Well it will be hard to find anyone that can complain about this weather; it is truly a beautiful and warm afternoon. This is what spring is all about; the birds are singing, the bees are humming, the flowers are blooming and my favorite color shows itself, Spring Green. I don’t know if that is an actual color, but it is what I call it every spring. It is the point where all the new tender leaves are stretching out and the chlorophyll in the leaves hasn’t turned dark green yet. Still a vibrant and in some cases near neon green that makes everything looks fresh and new. This is one of the best times of year across Alabama. The one draw back is that the pollen is showing up today. A bit of a yellowish haze outside as all the budding and blooming trees and plants release it. Some of the greatest pollen producers are pine trees. You can look at them and see the pollen producing clusters on each limb. If you catch yourself near a group of them and a gust of winds moves through them, there is an explosion of the yellow powder off the trees. It always reminds me of when someone is putting powder sugar on a cake.
The weather is fairly similar in many areas of the Southeast. A storm system is moving across the upper Midwest today, where some areas in the Northern Great Lakes are seeing some snow. No thank you. I will take our dusting of pollen anyday to winter weather.
The air over the Southeast is fairly dry and that means it heats and cools more effectively. That tells me that we will have very warm afternoon and fairly cool nights. That will continue for the next few days. Most areas will see 70s this afternoon, but will quickly fall back into the upper 40s and low 50s tonight, before rebounding nicely into the mid 70s tomorrow. A quick peek of the satellite shows most area across the Southeast are experiencing mostly sunny conditions. No rain, no storms and no severe weather. It is just a fantastic spring weekend.
Sorry for the lack of a video today, but my location in the Race Control Building at Barber Motorsports Park just does not lend itself to preparing a video.
High cirrus clouds continue to stream across the sky of Central Alabama. While the clouds dim the sun somewhat, temperatures have warmed nicely from the upper 30s this morning to near 70 just before noon. With surface high pressure off to our northeast, the surface wind has come around to the southeast with wind speeds in the range of 8 to 12 mph. Looks like Sunday will be a close duplicate of today with a few more clouds but highs should still reach the middle 70s.
The new 12Z run from the GFS has reached 156 hours, and it continues to bring the next major system into Alabama late Wednesday and early Thursday. If this timing comes to be correct, we might avoid a significant round of severe weather. Under the latest run, the major severe weather threat would be centered on Arkansas. But with the continuing inconsistency in timing from model run to model run, we’ll still need to keep a wary eye on how this system shapes up. At this writing, the European run was not available for comparison.
***No video today due to my work providing weather support to the Honda Indy Grand Prix at Barber Motorsports Park.***
A gorgeous Spring weekend is shaping up for Central Alabama. High pressure at the surface will be situated over the eastern US throughout the weekend keeping the weather just great. Ridging aloft will weaken a tad over the weekend, but the strong westerlies will remain well north of us through the first of the week. Beginning Monday, a strong upper trough will be digging into the Southwest US. This will cut off Tuesday in the vicinity of the Four Corners area and then kick out into the middle of the week. There has been some model inconsistency on timing of this system, but the latest GFS brings the strong upper low into the Mid-Mississippi River Valley on Thursday. A strong surface low will move from Colorado on Tuesday into the eastern Great Lakes on Thursday trailing a strong cold front into the Southeast US.
Based on current model guidance, there is still a great deal of uncertainty especially with timing. The European does not bring the system into the Southeast US until Friday, much slower than the GFS. SPC has highlighted a risk for Day 5, Wednesday, for a large part of Arkansas, West Tennessee, and Southeast Missouri. However, they note that model differences preclude identifying a specific area on Day 6 or 7 due to these differences. Some risk area is likely to be identified as we get closer to the event.
Temperatures will reach into the 70s for highs over the weekend and into the first of the upcoming week. We might even be pushing the 80-degree mark by the time we reach Tuesday and Wednesday, that would be the first 80s for 2013.