Archive for January 6th, 2013
With calm winds and very little to no cloud cover this evening and overnight across Alabama, we should expect ideal radiational cooling to take place across most of the area. Many areas were in the upper 40s and low 50s today, and now that clear skies are in place, expect the temperature to fall rapidly throughout the night and many locations will see a hard freeze overnight. The NAM forecast is pretty accurate to what I expect for Central Alabama. Most of North Alabama will be below freezing and many locations into the 20s. Lower 30s will be along and south of the hwy 80 corridor.
Heading into tomorrow, the clear skies will act the opposite an allow ample sunshine across Alabama. This will allow for our afternoon highs to reach into the mid 50s for Monday.
A few hours make a world of difference when it comes to the weather. This morning, the skies were overcast with a few sprinkles still falling from them. By this afternoon, most of the clouds have move out and it has turned out to be a mostly sunny afternoon for Central Alabama. Still a few mid level clouds across the northern two-thirds of Alabama. Thicker and lower level clouds are covering the Gulf Coast. Skies will continue to clear as we head into the afternoon and into the evening. With clear skies and calm winds tonight, temperatures will settle into the 20s across North Central Alabama by tomorrow morning.
Clouds are hanging around this morning across Central Alabama. Quick look at this morning’s satellite image shows high cloud tops over most of Central and South Alabama. These clouds will continue to move off to the east through out the morning and should give way to afternoon sunshine that will allow us to warm up into the mid 50s today. Off to the west in northern Mississippi and Arkansas, we see low level clouds, which is actually fog this morning. That will not be moving this way and should mix out with dry air this morning. Even a few breaks in the cloud deck this morning across East Central Mississippi and getting into West Alabama. Few peeks of sunshine already this morning, and heading into the afternoon we are expecting more sun than clouds.
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What a difference a day can make! Yesterday we were shaping up with a pretty big storm system for Thursday with both long range models in reasonably good agreement on the solutions, but today, all of that has changed. So forecast confidence has taken a nosedive. But whether or not there is any confidence in the model solutions, a forecast still has to be made.
Temperatures overnight went into stabilization with a flat line in values from about 4 pm yesterday through sunrise this morning. And clouds have remained in place across much of the Southeast US as we continue to see the upper trough just to our west. However, as that upper trough swings across the area, we may see a few sprinkles and we should see some breaks in the clouds this afternoon with some sunshine. Temperatures will climb to the lower 50s, about typical for early January.
After today, the warmup should begin in earnest as a deep upper closed low moseys across northern Mexico keeping us in a strong warm southwesterly flow. A surface low is likely to develop over South Texas on Wednesday with a warm front projected to move northward across the Alabama. At this point, my confidence in the forecast is pretty good, but it goes completely out the window from here forward in time as the primary models seem to lose all credibility. While both suggest a strong low coming out of northern Mexico, the associated surface low and the strength of that low don’t seem to mesh with the strength of the upper trough! This is in sharp contrast to the good agreement we saw in the models yesterday.
The suggestion is that the surface low will not be very strong and will move quickly northeastward from Texas to the eastern Great Lakes. While the speed of movement looks fine, the surface low never achieves much intensity which does not seem to agree with the intensity of the upper low/trough. It’s almost like both models don’t know what to do with the surface pattern. So from here out, my confidence in the solution drops to nearly zero!
The weather system in the Wednesday/Thursday time frame should bring a significant rainfall event to the Lower Mississippi River Valley with rainfall amounts through Thursday reaching 2 to 4 inches over Louisiana, East Texas, and parts of Arkansas and Mississippi. As to severe weather potential, who knows at this point?
If the upper air solutions are correct, then another upper low drops into the Southwest US and begins coming out by next Sunday. So assuming the upper air pattern is reasonably correct, the mild weather should be with us for the upper coming week through the first of next week.
The GFS still maintains a colder look to the overall pattern with a rain event around the 16th/17th and the 19th/20th. If the GFS is correct, the upper air pattern will shift to a long wave trough over the eastern half of the country returning us to winter-like conditions.
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James Spann should be up next with the Monday morning edition of the Weather Xtreme Video. In the meantime, I think I’m going to soak my head so it won’t explode after the models have worked me over this morning. I hope your Sunday is a good one and Godspeed.