Archive for October, 2009

SATURDAY’S WARMTH WILL BE SWEPT OUT TO SEA AS A SLOW MOVING COLD FRONT MOVES THROUGH HAMPTON ROADS… SUNDAY WILL BE MUCH COOLER AND PROBABLY QUITE DAMP

Lately, it seems that forecasters just cannot say definitively what the weather will do when a frontal system approaches our area. There is always some uncertainty as the models just will not come into a general agreement. The last frontal system that moved through here only brought about a quarter of an inch of rain to my neighborhood while most of the state of Virginia received much more precipitation. Here’s what forecasters do know. The warm air that is making for a beautiful Saturday will be out of here by the time you wake up on Sunday morning. Although it is quite breezy, it is still nice for the last day of October. The record high temperature for this date (31-Oct) is 84 degrees. Our winds will switch from a warm S-SW direction to a colder N direction overnight. A southwesterly upper level flow should cause some rain on Sunday which should begin by daybreak and last throughout the day. It probably won’t rain all day but periods of light rain are expected. The frontal system is not that strong and will be weakening a bit so there is uncertainty as to how much rain will fall. The forecast is for SE VA to receive about a half inch of rain. We’ll see if that comes true. The front will only very slowly move off the coast so Monday may not be that sunny of a day. I’ll have more on the extended forecast in my Sunday morning post.

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THE WARM AIR IS OUT OF HERE… BUT WHAT LIES AHEAD?… THE MODELS JUST CAN’T AGREE ON THE FORECAST FOR THIS UPCOMING WEEK

It was so warm and humid last evening (Saturday) that I had to turn on my air conditioner… even thought I had the heat on earlier in the week. I went out to get the newspaper this morning and one can easily tell that a cold front moved through last night. The air had a very different feel to it. We didn’t receive that much rain in my neighborhood from the front that moved through. Most of the heaviest rain (and the energy/dynamics) passed well to our north. However, some isolated areas of NC did pick up a decent amount. I picked up about 0.20 in my backyard overnight. ORF received about the same amount. Well, the front is offshore now and normally after a frontal passage like this, the forecast would be sunny for the next several days. That is not exactly the case as the flow aloft is southwesterly which is not allowing the front to move to far away. A low pressure system is expected to develop off the coast which may bring some unsettled weather to our region on Tuesday. An overrunning event is possible. There is plenty of uncertainty in the forecast as the models just will not come to an agreement on how the weather systems will behave. And, even after this system departs during the mid-week period, another stronger system is expected to develop in the Gulf states which may bring another period of unsettled weather to our region during the late week period. Forecasters don’t believe that we will see any real cold weather this week and a warm-up is possible before that second system affects us later in the week. So, the bottom line is that the forecast is a very tricky one this week with no real cold air in sight.

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SATURDAY’S (OCT 24) HIGH WILL PROBABLY BE OVER 30 DEGREES WARMER THAN LAST LAST SATURDAY’S HIGH TEMPERATURE… WILL WE SEE THUNDERSTORMS TODAY?… TEMPERATURES TREND BACK DOWN ON SUNDAY

Last weekend, we couldn’t even break the 50 degree mark as clouds, drizzle, and a north wind kept us over 20 degrees below normal. The weather setup this weekend is very different than last week’s pattern. A very slow moving cold front is going to move through our region Saturday night, and it might bring a few showers or thunderstorms as it moves through. Saturday will be a very warm day for this time of year. There will be lots of clouds but the sun will be out at times. As the cold front approaches later in the day, the coverage of the showers and storms should increase, but there is plenty of uncertainty as to how much rain we will receive and whether there will be any severe weather. In Wakefield’s discussion this morning, there is talk of possible isolated torndoes and storms. Please stay tuned to the local media today for any developments. Note that I watched WAVY 10 this morning and there didn’t seem to be any concern for severe weather today. So, we’ll see how it all pans out. Either way, Sunday will be a cooler day with a northerly breeze and the forecast is basically for dry weather. A coastal low may form Monday or Tuesday possibly bringing some moisture to us here locally, but I’ll have an update on that on Sunday. Let’s concentrate first on today’s frontal system. So, enjoy the summer-like conditions while they last.

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BELIEVE ME, THE SUN IS STILL UP THERE… LOW PRESSURE WILL SLOWLY PULL AWAY ON MONDAY BRINGING IMPROVING CONDITIONS TO HAMPTON ROADS

Today, Sunday marks the 4th day in a row that we (Hampton Roads) haven’t seen the sun. Just in time for most of us to return to work, the sun will return. How fast that will occur is still questionable, but by Tuesday we should see ample sunshine with warmer temperatures. Saturday’s high of 50 was a record low maximum temperature for that date (17-Oct).  On Thursday, Noroflk set a record for rainfall for that day (15-Oct) of 1.62 inches of rain. This has been a very wet year for ORF! The complex low pressure system which has brought snow to the higher elevations of the Northeast and coastal flooding/beach erosion will slowly pull away and leave us with a fairly decent week. Temperatures will slowly climb back to normal seasonal levels. The next chance of any wet weather won’t be until Saturday at the earliest. Will next weekend be as lousy as this one has been? It is way too soon to know. Is this cold spell an indicator of the cold season to come? Some forecasters might think so, but honestly, I really don’t think it will be. Look at the the past spring and summer in the Northeast. There was an early season brief heat wave and then the summer turned out cool and wet for the most part. Weather patterns can change as there is over two months until the official start of winter.

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WHEN WILL WE SEE THE SUN AGAIN?… NOT ONE BUT TWO STORMS BRING SNOW TO PARTS OF THE NORTHEASTERN STATES

The weather over the past several days seems more like late November as a deepening trough spawns low pressure systems that have brought a cold rain to the Mid-Atlantic States and snow to the higher elevations of the Northeastern states. This is the earliest significant snowfall ever in some communities of Pa. The coastal areas have been dealing with coastal flooding. Winds haven’t been especially strong here locally, but up north the winds have been stronger. The cool and damp weather should continue most of the weekend, but the models differ in solutions. One model has the a new low developing offshore and it has the low moving very slowly up the coast keeping us socked in with wet weather most of the weekend. Another model clears us out Saturday night. Forecasters are taking a middle of the road approach and forecasting only slow improvement on Sunday. The first round of rain brought my neighborhood 1.25 inches of rain and then another half inch fell on Friday. Next week looks nice once this system departs with temperatures in the lower 70’s and mostly sunny skies. I’ll have an update on Sunday.

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