Friday, March 8, 2013

Showers & T-Storms Late in the Weekend

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

** Don’t forget to ‘Spring Ahead’ on Sunday morning ... Daylight Saving Time officially returns at 2:00am this Sunday, and we move the clocks forward one hour.  That’s a good time to change the batteries in your smoke detectors and your NOAA Weather Radios. **

After a mainly sunny first half of the day, some high clouds have moved into the viewing area.  But it will still be a nice evening -- comfortably cool with temps in the 50°s.
Saturday looks like a pretty good day with highs in the 70°s -- but not exactly “picture perfect.”  Expect mostly cloudy skies for the better part of the day, and it will be breezy.  Sunday starts out dry under mostly cloudy skies, but expect scattered showers and a few t-storms by late Sunday afternoon into Sunday evening.  Rain chances increase into Sunday night and early Monday before clearing out later in the day.

Over the past couple of days we’ve been showing you the large upper-level trough and the storm system spinning over the eastern Pacific just off the California coast.  That system is now moving across the Desert Southwest and will be in the Southern Plains tomorrow.  The system’s surface low will continue to moving east-northeast, pulling a cold front through Texas.
The way things look right now, that cold front could be over the ArkLaTex by Sunday morning -- that’s a few hours sooner than what we’ve been thinking over the past two days -- which means the first of the pre-frontal rains will likely get here sooner on Sunday than we first thought.
We’re going with a 40% to 50% rain chance by the late afternoon and early evening on Sunday for most of the viewing area, especially WAFB communities north and west of the Capital City.  Those rain chances will rise for everyone into late Sunday night and early Monday morning as the cold front marches from west-to-east across the WAFB region.
The good news is that we still anticipate only 0.5” to 1.0” of rain for most of our neighborhoods, with isolated pockets possibly getting upwards of 1.5” or more.  More importantly, the “severe threat” with this front seems rather low.  Yes, there will be thunderstorms, and a few of them may become strong to severe, but currently this frontal passage does not look like it has the potential to generate a widespread severe weather outbreak.  (Of course, the WAFB Storm Team will be watching that for you throughout the weekend.)

The front is expected to continue to steadily move east and skies should beginning clearing by mid-day Monday, if not sooner.  We’ll get another dose of cooler air behind the front, but not anything “winter-like” -- highs on Monday and Tuesday will only reach the low to mid 60°s.  But the forecast through the upcoming work week looks like a dry one, with daytime highs back into the 70°s by mid-week.
Have a great weekend!

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