ITHACA, N.Y. — Following a weekend where the weather was about as close to perfect as one can get in Tompkins County, there are a few clouds on the horizon – namely, a storm system with associated cold front Tuesday into Wednesday morning. But other than that, temperatures are largely expected to top out in the 70s this week and enough dry weather is in the mix to allow for any outdoor activities you weren’t able to squeeze in this weekend.

Your Weekly Weather

It’s a pleasant and dry Sunday as high pressure sits over the Northeast and Mid-Atlantic, this first weekend of meteorological summer. With only a few fair-weather clouds and high cirrus, the weather will continue in relative tranquility for the remainder of your Sundays, as highs top out in the mid and upper 70s under light westerly winds. The winds will turn to the south tonight, which will allow for some additional cloud cover, but the atmospheric moisture is low enough that no rain is expected, just mostly cloudy skies with lows in the mid 50s.

Monday will be a little warmer as the high shifts northeastward ahead of an elongated storm system extending from the Ohio River Valley into Canada. With southerly winds, temperatures make it into the low 80s with partly cloudy skies and comfortable humidity. Monday night will stay dry, though with increasing clouds towards morning as the storm system moves closer. Lows will be in the low 60s.

Tuesday will see cloudcover become near-overcast by noon, with rain moving in during the morning hours as well. Most of the rain will fall during the afternoon and evening hours, and this looks like a substantial event, with amounts in the 0.25-0.50″ range. A few thunderstorm will be in the mix during the later afternoon and evening, but nothing severe is expected. The rain and thick cloud cover will keep highs in the mid 70s, even with the south breeze ahead of the cold front. The rain should start to wind down around sunset, with a few lingering showers as the cold front passes through around or a little after midnight. There will be decreasing clouds towards Wednesday morning, and lows in the upper 50s. With the moisture, some valley fog is possible around sunrise.

Wednesday will see any fog that develops burn off, and a fairly quiet weather day for Ithaca and Tompkins County. The air coming in from the north-northwest isn’t all that cold, so even with light north winds, highs will still climb into the upper 70s with partly cloudy skies.

The storm system responsible for the front will be blocked by a strong high further east, so the storm pivots back to northern Ontario, and its front will cut through the Atlantic Coast down to the Carolinas. This setup will allow for a weaker upper-level low to spin around it, passing over the Great Lakes and Tompkins County Wednesday night into Thursday. It won’t be a washout, but showers will move in after sunset Wednesday and continue through the night with mostly cloudy skies and lows in the upper 50s. New rainfall will be in the 0.1-0.25″ range.

Thursday will see scattered showers with that upper-level low and northwest winds as it crosses through the region. However, there will be a fair amount of sun, with partly to mostly cloudy skies and highs in the mid 70s. Showers will come to an end by sunset as the upper-level low is swept out with a developing coastal low pulling it along. Thursday night will be drier with partly cloudy skies and lows in the mid 50s.

Friday will be a nice day for the Southern Tier and Finger Lakes as high pressure builds in from the Western Great Lakes. Skies will be mostly clear with highs in the mid 70s. Friday night may see a few isolated showers, primarily northeast of Ithaca as the coastal storm system and Hudson Bay storm system interact over Eastern Canada. But generally, most areas will remain dry, with mostly cloudy skies and lows in the mid 50s.

Heading into next weekend, there is some risk of rain as a new coastal low develops off of the Mid-Atlantic coast, but the latest run shows this staying south and east of Ithaca and having limited impacts on Tompkins County. However, this will reinvigorate the northwest flow and keep temperatures a touch below normal. Plan for mostly cloudy skies and highs in the low 70s for now with showers south of Ithaca, but if you have plans outdoors Saturday and Sunday, keep an eye on the forecast in case the system starts trending northward and the chances for rain increase accordingly.

Graphics courtesy of the NOAA Climate Prediction Center.

Extended Outlook

Looking ahead into the second half of June, the medium-range models suggest a bubble of very hot air over the Southwestern United States, with troughs over the Pacific Northwest and the Northeast. This will result in a climatologically cool and wet period for Upstate New York, while those of you thinking about a trip to Las Vegas or Phoenix better prepare for extended periods of temperatures in the 110 to 115 range.

Brian Crandall

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