First heat wave of Summer 2018 just around the corner?

Good Wednesday evening…we are quickly approaching the start of the summer, about a week or so away. However mother nature seems to want a head start on the heat and humidity.


Looking at computer model guidance it appears the first heat wave of the season will begin by this weekend and will be in full force going into next week. A heat wave is defined by at least three consecutive days of 90-plus degree weather and all signs are heading in the direction that we will easily reach that criteria.



Heat waves in the summer originate when high pressure aloft develops and settles overhead the Southeast US. And sure enough by Saturday the beginning stages of that will occur, centered along the base of the Southern Appalachians. That will result in a strong cap aloft prohibiting cloud and thunderstorm development. That and light westerly winds at the surface will lead to a string of very hot days coming up with not much in the way of cooling at night…





Temperatures will area-wide reach or exceed the 90 degree mark starting on Saturday and will continue through the first half of next week. As you can see on the two images below, above normal temperatures will gradually center itself across the Carolinas, and generally under the 500mb ridge…







The European model and its ensembles look to have a firm hold on how this heat wave will evolve, its numerical data is showing daytime temps in the lower 90’s starting this weekend and getting up into the mid 90’s by early next week. A few localized bank thermometers could reach the upper 90’s on one of these afternoons but right now we do not see excessive heat as a big threat. Below are ensemble guidance for both Hickory and Shelby through the extended range.




We will definitely keep an eye on the models over the next few days just in case of any changes may occur but our confidence is pretty high that the first heat wave of Summer 2018 is just around the corner!



Daniel Crawley: @SoApps1979

Foothills Weather Network: @FHWxN