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Category: Alabama’s Weather

No 90s Again Today

| 3:48 pm July 22, 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.

“COOL” SUMMER CONTINUES: Today is the 8th consecutive day for Birmingham with a high under 90 degrees; clouds and showers are keeping temperatures down.

Temperatures

Scattered showers and storms are in progress, moving from east to west around the top of an upper low that is over the Mississippi Gulf Coast. Those showers will fade away later tonight.

TOMORROW AND THURSDAY: Moist air stays in place, and we will mention the risk of “scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms” tomorrow with a high in the 87-90 degree range. Then, look for an increase in the number of showers and storms Thursday afternoon and Thursday night as a surface front moves down into North Alabama.

DRIER FRIDAY/SATURDAY: The weather looks generally rain-free for the northern half of Alabama on these two days with lower humidity levels; the risk of scattered showers and storms will continue over the southern counties of the state. Afternoon highs will be around 90 degrees, and we should drop into the 60s early Saturday morning.

SUNDAY/MONDAY: The chance of showers and storms will increase again on these two days; moist air returns Sunday, and a cold front will approach Monday from the north. The high will drop back into the mid to upper 80s because of clouds and showers.

ANOTHER “COOL” SHOT NEXT WEEK: Global models are in good agreement; a vigorous long wave upper trough will form over the eastern half of the nation, pulling down cooler, drier continental air into Alabama Tuesday through Thursday. Looks like we have a chance of going down into the 50s again Wednesday morning, close to record levels for the end of July. This will be one of the coolest Julys on record for many Alabama reporting stations if this verifies.

TROPICAL DEPRESSION TWO: TD 2 in the Atlantic, about 800 miles east of the Lesser Antilles, is expected to dissipate, or become a remnant low by the time it reaches the islands due to very dry air surrounding the system, and harsh winds aloft. The rest of the Atlantic basin is quiet.

GULF COAST WEATHER: We project about 6 to 8 hours of sunshine each day on the Gulf Coast through the weekend (from Panama City to Gulf Shores) with the usual daily risk of scattered showers and thunderstorms. Highs will remain in the mid to upper 80s on the immediate coast, and sea water temperatures are mostly in the mid 80s.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40. We enjoyed having Oklahoma City TV meteorologist Gary England on the show last night… scroll down for the show notes.

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I enjoyed speaking to the residents at St. Martin’s in the Pines in Birmingham today… be looking for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 7:00 a.m. tomorrow…

Blanket of Moist Air Hangs Around

| 6:21 am July 22, 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.

ON THE MAPS: An upper low is over South Alabama this morning, and drifting westward. The position of this feature should bring an increase in the number of showers and thunderstorms to the northern half of the state this afternoon and early tonight. It won’t rain everywhere, but any one spot stands about a 50/50 chance of getting wet. Like recent days, a few heavy downpours are possible. Otherwise, the sky will be occasionally cloudy with a high in the mid to upper 80s.

Interesting to note that Birmingham has gone seven consecutive days with a high below 90 degrees.

TOMORROW AND THURSDAY: The upper low will continue to drift west and dissipate, so we expect rather routine summer weather tomorrow. Partly sunny and the risk of scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms. The high tomorrow will be in the 87 to 90 degree range.

Then, on Thursday, an approaching surface front from the north should bring an increase in the number of showers and thunderstorms during the afternoon and nighttime hours. A few strong storms are possible, but organized severe weather is not likely.

FRIDAY/SATURDAY: The GFS continues to suggest that drier air will cover the northern half of Alabama on these two days, meaning most places will be rain-free, and humidity levels/dewpoints will be a tad lower. The afternoon high should be around 90 on both days.

SUNDAY AND EARLY NEXT WEEK: Moist air returns Sunday with a chance of scattered showers and thunderstorms, and another “cold front” will push in here late Monday, so the day Monday could be relatively wet with a good chance of showers and storms.

A high amplitude upper air pattern sets up next week with a deep, long wave upper trough over the eastern U.S., and this should set up another refreshing airmass for summer by Tuesday and Wednesday, with lower humidity levels and cooler nights. See the Weather Xtreme video for the maps, graphics, and details.

TROPICAL DEPRESSION TWO: TD 2 out in the Atlantic between the Lesser Antilles and the coast of Africa will struggle today due to dry air surrounding the system, and harsh winds aloft. NHC expects the system to weaken to a remnant low before it reaches the islands, and it is not expected to reach tropical storm strength.

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Elsewhere, the Atlantic basin is quiet.

GULF COAST WEATHER: About 2 to 4 hours of sunshine today from Panama City to Gulf Shores with scattered showers and storms. Then, for the rest of the week and the weekend, brighter weather with 6 to 8 hours of sun each day with showers and storms being more widely scattered. Highs will hold in the mid to upper 80s along the immediate coast, and the sea water temperature this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 84 degrees.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40. Scroll down for the show notes on the new episode we recorded last night with Gary England of Oklahoma City.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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I will be speaking today at St. Martin’s in the Pines in Birmingham… look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon. Enjoy the day!

Warm, Moist Air Stays In Place

| 3:40 pm July 21, 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.

RADAR CHECK: Scattered showers and storms continue, mostly over the eastern half of Alabama at mid-afternoon. There is very little movement… just a drift toward the west/northwest, so some places have seen heavy rain. Temperatures are mostly in the 80s… this will be the seventh consecutive day with a high below 90 degrees in Birmingham. Quite remarkable for mid-July.

An upper low is over East Alabama, and is expected to drift southwest, toward Mobile tomorrow. This should mean a rather unsettled day tomorrow for the state, with a mostly cloudy sky and scattered to numerous showers and thunderstorms. Once again the high should be in the 80s due to clouds and showers.

WEDNESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY: The upper low will weaken and dissipate, so Wednesday looks like a typical summer day with a partly sunny and the risk of scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms. Then, an approaching front should bring an increase in the number of showers and storms to the northern half of the state Thursday afternoon into Thursday night.

The latest GFS (12Z run) brings drier air down into North Alabama Friday, suggesting the highest risk of showers and storms will come over South Alabama.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: For now Saturday looks relatively rain-free with only isolated showers, but a disturbance in the northwest flow aloft across the Deep South could bring an increase in the number of showers and thunderstorms Saturday night or Sunday. Highs this weekend should be close to 90 degrees.

LONG RANGE: Global models are showing another deep, long wave upper trough over the eastern U.S. in 9-12 days; this could bring another “cool” and refreshing airmass down into the southern states during a time when summer heat is usually peaking. Let’s hope this verifies.

GULF COAST WEATHER: About 4-6 hours of sun tomorrow along the coast from Panama City to Gulf Shores with scattered showers and thunderstorms. Then, we expect increasing amounts of sun and fewer showers Thursday and Friday. Highs will remain in the mid to upper 80s along the immediate coast, and the NWS Mobile has been warning of dangerous rip tides in coastal waters. Sea water temperatures are mostly in the low to mid 80s.

NEW TROPICAL DEPRESSION: The disturbance in the Atlantic about halfway between the coast of Africa and the Windward Islands has become the second tropical depression of the season in the Atlantic basin. The good news is that this is not expected to reach tropical storm strength, and should dissipate before reaching the islands due to harsh environmental conditions.

203240W5_NL_sm

The rest of the Atlantic basin is quiet.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40. Oklahoma City TV weather legend Gary England will join us this week… the show will be produced tonight at 8:30 CT. You can watch it on “James Spann 24/7″ on cable systems around the state, or on the web here.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 7:00 a.m. tomorrow….

Warm and Humid; Scattered Showers

| 6:23 am July 21, 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.

RADAR CHECK: Rain is falling early this morning over parts of Northeast Alabama’s Etowah, Cherokee, and DeKalb Counties… these showers are showing little movement. The rest of the state is dry with temperatures mostly in the upper 60s and low 70s.

A broad upper low is over East Alabama and Georgia this morning, and this should keep the best chance of showers over the eastern half of the state today. The highest amount of sunshine will be over the western counties, and most places will see a high somewhere between 86 and 89 degrees. Interesting to note the last time we saw a high of 90 or higher (in Birmingham) was one week ago… Monday July 14. A remarkable steak for the middle of July.

THE WEEK AHEAD: The upper low will drift to the southwest tomorrow, which should mean a better coverage of showers and storms across Alabama. It won’t rain everywhere, but a number of communities should see a good shower during the day, and highs will remain in the mid to upper 80s.

Then, Wednesday looks like a rather typical summer day. Partly sunny; the risk of scattered, mostly afternoon and evening showers and thunderstorms. We could touch 90 degrees Wednesday afternoon.

The GFS continues with the idea of a surface front approaching the state from the north Thursday and Friday, which could provide an increase in the number of scattered showers and storms over the northern counties of the state.

SATURDAY/SUNDAY: For the moment the GFS is suggesting the weekend will be relatively dry with only isolated showers, but the door is open for a wave to move into the state on a northwest flow aloft, and trying to identify this kind of feature is almost impossible five days in advance. For now we will just mention widely scattered showers and storms both days with a high close to, or just over 90 degrees.

VOODOO LAND: The European model is suggesting a deep upper trough will form over the eastern U.S. again at the end of July, which could set up another unusually “cool”, dry airmass for Alabama.

7-30_500

Could we be setting up for another round of record lows? We will just have to wait and see. Check out the Weather Xtreme video for the maps, graphics, and more details.

GULF COAST WEATHER: For the coast from Panama City over to Gulf Shores this week, it looks like rather routine summer weather with about 6 to 8 hours of sunshine each day along with the risk of scattered thunderstorms. Highs will be in the 85 to 88 degree range on the immediate coast, and the sea water temperature this morning at the Dauphin Island Sea Lab is 81 degrees.

TROPICS: A weak disturbance southwest of the Cape Verde Islands should dissipate later this week, and tropical storm formation is not expected in the Atlantic basin anytime soon.

WEATHER BRAINS: Don’t forget you can listen to our weekly 90 minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including our meteorologists here at ABC 33/40. Oklahoma City TV weather legend Gary England will be our guest on this week’s show, which we will produce tonight at 8:30 CT. You can watch it on “James Spann 24/7″ on cable systems around the state, or on the web here.

CONNECT: You can find me on all of the major social networks…

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Look for the next Weather Xtreme video here by 4:00 this afternoon…. enjoy the day…

Droughtwatch

| 3:23 pm July 20, 2014

Lots of folks across the middle of Alabama, from Cullman County southward to Autauga County have been very dry recently.

In fact, most of the five county Birmingham metro area have only received 10-25% of their typical rainfall over the past 30 days.

Click image to enlarge

Click image to enlarge

These areas need 1-2 inches of rain just to make up for the short-term deficits.

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The GFS predicts 3-4 inches of rain over the next 16 days. We will keep our fingers crossed.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

The good news is that of last week, no part of Alabama was in full scale drought conditions. Abnormally dry conditions, according to the Drought Monitor, extend in a big backwards “C”, across Jefferson and Shelby Counties, over to and down the Georgia border into the Wiregrass of Southeast Alabama.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Sunday Afternoon Update

| 1:41 pm July 20, 2014

An area of showers and storms has been moving across South Central Alabama this morning and early afternoon in response to a very weak surface low moving moving across southern Alabama. The mesoscale models picked up on this feature very well yesterday and predicted there would be showers this morning in places like Clanton, Montgomery, Greenville and Auburn.

Click image to enlarge.

Click image to enlarge.

Mostly rainfall amounts were moderate, although there were some 3 to 4 inch amounts in places like northern Bullock, Lee, western Lowndes and southeastern Dallas Counties. Auburn has picked up 1.67 inches since yesterday morning.

There was a good bit of lightning in the I-85 corridor.

The heaviest weather is now exiting northeastward into Georgia, around the Lanett/Valley exit on I-85.

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ON THE WEATHER MAPS: In addition to the surface low northeast of Montgomery, a stationary front lies generally along I-59 and most of any shower activity that develops through the afternoon should be east of this boundary. In the mid levels of the atmosphere, a powerhouse of a high is near El Paso. To the right of it, a series of disturbances is rounding the top of the high, carving out a trough over the Ohio Valley down into the Tennessee Valley. One of the disturbances was sliding into northern Mississippi and we are tracking another over southwestern Missouri.

TROFFY PATTERN: Is “troffy” a word? For our purposes it is. Those kinds of disturbances will keep us in a troffy pattern into the coming work week. In fact, the trough may close off into an upper level low by Tuesday, which could lead to increase rain chances Tuesday and Wednesday. For today, drier air covers the northern half of the state, reducing shower chances to around 10-20%. Moisture levels will rebound a bit on Monday, allowing rain chances to return to 20-30%.   If the upper low materializes as expected by Tuesday, rain chances will likely undergo an uptick. This increase in rain chances should continue into Wednesday.

TEMPS: Highs today will be generally in the upper 80s, except over East Central Alabama, where clouds and showers are limiting the rise in the mercury. By tomorrow, everyone should be in the upper 80s and this trend should continue through midweek, except there will be an increasing number of 90s thrown in each day.

Return to Summer-ish Weather Ahead

| 6:59 am July 20, 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.

Our weather pattern continued to somewhat complex with a weak front draped across Central Alabama with moisture values high to the east and south of the Birmingham area. A weak short wave moving across northern Mississippi was helping to produce showers across South and East Alabama where dew points were in the lower 70s. Some fog was being reported across the northwest portions of Central Alabama. As the weak short wave moves by today, showers remain possible with the greater risk once again generally east and south of the Interstate 59 corridor. Clouds will once again limit daytime heating but most areas will see the middle 80s with some upper 80s possible.

As we get into the upcoming work week, a summer-like pattern with some moisture in place will keep the potential for daily showers in the forecast through the middle of the week. Moisture levels slowly work up as does the heat so showers may become a bit more widespread into Tuesday and Wednesday. I expect afternoon highs to climb into the 88 to 92 degree range.

The next big challenge in the forecast will be the approach of yet another front Thursday and Friday with the deepening of another trough over the eastern half of the country. As I’ve noted before, we don’t usually see fronts plowing through the Southeast during July and August, but this summer seems to be the exception. Our major two long range models are in fair agreement on the idea of the front going all the way to the Gulf but the GFS was more bullish than the European which was washing the front out. The approach of the trough and the front could signal an increase in showers and thunderstorms for the end of the week, but we’ll have to watch for adjustments to the forecast.

The upper flow with the deepening trough also goes north to northwesterly, so there is some risk for large clusters of storms to form over the Central US and move into the Southeast US, but it is certainly too early to be that specific – just wary to that kind of development.

There is little change in the overall pattern of the trough in the East and the ridge in the West, so we continue to hang onto the idea of little extreme heat for the Southeast US as we stay somewhat unsettled.

Beach bound folks will see some decent rain chances today, but the weather should become more seasonal this week as showers return mainly during the afternoon, and most likely along the sea breeze front as it moves inland. Cloudy today with 4 to 6 hours of sunshine but more sunshine early this week with 6 to 8 hours likely. Highs will be in the upper 80s with overnight lows in the upper 70s. Water temperatures along the coast are in the lower 80s and likely to hold there.

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James Spann will have the next Weather Xtreme Video on Monday morning. Enjoy your day and Godspeed.

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Another Cool Summer Day

| 11:42 am July 19, 2014

It once again feels and looks nothing like the middle of July for the state of Alabama. We are once again seeing clouds, showers, and unseasonably cool temps. Even at this point in the day, temperatures are struggling to climb out of the 70s. I am certainly not complaining, but it definitely is not our typical summer weather.

Heading through the rest of today, we will continue to see elevated rain chances, and the cloud will be hanging tough, but we will see some breaks in the clouds that will allow some sun to shine through. Where we see more sun, the temps should make it into the lower to mid-80s, where there is no sun, I would not be surprised to see some locations stay in the 70s.

We continue to watch a front that is moving across the Southeast, and it should be clearing most of the area later today. This will allow our rain chances to decrease some, and we will see our temperatures on the increase as we head into the new work week.

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