Thursday, May 16, 2019

Sunny & hot for now, t'storms return Sunday

While it may not officially be summer yet, the rest of this week and next week sure do feel like summertime. Luckily, rain chances will stay away now through Saturday leaving us with some pretty nice and warm conditions. Shower and thunderstorm chances will return on Sunday, before hanging around throughout next week. Besides that, highs will remain in the 80s for the foreseeable future.

Rest of today

Following what was a busy evening yesterday for some with severe thunderstorms across the area, we are expecting a much more quiet and tranquil evening tonight. Temps will remain in the 80s until sunset, before falling to 68 overnight under clear skies. 


Another sunny, warm and muggy day is on tap for tomorrow as highs will reach 89. I would not be surprised if it feels like the 90s tomorrow, especially in the afternoon. If you are planning to head out to the World Championship Barbecue Cooking Contest, I would be sure to bring sunscreen and stay hydrated. It will definitely feel like summertime tomorrow. 


If you had to choose between Saturday and Sunday for a day outside, Saturday is definitely the day to do so. Sunny skies and warm temperatures return once again with highs nearing 87. Things will get a bit breezy in the afternoon, with sustained winds around 15 mph and gusts upwards of 25-30 mph. Cloud coverage may begin to increase in the afternoon as well, otherwise Saturday looks incredible. 

While shower chances should hold off until Sunday, we will need to keep an eye out for some pesky pop-up thunderstorms Saturday evening. The chance is small, but the chance is there. Hopefully showers will hold off until after midnight. 

Sunday into next week

After a beautiful Saturday, Sunday does not appear to be as nice. While highs will be in the low 80s, showers and thunderstorms will likely put a damper on our day. Scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected to pass through the area through the morning into the afternoon hours. While thunderstorms will be possible, widespread severe weather is not expected. 

GFS shows showers and thunderstorms passing through the Mid-South on Sunday. (Tropical Tidbits)
As we look into next week, we will continue to transition into a summertime weather pattern. Highs are expected to be above average, with temps reaching the mid to upper 80s. 

The Climate Prediction Center shows temperatures will be above average next week throughout the Mid-South. (NOAA/CPC)
With this summertime pattern, shower and thunderstorm chances will be possible through the first half of the week with the best chances in the afternoon hours Tuesday and Wednesday.

Summer Outlook

Every year around this time, the Climate Prediction Center (CPC) releases their June, July, August three-month outlook, otherwise referred to as their summer outlook. For much of the Mid-South, the CPC is expecting relatively near average temperatures across the area with slightly above average precipitation. While this is an overall trend (meaning we could have periods of warmer/cooler weather), it is promising to see.

CPC three-month outlook for temperatures shows near average temperatures for much of the Mid-South this summer. (NOAA/CPC)

CPC three-month outlook for precipitation shows slightly above average precipitation for much of the Mid-South this summer. (NOAA/CPC)

Farewell Note

On a personal note, this will be my last full-time blog for MWN. I have thoroughly enjoyed getting to know the Memphis area over the past year. As a fellow Tennessean, I have always loved working in different areas across the state. I would also like to thank Erik for the opportunity and guidance/mentoring over the past year. The Memphis community will always hold a special place in my heart. As for me, I will be working full-time this summer for the NWS office in Nashville, TN before returning back to Mississippi State this fall to finish up and complete year two of my master's degree.

Caroline MacDonald
MWN Meteorologist Intern

[ Editor's Note: Caroline has been an amazing addition to the team over the past year. I had high expectations based on a very strong reference from another outfit like MWN based in middle TN. Honestly, she exceeded those expectations. I can't thank her enough for the time and dedication she offered to MWN and all of you. Her future in meteorology is bright and I have no doubt she will be a superstar wherever her path leads. Thank you Caroline! You'll always be a part of #TeamMWN in my book!  --Erik ]

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MWN is a NOAA Weather Ready Nation Ambassador Meteorologist Erik Proseus is an NWA Digital Seal Holder

Saturday, May 11, 2019

When clear weather returns, and your mother's day forecast

Happy weekend! After a couple days of wet weather, and a cool day yesterday, it's nice to see some clear weather returning for the Mid-South in the near future. Today rain chances are still intact for the metro, but clearing out come Sunday. 


The HRRR model showing scattered showers for the duration of Saturday. (WxBell)
After some morning drizzle, afternoon rain and some thunderstorm activity will be likely. A stalling cold front is bringing us this lovely weather, but luckily it's pushing out overnight, leaving behind some decent weather just in time for Mother's Day. The Storm Prediction Center currently has most of the severe weather risk down south, where instability is higher, while our main concerns are just a few thunderstorms, and most of those will be this afternoon in Mississippi. Temperatures today will only rise to around 67. Any outdoor plans today should have a backup plan in place, in case you need to move them indoors. Overnight expect overcast conditions with some showers moving into the very early hours. Temps down down into the upper 50's. But let's get to the good news!

The Storm Prediction Center severe weather outlook for Saturday has a Marginal Risk of severe weather (level 1 of 5) just to our south, leaving the Memphis metro with just the chance of thunder. (NWS/SPC)


Don't change any plans you have for Mother's Day, because it's looking up to be a pretty good day! Pre-dawn Sunday is looking to have a few showers, but skies become partly sunny for the rest of the morning and afternoon. A low pressure system will continue to push northeast, leaving behind warmer temps in the lower 70's, a bit more sunshine, and a light northwest wind. Clouds will clear out by Sunday night making it mainly clear with a low of 54. A perfect day to enjoy outside!

Beginning Your Work Week

Nothing like Monday motivation with a forecast like this. We'll start the week off dry with Monday looking to be partly cloudy with highs in the lower to mid 70's and lows in the mid 50's. On Tuesday, more sun returns with highs warming up to near 80 and lows in the mid 50's.

Rain Chances Return Mid-Week

Rain chances return in the latter half of the week, specifically Thursday according to the GFS model. (Pivotal Weather)

Wednesday and Thursday are looking to be the days when slight rain chances could return. These would have some possible thunderstorms associated with them, but we'll be keeping a close eye on those as we get closer. We'll keep rain chances low at about 20% for both days with partly sunny skies. Low precip amounts are expected Wednesday, but could be a bit higher with the weak front moving through Thursday. Temps will warm up again after Tuesday, putting us back above average with highs in the 80's through next weekend. But with that warm weather, allergy problems will return. Might want to keep that allergy medicine handy around mid-week!

Medium amounts of pollen are anticipated for Tuesday and Wednesday. (

Have a great weekend Memphians, and Happy Mother's Day to all the wonderful moms out there!

Jennifer Lambers
MWN Meteorologist Intern

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Sunday, May 5, 2019

A short dry spell, then more wet weather ahead

It's been a wet few days across the Mid-South, but today the sun is back out and very pleasant weather is making for a great end to the weekend. Yours truly has been on-site at Beale Street Music Festival warding away the lightning and making sure the organizers and operations personnel have the very latest weather forecast information and radar updates. The beautiful weather today has allowed for a bit of a reprieve after the first couple of days!

The meteorologist's setup for Memphis in May, which provides a location to monitor all forms of inclement weather and keep key operations personnel advised. The goal is to provide a safe environment so that patrons can enjoy their experience! The emoji tablecloth is just a bonus. :-)
It's not all work and no play though...

Early week - dry and warming

Looking ahead, the dry weather will last a couple more days, though as high pressure moves east, wind switches to the south and temperatures warm back into the lower 80s Monday and mid 80s Tuesday. We'll also have a good deal of sunshine Monday with high clouds advancing over the area Tuesday ahead of the next upper level system.

Monday's weather map from the NWS shows high pressure over the Mid-Atlantic extending its influence into the Mid-South. South wind will wrap around it, allowing temperatures to warm into the 80s. (NOAA/NWS) 


The mid-week period features the arrival of our next weather-maker with scattered afternoon thunderstorms on Wednesday as an upper level trough moves into the mid-portion of the country and flow turns to the southwest, ushering in more upper level moisture and muggier air at the surface. Wind becomes a bit gustier from the south as well, helping to push temperatures up to 80 degrees despite the cloud cover and rain chances. By Wednesday night, a surface front moves a bit closer and rain chances likely increase further.


The cold front is poised to swing through the region, bringing a round of thunderstorms, a few of which could be severe. The Storm Prediction Center has outlined a large area ahead of the front, including the Mid-South, for a chance of severe storms. It's too early to get into detail, especially as fronts sometimes have a tendency to move more slowly than originally forecast as we head into the warmer months of the year. At a minimum, plan on a wet day with warm, muggy air in place.

The Storm Prediction Center has outlined a large area from the southern Great Lakes to southeast TX for possible severe storms on Thursday. We'll need to monitor this closely as the event gets closer - forecast refinements are likely. (SPC)

Friday into the weekend

If models are correct, the front will drop to the south of the Memphis area, which should usher in cooler temperatures and push thunder chances to the south Friday. Showers are still possible, but for now, we expect lower rain chances with highs near 70 rather than 80.

Models are indicating that a low pressure system could ride along the front to our south on Saturday, bringing another round of rainfall, but this time in cooler air than Thursday, so thunder should be minimal, but rain could potentially just heavy. We're crossing our fingers for drier weather to end the weekend once again! However, even the week 2 outlook indicates a chance of above normal precipitation potentially continuing into mid-May.

The NOAA Climate Prediction Center (CPC) indicates above normal rainfall could continue into the middle of May, according to their 8-14 day precipitation outlook valid May 13-19. (NOAA/CPC via Pivotal Wx)

An intelligent blend of various computer models produces the temperatures above for the coming 10 days. Once the front arrives late in the week, cooler weather also moves in. Until then, looking for warming temps! (

Erik Proseus
MWN Meteorologist

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MWN is a NOAA Weather Ready Nation Ambassador Meteorologist Erik Proseus is an NWA Digital Seal Holder

Saturday, May 4, 2019

April 2019 Climate Data for Memphis, TN

April Climate Recap

Overall, the month ended very near average for April, despite both warm and cool spells. With a temperature range of nearly 50 degrees from the coldest temperature (35 degrees on the first day of the month) to the warmest (84 degrees on the 10th), the month featured large swings not atypical of a spring month. Generally the first third of the month was above average (after the first couple of days), while the middle third was cooler than normal, followed by warming again for the latter part of the month.

The large temperature swings meant that there were multiple fronts crossing the area, which resulted in a wet month. In fact, the latter third of the month was fairly dry with only one day with measurable precipitation after the 19th. However, over 7" of rain fell between the 4th and 19th, including three days with more than an inch and nearly 2.5" on the 13th.

U.S. temperature departure from normal for April 2019. (
Thunderstorms were frequent as well, however the only Severe Thunderstorm Warnings issued in the metro were on the 6th. A Tornado Warning was also issued for DeSoto County that evening. Minor wind damage resulted from those storms.

Memphis International Airport, Memphis, TN

Average temperature: 62.7 degrees (0.2 degrees below average)
Average high temperature: 72.5 degrees (0.5 degrees below average)
Average low temperature: 52.9 degrees (0.0 degrees below average)
Warmest temperature: 84 degrees (10th)
Coolest temperature: 35 degrees (1st)
Heating Degrees Days: 113 (24 below average)
Cooling Degree Days: 53 (22 below average)
Records set or tied: None
Comments: None

Monthly total: 7.89" (2.39" above average)
Days with measurable precipitation: 11 (1.4 days above average)
Wettest 24-hour period: 2.43" (13th)
Snowfall: None
Records set or tied: None
Comments: Five days recorded more than 0.5" of rain and three days recorded over 1".

Peak wind: South/44 mph (11th)
Average wind: 8.6 mph
Average relative humidity: 69%
Average sky cover: 60%

Click here for a daily statistical recap for Memphis International Airport.

Cirrus Weather Solutions /, Bartlett, TN

Average temperature: 62.9 degrees
Average high temperature: 73.9 degrees
Average low temperature: 50.8 degrees
Warmest temperature: 86.5 degrees (10th)
Coolest temperature: 31.8 degrees (1st)
Comments: None

Monthly total: 7.89" (automated rain gauge), 7.87" (manual CoCoRaHS rain gauge)
Days with measurable precipitation: 11
Wettest date: 3.33" (13th) (via automated gauge)
Snowfall: None
Comments: None

Peak wind: Southwest/29 mph (11th)
Average relative humidity: 73%
Average barometric pressure: 29.97 in. Hg

Click here for a daily statistical recap for Bartlett, TN.

MWN Forecast Accuracy

MWN average temperature error: 2.32 degrees
MWN forecast temperatures within 2 degrees of actual: 63%
MWN average dewpoint error: 2.40 degrees
MWN forecast dewpoints within 2 degrees of actual: 58%

MWN's forecasts extend out five periods (2.5 days, or roughly 60 hours). Historical accuracy statistics can be found here.

Climate Outlook - May

The May climate outlook for the United State from the Climate Prediction Center is shown below. The eastern and western U.S. appear to remain in a pattern favoring above normal temperatures, while the central U.S. should be cooler than normal, continuing the relative trend from April. As a result, odds favor warmer than average temperatures for Memphis, with a 42% chance of above normal temperatures, a 33% chance of near normal temperatures, and a 25% chance of below normal temperatures. Memphis typically averages 71.7 degrees for the month of May, or about 9 degrees warmer than April.

A wet May is forecast for much of the U.S., with the most pronounced wet anomaly from the Mid-Mississippi Valley into the Southern Plains. Below average precipitation is expected in the Pacific Northwest. For Memphis, odds favor a wet month with a 50% chance of above normal precipitation, a 33% chance of near normal precipitation and only a 17% chance of below average precipitation. May historically averages 5.25" of precipitation, just a bit less than April.

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MWN is a NOAA Weather Ready Nation Ambassador Meteorologist Erik Proseus is an NWA Digital Seal Holder

Wednesday, May 1, 2019

Wet pattern through Saturday, sunshine returns Sunday

Our somewhat dry weather pattern could only last so long as we have transitioned back into an unsettled pattern. Showers and thunderstorms will be the main discussion over the next few days with chances now through Saturday. Temps will remain near 80 through the remainder of the week before falling back into the 70s this weekend.

Those who are planning to head out to the Beale Street Music Festival should keep a close eye on the forecast over the next few days, as we are expecting showers/thunderstorms on Friday and Saturday.

Rest of today

It's been a pretty gross day thus far with showers and thunderstorms moving through the area. A current look at the radar over the area shows scattered showers continuing to drift eastward. The heaviest bands have already moved through.

Radar loop from 1:16 PM through 1:54 PM shows scattered showers pushing through much of the Mid-South.
These showers will remain over the next few hours before pushing off to our east this evening. Temps will remain very mild with a muggy low of 68 overnight. 


Tomorrow appears to be somewhat similar to today, with scattered showers through portions of the day and thunderstorms arriving in the afternoon to evening time frame. Highs will reach near 80. We are included in a marginal risk for severe weather tomorrow, with the main concerns being damaging wind gusts and heavy rainfall at times.

The Storm Prediction Center has included our area in a Marginal Risk (level 1/5) for severe weather tomorrow with a Slight Risk (2/5) in place just to our north. (NOAA/SPC)
We are only expecting a few scattered showers in the morning and early afternoon hours, but the best chances appear to be in the late afternoon into the evening hours. 


Hope you are planning to keep your umbrella handy because you will need it once again on Friday. Another round of scattered showers and thunderstorms are expected with highs reaching near 81. We could see a few hours in the morning and early afternoon where showers stay away, but expect shower/thunderstorm chances to increase as we move into the late afternoon to evening hours. Luckily, widespread severe weather is not expected, only a few potentially strong thunderstorms and heavy rain at times. 

Unfortunately, this does not bode well for Beale Street Music Festival, set to begin Friday evening. We hope that we can get lucky, but it's Memphis in May, so there is bound to be some rain.

This weekend

If you have to pick between Saturday and Sunday for an outdoor event, Sunday appears to be the better of the two days. On Saturday, lingering showers and thunderstorms will remain through the first half of the day into the afternoon with highs nearing the mid 70s. Luckily, things should begin to dry out by evening, leaving us with pleasant conditions into the overnight hours.

Sunday looks pretty great if you ask me. While some cloudiness is expected, we will have plenty of sunshine to make the day an enjoyable one. Highs will reach into the upper 70s. The best news of all is that we aren't expecting any rain, so those heading out to the Beale Street Music Festival will have some awesome outdoor conditions.

Next week

It looks like we may get a taste of summer next week as an upper-level ridge builds into the eastern half of the U.S. This will mean much warmer temperatures for our area, with above-average temperatures in the 80s expected through much of the week.

The Climate Prediction Center's 6-10 temperature outlook shows above average temperatures across the southeast next week. (Pivotal Weather)
In addition to these warmer temperatures, southerly flow will aid in bringing some moisture to the Mid-South, leading to an increase in our dew point temperatures. Things should remain dry Monday, but shower and t'storm chances return by mid-week.

Caroline MacDonald
MWN Meteorologist Intern

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Complete MWN Forecast: on the mobile web or via the MWN mobile app
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MWN is a NOAA Weather Ready Nation Ambassador Meteorologist Erik Proseus is an NWA Digital Seal Holder