Sunday Preview: Arctic Blast to Settle into the Western Carolinas



Good Saturday afternoon, it has been a soggy first half to the weekend across the Western Carolinas, Widespread showers have soaked the coverage area. That will continue through this evening in advance of a strong cold front that will change the weather here in a big way...an arctic blast will roll through on Sunday and will stay around for the MLK Jr Holiday...



Late tonight a cold front will blast through the region and behind it will be the coldest air so far this winter season...a direct tap of arctic air is diving south and will settle into the region. This airmass will be ushered on strong northwest winds. A High Wind Warning has been issued by the National Weather Service for the NW sections of Burke, Caldwell, McDowell and Rutherford Counties through Sunday night...winds in excess of 60 mph are possible in the warned area, including Globe, Jonas Ridge and Little Switzerland...






Model Projected Wind Gusts 6 am

By daybreak winds will already be howling across the high elevations of Western North Carolina, already approaching 40 mph in some areas...meanwhile winds will slowly increase east of the Blue Ridge...









By lunchtime, the region will be tapping into some very strong jet stream winds aloft. For our Northwest sections, gusts could be reaching the 60 mph mark, in the lower elevations breezy to at times windy conditions will begin impact the area...



Model Projected Wind Gusts 11 am



Strong winds in the mountains and windy conditions elsewhere will continue through the rest of the day and into Sunday night. Further gusts of 60 mph are possible in NW areas, for lower elevations 30+ mph will also continue through the evening. Given the wet soil a few trees could be as risk of falling on Sunday and possibly a few power outages in the mountains especially.








The combination of wind and cold arctic air will produce some very cold wind chill values in the afternoon and evening hours of Sunday...if you have plans to travel in the mountains on Sunday, wind chill values could drop below zero by late day...









Temperatures for tomorrow will be true reality check that it is still the heart of winter. By breakfast time much colder air will have already moved into the mountains...meanwhile relatively mild conditions will continue for a bit longer east of the mountains. There is a chance that tomorrow' highs will be in the morning hours...




Model Projected Temps 6 am






Downsloping will keep temps in check through early afternoon, however a precipitous drop is expected to begin by late afternoon, 30's will filter east of the mountains on gusty winds...









Then by tomorrow evening the arctic air will quickly flood into the region...temps will quickly drop into the 20's after sunset and by daybreak Monday teen's should be expected in the foothills, some low 20's in the Piedmont. If you have plans to be in the mountains, temperatures will be in the single digits and low teens.


Be prepared for a cold stretch that will last through the early part of next week. This is the first of a wholesale pattern change that will impact our part of the country here in the last third of January,







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