After the bitter cold that came in the wake of our first winter storm this past weekend, it now looks like a reversal of fortune is fast approaching. We could see temperatures a good 40 degrees warmer Thursday than they were on Saturday! Any snow north of Atlanta will sure to be gone by then.
Unfortunately another cold night is on the way with subfreezing temperatures across most, if not all, of north Georgia. There are many areas still dealing with ice and snow covered roads that will refreeze in the overnight hours as temperatures once again drop below freezing. This should be the last night this week, and possibly for a while, where temperatures this cold will develop.
As we head through the day on Tuesday our winds will start to swing more to the south, helping the high temperatures to jump into the 50’s. Much of the nation will be warming as well, as a large ridge of high pressure begins to establish itself across the eastern half of the country.
By Wednesday we are looking at highs in the 60’s, and by Thursday and Friday highs will climb to 70 or better. Not bad for a week that is starting out this cold.
Usually when you get such a spike in temperatures this time of the year, you can always count severe weather not being to far behind. This time though that is not the case. In fact apart from a few showers north on Wednesday, our next chance for showers won’t arrive until sometime on Sunday!
If you’re looking to save a few bucks on your heating bill this winter you may be in luck. Starting Christmas Day temperatures will trending upward as we head toward the New Year. The medium to long range forecasts keep the Southeast in above normal temperatures through March, which overall could help to reduce your heating costs. If we could get some decent rains to help with the drought it would be a big bonus.
Starting Christmas Day we see highs climb to near 60 degrees. The following week headed into New Years Day will bring temperatures well into the 60s to near 70. The record highs that week are in the low to mid 70s so we will close to record warmth, but won’t be breaking any.
Now onto January! Here is the latest outlook for temperatures and precipitation from the Climate Prediction Center for the month of January. As you can see we are projected to be slightly above normal for temperatures…….
and slightly below normal for precipitation.
In fact the news gets even better for the three month period January through March. Our potential for above normal temperatures increases…..
while our prospects for rain falls anywhere between slightly above normal and equal chances.
So hopefully Mother Nature will be kind to us, and give us a break on the heating bill this winter. Remeber this is all subject to change, but at least for now it doesn’t paint us a into a deep freeze.
One thing for sure is that November will start off well above normal with record highs possible during the first week. Highs this weekend will soar back into the low 80s, and those type of readings should stay with us at least through the following weekend. But will it last through the rest of the month? After all it is November, and it should be cooling off, right?
Well I decided to look back through the record books at previous Novembers going back to 2000. Of the previous 16 Novembers, 7 of them were above normal (2001, 2003, 2004, 2005, 2010, 2011, 2015). The warmest year was 2001 checking in with an average overall temperature of 59.9 compared to the normal of 54.0. From the graph below you can see that most of the month stayed above normal. It was very consistent.
Many months started out very warm only to end up below normal in the end. 2000 is a perfect example where the month began very warm with a high of 80 on the 1st, and then back to back records of 81 on the 2nd and 3rd only to start a slide toward cooler temperatures. That month ended up with an overall average temperature of 51 compared to the normal of 54!
You can see by the graph above how the first three days of 2000 started off much warmer than the rest. Along with the cooler weather that year it was also wetter than average with over 5 inches of rain recorded!
Tropical Depression Nine is among three disturbances in the Atlantic Basin that include Tropical Depression Eight, and Hurricane Gaston. Hurricane Gaston now a Category Two storm with winds of 110 mph has weakened a bit today, and will continue it’s lonely trek across the open waters of the Atlantic. Tropical Depression Eight will brush the Outer Banks of North Carolina and may never reach tropical storm strength until it begins to head out to sea.
Tropical Depression Nine on the other hand has a very good chance of developing into a tropical storm over the Gulf of Mexico, and will more than likely become Hermine before TD Eight has a chance to. Right now the low is located over 300 miles SSW of Tampa. Whether it becomes a tropical storm or not there will be plenty of rain and wind on tap for the Florida Gulf Coast beginning later this week. The official track places the storm near the Big Bend area of Florida sometime on Thursday.
Winds will start to pick on Wednesday with the peak winds arriving Thursday during the morning and afternoon.
The official forecast is for winds of 65 mph as the storm makes landfall north of Tampa. Not hurricane strength, but close.
Rain totals could be substantial as well with some areas seeing in excess of 6-7″.
Therefore if you have travel plans that take you to north or central Florida later in the week, be sure to closely monitor the system as it strengthens in the Gulf of Mexico.
After a very quiet start to the Atlantic Hurricane Season we are finally seeing the action heat up! As of right now we have 3 disturbances: Tropical Storm Gaston, Invest 99L and the remnants of Fiona.
Gaston quickly went from being declared a Tropical Depression Monday evening at 5pm to a Tropical Storm by 11 pm.
As of 2 pm this afternoon Gaston is nearing hurricane strength with winds of 65 mph, and the official forecast calls for the storm to reach hurricane strength later this evening. Maximum sustained winds of 100 mph (Cat. 2) are forecast by Thursday evening before gradual weakening takes place into the weekend. The good news with this storm is that the track will keep it forever over the open waters of the Central Atlantic.
Then there is Invest 99L which may or may not pose a threat to Florida and the Southeast later this weekend and into early next week.
Earlier today the hurricane hunters flew a mission through the disturbance and found a poorly defined and elongated circulation. Conditions over the next few days won’t be very favorable for development mainly due to the presence of dry air in it’s path. If the storm survives the passage through Hispaniola then conditions will become more favorable for development as it nears the Bahamas. That would be around Friday and that’s when things could get very interesting. The latest spaghetti plot shows that most of the models take the storm in the direction of the Bahamas and then Florida. How much is left of the storm, and therefore it’s strength is anyone’s guess at this time.
Invest 99L definitely bares watching over then next several days!
Another big week on the way next week with plenty of graduation ceremonies, and the start of summer for the kids. So it would seem imperative that the weather cooperate, and lo and behold it looks like it will. Not only will the week be dry, but warm as well. In fact warm may be an understatement. Highs could be back into the mid to upper 80’s.
In fact some of the warmest air so far this spring. As far as rain goes…..don’t see much of that happening at all barring a pop up shower or t-shower.
As with all long range forecasts take them with a grain of salt, although this one appears to need a little less salt than some others in the past.
Memorial Day, or as we like to say “the unofficial start to summer”, is fast approaching. Along with Memorial Day this week brings many graduation ceremonies and parties to north Georgia. So will the weather cooperate? Well that depends on what day that you are interested in.
Once again this afternoon we should see showers and t-showers developing although maybe not as numerous as yesterday. Still a few could be strong to severe with the main threat being from lightning, small hail and gusty winds.
Our next chance of rain will come Wednesday evening and early Thursday morning as an upper level disturbance traverses the Southeast. This too could lead to a few strong to severe storms, so if you have outdoor plans Wednesday night just be aware.
Once we get through Wednesday evening it should be smooth sailing right into the weekend. Look for warm sunny days and fair mild nights through Saturday. Highs will remain in the mid 80s with lows in the low to mid 60s. Along with the sunny skies the humidity will also lower by Thursday making it feel more comfortable for all the weekend activities.
The next chance of rain returns by Sunday and Monday in the form of isolated or “pop-up” showers during the afternoon and evening. These will be nothing more than garden variety showers that will pose more of a nuisance than a threat.
So all in all it’s looking like a great holiday weekend to be out and about enjoying the “unofficial start to summer”!
A cold front will arrive Wednesday bringing an end to our unseasonably warm weather.
COOL DOWN: Cooler than normal weather will return by this weekend with gradually cooler temperatures arriving Wednesday. Tuesdays highs will be once again well above normal with most areas in the upper 70s to lower 80s. Once the front moves through highs will fall into the lower 70s on Wednesday and then in the upper 60s to near 70 by Thursday and Friday. Another shot of cool air arrives Saturday leaving us with highs in the low to mid 60s through the weekend. Overnight lows will drop into the low 40s!
RAIN CHANCES: Our best chance for rain over the next seven days will come on Wednesday with the cold front. Right now it looks like a 30% chance of showers is about as good as it will get, so don’t plan on much rain wherever you live. After that the next system doesn’t arrive until about the following Wednesday and that one doesn’t look too promising either.
TIME CHANGE: This weekend Daylight Saving Time ends so don’t forget to turn your clocks back one hour before you go to bed Saturday night.
As temperatures soar over the next few days, look for the hottest weekend so far this year.
TEMPERATURES: Temperatures over the weekend will hit the highest readings seen so far this weekend. Highs will run anywhere from 95 to near 100 in and around Atlanta, especially to the south and east. Combined with the humidity it will feel more like 100-105. Make sure to drink lots of water and sty hydrated in this type of heat. After all it’s the weekend and many of us will be outside so it makes it all the more important. By next week highs will drop back to seasonal norms with reading generally in the upper 80s.
T-STORMS: Strong high pressure building aloft will not only aid in heating up the atmosphere, but it will also suppress the ability for t-storms to form. Therefore except for a stray t-shower don’t look for much in the way of organized t-showers this weekend.
TROPICS: The system that everyone has been watching in the Atlantic, Invest 96L, is on track to strengthen and possible become a TD as it makes its way into the Caribbean. The new long range forecast model data suggests that the system will track toward the Bahamas by Monday. On that path it will struggle to stay alive after it encounters Hispaniola, so we will wait and see. Earlier in the week the models suggested a stronger system in the Gulf of Mexico. Quite a difference wouldn’t you say? That is why putting faith in long range models is not a smart thing to do.
A vigorous upper level disturbance moving out of Arkansas is creating widespread showers and t-showers this evening.
T-STORM THREAT: Showers and t-showers this afternoon and evening have been capable of damaging winds and large hail. This threat will gradually diminish later tonight as the atmosphere becomes more stable. A large upper level disturbance will continue to generate showers and a few t-showers overnight, but they should remain well below severe limits. Tomorrow a series of weaker disturbances will move over the area so look for more showers and t-showers throughout the day.
HEAT: The hottest days of this summer are on the way this week with highs in the mid 90s and lows only in the mid 70s. The increase in temperatures will begin Wednesday and last into the upcoming weekend.