Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wakefield, VA

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FXUS61 KAKQ 210015

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Wakefield VA
715 PM EST Mon Feb 20 2017

High pressure traverses New England through tonight, then
slides offshore on Tuesday. A frontal boundary stalls north of
the area Tuesday night. Low pressure tracks well south of the
region Tuesday night through Thursday.


Sfc high pressure centered over Eastern Canada extends south
across the Mid-Atlantic region this afternoon. Although not
quite as warm as Sunday, today has still featured mild
temperatures and a mainly clear sky. High pressure will traverse
New England tonight with light N-NE winds becoming east late.
BUFKIT soundings show an increase in high-level moisture
overnight in NW flow. Will show a mainly clear to partly cloudy
sky. Lows in the 30s to near 40.


The high slides off the New England coast Tuesday ahead of a
weakening mid-level cold front approaching from the west.
Meanwhile, a strong upper low develops near the TX/LA border and
reaches the MS Gulf Coast by the end of the day. High pressure
remains offshore Tuesday night and Wednesday as the strong low
reaches the west coast of FL by 00z Thu. Partly to mostly sunny
and mild Tuesday with highs from the mid/upr 50s at the coast
to the low 60s inland. Increasing clouds Tuesday night with a
slight chc of showers across the Piedmont late. Will maintain
slight chc to low end chc pops (20-30%) Wednesday (along/west
of the Bay) as a weak upr trough passes overhead. The 12z NAM is
the most bullish with precip chances on Wednesday although
mostly discounting it as this point given that consensus keeps
most of the moisture south of the local area nearest the Gulf
low. Lows Tuesday night in the 40s. Highs Wednesday in the 60s.
Dry and mild Wednesday night with high pressure sitting offshore
and the strong low impacting FL. Lows in the upr 40s to mid 50s.
By Thursday, increasing WSW develops due to the position of the
offshore low and a deepening trough over the northern
Plains/Midwest. Models indicating enough moisture present for
isolated showers (~20% PoPs). Turning warmer with highs 70-75,
except some 60s along the immediate coast.


The models are in good agreement in the extended range showing a
flat ridge over the eastern US for the second half of the work
week. That ridge will amplify into Saturday as a trough lifts
out of the central plains into the Great Lake states which will
knock the ridge down by Sunday and return the area to more
westerly zonal flow. Overall, this will lead to another period
of well above normal temperatures along with a chance for
showers and psbl tstms as the cold front crosses the area

The next strong sfc low will lift from the central plains into
the Great Lakes on Friday into Saturday dragging a cold front
across the region on Saturday. The guidance remains in decent
agreement for a swath of moisture and marginal dynamics with the
fropa on Sat, but with the upper trough already taking on a
negative tilt so far W of the Appalachians, could see a scenario
where precip struggles to hold together as the front moves east
of the Mtns. Will maintain slight chance of tstms on Sat, but
have lowered the PoPs to ~30% over the south/southeast. Best
chance for precip will be across the far N where a low-end
likely PoP ~60% is in the forecast. very warm with highs upper
60s NW to lower-mid 70s SE. Behind the front, temperatures will
return closer to normal but will remain above avg (just not 20
to 25 degrees above normal as Fri-Sat will be). Dry Sun-mon with
highs mainly in the 50s N to the 60s S.


High pressure over New England will slowly slide to the east. Light
northeast to east winds will gradually veer to southeast on
Tuesday. Scattered to broken high clouds will be over the area
during the 00Z TAF period. Low dew points will continue
maintaining unlimited visibilities.

OUTLOOK...Mainly VFR conditions are expected for the rest of the
week. Broad area of low pressure over the Lower Mississippi Valley
will drift to the east into Florida by Wednesday. Moisture will
increase from the south but only isolated showers are expected
Tuesday night and Wednesday. Complex frontal system will affect the
area late in the week with small chances for showers Thursday
and Thursday night. A strong cold front passes through the Mid
Atlantic States Saturday with a good chance for showers...
especially northern portions.


Sub-SCA conditions prevail this aftn with a weak pressure
gradient in place. NE winds now diminishing to 5-10 KT on avg
with seas and waves only 1-2 ft throughout. The high builds
directly over the northern wtrs by Tue with winds shifting to
the E/SE at 10 KT or less. Seas likely build to 2-3 ft with
waves in the Bay 1-2 ft on avg. Sub-SCA S/SE flow then persists
Wed-Fri ahead of the next cold front, which crosses the wtrs
over the weekend with a period of marginal SCA conditions


Feb 2017 shaping up to rank among the warmest on record given
continued warmth over the next week. Daily record highs are
listed below, with the top 3 warmest February`s on record
listed below that. Expecting RIC and ORF to be at least into the
top 3 warmest (and possibly the warmest).

Daily Record Highs for Thursday 2/23 and Friday 2/24:

       2/23           2/24

RIC   75 in 1985    82 in 1985
ORF   79 in 1975    82 in 2012
SBY   74 in 1943    77 in 2012
ECG   77 in 1975    79 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)




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