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MARCH STARTS OFF COLD: Both the NAM and the GFS are printing a high of 49 degrees for Birmingham today as the trend toward colder weather begins with a mix of sun and clouds. Clouds thicken tonight, and tomorrow will be a mostly cloudy day with a high between 45 and 49 degrees.
SNOW FLAKES TO KICK OFF THE WEEKEND: Strong forcing from a cold, deep upper trough will bring snow showers to Alabama Friday night into Saturday. These are convective due to very cold air aloft, and similar to the rain showers on a summer afternoon in Alabama. They will be somewhat scattered, but a few heavier snow bursts are possible. We have the potential for dusting to around one-half inch on grassy areas, mainly along and north of I-20 (Tuscaloosa to Birmingham to Anniston). Some high terrain locations (mainly above 1,000 feet) over Northeast Alabama might see one inch in the grass in a few spots. Temperatures will be above freezing and driving issues are not expected; any moisture on the roads should evaporate quickly Saturday evening before temperatures go below freezing.
Otherwise, Saturday will be windy, raw, cold, and blustery. The high will be in the low 40s, and a north wind of 10-20 mph will make it feel colder. We won’t get out of the 40s Sunday afternoon as well.
A significant freeze is likely both Sunday and Monday morning with a low between 22 and 27 degrees for most spots; some of the colder valley locations over North Alabama will have a chance of reaching the upper teens at daybreak Monday, right at record levels for early March in Alabama.
We begin to warm up Monday afternoon with a high in the low to mid 50s.
NEXT STORM SYSTEM: The GFS and the ECMWF are a little more aggressive with the next system on Tuesday of next week, with better dynamic support. We will forecast a good chance of showers Tuesday; for now we believe temperatures will be well above freezing early Tuesday morning as the precipitation begins, and ice should not be an issue. Rain amounts of around 1/2 inch are likely Tuesday, and both models hint that we might see a brief change to light snow on the back side of the departing system Tuesday night. Accumulation doesn’t look likely for now; drier air will follow on Wednesday.
Finally it looks like we have a chance at reaching the 60s Thursday of next week as a warming trend begins. See the Weather Xtreme video for more long range thoughts, along with the maps, graphics, and details.
STORM ALERT 2013 IN CLAY TONIGHT: Our annual severe weather awareness tour across Alabama wraps up tonight at Clay-Chalkville High School. We will share lessons learned after the April 27, 2011 generational tornado event, along with other amazing weather stories. Learn how to keep your family safe during severe weather, and have a chance to win some cool prizes as well. The show begin at 6:30… be sure and get there early to get a good seat.
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I will be doing a program at North River Christian Academy in Tuscaloosa today… then on to Clay for tonight’s Storm Alert 2013 at Clay-Chalkville High School. Won’t be able to produce an afternoon Weather Xtreme video due to travel, but I will have forecast notes here by 4:00. Enjoy the day….
Category: Alabama's Weather