The sun is out and all is quiet for now….so enjoy the last few hours of nice weather, because we are tracking some big changes. These changes come in the form of a developing coastal storm slated to impact us Thursday into Friday. The low still hasn’t developed yet, but should get its act together tonight off the coast of Georgia and Florida. This low will move northeastward from there, staying well offshore, but getting close enough to bring us some rain, wind and tidal flooding over the next 48 hours. There has been an shift in the computer model’s solution this afternoon…a good change for us. Over the past few days, the GFS and EURO models have consistently kept the low offshore, but close enough to bring us some rain and wind. The NAM’s solution has kept the low closer to the coast (farther inland), which would give us more rain and stronger winds. Now the NAM’s solution has the low located more offshore, closer to the solution of the EURO and GFS. This gives us higher confidence that this is going to be a weaker storm for us. We could still see rain, wind and tidal flooding, but this is not going to be a huge storm for us.
Now onto the forecast…the high clouds have already moved into the region and the clouds will continue to thicken up overnight. A few showers will be possible across North Carolina overnight, but most will stay dry with lows in the mid 50s. Scattered showers will move in Thursday afternoon, but the rain will be hit or miss. It is not going to rain all day long, just keep the umbrella with you.
When you are not seeing rain tomorrow, expect to see a lot of clouds and highs in the mid to upper 60s. Northeast winds will only be running between 5-15mph tomorrow. Expect winds to really increase late Thursday night into Friday as the low strengthens offshore. Northeast winds should range between 15-25mph inland and 20-30mph along the coast with higher gusts possible during the day on Friday. This is what our Future Trak Wind Speed model has at 12 PM Friday.
As the low continues to move away from us on Friday, we are going to be watching an upper level low pushing into the region from the west. I think this is when we will have the best chance for rain over the next 2 days….Friday morning into Friday afternoon. Rain could be heavy at times, but I don’t think it will amount to much in the rain gauge. Forecast rain totals should range between 0.5-1 inch of rain. Notice how the rain becomes more widespread at 7 AM Friday.
Rain will continue into Friday afternoon and highs will be kept down into the upper 50s and lower 60s. Rain will come to an end by Friday night, but we may see some lingering moisture in the form of cloud cover on Saturday.
*Keep in mind that some of the computer models have this upper level low diving to our south on Friday. If this solution pans out, then North Carolina would see rain and most of Virginia would stay dry on Friday. So a lot can still change at this point.*
With the strong northeasterly winds and an almost full moon, tidal flooding will become a possibility. Nuisance to minor tidal flooding will be possible Friday night during high tide, which is around 8:30 PM. Winds will subside on Saturday, so the water levels should drop below the threshold for tidal flooding at that time.
The weekend is looking fantastic! Lots of sunshine both days with highs around 70° on Saturday and mid 70s on Sunday.
-Meteorologist Tiffany Savona