Monday, September 22, 2014

Beautiful Start to Fall on Tuesday!

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

WAFB First Alert Quickcast:
- cool sun-ups for Tuesday & Wednesday
- dry pattern sets-in through the work week with highs in the 80°s
- all quiet in the tropics
Although the afternoons were quite warm over the weekend with highs near 90° for most WAFB neighborhoods on both days, the humidity was agreeable making for nice afternoons.  In fact, about the only complaint most would have about the past weekend was the first half of LSU’s SEC home opener … but we’ll leave that discussion to the Sportsline guys.
Two things happen today:
(1) a weak cool front slid through the WAFB area, delivering isolated showers at best, and
(2) autumn officially begins this evening at 9:29pm CDT.
The cool front sliding through Louisiana lost much of its form: the air ahead of the front was already fairly dry so that the air-mass contrast was minimal.  IN addition, the dry air already over south Louisiana as the front arrived provided little instability for the boundary to work with as it pushed through.  As a result, the front tracked from north-to-south through the area producing very little shower activity on its way towards the Gulf.  However, dew point temperatures will display a large drop-off tonight, falling into the 50°s for most WAFB communities.  That should lead toTuesday morning lows in the upper 50° to low 60°s for those living along and north of the I-10/12 corridor -- the coolest readings since mid-May.
The work week forecast remains dry as a continental air mass (dry air from the north) settles in and remains over the region.  Lows will fall to the low to mid 60°s again for everyone on Wednesday morning and show a slow rise through the remainder of the week.  Tuesday will be the coolest of the four-day run, with metro area highs in the mid 80°s; highs for the remainder of the week will run in the upper 80°s.  But for now at least, we’re not anticipating any 90°s through the coming weekend.
So you may be wondering, “Are we done with the 90°s for 2014?”
It’s possible, but not likely.  Baton Rouge records show that roughly 3-in-4 autumns have at least one day with a high of 90° or more.  In fact, although not very common, there have been a number of years when there were ten or more days with highs of 90° or more after the fall equinox.  But we can be hopeful: the last time there were no 90°s after September 22?  Not that long ago: back in 2008.
What about the extended outlook for the coming weekend?  Guidance is hinting at a non-tropical low developing in the Gulf over the weekend, providing decent rain chances for both Saturday and especially Sunday.
As for the tropics?  Satellite views of the Atlantic Basin show a series of poorly-organized tropical waves, none of which are hinting at any potential for development, at least over the next several days.  The atmosphere over virtually the entire tropical Atlantic remains rather hostile -- no complaints there either!

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