It may surprise many that we have our own little micro-climate here in Bay Head. Most of the rain in the summer in New Jersey comes up out of the southwest. It usually just misses us and passes by to the north, leaving us in hot hazy sunshine. We do get the occasional summer thunderstorm but they are short lived giving us many hours of sun and beach time. I’ve been told that part of the reason is the east winds keeping the stormy weather to our west so it passes just north of us. Much of the stormy weather that has plagued north Jersey and New York the past few weeks has followed this pattern.
If you’re considering a trip but the weather looks rainy or “iffy” I would highly recommend looking at www.wunderground.com and using the zip code of the town you are going to visit. You will get a truly local weather picture. Be sure to read the text (I think too many times we just look at the weather icons and get an incomplete picture). For instance, the icon shows a big thunder cloud with a little piece of sun peeking out leading you to believe it’s mostly rainy while the text says something like “scattered thunderstorms” or “afternoon thunderstorms”. Usually the icons are representing the percentage of chance of rain and not the percentage of time it actually will rain. I think that on hot humid summer days there is often a chance of a sudden thunderstorm and weather professionals are doing the best they can predicting the unpredictable. Coastal storms are quite different. They come up the coast from the south and we can get fully rainy days from them. They are very rare in the summer.
If a trip to the shore is in view, don’t hesitate to call for last minute availability. Many other people are missing out because they ‘think’ it will be bad weather but they don’t know about the Bay Head bubble.
Either one of these icons might keep you from having some outdoor activities. The first one represents an 80% chance of rain while the second one is a 20% chance of rain. That’s why you should read the text and not rely on the icons.