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WeatherBrains 457: Don’t Pull My Ears

| 5:15 am October 28, 2014

WeatherBrains Episode 457 is now online (October 27, 2014). If you are crazy about weather, this is THE netcast audio program for you!

Tonight’s Guest WeatherBrain is a show alum, having appeared on show number 300 in 2011. He is an educator at the Warning Decision Training Branch in Norman, OK. He trains meteorologists on how to use radar and satellite data so they may produce more accurate forecasts and warnings. He develops new techniques for combining satellite and radar data. Jim LaDue, welcome back to WeatherBrains.

Tonight’ Guest Panelist is also a repeat offender. Tonight marks her fourth appearance on the show. She is a graduate of Florida State University. She just recently got a job as a Meteorologist at WHAG in Washington, DC. Congratulations and welcome back to the show Raquel Nicora.

Nicora and LaDue on WeatherBrains 457

Other discussions in this weekly podcast include topics like:

  • Extremes: 92 at Big Spring, TX, and 8 at Bodie State Park, CA
  • Hanna formed today and will move ashore tonight in Central America
  • Kevin is out starting his new job
  • Bill is headed for Calgary
  • Relatively quiet weather across the Nation
  • Some really cold air coming
  • and more!
  • Our email bag officer is continuing to handle the incoming messages from our listeners.

    From The Weather Center:

    WeatherBrains 101: The days are getting longer and there has been a bit of a nip in the air in some spots. So this episode we take a look at frost, specifically hoar frost.

    Listener SurveyListener Surveys: Okay, we continue to drive this topic into the ground, but we really do like to hear from you. Many thanks to everyone who has taken the time to fill out the Listener Survey. The survey takes just a minute or two to complete and provides us with an opportunity to learn where you are and hear your thoughts and comments on the show. Click here to take the survey.

    Web Sites from Episode 457:

    Raquel’s Station web site

    Warning Decision Training Branch

    Earth, Ocean, and Atmospheric Science Department at FSU

    International Space Station Spotting

    Picks of the Week:

    Nate Johnson – NWA Spotify comments

    Jim LaDue – Operational High Resolution Rapid Refresh Training

    Raquel Nicora – Making weather into music

    Brian Peters – Gets the Fog Horn!

    John Scala – NWS damage assessment viewer

    James Spann – Storm Prediction Center Outlook Change Page

    Aubrey Urbanowicz – spaceweather.com sun spots

    SkyDavers Blog – The Fog Bank

    The WeatherBrains crew includes your host, James Spann, plus other notable geeks like Nate Johnson, Bill Murray, Aubrey Urbanowicz, Dr. John Scala, Rick Smith, Kevin Selle, and Brian Peters. They bring together a wealth of weather knowledge and experience for another fascinating netcast about weather.

    Audible.com graphic

    Gradual Warm-up Continues

    | 6:58 am October 26, 2014

    An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

    The warming trend is expected to continue today with lots of sunshine after the morning fog across North Alabama dissipates. If you have early morning travel plans that take you north, there were dense fog advisories until mid-morning for the Tennessee Valley, Middle and West Tennessee, and the southern sections of Kentucky. By afternoon we should see highs climb into the 79 to 82 range, somewhat warmer than our typical high for late October which runs about 73 degrees.

    The upper ridge along with the surface high pressure center will keep us dry into the first of the work week. Come Tuesday a strong trough moving through the Great Lakes will bring a cold front down into the Middle Mississippi River Valley. The front is forecast to affect Central Alabama primarily on Wednesday. Moisture does return in a fairly narrow band, so showers that develop will be scattered meaning that not everyone will see some rain. Greatest rain threat should come Wednesday.

    The upper trough moves off quickly by Thursday but another impulse will dive southeastward across the Central Plains states Thursday. It should be enough to push the frontal system further south into the Gulf Coast area drying us out. This sets up a trough along the East Coast and brings another shot of colder air into the Southeast US for the weekend.

    Right now it appears likely that Halloween will be dry for trick or treating as we transition to some colder temperatures for the weekend as highs drop back into the 60s. Another ridge will transition across the eastern US late next weekend and into the first part of next week, bringing a return of some warmer temperatures.

    Tropics are still fairly quiet. NHC is watching the one area, remnants of TD 9, in the western Caribbean, but this area of disorganized showers should be slow to develop as it treks eastward. An area of showers in the Eastern Pacific off Central America will be moving into an area where conditions favor some additional development in the next few days.

    Looking out into voodoo country, the overall pattern remains fairly progressive with troughiness along the East Coast giving way to another strong ridge around November 7th. Another strong trough pushes across the US around the 10th of November, but that trough does not appear as deep as we saw on yesterdays model run.

    And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

    James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray
    Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

    James Spann will be back with the next edition of the Weather Xtreme Video first thing on Monday morning. Enjoy this wonderful warm Fall weather while we can. Have a great day and Godspeed.

    -Brian-

    Warm Weekend for Us

    | 7:15 am October 25, 2014

    An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

    The weather for Central Alabama is looking great with a general warm-up in store for us. But this morning started the weekend on a brisk note with morning lows dipping into the 30s in some spots across the area. Our Skywatcher in Black Creek reported a morning low of 36 degrees. With clear skies today we should see temperatures warm nicely into the middle 70s.

    FOOTBALL WEATHER: Great weather for a big football day in Birmingham with the Magic City Classic at Legion Field featuring Alabama State and Alabama A&M. The sky will be sun filled for the 2:30 pm kickoff; 76 degrees at kickoff, with upper 60s by the final whistle. Auburn hosts South Carolina this evening at Jordan-Hare Stadium (6:30 pm kickoff), the sky will be clear with temperatures falling from around 70 degrees at kickoff into the upper 50s by the fourth quarter. Alabama is on the road at Knoxville where they take on the Tennessee Volunteers with a 6:30 pm kickoff. The sky will be clear with a kickoff temperature near 65 degrees, falling into the 50s by the second half.

    The surface high pressure system will slide eastward Sunday and Monday taking up a position centered over the Southeast US coast by Monday afternoon. Aloft an upper ridge will gradually move eastward, too, locating along the eastern seaboard of the US by Monday afternoon. This should continue the dry weather with temperatures warming with a morning low around 60s and a high in the lower 80s by Monday.

    That’s when we begin to see a strong trough moving out of the Rockies bump the ridge eastward into the Atlantic Ocean. This should bring a surface low across the Great Lakes with a cold front trailing southwestward into Arkansas. So clouds will increase Tuesday into Wednesday and with the front in our vicinity by Wednesday we should see some scattered showers as the moisture increases with the surface high off to the east allowing a southerly surface flow. The front moves through slowly before another strong impulse digs into the trough pushing the front out of the area and bringing another shot of cold air with a strong ridge just to our west.

    The tropics are relatively quiet with the remnants of TD 9 in the western Caribbean with no expectations of any development in the near term.

    Looking out into voodoo country, early November looks dry and relatively warm with an strong upper ridge in place, but the GFS is taking on a cold and somewhat stormy look around the 7th and 8th of November.

    And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

    James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray
    Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

    You can find the next Weather Xtreme Video here on Sunday morning by 8 am or so. Enjoy the lovely day and Godspeed.

    -Brian-

    Nearly Perfect Autumn Day

    | 7:01 am October 19, 2014

    An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

    The weather doesn’t get much better than what we will see today. Dry, cool air across the state this morning allowed temperatures to fall into the 40s with upper 30s across Northeast Alabama. With only high cirrus clouds in the sky we should see highs climb into the lower 70s.

    In the tropics, Gonzalo was expected to become an extratropical storm today as it continued to accelerate rapidly into the northern Atlantic.

    The upper trough over the Mid-Atlantic states will rotate across New England and into the Canadian Maritime provinces Monday as a strong short wave close on the heels of that low digs into the Great Lakes area. This will drag another cold front into and across the Southeast US on Tuesday. Since moisture will not have a chance to return, this front is also expected to pass through without any precipitation associated with it. It will also bring another cool down with lows returning into the 40s.

    The upper air pattern remains fast with a ridge affecting us Wednesday and Thursday as the upper trough forms a closed low over the Mid-Atlantic states. We’re on the dry side of things so look for plenty of sunshine and highs only around 70 on Wednesday, Thursday, and Friday. Friday into Sunday, a short wave trough will move from Iowa southeastward across the Southeast US digging a deep trough into North Florida. However, without any signs of moisture for the trough to work with, it should come through the Southeast dry with only some middle or high clouds to mark its passage. This should bring great weather for high school football on Friday evening.

    If your plans include a trip to the beaches of Alabama and Northwest Florida, the weather will be dry for the week ahead with highs around 80 dipping into the upper 70s for much of the middle and latter part of the week ahead.

    The GFS is showing another good trough moving through the Central US around the 28th of October which could bring a chance for rain to Central Alabama. That is followed by another ridge as we enter November.

    And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

    James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray
    Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

    James Spann will have the next Weather Xtreme Video here on Monday morning. Enjoy the lovely autumn weather today. Godspeed.

    -Brian-

    Cold Front Brings Cool Down

    | 7:14 am October 18, 2014

    An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

    Dry and pleasant weather is expected to fill the forecast for the next seven days. In fact, we might go all the way to November before the next good rain event for Central Alabama.

    A cold front was making its way through Alabama this morning and will usher in some cooler and drier air once again. Highs yesterday made it into the lower 80s for most locations, but the cold front will keep temperatures in check today with highs in the middle 70s.

    In the Atlantic, Gonzalo has moved by Bermuda will continue to weaken as it accelerates northeast across the northern Atlantic. In the Pacific, Trudy was along the western coast of Mexico and weakening as it moved slowly ashore.

    For those heading to football events today, Alabama hosts Texas A&M at Bryant-Denny Stadium in Tuscaloosa with a 2:30 pm kickoff. The sky will be sunny; 74 degrees at kickoff, upper 60s by the fourth quarter. And the UAB Blazers are on the road playing Middle Tennessee State in Murfreesboro (2:30 pm kickoff). Again, a perfect day for football with a sunny sky. Temperatures will fall from near 69 at kickoff to near 62 by the final whistle.

    And for the races at Talladega, sunny pleasant days, fair cool nights through the weekend. Afternoon highs today and Sunday will be in the low to mid 70s. Don’t think you could ask for better weather for NASCAR fans.

    The weather is expected to stay dry for the week ahead, but the weather pattern remains pretty active. The upper trough responsible for bringing the dry cold front through the state today will move briskly off the Atlantic coast by Sunday. But another trough is forecast to drop in right behind the first one. This one is forecast to close off over the Mid-Atlantic states Wednesday which keeps us on the dry side with a cool, but not especially cold, northwesterly flow. Look for another dry cold front around Wednesday which will drop temperatures back into the lower 70s for highs.

    The upper closed low moves off on Friday and Saturday leaving behind troughiness over the Southeast US. So all in all, it looks like dry weather for the week ahead as temperatures warm a little for the middle of the week and then cool off again back to seasonal values for the latter part of the week.

    Looking out into voodoo country, the GFS maintains a broad ridge over the eastern half of the country which should keep us dry until early November.

    And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

    James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray
    Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

    I expect to have the next Weather Xtreme Video posted here by 8 am or so on Sunday. Enjoy this lovely day and Godspeed.

    -Brian-

    WeatherBrains 455: I Generate My Own Backlight

    | 5:15 am October 15, 2014

    WeatherBrains Episode 455 is now online (October 14, 2014). If you are crazy about weather, this is THE netcast audio program for you!

    Tonight we talk Weather Apps. But joining us as a guest is Dr. Kevin Kloesel, University Meteorologist at Oklahoma University.

    Other discussions in this weekly podcast include topics like:

  • Extremes: 102 at Arvin, CA, and 16 at 1 mile east of Dillon, CO
  • Gonzalo becomes a major hurricane
  • Severe weather delayed WeatherBrains last night with severe weather in the Carolinas
  • Millions in path of severe storms
  • Great Fall weather coming in behind this system
  • and more!
  • Our email bag officer brings the latest information coming from our listeners. And we appreciate hearing from listeners!

    From The Weather Center:

    WeatherBrains 101: Next week we see the implementation of some changes to the severe weather outlooks prepared by the Storm Prediction Center in Norman, OK, so for this episode of 101 we take a look at those changes and the definitions of some new terms like “marginal” and “enhanced.”

    Listener SurveyListener Surveys: Okay, we continue to drive this topic into the ground, but we really do like to hear from you. Many thanks to everyone who has taken the time to fill out the Listener Survey. The survey takes just a minute or two to complete and provides us with an opportunity to learn where you are and hear your thoughts and comments on the show. Click here to take the survey.

    Web Sites from Episode 455:

    Protecting Large Outdoor Campus Events from Weather

    Apps Discussed on This Episode (list may not show all of the apps discussed)

    RadarScope My-Cast Weather
    WeatherGeekPro QuickWeather
    Raindar NWS Mobile Site
    SPC Mobile Site mPing
    MyWarn.com WeatherBug
    ABC 3340 Weather App James Spann 24/7 Weather App
    AlertFM RainAware
    WeatherUnderground AeroWeather
    TweetBot Soundings by WeatherWary
    Outsider App WindScape

    Picks of the Week:

    Nate Johnson – King of Click

    Kevin Kloesel – Houston/Galveston NWS Office

    Brian Peters – No Pick – gets the fog horn!

    John Scala – Arctic Seas Ice Low But Antarctic High

    Rick Smith – Tagboard for NWA

    James Spann – Tsunami Information

    Aubrey Urbanowicz – Weather of Christopher Columbus

    SkyDavers Blog – The Fog Bank

    The WeatherBrains crew includes your host, James Spann, plus other notable geeks like Nate Johnson, Bill Murray, Aubrey Urbanowicz, Dr. John Scala, Rick Smith, Kevin Selle, and Brian Peters. They bring together a wealth of weather knowledge and experience for another fascinating netcast about weather.

    Audible.com graphic

    Showers and Warmth Continue

    | 7:03 am October 12, 2014

    An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

    As we gear up for the approach of a very dynamic system late Monday and early Tuesday, we will be staying warm and unsettled with scattered showers a possibility through Monday. Highs today should be in the lower and middle 80s with a mix of sun and clouds and those scattered showers. That frontal boundary will gradually wash out over the next 24 hours as a deep trough takes shape just to our west.

    A strong impulse coming out of the Rockies will dig a deep trough into the Central US generating a surface low over Oklahoma that will move to the northeast into the Great Lakes by Tuesday afternoon. The strong southerly flow will bring good low level moisture northward from the Gulf of Mexico. That along with strong low level jet will set the stage for the development of strong to severe thunderstorms over a large portion of the Lower and Middle Mississippi River Valley Monday and into early Tuesday. For Central Alabama, it looks like the main threat for strong to severe storms will come in the 9 pm Monday to noon Tuesday time frame. Shear valleys are sufficient to support rotating storms so there is a risk of tornadoes along with damaging thunderstorm wind.

    This dynamic system should move through Central Alabama by early Tuesday afternoon with the severe weather risk shifting into Georgia for Day 3 or Tuesday. Some clearing may occur but it looks like there could be some wrap around cloudiness into Wednesday before we see a return to full sunshine.

    This system won’t be tapping into any really cold air but we should cool down nicely with lows on Wednesday and Thursday morning dipping into the 40s with afternoon highs in the lower 70s. That will certainly feel nice.

    The weather pattern remains fairly active for October with another trough forecast to come across the Great Lakes on Friday. But this system appears to stay well north of us thanks in part to weak ridging following the strong system Monday and Tuesday. This next system will probably drag a front into the eastern US late in the week, however, it looks like we don’t see any significant moisture return, so we should stay dry for the latter part of the week and into next weekend. That will be great for Friday night high school football and college games on Saturday.

    In the tropics, Fay transitioned from a sub-tropical storm into a tropical storm yesterday and was brushing by Bermuda this morning. Fay will continue into the North Atlantic on an east to northeast track. Another area of disturbed weather just to the east of the Lesser Antilles shows some potential for development, but this system appears likely to recurve into the Atlantic away from the southern US just as Fay has done.

    Beach visitors will have to contend with showers today and Monday along with some risk for severe storms on Monday into the first half of Tuesday. Lows will be in the lower 70s and highs in the lower 80s. After Tuesday, the weather turns dry along the coast with highs around 80 and lows in the lower 60s. Water temperatures were running in the middle 70s along the Alabama coastal area.

    Looking into voodoo country, October appears to remain more active than we usually expect for this, the driest month of the year for Central Alabama. The GFS continued to show another deep trough over the eastern third of the country around the 21st/22nd time frame which would spell another round of rain and storms. The good news is that there does not appear to be any sign of any extreme temperature changes for Week 2.

    And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

    James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray
    Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

    James Spann will have the next Weather Xtreme Video here on Monday morning. Check back here for updates on this evolving weather system. Have a great day and Godspeed.

    -Brian-

    Unsettled Weather Through Tuesday

    | 7:51 am October 11, 2014

    An all new edition of the ABC 33/40 Weather Xtreme video is available in the player on the right sidebar of the blog. You can subscribe to the Weather Xtreme video on iTunes by clicking here.

    October of 2014 is not living up to the typical characteristics of an October as the weather pattern remains quite unsettled for the next several days. Radar this morning showed showers across the northern third of Alabama along a stationary frontal boundary. Showers will be ending temporarily from the west this morning before additional showers affect us this afternoon.

    For those heading to football games, rain gear is probably a good idea for the games. Auburn takes on the Mississippi State Bulldogs in Starkville (2:30 pm kickoff). The sky will be mostly cloudy with a kickoff temperature near 80 degrees; there is a good chance of showers or thunderstorms during the game. Temperatures will fall into the lower 70s by the final whistle.

    Alabama is on the road as they play Arkansas at Fayetteville (5:00 pm kickoff). Showers and storms are possible. The temperature will be in the upper 50s all day and will drop into the lower 50s by the fourth quarter.

    UAB Blazers host North Texas (2:30 pm kickoff) at Legion Field. The sky will be mostly cloudy with showers and storms possible, and temperatures will fall from near 82 degrees at kickoff to around 74 by the fourth quarter.

    The unsettled weather continues into Sunday though it looks like showers will be somewhat less numerous than today. By Monday a very dynamic weather system aloft is forecast to bring a deep trough along with a closed low across the Central Plains with a large area of potentially severe weather from the Lower Mississippi River Valley into Ohio and Indiana. CAPE values are forecast to be into the 1000-2000 j/kg range and shear values will also be sufficient for the possibility of tornadoes. It does look like the system will produce a squall line that will move through Central Alabama late Monday and early Tuesday with damaging wind likely.

    The upper low and trough will move by quickly on Tuesday so look for rapid clearing and much cooler temperatures by Wednesday morning with readings down into the 40s. Wednesday should be a great day with highs into the lower 70s.

    The main westerlies stay north of us through the end of the week and into next weekend so we should have dry weather with seasonal temperatures – lows in the 50s and highs in the middle and upper 70s.

    Subtropical storm Fay is churning in the Atlantic and not expected to affect the US. Bermuda is under a tropical storm warning as the storm passes just southeast of the island. Two other areas of disturbed weather were noted in the South Atlantic but neither is likely to become a storm in the next couple of days. The disturbance just east of the Leeward Islands is forecast to move into an area more conducive for development early next week. Forecasts indicate that the system should recurve east of the Bahamas.

    Looking briefly into voodoo country, the weather stays unsettled with yet another deep trough forecast over the eastern third of the country around the 20th and 21st. And by the end of the month, the GFS suggests a closed low near the Four Corners area which could keep the Southeast in a wet pattern.

    And you can follow news and weather updates from ABC 33/40 on Twitter here. Stay in the know by following the whole gang – here’s the list…

    James Spann Charles Daniel Bill Murray
    Brian Peters E-Warn (AL wx watches/warnings)

    I expect to have the next Weather Xtreme Video posted by 8 am or so on Sunday. Check back here for later updates on the weather situation. Enjoy the day and Godspeed.

    -Brian-