Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 161417 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 916 AM EST Sat Dec 16 2017 .SYNOPSIS... High pressure will build across the Carolinas today and shift offshore later today thru Sunday. Below normal temperatures will continue today and tonight. A cold front will move into the area and stall Mon thru Mon night. Hit or miss showers will occur from early Mon thru Mon night with amounts generally less than one tenth of an inch. Low pressure from the Gulf coast states will push across the area Wed thru Thu with a chance for substantial rainfall. High pressure will follow for the late week period. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 915 AM Saturday...Weak confluent flow aloft will persist across the Eastern U.S. with surface high pressure across the area through tonight. Other than patchy high cloudiness, skies will be mostly clear through the period. Below normal temperatures will continue through tonight as well with highs today in the lower to mid 50s, and lows at or just below freezing away from the coast tonight. Light winds with a weak pressure gradient across the area. && .SHORT TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT/... As of 345 AM Saturday...Low amplitude ridging aloft, with the ridge axis extending north across the FA from the Bahamas, will persist thru this period. A mid-level s/w trough ejected from the Desert SW early Sunday, will track to the NE remaining well north of the FA as it passes by. At the same time de-amplifying as it gets absorbed in the mean flow by late Sun. The southern branch of the jet stream will dominate the local area, keeping any cold air or outbreaks well north of the FA this period. Sunday will be a mostly sunny early with increasing mid and upper level clouds by afternoon. Low level cloudiness will become more persistent late Sunday night thru Tue as a cold front drops south and stalls as it becomes parallel with the upper flow oriented from the ENE to WSW across the FA. Will indicate low chance for isolated to widely scattered light showers to break out early Monday morning and continuing thru Mon Night. As for temps, stayed close to a consensus of avbl Mos Guidance as a start followed by the addition of a few degrees especially for maxes Sun and Mon. && .LONG TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...On Monday the 12 UTC runs of the ECMWF and GFS are showing a trough/cutoff low south of the 4 corners area of the great southwest. The models begin to diverge and by Tuesday the GFS is faster pulling the cutoff low to the east. By Wednesday morning the GFS has dissipated this wave and it has this feature accelerating to the east coast in the zonal flow. The ECMWF still has a cutoff over the Oklahoma and Arkansas border and the model weakens and dissipates this features as if has moves off the east coast. Therefore confidence in the extended forecast is not high. The GFS models continue to show a warming trend through Tuesday before moving a cold front through the area between Tuesday and Wednesday and bringing down a shot of cooler temperatures, but the ECMWF keeps the shot of colder air farther north. So the forecast will side with the model blend and this will bring in cooler temperatures for Wednesday. Rainfall chances looks to be the best on Monday into Tuesday with the favoring of the GFS solution stronger southern energy out of the southwest and pulling the cutoff low out quicker. With the the west-southwest flow remaining over the region expect to see small chances of rain Wednesday through Thursday. && .AVIATION /12Z SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 11Z...High confidence for VFR conditions through most of the forecast period. High pressure centered to our west will give us light northerly flow with moderate subsidence. Other than jet cirrus, little to no clouds are expected. Light fog is a possibility at the end of the forecast period and will be reevaluated on the next model run. Extended Outlook...VFR. VFR tempo MVFR/SHRA Monday through Tuesday night. && .MARINE... NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 915 AM Saturday...A surface ridge axis aligned along the Carolina coastal plains will maintain light northerly flow across the adjacent waters. Light and variable winds expected tonight as high pressure shifts farther east. Seas will be 2-3 ft today, and subside to 1-2 ft tonight. SHORT TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT/... As of 345 AM Saturday...Rather docile wind and sea conditions Sunday that will likely persist thru Monday with only a few knots of wind added and up to 1 foot for significant seas. Center of high pressure overhead early Sunday with a variable wind direction under 10 kt, will push offshore late Sunday resulting in a brief southerly return flow. An approaching cold front will produce SW to W flow at 15 kt or less Mon thru Mon night due to a slight tightening of the sfc pg. The front will stall oriented ENE to WSW across the local waters in the vicinity of Cape Fear late Mon thru Mon night. Winds W to WNW north of the stalled front and SW-WSW south of the front. Significant seas will run 1 to 2 ft Sun thru Sun night and 2 to occasionally 3 ft Mon thru Mon night. An easterly 1 foot, 9 to 10 second period ground swell will dominate the local waters Sun thru Sun night. Wind induced waves at 3 to 5 second periods, Mon thru Mon night may become the more dominant player in the sig. seas. LONG TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 3 PM Friday..An unsettled period for the marine forecast with west to southwest flow on Monday into Tuesday with a cold front pushing across the waters later Tuesday into Wednesday. Will have to watch if small craft conditions develop after the cold frontal passage but otherwise expect seas of 2 to 4 feet. && .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...None. && $$ NEAR TERM...SRP SHORT TERM...DCH LONG TERM...DRH AVIATION...43 is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.