Archive for March, 2009

AFTER A BEAUTIFUL DAY ON SUNDAY, THE FIRST WEEK OF SPRING WILL BE ON THE CHILLY SIDE AND THERE’S NO REAL WARMTH IN SIGHT… RAIN CHANCES APPEAR TO BE INCREASING BY NEXT WEEKEND

After a gorgeous day on Sunday,  those of you who cannot wait for that stretch of warm, spring-like weather are going to have to wait a while. A back door cold front will move through Sunday night making Monday a chilly day for this time of year. And there is no real warm up in sight this week. Maybe by the weekend, we will have high temperatures near 60, but along with that will come an increased chance of showers. In the mean time, it won’t really be that bad if you don’t mind the brisk conditions. Across the western states and the mid-section of the nation, the weather will be quite active with some mountain snows and some isolated severe weather across parts of the plains states. Tornado season is upon us as the conditions that cause tornadoes becomes more prevalent. Please see my weather fact on this subject for an explanation as to why parts of the US are prone to tornadoes. Now, in our part of the world, I don’t think that we’ll have to worry about tornadoes any time soon, but this is a good time for you to increase your awareness of the warning system and to start thinking about what you would do should a warning be issued. Although last year’s damaging tornado in Suffolk was a truly rare event here in SE VA, just the idea that it could happen again should make us be prepared for such an event. Folks in the path of that tornado were very lucky that day as there were no fatalities. We may not be so lucky should another tornado of that magnitude strike Hampton Roads again. Well, that’s it for now. I should have an update on Tuesday.

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SPRING IS HERE BUT IT REALLY WON’T FEEL LIKE SPRING… SUNSHINE SHOULD PREVAIL THIS WEEKEND

On Friday morning, spring arrived. I am very glad as this seemed like an extra long winter. It just seemed to go on forever. We didn’t get much snow but the cold was quite persistent. Although it may be chilly now, it won’t be long before the atmosphere begins warming up as both the intensity and duration of the sun increase. Why is it chilly now? A cold dome of high pressure is moving through the Northeast creating a NE flow which will keep us on the cool side on Saturday. Note that it will be cooler near the water. We warm up a bit on Sunday only to cool back down early next week as a back door cold front moves through. Little if any precipitation is expected with that front. Actually, we have a very low chance of rain for several days. After the five days in a row of rain last week that is good news. It’s been a very long time since I could say that as we’ve been so dry until recently.  Actually, March has been quite wet here in Hampton Roads. In my backyard, over six inches of rain have fallen so far this month! I’ll have an update on Sunday.

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WHEN WILL THE CHILLY, WET WEATHER PATTERN END?… SPRING BEGINS ON FRIDAY, BUT WILL IT FEEL LIKE SPRING?

This was a great weekend to curl up on the couch with a good book or to rent a movie. As strange as it may sound, I actually cannot wait to get out there and do some yard work. Yes, I am not one to just stay inside. The stalled frontal boundary and its associated waves of low pressure that has been causing all of the wet weather here in Hampton Roads is showing no signs of wanting to leave. Forecasters now think that we may hold onto the rain chances through Monday, although the rain may not be as steady as it has been over the weekend. We’ll see. Anyway, the cool NE flow off the Atlantic Ocean combined with the overcasst skies and occasional rain has kept temperatures in the low forties on Saturday. As of 0930 Sunday morning, I’ve picked up about 1.50 inches of rainfall and believe me, there is more to come before this is over. I know it’s the weekend, but truthfully, we need the rain. We’ve been running a deficit since the beginning of this year. I was looking at the upper level wind projections this upcoming week and it seems that the flow is going to become more of a zonal flow (west to east) so that should mean that this frontal system will finally get pushed out to sea and we should see some warming by mid to late week, although not a heat wave by any means. Anyway, spring begins on Friday so there is hope that very soon the weather will be responding to the increasing daylight both in time and intensity. It won’t be long when I’ll be mowing the lawn and trimming the weeds. I really can’t wait! Will I still feel that way in July when it’s 90 and humid? Probably not, but that’s why I’ll have my son do some mowing… he’ll want to get paid for it though. Until next time, stay safe out there while driving in these wet conditions.

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THE COOL AND WET PATTERN CONTINUES THROUGH THE WEEKEND… WHEN WILL IT CLEAR OUT?

Waves of low pressure moving to our south along a stalled frontal boundary will produce periods of rain on Saturday and will keep us socked in with clouds through Monday. Sometimes these types of patterns are hard to break. We picked up about a half to three quarters of an inch of rain already on Friday and more is yet to come today (Saturday). With winds from the NE today and the overcast conditions, temperatures will remain below normal. We’re only about a week away from the start of spring so it shouldn’t be long before we see some real spring weather. Howver, March is known for wild swings in temperatures and weather conditions. The models finally kick the frontal system out to sea on Monday or Tuesday so things should begin to improve. Temperatures should also trend upwards next week. Well, look at the bright side, we could use the rain as we’ve been running a deficit for quite a while. Maybe we can actually go to an above normal status for once. I’ll have an update on Sunday. Please be careful driving and keep plenty of distance between you and the vehicle in front of you.

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CLOUDS WILL DOMINATE FOR SEVERAL DAYS… SOME RAIN IS LIKELY WITH TEMPERATURES STAYING BELOW NORMAL THROUGH THE WEEKEND

Just a quick update on the current weather pattern. A frontal boundary has basically become stationary just to our south. Waves of low pressure are expected to travel along this boundary over the next few days, each of which should bring a period of rain to SE VA. The winds will be blowing generally from the NE keeping us cool and on the damp side. While it won’t rain all the time, there is a chance of rain nearly every day from now through Monday. A rain/snow mix is even possible well to our north and west. Early next week, the weather should improve and temperatures should start trending upwards. Rainfall totals aren’t expected to be excessive so there shouldn’t be any major flooding issues. Forecasters are predicting around an inch from now through Monday. We are still running below normal in the precipitation department, so any moisture (even on a weekend) is welcome.  I’ll have an update on Saturday.

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