Friday, January 24, 2014

Returning Sunshine, Warmer on Saturday!

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

Tonight & Tomorrow Morning: 

Although the rain and winter-mix will end tonight, everyone stays below freezing through the night and into Saturday morning.  With all the traffic problems today, we’d recommend limiting your driving this evening.  In fact, be careful if you head out early on Saturday as roads could still be dangerous until the warm-up kicks in.

Saturday Afternoon & Sunday:  

Sunshine will take metro Baton Rouge into the mid to upper 50°s for Saturday afternoon, and while we still drop into the 30°s for Sunday morning, most of us will stay above freezing.  Sunday’s highs reach the 60°s for most WAFB communities.

Forecast Discussion

Well, there can be little question about whether or not the area school closing were justified.  Just look at the traffic snarls - - and the array of accidents - - that served as the area “lowlights” through the day!
In fact, most WAFB communities got a bit more of the frozen stuff than they bargained for, with the wintry mix continuing far later into the day than anyone expected.  In fact, sleet and rain -- even a little snow --  were still falling over a number of areas into the late afternoon as the “precip line” stalled while draped across the metro area.
Just about everyone in the WAFB viewing area dodged an official ‘hard freeze’ for Friday morning (defined by the local NWS as temps at 26° or below for several hours), but once temps fell below freezing during the overnight they stayed there.  The cold, cloudy and damp air maintained a real winter feel to the day with afternoon highs not getting above freezing for just about everyone.  After falling below 30° around 1:00AM, Baton Rouge’s Metro Airport never got out of the 20°s through the remainder of the day!
Winter weather woes extended over virtually the entire state, even spreading into the New Orleans area today.  And for most, conditions will show little improvement until tomorrow.
For WAFBland, the rain and sleet should come to an end later this evening with another very cold night on the way.  Metro Baton Rouge can expect temps to stay in the mid-upper 20°s tonight, with temps dipping into the mid 20°s up along the state line.
We can look forward to some marked improvements into the weekend after we get past a very cold Saturday start.  Saturday sunshine will feel great and help drive temps into the mid to upper 50°s for the afternoon, taking care of any lingering ice in the area.  Although it’s back into the 30°s for Sunday morning, just about everyone in our viewing area stays above freezing.  By Sunday afternoon, most WAFB neighborhoods will climb into the 60°s, even with clouds on the return through the day.
Sunday’s warm-up and returning clouds will be an early sign of our next approaching cold front, scheduled to arrive on Monday.  We’ll go with scattered showers for Monday as the front slides by, with 'overrunning’ rains (rains behind the front) extending into Tuesday.
And then, here we go again!
Yet another Arctic air mass heads our way behind Monday's cold front, with the extended forecast calling for lows to drop back into the low 20°s for metro Baton Rouge by mid-week.
Had enough “real winter” yet?  Stay warm tonight … and enjoy the weekend!

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