Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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755 FXUS62 KILM 202353 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 653 PM EST Fri Jan 20 2017 .SYNOPSIS... A warm front just north of the area will drift slowly back south as low pressure lifts off to the northeast tonight. Another area of low pressure will move through Saturday into Saturday night. A more complex and potent storm system will affect the Carolinas on Sunday with potential for severe weather. Total rainfall amounts should amount to one to three inches. This storm system will slowly depart through Monday leaving high pressure for Tuesday and Wednesday. A cold front will move across the area on Thursday. && .NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 AM SATURDAY MORNING/... As of 615 PM Friday...Temperatures remain elevated in the lower to mid 60s this evening as a light southerly flow continues behind a departing warm front. Still anticipating a mainly dry overnight period, with rain changes marginally increasing around daybreak. Previous discussion follows: Warm front is located north of forecast area with all obs showing southerly winds with temps just into the 70s and dewpoint temps near 60. Pcp remains fairly inexistent with only a spotty light shower possible through this evening. Breaks in the clouds have led to periods of sunshine and soundings continue to show plenty of dry air in the mid to upper levels working down through the column through this evening as winds veer to the west. Therefore have kept previous forecast leaving pops out of forecast through most of tonight. The warm front just north of area will drift south as low pressure pulls away tonight. Winds will become very light and variable at the surface while low level flow will veer from SW to W before backing around to the SW again by morning. This will allow moisture to increase through the column once again and have included some potential for pcp toward daybreak. Not expecting measurable rainfall tonight, although some spotty drizzle may occur tonight, as well as, low stratus and fog development and have included areas of fog in the grids at this time. Widespread fog may turn dense overnight as dewpoints remain elevated. && .SHORT TERM /6 AM SATURDAY MORNING THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Friday...Shortwave riding up from the southwest on Saturday will increase lift and potential for pcp through Sat. Models show this wave of low pressure exiting the coast Sat night while a potent shortwave digs down through the gulf coast. The associated surface low will deepen as it reaches the western Carolinas late Sun aftn. Expect a break in convection through Sat eve but expect an uptick in pcp toward Sun morning and convection to become strong to possibly severe on Sunday aftn into Sun evening. Pcp water values will reach up to 1.5 inches Sat aftn, diminishing slightly into Sat night before increasing again through Sunday as LLJ reaches up to 45 to 50 kts. The best bulk shear values come Sun aftn into early evening up over 80 kts. SPC has most of area in slight risk for severe weather on Sunday. QPF should be on the high side this weekend with up to 1 to 3 inches possible with some localized flooding possible as well as contributing toward possible river flooding into early next week. && .LONG TERM /MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...Anomalously deep stacked low pressure will move through the central Carolinas on Friday. Most of the precip/convection with this system will occur before the long term, but as spokes of vorticity move overhead Monday, a few showers will be possible through the day. The cold front tailing this system will drag offshore Monday night, but by then the atmosphere will be too dry for any further showers, and the only noticeable difference will be somewhat cooler air Monday night and Tuesday, when temps will drop to just slightly above seasonable norms. Any cooldown is short lived, as the quick mid-level pattern allows ridging to blossom quickly once again across the Southeast. The Wed/Thu timeframe appear very warm, with 70s returning to the area, ahead of a strong cold front progged to cross the Carolinas early on Thursday. This cold front may signal the beginning of a regime change, as a large trough dives into the eastern CONUS with seasonable or even below seasonable temperatures possible at the end of the week. && .AVIATION /00Z SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 00Z...Expect VFR this evening to gradually deteriorate to MVFR and then IFR/LIFR overnight into Saturday as increasing coverage of low cigs, areas of fog, and periods of -RA prevail. Into Saturday afternoon, given ample available low level moisture, do not anticipate conditions to improve, remaining around IFR/LIFR through Saturday evening. Would not entirely rule out an isolated thunderstorm, but anticipate greater chance for TSRA beyond the valid TAF period. Light and variable winds overnight will become south-southeast around 5 to 10 kts on Saturday. Extended outlook...IFR/LIFR likely continuing Saturday morning. Tempo MVFR or lower ceilings and visibility expected in showers and thunderstorms Sunday and Sunday night, the potential for strong to severe wind gusts. Otherwise, expect VFR. && .MARINE... NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 615 PM Friday...Latest obs show seas in the 2 to 3 ft range with SW winds of 10 to 15 kts. This fits in well with the going forecast. No changes anticipated to the overnight period, previous discussion follows: A warm front north of waters leaves all waters in S-SW winds through tonight. Seas will remain 2 to 3 ft this afternoon in S to SW winds 10 to 15 kts. As the low moves north tonight the front should drift south lightly producing more variable winds mainly over northern waters, but remaining very light. Seas will remain 2 to 3 ft. Winds in the northern waters may be E-NE overnight but will come back around to the E-SE through Sat morning while winds above the surface will shift back to the SW by morning. There is some concern for sea fog development and reduced visibility late tonight and have included through a good portion of the weekend. SHORT TERM /SATURDAY THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Friday...A shortwave will track up from the southwest on Saturday. This will aid in enhanced lift and potential for more widespread shwrs and iso thunderstorms over the waters as another wave of low pressure moves through. Most of the waters will experience warm moist air streaming over the cooler waters. This could produce sea fog through much of the weekend. A more favored SW trajectory through Saturday will lead to better chances of fog. By Sunday, a more potent storm system will move up from the southwest with increased potential for strong convection. Winds will become more on shore while increasing up to 20 to 25 kts. This persistent and increased southerly push will drive seas up from 2 to 4 ft Sat up to SCA thresholds by late aftn or early eve on Sun and possibly reaching up to 7 to 9 ft Sun night. LONG TERM /MONDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...Strong low pressure moving through the central Carolinas will drag a cold front across the waters late Monday into Tuesday. Gusty SW winds will reach 20-25 kts ahead of this front driving seas to 5-8 ft, before a wind shift occurs by Tuesday morning to the NW followed by a slow decrease in speed. An SCA will likely be needed all of Monday and perhaps into Tuesday morning, before conditions improve below headline thresholds. NW winds Tuesday will fall slowly from around 20 kts early, to 10 kts late, and then will back again to the SW Wednesday with an increase in speed once again. Wave heights will fall to as low as 2-3 ft late Tuesday thanks to the slowing speeds and offshore wind component, but will ramp back up again to 3-5 ft late in the period. && .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...JDW NEAR TERM...REK/RGZ SHORT TERM...RGZ LONG TERM...JDW AVIATION...SGL MARINE...JDW/RGZ/REK is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.