Friday, February 27, 2015

Warmer, Some Rain This Weekend

By Jay Grymes & Steve Caparotta

WAFB First Alert Quickcast:

- warming trend through the weekend and into next week
- backing down a bit for Sunday’s rains

Overnight and early morning clouds slowed the temperature drop last night and kept just about all WAFB communities above freezing this morning -- and we doubt that anyone’s complaining. 

As expected, it was a mix of sun and clouds for much of today. Add in the north to northeast winds and it kept us cool-ish. But at least most of us made it into the 50°s -- still 15° or more below normal for the daytime high but at least not the 40°s for highs that we endured on Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday.

We’ve been talking about a warm-up over the weekend ... and it’s on the way. But first, it’ll be another cold night and morning start for Saturday. Plan for sunrise temperatures tomorrow once again in the mid 30°s for the Red Stick. Then the warm-up finally begins, with fair to partly-cloudy skies through the day getting most WAFB neighborhoods to 60° or more for the afternoon. Sunday morning will be considerably milder, with sun-up temperatures around 50°. By Sunday afternoon, some of us could be up around 70° -- sounds good!

There’s been another positive development with our weekend forecast: the “likely” rain chances we had been posting for Sunday have dropped considerably. We’re not ready to say “rain free” … but instead of the 50% to 70% rain chances we had been talking over the last couple of days, we’re now down in the 30% to 40% range. And even if it does rain in your neighborhood, we’re not talking big totals or an all-day event: most of you that do get rain will see less than one-quarter-inch.

Into next week, it’s looking like more 70°s for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday -- real springtime temperatures. However, although we’ve lowered the rain prospects for Sunday, we’ll keep decent rain chances in the forecast for each of these three days as the regional weather pattern stays unsettled. In fact, for Monday and Wednesday, we’re thinking “numerous” showers and t-storms possible.

Of course, at this time of year, we can expect more of the temperature rollercoaster ride and that’s exactly what we’re anticipating by the latter part of the week. The latest NWS guidance from the Weather Prediction Center currently has the next cold front arriving in the lower Mississippi Valley on Thursday, which means, “Goodbye 70°s!” The question then becomes, “Just how cold?”

Our key extended models have started to come into a little more agreement over the last couple of runs. The GFS was first to indicate the potential for freezes by late next week and the Euro is now showing some support. With that in mind, it's possible our Thursday and Friday temps may have to be revised downward a bit as the forecast becomes clearer.

In the meantime, enjoy a little “taste of spring” … and watch the lawns and gardens (and mosquitoes) respond to the warm-up too!

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