Sunday, September 9, 2018

Cooler weather? Yes, please! Plus a look at Florence

The front that seemed to bring endless storms yesterday evening/last night is finally pushing through, despite the clouds lingering around. Behind this front is some much needed heat relief and lower humidity that should last through a majority of the coming week.


A large stratiform cloud deck remains placed across the Mid-South behind the rain as the front moves through. Source: College of DuPage

Clouds held strong across the Mid-South, but at least the rain moved out as the front pushed southeast of the metro. You probably noticed that the temperatures were much cooler thanks to the cold air coming in behind the front, along with the ample cloud cover preventing any day-time heating. In fact, our daytime high of 70 degrees was the coolest we've been since late April! How's that for some relief? As we head into the night, plan on very crisp temperatures with a low of 63. Too bad the clouds won't be budging. If they did, maybe we could get even cooler since they act like a blanket holding in the "heat." Some might even say today and tonight are a tease of what fall has to bring.


Those Monday feels shouldn't be as bad as usual thanks to the cool morning air as you head out the door. The only downfall with tomorrow will be that we won't get the clouds out of here. Part of the reason for the persistent clouds will be that the first front will be to our south, but a upper level trough will be diving south and moving through the area late Monday into Monday night. The arrival of this trough will not initially have any adverse effects, but it could lead to some very isolated showers Monday night, with the greatest chance in north Mississippi. Plan on little change in temperatures with Monday's high only in the mid 70s. Monday night, aside from the chance of an isolated shower, skies will be mostly cloudy and temps drop to the mid 60s. 

Tuesday Through Friday

Don't look for much change in the forecast at this point of the forecast. The upper level trough that moves into the area Monday sets up camp over the Mid-South. That means each day we will see a small chance of a shower with a good coverage of clouds, especially Tuesday and Wednesday. Thursday and Friday it scoots slightly further south: enough to drop rain chances and clear skies up slightly. Any rain on Tuesday and Wednesday will be very light and scattered, so not everyone will see it each day (or maybe not even either day). Temperatures through this period will slowly be on the rise, going from a high of 78 Tuesday back to the upper 80s by Friday. Yup...the warm weather returns. Lows follow that same trend, starting in the upper 60s Tuesday and climbing to the lower 70s.

The Weekend

Next weekend is on track to be decent with the upper level trough to our south. Skies will be partly cloudy each day with highs near 90 degrees. Nights will feature mostly clear skies and lows in the lower 70s. A brief return to summer for a few more days!

Hurricane Florence

The current forecast from the National Hurricane Center brings Florence to the east coast as a Cat. 4 hurricane before landfall late this week.
If you haven't heard by now, eyes are on Hurricane Florence that is currently located in the Atlantic. Current projections have this tropical system making landfall along the east coast. Now, we are going to take a moment and encourage you to be careful about where you are receiving updates about this system. An exact landfall location is still not known, since just small changes in the ridge to its north and the front moving across the US now can have big changes in where this goes. 

Current multi-model forecast graph of strength for Florence. Source: Tropical Tidbits.
Looking at intensity forecasts, you can see that Florence is forecast to continue to rapidly strengthen as it enters warmer water and experiences less wind shear (which tends to put a lid on strengthening). There is good agreement among the best models that Florence will maintain major hurricane strength right up until it nears the coast, a "major" problem for wherever it ends up! The graph above shows a rapid fall in intensity, however that is due to land interaction, as those models have it moving ashore after about 96 hours (4 days). Besides the wind and accompanying storm surge, the big story from this storm is likely to be significant to record inland flooding over the Mid-Atlantic as it appears the center of circulation could stall out in the region for perhaps a few days.

Numerous model plots of projected track for Florence as the storm approaches the east coast. Source: Mike's Weather Page
Regardless of strength, those along the east coast should remain aware of what local forecasters are saying over the next several day to remain safe. We don't expect any direct impacts from Florence on our weather here in the Mid-South.

Reginald Roakes
MWN Meteorologist

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