Archive for October 16th, 2011
It’s that time of year…late October, shorter days, lower sun angle, arctic getting cold. Usually, some time in late October, the cold air builds up enough that a piece of it will break away from the Arctic and head south into the US. That will happen this week.
With the ground being warm and releasing lots of heat, etc., it is hard to predict just how cold it will get. But, this air will be coming from Canada, and it will be a lot colder than it is today! As a matter of fact, in parts of NE Alabama, it could be nearly 50 degrees colder by Friday morning than it is now (it’s 81 in Fort Payne).
The European model is not as aggressive with the cold air, and Canadian model is a little too aggressive, and with the GFS in the middle, it may be the best guess, or somewhere between it and the Euro. Here are forecast temperatures over the next 5 days from the GFS (every 3 hours):
The cold front will move in on Tuesday, dropping temperatures from near 80 at mid-day, to the 40s by late evening. Highs may stay in the 50s on Wednesday and struggle to reach 60 on Thursday too, and with winds 10-20 mph, wind chills at times will be down near 30! That’s a big time change.
The coldest morning will be Friday. It’s too early to predict who will get frost, due to uncertainty with temperature and wind.
Needless to say, the big change to fall is coming this week, and most people’s home heating system will probably need to kick on by Wednesday night with the cool daytime temperatures and clouds, and very chilly lows between 35 and 45.
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Looks like another couple of warm days ahead of us for Central Alabama before we see another shot at some relatively chilly air. But for now, that is today and Monday, we will be in fine shape with afternoon highs climbing into the middle 80s. Those values well above seasonal highs – 75 for mid October. But come late Monday and Tuesday, so changes will be occurring.
A strong trough is expected to dig into the Mississippi River Valley. As it does, a significant cold front will sweep through the area. Timing is still up for some adjustment, but it appears now that the front should be traversing Central Alabama from late Tuesday morning through the afternoon and exiting in the late evening. We have a fairly good shot at some rain, however, it will come in the form of showers, so it is possible that some locations might not see much rain. Rainfall amounts will probably be less than a half inch. And we do need some rain with amounts so far this month running less than a quarter of an inch at most observing locations.
Wrap around moisture primarily in the form of clouds but with some potential drizzle could affect us Wednesday. These clouds and some wind should help to keep temperatures from falling into the 30s. But by Thursday morning as the wind goes light we could one of the chilliest mornings of this Fall season so far. Highs will drop back into the 60s for the end of the week and into the weekend.
Tropical moisture over the western Caribbean and the Yucatan Peninsula will help to keep Florida very wet for the upcoming week. The approach and passage of the front should help to keep all of that tropical moisture well south of Central Alabama.
Long range projections suggest that the pattern remains fairly active with a new system around the 26th and again as we head into November.
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National Weather Association (NWA) conference kicks off this morning with the broadcaster session. Looks like a great lineup with folks like Dr. Greg Forbes from The Weather Channel. I hope you have a great day and get some rain Tuesday. Godspeed.
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