Friday, May 24, 2013

Warm, Less Humid This Weekend

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

We’ll keep a very slight chance of rain on the board into the evening, but it looks like the weak ‘backdoor’ front we’ve been waiting this week has eased its way through most of the viewing area.  Light, variable winds at Metro Airport will become light northeasterly and then easterly later this evening and overnight, signaling that the front has drifted south and southwest of metro Baton Rouge.

With the frontal passage and wind shift we’ll also enjoy a nice drop in humidity.  Dew points that began the day in the upper 60°s will drop into the low 60°s by Saturday morning and could even make their way down into the upper 50°s by Saturday afternoon for some WAFB areas.  That’s in the “very comfortable” range for dew point temps: not unheard of during late May but somewhat uncommon for this time of year.

Our latest set of model guidance suggests that we can expect dew points to remain in the 60° to 64° range across metro Baton Rouge through Sunday and into at least the first half of Monday before “return flow” (winds off the Gulf) starts to moisten-up the air once again.

So it’s two thumbs-up for the 3-day Memorial Day weekend -- the “unofficial” start to the summer season.  Yes, afternoon highs will still reach the upper 80°s for most WAFB neighborhoods on Saturday, Sunday and Monday, but the reduced humidity will mean comfortable mornings (at least by late May standards).  In addition, the “dry” air means that rain chances for all three days will be about as close to “zilch” as we can expect for this time of year!

Three great “outdoor” days -- just remember the water and the sunscreen and watch the kids and the elderly for sign of heat stress if they stay outside for long stretches at a time.

Sadly, the “dry” air will be gone before the middle of next week.  We close out the last days of May (Wednesday thru Friday) with a more typical south Louisiana summertime pattern: morning lows in the upper 60°s to low 70°s across the viewing area with afternoon highs in the upper 80°s to around 90° and isolated-to-possibly-scattered afternoon and early evening t-showers.  But then that is the way it is supposed to be.

And when you have a free moment, take time to remember the purpose of this federal holiday: Memorial Day is for recognizing and honoring those who died while serving in the U.S. Armed Forces.

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