2015 - 9:58pm -- Dave Robinson

Dry Reservior

This month had quite a variety of weather conditions around the state. This resulted in some areas experiencing flash flooding and others encroaching drought conditions. Damage resulted from the flooding and one storm even produced a nocturnal “heat burst.” Some minor brush fires and declining river, ground water, and reservoir levels accompanied subnormal rain totals. The dry conditions helped produce some wide daily swings from cool nighttime temperatures to consistently warm daytime maximums. Preliminary values show August 2015 to have a statewide average rainfall of 2.18”. This is 2.03” below normal and ranks as the 13th driest since statewide records commenced in 1895 (Table 1). The 74.5° average temperature was 1.1° above the 1981–2010 mean and ranks 21st warmest.

Leaning Warm, Leaning Dry: July 2015 Recap

August 1, 2015 - 8:23pm -- Dave Robinson

Flooding photo

In most respects, July 2015 was a rather common one in the weather department. The statewide average temperature of 75.5° was 0.5° deg above the 1981–2010 mean. This past June had the same positive anomaly. This ranks as the 28th warmest July since 1895. It may seem strange to have such a small departure from normal yet rank in the top quartile for warmth. This can be explained by the fact that New Jersey has gotten warmer since the end of the 19th century. Compared to all Julys since 1895, this past July was 1.3° above average. Again, this might not seem like a large difference, however, given that temperatures do not vary from year to year nearly as much in summer as in winter, this change over the past century is notable.

With an El Niño underway, how much of an impact can we expect it to have on NJ's summer weather?

July 23, 2015 - 2:29pm -- Dave Robinson

Sea Surface Temperature (SST) anomalies for July 20, 2015.  NOAA/NESDIS.

Scientists are carefully monitoring sea-surface temperatures in the tropical Pacific Ocean for a potential El Niño event. An El Niño occurs when warmer-than-average waters start to form in the eastern Pacific Ocean, specifically near the equatorial latitudes. Easterly winds (blowing from the east) typically move warmer water to the western Pacific (near Indonesia), permitting cooler water to upwell to the surface in the east (near South America). When these winds are weaker, or if they reverse direction, the warm water stays in the eastern Pacific. This difference in sea surface temperatures and winds creates a new dynamic between the ocean and atmosphere, distinctly affecting weather patterns across the world. No two El Niño events are alike; they vary in magnitude and location of the largest temperature anomalies. El Niño events can be classified as Strong, Moderate or Weak.

Drought? What Drought?: June 2015 Recap

July 4, 2015 - 7:34pm -- Dave Robinson

Roll Cloud photo

Toward the end of May, the threat of a significant drought loomed over the Garden State, as May proved to be the 3rd driest on record. Crops were in bad shape or not growing at all, and reservoir levels were declining at a faster than seasonal rate. However, New Jersey had yet to reach the point where average and timely rainfall could not remedy the situation. Not only was this prescription filled, it was done in abundance. June rainfall averaged 8.21" across NJ. This was 4.19" above the 1981-2010 normal and ranked 4th wettest since 1895 (Table 1). It joined four other Junes in the past 13 years to rank in the top eight over this 121-year period. As explained in last month's report, the rains that fell during the daytime and evening hours of May 31st factored into the June total, much as the localized afternoon and evening rains on June 30th (discussed below) will count toward the July total.

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