Friday will be cooler than Thursday but not as cool as the weekend. As we continue to get colder air moving in from the west, we also have a pulse of energy moving in from the south. This will start to organize itself in the Gulf of Mexico Friday, and will take its aim toward the Carolinas. Friday’s highs, for the mountains, will be in the 60’s, while some lucky few in the Piedmont may hit 70. As we move throughout the day, you will start to notice some high clouds moving in. This will only put a slight damper on what, otherwise, should be a beautiful day. Saturday will be much more cloudy due to weekend storms moving in by the afternoon. For the most part, Saturday will be dry with highs only in the mid 50’s. Showers will be arriving overnight. Sunday will be the coldest and wettest day of the weekend. For most, rain totals will be less than a half inch, but with the colder temps, Sunday is likely to be a nasty day. In the Mountains, highs will be in the upper 30’s to low 40’s, and in the Piedmont highs will likely be in the upper 40’s.
A few things continue to remain uncertain as we continue to watch this weekend forecast. Temperatures will be cool, but just how low will they get? This answer depends on the track and strength of of the low. The low will ultimately determine just how cold temperatures will get. Higher elevation mountain areas will likely see snow fall, especially on the back side of this storm. The most interesting part of this set up is a little piece of vorticity that lags behind the coastal low. Since these two pieces of energy are not going to phase together, the question remains: if enough energy is there, could we see some lower elevation snow? Right now, I’m thinking no, not for the Mountains. The Northeast needs to closely monitor this storm as it continues to trend further east. This could mean a significant snowstorm for the Northeast.
Below I have posted the NAM4 0Z model run. NAM stands for North American Model, the 4 is the resolution (4km), and the 0Z is the time the model is ran (in this case, midnight Thursday). The NAM tends to over-do moisture, so don’t get caught up in the amount of rain. However, notice that the heavier rain stays to the south and that the coldest air is confined from the Mountains to mid-Virginia and the Northeast. When you’re watching the model run, the first piece of energy is the low coming off of the Gulf and making its way up the coast. Notice at the end of the model run, the second piece of energy is the upper-level support represented by precipitation moving into Tennessee from the mid-west.
The overall story is that Saturday night and Sunday will be breezy and wet. There could be traces of snow, especially in the mountains and the Northeast. Sunday will be cold! Sunday night we will have a freeze, so if you have tender plants cover them or bring them inside. However, there is some good news! Next Sunday looks to be the beginning of a warming trend that will continue throughout the week. Below is your five day forecast.