Sunday, December 29, 2013

A 'Cool' Close to 2013

Talk about a “mixed bag” of weather over the weekend? An absolutely ugly Saturday was followed by today’s fairly nice winter day. Sure, the high thin clouds settled in through most of the day, but most WAFB neighborhoods saw highs today reach into the 60°s -- quite an improvement after a wet, dreary Saturday when some WAFB communities never saw temps climb out of the 40°s.
But after this afternoon’s filtered sunshine, a thicker deck of clouds will return as a cold front slowly approaches from the northwest. Fortunately, the air column remains fairly dry as we head into Monday, so the cold front won’t have an abundance of moisture in the immediate area to generate rains. We’ll plan for mostly cloudy skies but staying “mainly dry” through the overnight with lows in the low to mid 40°s for just about all of the viewing area.
However, a disturbance moving into the western Gulf may add in just enough moisture to the air to generate a few light showers during the day on Monday behind the front-- we’ll go with rain chances at 20% (to maybe 30% along the coast) but with little in the way of measureable accumulations. Monday’s clouds and the frontal passage will keep things cool too -- highs will max-out in the 50°s. The clouds linger into the night and early Tuesday, with the Canadian air filtering in behind Monday’s front taking Tuesday morning lows into the 30°s for just about all WAFB communities.
Unfortunately, our main computer models not only keep the clouds around for Tuesday but also hint at isolated, mainly-light showers for Tuesday afternoon and Tuesday evening. We’ll call it a 20% rain chance for Tuesday afternoon and evening -- certainly not an all-day rain, and in fact, most will stay dry. So don’t let the slight rain threat make you change your New Year’s Eve plans, whether indoors or outdoors.
Just remember, if you’re going to be spending some time outside on Tuesday evening into the midnight hour -- like Baton Rouge’s Red Stick Revelry at Town Square --be sure to dress for it. We expect temps to be running in the 40°s through the evening and likely dipping to around 40° or even into the upper 30°s around the midnight hour. And Happy New Year!
The pattern continues with a chance of rain into New Year’s Day as we’ll have to keep an eye on another disturbance that the models have developing in the western Gulf. Computer guidance currently suggests that much like Monday, the main storm energy from this second Gulf system will slide from west-to-east but remain to our south over the Gulf waters. For the time being, we’ll go with just a few showers in the viewing area from late Wednesday into early Thursday, with clearing during the latter half of Thursday.
It’s back to sunrises in the 30°s for Friday and Saturday -- maybe even a light freeze for some viewers on Friday morning. Friday afternoon stays cool under mostly sunny skies with ‘Red Stick’ highs around 50° or so; the forecast calls for fair to partly cloudy skies by the afternoon with highs near 60° for Saturday. The extended guidance has our next cold front headed into the region on Sunday, delivering scattered showers and a few t-storms.

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