Monday, July 2, 2012

No Quick End to the mid 90°s!

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

Many neighborhoods just can’t seem to get around those mid 90°s for afternoon highs as regional surface high pressure combines with upper-level ridging to keep temps running above the norm, even for July!  And to add to the discomfort, the low-level humidity returned over the weekend and will remain with us through the work week, adding to the heat stress.

We did get some showers and t-storms rumbling in SW Mississippi and the Florida Parishes during the afternoon, as well as a few showers over the coastal parishes.  A handful of Weather Watchers and locations received more than one-half-inch of rain this afternoon, but it looks like most of us missed out.  Not only has it been warmer-than-normal, but it appears as though many of us are slipping back towards drought-like conditions.

Monday’s afternoon storms turned out to be rather “active” for a few communities, with frequent cloud-to-ground lightning, some gusty winds and even small hail.  But these rains will die down as we lose the daytime heating, and we’ll go to mostly fair skies overnight.

For now, we’re thinking isolated showers at best for the next three days, with rain chances posted at less than 20% for Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday.  Meanwhile, the heat lingers with morning lows in the mid 70°s for metro Baton Rouge and highs returning to the mid 90°s through Thursday.

By the way ... for July 4th festivities, even if we get some afternoon rains and spotty storms, they should be long-gone by the time the evening fireworks get started!

As we head towards Friday and the weekend, it looks like the upper-level ridge that has been so persistent over these many days might retreat a bit to the west, taking the “lid” off the atmosphere and allowing slightly better afternoon rain chances.  If this scenario develops, then we can look for rain chances in the 30% to 40% range: not widespread soakings like many of you would like, but scattered rains and more cloud cover, hopefully knocking down the afternoon heat a bit.

And in the tropics?  Nothing going on for the time being, and no complaints about that from anyone!

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