Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wakefield, VA

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000 FXUS61 KAKQ 230647 AFDAKQ Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wakefield VA 147 AM EST Thu Feb 23 2017 .SYNOPSIS... A weak trough of low pressure crosses the area through this evening. Low pressure tracks east across the Florida Peninsula tonight through Thursday morning. Meanwhile, high pressure shifts farther off the Mid-Atlantic coast. A strong cold front crosses the local area late Saturday. && .NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 AM THIS MORNING/... Latest radar trends and observations indicate ongoing light rain/drizzle across southern and southeastern Virginia. RAP guidance places the associated vorticity maxima across southeast Virginia. As depicted by an overall downward trend in coverage, the upper level support is expected to wane by midnight as the energy pushes offshore. Coverage late tonight expected to be limited to far southeast Virginia and remain light. Rainfall totals for the day have only totaled a few hundredths of an inch. BUFR soundings and small dewpoint depressions indicate rather moist low levels, so anticipate some patchy fog from the Piedmont into central Virginia overnight, even under a mostly cloudy to cloudy sky. Otherwise, near term guidance handling temperatures well, so no additional changes made. Previous Discussion... A weak wave of low pressure aloft will cross the local area thru this evening. Meanwhile, strong low pressure over the eastern GOMEX will impact the FL Peninsula tonight. As the weak trough pushes SE of the area, light shwr activity will continue across the lower 2/3rds of the FA. Have highest pops (40-50%) straddling the Hwy 460 corridor across the Piedmont thru 6 pm or so then this shower activity will tend to dissipate/end thru midnight while drifting slowly SE. Generally remaining mostly cloudy overnight with lingering low level moisture. Cannot rule out patchy fog as well early Thu morning, especially along/west of I-95. Lows temps in the upr 40s to low/mid 50s. && .SHORT TERM /6 AM THIS MORNING THROUGH SATURDAY/... A high pressure ridge will extend west from its center near Bermuda Thursday and Friday as heights build aloft due to an upper ridge expanding NE from the western GOMEX. Meanwhile, the aforementioned upper low near FL will move east of the Bahamas Thursday afternoon then heads NE well offshore into Friday. Expecting generally dry and warm conditions during Thursday/Friday although there are some model differences wrt how much moisture gets trapped across the area on Thursday for possible sprinkles/isold shwrs. Partly to mostly cloudy both days. Some record highs will be challenged Thursday but Friday`s numbers appear safe since they are higher. See CLI section below. Low level thicknesses and H85 temps support highs both days in the low to mid 70s west of the Ches Bay (possibly upr 70s Fri), 65-70 along the coast. Lows in the upr 40s to mid 50s. 12z models are still in good agreement showing a strong cold frontal passage between 20Z Sat and 03Z Sun. Data continues to support a swath of moisture and marginal instability with the boundary but with the best forcing/dynamics staying north of the local area. However, given the spring-like conditions expected ahead of the front (sfc temps in the 70s with 55-60 degree dew points) along with some instability present and moderate shear, cannot rule out the chance for isold tstms across the FA during the afternoon, shifting to the coast through the early evening. Our FA is not currently outlooked by SPC for any severe threat on Saturday. && .LONG TERM /SATURDAY NIGHT THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... Cold front slips off the coast Sat evening...w/ drying/gusty WNW winds and temperatures returning to near normal (beginning Sun). Sfc hi pres drifts over the FA Sun night...resulting in mainly SKC and chilly conditions. Quick moving low pressure tracks from the OH Valley Mon across the FA Mon night w/ increasing cloudiness and low PoPs (15-25%). Another warm up begins Tue and continues through Wed as sfc hi pres sets up off the coast...and return S flow develops. Dry and mild Tue...a warm front lifting through the FA Tue night may clip the region w/ clouds and low PoPs (10-20%). Breezy/warm Wed ahead of approaching cold front from the W. Models push that front through the region late Wed (possibly accompanied by SCT RASH). Lows Sat night in the u30s NW to the l40s SE. Highs Sun in the m-u50s. Lows Sun night from the l30s N and W to the u30s-around 40F SE. Highs Mon in the u50s-around 60F on the eastern shore to the 60s elsewhere. Lows Mon night in the u30s NW to the m40s SE. Highs Tue again in the u50s-around 60F on the eastern shore to the 60s elsewhere. Highs Wed in the 60s on the eastern shore to the 70s elsewhere. && .AVIATION /07Z THURSDAY THROUGH MONDAY/...
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Weak high pressure ridge will extend from the Atlantic westward into Virginia and North Carolina today. Low pressure will organize over the Central Great Plains Friday and will move northeast into the Great Lakes Saturday. A strong cold front will cross the region late Saturday and Saturday evening. High pressure builds over the Mid Atlantic States Sunday. As of 06z...An area of light rain was dissipating over southeast Virginia. Mainly VFR conditions were present at the TAF sites. MVFR visibilities are expected overnight at RIC and possibly SBY. Considering cloud cover...expect visibilities to go no lower than 1 to 2 miles and that will be mainly in the Piedmont Region. NAM12 soundings do not support widespread IFR ceilings. Conditions improve by around 14-15Z. Winds will be mainly from the south at around 5 to 10 knots. OUTLOOK...Dry weather is expected through Friday. Showers and thunderstorms are expected with the cold front late Saturday and Saturday evneing. Dry weather returns Sunday. There will be a small chance for showers on Monday as a weak cold front moves through.
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&& .MARINE... No headlines into the weekend. Predominantly SSE winds aob 15 kt through Fri night. Waters ranging from 1-2 ft waves over the Ches Bay and 2-3 ft seas over cstl wtrs. With lo pres invof FL Thu pushing off the southeast coast Fri...guidance indicating some increasing long period swell moving up to the local area wtrs for Fri-Sat w/ seas building to 4-6 ft...which would lead to SCA headlines along the coast starting around Fri night. Some increase in SSW winds resulting from WAA Sat...though speeds expected to remain below SCA. Cold front crosses the waters Sat night...to be followed by a period of modest low level CAA. SCAs likely Sat night through Sun morning before winds wane to end of the weekend. && .CLIMATE... Feb 2017 is shaping up to rank among the warmest on record given continued warmth over the next week. Daily record highs are listed below for Thu-Sat, with the top 3 warmest February`s on record listed below that. Expecting RIC, ORF, ECG to be at least into the top 3 warmest (and possibly the warmest). SBY looks on track to be 4th or 5th warmest. Daily Record Highs for Thursday 2/23, Friday 2/24 and Saturday 2/25: 2/23 2/24 2/25 RIC 75 in 1985 82 in 1985 83 in 1930 ORF 79 in 1975 82 in 2012 81 in 1930 SBY 74 in 1943 77 in 2012 80 in 1930 ECG 77 in 1975 79 in 1985 77 in 1985 Warmest February`s on record: * RIC: 1) 49.9 (1890) 2) 48.5 (1976) 3) 48.1 (1884) * ORF: 1) 52.4 (1890) 2) 50.5 (1909) 3) 50.1 (1990) * SBY: 1) 46.1 (1976) 2) 45.8 (1984) 3) 45.7 (1925) * ECG: 1) 52.1 (1990) 2) 51.8 (1939) 3) 50.3 (1976) && .AKQ WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... MD...None. NC...None. VA...None. MARINE...None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...JDM NEAR TERM...JDM/SAM SHORT TERM...JDM LONG TERM...ALB AVIATION...MAS/LSA MARINE...ALB CLIMATE...

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