Forecast Discussion: Sat August 19th, 2017

A frontal boundary passed through the region overnight but that front was in name only. Hot weather will continue for your Saturday across the Western Carolinas. The only change is that some drier air will move in for this afternoon, also thanks in part to some downslope flow.

 

Storm chances for today are very slim across the region with upper 80’s to low 90’s dominating the scene. Sunday will feature a very similar look with possibly even lower amounts of humidity. Regardless temperatures will again average in the low 90’s.

 

Monday is a big day apparently. Something about a total solar eclipse will travel across the country, ever heard of it?

 

All kidding aside the weather for all the festivities centered around the solar eclipse will go off without much of a hitch weather wise. A few high clouds may slide through in the afternoon but if you are staying here locally to witness the event it should go without many problems. Temperatures in the early afternoon will be in the upper 80’s to around 90 degrees. Then as the eclipse begins shortly after 1 pm temperatures may hold steady through the entire event which should end shortly after 4 pm.

 

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Again…for those who are wanting of know of specific times…the eclipse will begin around 1 pm, it will peak between 2:30 and 2:45 pm. Then we will be departing the eclipse by just after 4 pm. For our coverage area, we will be between 97-99 percent coverage. For those wanting to enter the path of totality on Monday travel southwest into parts of Upstate South Carolina (along and west of Greenville) and in North Carolina from near Brevard up to Sylva.  

 

 

Forecast Discussion: Friday, August 18th, 2017

Written By Chase Graham

SHORT-TERM FORECAST: FRIDAY AND THE WEEKEND

In advance of a "cold" front on Friday, our area will be plagued with another day of high heat and humidity, with dew point temperatures remaining in the low-to-mid 70s during the middle of the afternoon. As a result of plentiful surface moisture in combination with adequate upper-level forcing brought on by the front, showers and thunderstorms should form along the mountains by early afternoon tomorrow, similar to the setup that we've had the past few days. Once the cold front moves through the area early Saturday morning, drier air should move into the area as light westerly winds will help to keep dew point temperatures in the mid-to-upper in the 60s on Saturday afternoon. This, in conjunction with postfrontal subsidence behind the cold front will hinder the development of showers and thunderstorms on Saturday and Sunday afternoon, although the chance of storms cannot be completely ruled out. Unfortunately, the cold front will not bring cooler temperatures to our area, as highs should remain in the upper 80s and lower 90s throughout the weekend.  

2-meter Dew Point Temperatures, Friday, Aug. 18th, 2:00 p.m.           Source: tropicaltidbits.com

2-meter Dew Point Temperatures, Friday, Aug. 18th, 2:00 p.m.           Source: tropicaltidbits.com

2-meter Dew Point Temperatures, Friday, Aug. 18th, 2:00 p.m.         Source: tropicaltidbits.com

2-meter Dew Point Temperatures, Friday, Aug. 18th, 2:00 p.m.         Source: tropicaltidbits.com

A LOOK AHEAD TO THE "GREAT AMERICAN ECLIPSE": MONDAY

By Monday, humidity will begin to increase again, as a moist southerly wind will assist dew point temperatures in possibly reaching 70 by the afternoon. This could allow for some convection to form, particularly to our south in Georgia and the South Carolina lowcountry. Clouds (in relation to eclipse viewing quality) is possibly the most difficult thing to forecast, because one small cloud in the wrong place at the wrong time could totally spoil viewing the eclipse. As a result, I will refrain from making any sort of prediction with certainty about eclipse viewing. All I will say for now (just after midnight on Friday morning) is that conditions look moderately favorable for eclipse viewing next Monday in our area.

Current Model (GFS/American) Cloud Cover Prediction, 2:00 p.m. 8/21/17 Source: tropicaltidbits.com

Current Model (GFS/American) Cloud Cover Prediction, 2:00 p.m. 8/21/17

Source: tropicaltidbits.com

LONG-RANGE FORECAST: TUESDAY THROUGH THE REST OF NEXT WEEK

After the excitement of the eclipse next Monday, we will return to the typical hot and humid pattern that we have experienced over the past week for Tuesday, Wednesday, and Thursday next week. Shower and thunderstorm chances will increase as we get closer to next weekend, as a stronger cold front approaches from the north. Both major long-range models (GFS and Euro) suggest that there will be some type of cold front moving into our area by the end of next week. The GFS has a more moderate air mass moving into the area while the Euro wants to bring a more significant cool air mass into the southeast. Regardless, it looks probable that a cooler and dry air mass may be on the way for next weekend.

Synoptic Setup for the middle of next week (Model: European/ECMWF)                                       Source: Accuweather Professional

Synoptic Setup for the middle of next week (Model: European/ECMWF)                                       Source: Accuweather Professional

Synoptic Setup for late next week. Note the "valley" created in the geopotential height lines. This indicates a "trough", which generally brings cooler weather.  (Model: European/ECMWF)                                                                         Source: Accuweather Professional

Synoptic Setup for late next week. Note the "valley" created in the geopotential height lines. This indicates a "trough", which generally brings cooler weather. 

(Model: European/ECMWF)                                                                         Source: Accuweather Professional

Heat & Humidity Continue

Good Thursday everyone through Western North Carolina. After a few weeks cooler, wetter and cloudy weather, the sun has returned. 

High pressure over the Gulf of Mexico has relaxed a little bit, which is bring in some warmer and very humid conditions to the area. Today we expect to see low to mid 90's throughout the foothill and Western Piedmont areas. Heat index values could make a run at 100 in our southern areas in Cleveland County.  A few thunderstorms are possible in the mountains and can't rule out a few over the foothills and Piedmont locations. 

As we look towards the weekend. We see another chance at storms for Friday. It appears we could have some dynamics in place that a few of those could be strong to severe with damaging winds and large hail possible. Those will be scattered, so not everyone will see a storm. Friday night into Saturday morning the cold front will pass through and give us a nice Saturday and Sunday with partly cloudy skies and temps close to 90. 

 

 

For those wondering about Monday and the chances of seeing the Solar Eclipse... I think we are in good shape as of right now as we will see partly cloudy skies and temps in the upper 80's to low 90's. 

 

Have a wonderful day! 

 

Scotty Powell 

Twitter: @ScottyPowell_WX

Foothills Weather Network 

 

Images credit: 

Weatherbell

Tropical Tidbits 

Five Days away from The Full Solar Eclipse of 2017

We are getting inside of a week from the Great Total Solar Eclipse of 2017, in fact it’s just under five days away as the moon will line up between the sun and earth on Monday creating a total solar eclipse that will cover the largest amount of the Continental  United States in nearly 100 years…

 

Of course the million dollar question is…What will the weather be like on Monday afternoon?

 

Our latest thoughts on the weather here locally is that a frontal boundary will move just south of the region this weekend, that as a whole should keep shower and thunderstorm activity at a minimum on Monday, we currently have 20-30 percent changes in our forecast for Monday.

 

The other big question is…will the clouds block out the image?

 

Right now we see no reason to be discouraged. Looking at our global models the GFS in particular is showing small amounts of clouds, areas in South Carolina could see high clouds and some low cumulus may form in North Carolina here in the western sections…but again it’s nothing to be discouraged.

 

We feel with some confidence that most everyone in our viewing area will have solid conditions for viewing Monday afternoon. Posted below are the latest projections from the GFS and European models…

 

 

The video clips posted below (click to animate) provide all the information you need to know across the Carolinas related to time of totality, duration and percentage for those areas even outside the path of totality. For our coverage area coverage of eclipse ranges from about 96 percent in Alexander and extreme Eastern Catawba and Lincoln Counties to nearly 99 percent in Western sections of McDowell and Rutherford County…so even if your plans don’t include reaching the path of totality, there will be plenty of coverage here in our local area. A reminder that the eclipse will begin at approximately 1 pm on Monday, max out between 2:30 and 2:45 pm and then begin its decline up to about the 4 pm hour when the eclipse ends.

 

Wherever you may be viewing the Solar Eclipse, make sure and take all precautions including using protective eyewear. Also, get to your destination as early as possible... there is an expected influx of traffic coming from people in other parts of the country who are wanting to get near the path of totality.

Once you get to your destination and settled in, enjoy the view!

Forecast Discussion: Wednesday August 16th, 2017

Good Wednesday to everyone across the Foothills and Western Piedmont of Western North Carolina…

 

The last several days has been active in the weather world, especially in our part of the country. We are still entrenched in a very humid and sultry airmass across the Western Carolinas. The one thing that has changed is that we are seeing more of a northwest flow thanks in part to some ridging back to our west…that is going to help reduce storm chances for today.

 

Expect partly cloudy skies for your Wednesday and just a stray storm chance, mainly along the Blue Ridge. Temperatures will top out later today in the mid to upper 80’s but with dewpoint still expected near the 70 degree mark, it will make those high 80’s feel more like 90’s. With the humid air that will result in warm muggy nights continuing with lows slowly making their way down to the upper 60’s to lower 70’s.

 

Thursday could possibly turn out to be a bit more active convectively as surface winds veer back to southwest thanks in part to a developing trough and frontal boundary approaching the region. Even so…it will continue to be hot with upper 80’s expected.

 

For the upcoming weekend, the hot and muggy weather continues and if anything the heat may be pumped up a knotch. Each day will feature slight storm chances with temperatures in the low 90’s across the Foothills and Interstate 40 Coridoor. A couple mid 90’s are possible for our Piedmont locations. The combo of heat and humidity in the afternoons could result in some heat index values approaching the 100- degree mark on Friday in particular…

 

The Weather Prediction Center precipitation forecast over the next several days show that rain amounts will not be as substantial as what we have seen in recent days across the region.

 

Daniel Crawley,

Foothills Weather Network

Forecast Discussion: Tuesday, August 15th, 2017

Short-Term Forecast: Tuesday and Wednesday

At the upper levels of the atmosphere, a ridge of high pressure will set up over the Eastern United States, which will favor warmer temperatures over our area. At the surface, there will be a lack of many major synoptic features in our immediate area, allowing for a general risk of afternoon thunderstorms on Tuesday and relatively calm conditions on Wednesday. Temperatures will increase during the period, going from the mid-80s on Tuesday into the upper 80s on Wednesday.

Mid-to-Long Range Forecast: Thursday, Friday, and Next Weekend

Currently, models are suggesting that a front coming in from the midwestern United States will weaken and stall out over the area, increasing shower and thunderstorm chances, although these chances will still be fairly small most of the weekend. Temperatures will be quite warm during this period, hanging out in the upper-80s and lower-90s.

Tropical Update

Hurricane Gert in the Atlantic Basin will continue to move northward, intensifying while turning away from the east coast of the United States. Gert may reach Category 2 status, but will have a minimal impact to land. Another disturbance may form in the coming days in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. This disturbance would become Harvey if it reached Tropical Storm status.

Thank you for reading!

Chase Graham

Flash Flooding Possible This Afternoon Into Tonight

AREAS AFFECTED...NORTH GA, WESTERN CAROLINAS, & EASTERN TN

CONCERNING...HEAVY RAINFALL...FLASH FLOODING POSSIBLE

VALID 141747Z - 142347Z

SUMMARY...THUNDERSTORMS ARE EXPECTED TO EXPAND IN COVERAGE WITH
TIME.HOURLY RAIN TOTALS TO 2.5" WITH LOCAL AMOUNTS TO 4" ARE
POSSIBLE WHERE CELLS MERGE/TRAIN.

DISCUSSION...A CIRCULATION ALOFT IS MOVING THROUGH CENTRAL TN AND
LIKELY ACTING AS A SOURCE OF DIVERGENCE ALOFT.SUNNY SKIES ARE
LEADING TO INCREASING INSTABILITY.AT THE SURFACE, A WEAK THERMAL
WAVE IS MOVING INTO NORTHWEST GA WITH A THERMAL BOUNDARY RETURNING
NORTHWARD.NEAR AND AHEAD OF THE BOUNDARY, SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS ARE DEVELOPING.PRECIPITABLE WATER VALUES OF 1.5-2"
LIE HERE PER GPS VALUES AND RAP INITIALIZATIONS.ML CAPE VALUES
OF 500-1000 J/KG LIE ACROSS MUCH OF THE AREA, WITH HIGHER VALUES
OF 2000 J/KG IN NORTHEAST GA.INFLOW AT 850 HPA IS WEST-SOUTHWEST
AT 10 KTS PER VAD WIND PROFILES, BUT EFFECTIVE BULK SHEAR IS ~30
KTS PER SPC MESOANALYSES WHICH IS TWICE THE VALUE OF THE MEAN
850-400 HPA WIND.

THE MESOSCALE GUIDANCE SHOWS SPOTTY LOCAL AMOUNTS OF 2-4", WHICH
APPEARS POSSIBLE GIVEN THE ABOVE FACTORS.AS THE TN CIRCULATION
APPROACHES, LOW-LEVEL INFLOW IS EXPECTED TO RISE TOWARDS 20 KTS
WHICH IN ADDITION TO THE BULK SHEAR AND RISING PRECIPITABLE WATER
VALUES SHOULD HELP INCREASE CONVECTIVE COVERAGE AND COULD LEAD TO
SHORT TRAINING BANDS WITHIN THE TOPOGRAPHY AS THE FLOW IS NEARLY
UNIDIRECTIONAL WITH HEIGHT.HOURLY RAIN TOTALS UP TO 2.5" APPEAR
POSSIBLE WHERE CELLS TRAIN AND/OR MERGE.ABOVE AVERAGE RAINFALL
HAS BEEN SEEN OVER THE PAST COUPLE WEEKS; SOILS ARE PARTIALLY
SATURATED WITHIN THE RUGGED TERRAIN.

http://www.wpc.ncep.noaa.gov/metwatch/metwatch_mpd_multi.php?md=690&yr=2017

Rain Chances Continue Today; More Localized Flash Flooding Possible

Good Monday and I hope all of you are having a great start to your week.  Lots of rain overnight.  Officially 2.03 at our office in McDowell County, 2.24 inches In Jonas Ridge, 4.69 in Lawndale, 3.39 inches in Granite Falls, 1.17 inches in Taylorsville, 3.08 inches in Collettsville, 4+ inches in Lake Lure (Radar Estimated), .32 inches in Conover, and .70 in Hickory.  Left over this morning is residual fog and low cloudiness. 

We may see some breaks in the clouds today for a sneak peak at the sun but by far I think the clouds win out.  Dewpoints remain very high, starting off around 70 degrees and even a few places in the low 70's. Temps are in the low 70's as well so humidity today is very high. Dewponts look to rise into the low and mid 70's today ahead of the short wave that is due this afternoon.

Forecast for today continues with the same old repeated weather.  We start off "dry" with no rain but by afternoon showers will start to develop in the mountains.  Those showers will expand in coverage and intensity.  Showers will commence in the mountains between 2 and 4pm and then should move into the foothills after 6pm.  A couple of enhancements to today and Tuesday's rainfall though too (as if it needed any help).  A warm front will move North and stall across the area.  At the same time a short wave will move from Memphis into Western NC by dinner time.  This short wave will enhance shower and thunderstorm activity.  Precipitable water values continue to be very high at nearly 2 inches.  There is ample sheer in the atmosphere today as well.  This means that showers and storms could cluster into lines or clusters and train over the same areas time and time again.  Today the mid levels will have more movement with them than they did yesterday.  However with a warm front in the area moving NW at times, upslope flow could allow a few cells to anchor in place again.  Localized flash flooding is possible again today especially in Southern Burke, Cleveland, McDowell, and Rutherford Counties that saw the heavy rains overnight last night. 

Timeline for the rain to arrive today should be between 5-7pm in the western foothills and move East from there.  Keep checking or subscribe to get updates as we go through the day

Click Here
Futurecast .GIF

 

Total Rainfall Through 0500 hours

Total Rainfall Through 0500 hours

Tropical Trouble? What's Hype And What We Know

It's that time of year when we are heading down the road to the peak of hurricane season. September 10th is the official peak of hurricane season.

Tropical Depression 8 finally got it's act together Sunday Afternoon, developing into a minimal tropical storm, and earning the name of Gert.  Gert will move off to the North, splitting the distance between Hatteras and Bermuda, and not affecting either of them. It should remain a tropical storm or weak hurricane as it turns back out into the open Atlantic. 

Something else has our attention though. Friday Night a wave moved off the African Coast. It hasn't been impressive thunderstorm wise but it has a very strong circulation already. See the attached graphic posted and you can see the disorganized thunderstorm activity. This system does have some hurtles to overcome before you can even start to believe any of the fantasy model runs that you likely start seeing pop up on social media over the next few days.  Those hurtles include sheer and brief drier air. Models do indicate that it will overcome those obstacles. In fact it looks like two troughs will merge together and then it could be game on for this system. That's all we know right now though. Anything else you hear is hype at this point on. The models move from run to run  on where this system is going to go and how strong it is going to be. Anyone that shares anything else at this point is doing so to try to hype this event way before they have any facts. For all the latest in the tropics monitor hurricanes.gov or monitor your favorite media outlet for the latest. Just make sure that media outlet is a reputable source.

Chief Meteorologist Chris White

 

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Tropical Storm Gert Forms in Western Atlantic. No Effects For Land

...DEPRESSION STRENGTHENS TO TROPICAL STORM GERT...

SUMMARY OF 500 PM EDT...2100 UTC...INFORMATION

LOCATION...28.1N 71.7W ABOUT 505 MI...810 KM WSW OF BERMUDA

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...40 MPH...65 KM/H

PRESENT MOVEMENT...NNW OR 335 DEGREES AT 10 MPH...17 KM/H

MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1011 MB...29.86 INCHES

WATCHES AND WARNINGS -------------------- There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.

DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK ------------------------------ At 500 PM EDT (2100 UTC), the center of Tropical Storm Gert was located near latitude 28.1 North, longitude 71.7 West. Gert is moving toward the north-northwest near 10 mph (17 km/h). A turn toward the north is forecast to occur tonight, followed by a turn toward the north-northeast by Monday night. Maximum sustained winds have increased to near 40 mph (65 km/h) with higher gusts.  Slow strengthening is forecast during the next day or two. Tropical-storm-force winds extend outward up to 80 miles (130 km) northeast of the center. The estimated minimum central pressure is 1011 mb (29.86 inches).  

 

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Watching Potential for Increased Showers/Storms Sunday Night

Good Sunday afternoon to everyone, so far today shower and thunderstorm activity has been at a minimum. A few showers have tried to form along the Blue Ridge but not to much luck as they have quickly died off.

 

However, we are monitoring for the potential of showers and storms to increase late today and especially into tonight as we may see the beginning stages of an upslope rain event for parts of the coverage area…

 

Recent short range guidance has been persistent in shower and thunderstorm activity increasing after sunset and lasting through the early morning hours of Monday. This is partly a result ofsurface winds veering over to an easterly direction tonight. The images below clearly show a good easterly fetch converging across the Foothills late this evening and lasting into the early hours of Monday morning.

 




All eight counties in the coverage area in play for increased storm activity later on but our Foothill counties of Rutherford, McDowell, Burke and Caldwell could be at highest risk. Also with recent heavy rain showers especially along the Blue Ridge, quick water rises along small streams could occur if this convection were to materialize.

 

It’s something that Foothills Weather Network will monitor through the rest of the day. The images below are “future radar” images from the short range guidance for late this evening and overnight…


Rain Chances Sticking Around

Forecaster Sinead Lockhart

Happy Sunday, Foothills Weather Nation! Here's a look at what to expect for today and for the beginning of your work week.

It wasn't the cloudy eyes and grogginess of Sunday morning, there was some patchy fog out there! Most of it cleared out by 9 am to mostly cloudy conditions as our frontal boundary scoots just south of our forecasting periphery into SC. The start to our day should have lower chances (20%) of rainfall. Precipitation probabilities will increase up to 40% in the late afternoon as we continue to swim in high humidity levels and temperatures flirting with the mid 80's despite the persisting clouds.  Severe weather isn't on our "radar" for today with only a chance of the isolated storm producing locally heavy rainfall and cloud to ground lightning.

Keep out your rain gear because overnight Sunday hours into Monday we see the frontal boundary bounce back northward towards us as weak upper level trough propagates in bringing back another full round of rain and thunderstorms with precipitation probabilities holding strong to 60% for the day and night on Monday and the day of Tuesday with a series of upper level divergence. We anticipate more severe conditions with more widespread and potent storms producing high winds, locally heavy rainfall, possible small hail, and plenty of cloud to ground lightning. With the plentiful rainfall and continuing high moisture levels, mugginess with prevail with the temperatures standing strong in the low to mid 80's for the diurnal highs and upper 60's for the lows.

Starting Wednesday upper level ridging temporarily builds over the forecasting area, which will help clear out some of the clouds and attempt to "mop up" residual moisture, although bring in the typical climo August heat of the upper 80's. Our ridge will be short lived as an anticipated upper level trough is expected to march back into the area on the late Thursday into early Friday time frame, which of course will drag back in precipitation probabilities for the later half of the week.

We are eagerly waiting for the wet period to end with the solar eclipse being only 8 days away! Rain, rain, go away! Come again... sometime in September!

As always, thank you for reading!

Sinead Lockhart

Foothills Weather Network

Tropical Depression 8 Forms In Western Atlantic; Should Not Affect Land

BULLETIN

   Tropical Depression Eight

Advisory Number  1 NWS

National Hurricane Center Miami FL

      AL082017 1100 PM EDT Sat Aug 12 2017 ...DEPRESSION FORMS OVER THE WESTERN ATLANTIC... ...FORECAST TO REMAIN EAST OF THE UNITED STATES...

SUMMARY OF 1100 PM EDT...0300 UTC...INFORMATION ---------------------------------------------

LOCATION...25.3N 70.3W ABOUT 260 MI...415 KM NE OF THE SOUTHEASTERN BAHAMAS

MAXIMUM SUSTAINED WINDS...35 MPH...55 KM/H

PRESENT MOVEMENT...NNW OR 330 DEGREES AT 13 MPH...20 KM/H

MINIMUM CENTRAL PRESSURE...1011 MB...29.86 INCHES

WATCHES AND WARNINGS --------------------

There are no coastal watches or warnings in effect.

DISCUSSION AND 48-HOUR OUTLOOK ------------------------------

At 1100 PM EDT (0300 UTC), the center of Tropical Depression Eight was located near latitude 25.3 North, longitude 70.3 West. The depression is moving toward the north-northwest near 13 mph (20 km/h) and this general motion is expected to continue through Sunday.  A turn toward the north is forecast on Sunday night, followed by a turn toward the north-northeast on Monday. Maximum sustained winds are near 35 mph (55 km/h) with higher gusts. Gradual strengthening is forecast during the next 48 hours, and the depression is expected to become a tropical storm later tonight or on Sunday. The estimated minimum central pressure is 1011 mb (29.86 inches).

HAZARDS AFFECTING LAND ---------------------- None

NEXT ADVISORY ------------- Next complete advisory at 500 AM EDT.

$$ Forecaster Brown  

 

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