Thursday, April 23, 2015

'Mixed Bag' of Weather over the Next Three Days

April 23rd First Alert Quickcast:
- showers & storms return on Friday & Saturday
- a very warm but mainly-dry Sunday ahead

The outlook for today was much wetter -- and stormier -- than what materialized.  Rain coverage was rather limited, although we did have a few sites that recorded 0.5” to 1.0” or more for the day.  An eastbound series of showers and storms rolled across the viewing area during the early afternoon, but that was about it for the day.  Isolated showers popped up here and there through the remainder of the afternoon, but there were no severe storms, and no reports of thunderstorm-related winds or hail.

Everything should quiet down into the evening and overnight.  Plan for partly to mostly cloudy skies for Friday’s start, with morning lows in the upper 60°s to near 70° for the Red Stick and some pockets of fog thanks to the muggy, moist air mass.  As with today, our prior forecasts were a bit more ominous for Friday than what we’re seeing now.  We’ll go with Friday afternoon rain chances at 40% with a high in the mid 80°s for the Capital City.

So Friday isn’t a “dry” day.  In fact, the NWS Storm Prediction Center (SPC) says that the WAFB region has a “Slight Risk” for severe storms during the afternoon.  But that is still a better outlook for tomorrow than what I had been thinking … and with a little luck, Baton Rouge gets in a Live After Five for good measure!

Saturday’s weather is a little less clear.  For now, I’m going with a 50% to 60% rain chance for the day, with the chances for rain greatest during the first half of the day.  Again the SPC includes the entire viewing area under a “Slight Risk” for severe storms for the first part of the day.

So it's essentially a 24-hour period with a significant rain potential for the area.  Four of our routine rain-estimating models show a fairly large range of possible totals for the WAFB area -- from under 0.2" to more than 1.0" -- with a good middle range estimate of 0.5" to 0.8" for the period.

Sunday looks pretty good, although it will be quite warm.  Some WAFB neighborhoods could be flirting with highs at or near 90° for the afternoon, and while I can’t say “no rain,” it currently looks mainly-dry through the day.  I’ll go “spotty rains at best” for Sunday afternoon.

 Heading into early next week, a storm system brings rains back for Monday and Tuesday, with the extended outlook showing a clearing by mid-week.

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