Sunday, April 23, 2023

A Couple Clear Days With Cool Mornings, Then Some Rain Mid-Week

Monday (High 63, Low 39): Sunny and breezy. Patchy frost possible in the morning.

Tuesday (High 70, Low 38): Patchy frost possible in the morning. Partly to mostly sunny during the day, then scattered rain showers possible at night. 

Wednesday (High 69, Low 51): Rain showers likely, off and on, throughout the day. Overcast.

Thursday (High 67, Low 54): Rain likely. 

Friday (High 70, Low 53): Partly cloudy with a 40% chance of showers. 

Saturday (High 72, Low 49): Partly cloudy with a 30% chance of showers/a thunderstorm.

Sunday (High 71, Low 47): Partly to mostly sunny with a 20% chance of a lingering shower. 

We have a frost advisory tonight for Tennessee counties and places like Huntsville and Muscle Shoals up close to the state border. 

At 8 PM we are overcast in Cullman with a temperature of 48 degrees. The dewpoint is 37, making the relative humidity 66%. Winds are from the North at 3 miles per hour. The pressure is 30.14 inches and steady. Overall we had a mix of sun and clouds today, a few breezy periods, a High of 57 and a Low of 43. In Jasper the High was 61 with a Low of 46. Haleyville saw a High of 55 and a Low of 42. The clouds were a little more persistent in Fort Payne today, and they saw a High of 60 and Low of 43. Seems like their winds had a westerly component more often than a lot of these other sites too. If the observations from Decatur are accurate, they only got to 53 degrees today, Low of 43 this morning. I think that's right, was just on the lower end of temperatures, and it seems like their site was down or having difficulties within the past couple weeks. Looks like that data is correct though. At the Huntsville/Madison County Airport, the wind observations are strangely missing. Maybe because my niece up that way got chastised for excessive references to windbreaking during this past week. Maybe everybody took it too seriously. Okay, but their High today was 51 with a Low of 42. Fayetteville only made it up to 48 with a Low of 41. And it looks like those were also the High/Low temps for Winchester. 

We have some light rain showers moving through at this hour. Thanks to my bro for helping me get and set up a new phone that supports Radarscope, but no need to use it this go-round, no major storms going on around here. I still can't get it to work on desktop and guess if I do use it I will go back to e-mailing the images to myself. It's still really neat to have on a cellular device. I like that other product, Radar Omega, and may use it again in the future. Trying to cut back on monthly subscriptions for the time being. 

The only really big storms right now are down in the Gulf of Mexico, South of Louisiana. 

Looks like that is associated with an area of low pressure to the South of the main stationary front we've got stalled out around about Montgomery down through Biloxi and New Orleans. 

Tomorrow we have high pressure moving in from the Northwest. We'll have a Low of about 39 tonight,a and then sunny skies tomorrow with a High near 63. The northerly breeze will make much of the day feel cooler than it really is though.

That high pressure moves off to the East/Northeast on Tuesday, but we'll have another dry day, won't get any more rain (associated with a shortwave trough approaching from out West) until Tuesday night into Wednesday. Winds should be lighter on Tuesday, and overall I think the day is partly to mostly sunny for most of us. Clouds will increase in the evening of course, with rain chances coming back overnight into Wednesday. But overall another dry and mostly clear day. Winds more like 5-10 miles per hour and shifting more to an Easterly direction as the pattern changes. High should approach 70, Low near 40 again. 

The models diverge a little for Wednesday's weather. And I have not been keeping up with the weather for about the past week. 

The NAM is a lot more conservative with the rain chances than the GFS, but once you get out this far, it starts to be less reliable anyway. 

The ECMWF tends to do better at this time range, and is much more in line with what the GFS is showing. I'm playing catchup with this forecast package since I've been out of the loop. I think the GFS has a good handle on this one. As the Low pressure system moves through the Plains, I think we will get plenty of rain in the Southeast. Rain should be scattered Tuesday night but then widespread on Wednesday during the day. Low should rebound to about 50, High staying in upper 60's.

If anything Thursday looks even wetter. Though the European did show a slower timing of the second wave of rain, another shortwave trough coming in with this main Low pressure system. Should have a High near 70 again, Low in the lower 50's.

Then as we get toward the end of the forecast period, next Friday, the GFS may be getting in too big a hurry kicking this system through here. 

Usually when you see a slower ECMWF solution like this, it turns out to be right. So will keep scattered rain in the forecast for Friday, about 30-40% chance anyway. With temperatures not modifying too much.

Then another front comes at us next weekend.

And again the European solution is slower than the American one. So rain chances in the extended period will get a little tricky for this forecast, have to consider how to divvy them up day by day carefully. Confidence is good in the short-term forecast of the next three days, but in the extended this time, is one of those times we're glad we can fall back on probabilities, when things are not so clear-cut. 

For now it looks like rain chances should stay on the low end for Saturday, about 20-30%. The High probably warms up a couple degrees into the 70's, and the Low drops back into the upper 40's as the air is not quite as humid. 

While we are still in the peak of our usual severe weather season, nothing about this setup makes severe thunderstorms look especially likely around here. Might have to watch for some stronger storms in Northeast Alabama where some unstable air and wind shear might try to get together, but even there, I doubt it. This looks like another round of regular rain and thunderstorms. And like I say, at this point, the rain chances Saturday do not even look that high. 

Then on Sunday at the end of the month, the GFS shows a clearing trend. 

And this time even though the timing is just a little slower, the ECMWF is on board with the basic idea. 

So more sun than clouds on Sunday, could see an isolated lingering shower or two, High near 70, Low in the upper 40's. 

This time of year, if you want to play it safe, you need to watch any system that comes along, like the one next weekend. But it really does not look likely to produce severe weather around here. Even the synoptic setup just doesn't ring any alarm bells. 

We could see about an inch of average rainfall total for this forecast period though. 

Hope you enjoy your week. Thanks for reading.

P.S. Adding this note at 9:43 PM, if you think you are seeing the Northern Lights tonight even in Alabama, you're probably right. There is a major solar/geomagnetic storm that could bring us quite a show tonight. Ignore the people saying it's an apocalypse, and enjoy the show if you are fortunate enough to see it. For more information on geomagnetic storms like this, please see NOAA's page on it here. What can I say . . . the universe we get the chance to live in can be awe-inspiring.

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