Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 080541 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 1236 AM EST Thu Dec 8 2016 .SYNOPSIS... Dry and seasonable weather will continue through Thursday as high pressure weakens across the Carolinas. A cold front will move through later on Thursday, ushering in the coldest temperatures of the season for the first part of the weekend. A warming trend will follow Sunday into Monday ahead of the next cold front. Expect seasonable and dry weather Tuesday as high pressure builds in behind front. Another frontal system will affect the area during the middle of next week. && .NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 AM THURSDAY MORNING/... As of 945 PM Wednesday...A deck of low to mid clouds is moving in from the SW and that will put a damper on the rather steep downward plunge in temperatures that occurred this evening. Other than that see no changes to the forecast for the overnight period. Previous discussion from this afternoon follows: A break-through sparkling afternoon after several days of slate overcast. Plenty clouds lurk W through SW of the forecast area, and this is the direction from which winds in the boundary layer to 850 MB will be trending overnight into early Thursday. Consequently, we expect an intrusion/increase in clouds into NE SC and SE NC tonight. The backing wind regime is being spurred by the approach of a cold front, behind which brings a cold rush of air after the `near term` time period. All factors considered it appears our minimums will dip into the low and middle 40s in the pre-dawn hours, potentially leveling off into daybreak as clouds impact long-wave radiation escape. && .SHORT TERM /6 AM THURSDAY MORNING THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Wednesday...Overwhelming headline for the THU/FRI period is `Old Man Winter Dips His Toes into the Carolinas`, as the leading edge of a bubble of Arctic born air infiltrates late on Thursday. Widespread sub-freezing 20s will greet SE NC and NE SC daybreak Saturday as this high settles nearly overhead. Even with cold air advection breezes Thursday night, temps well inland may fall below freezing. A brief deepening of column moisture Thursday into the afternoon could provoke or motivate a few showers to form just ahead or along the cold front late THU with support from low-level convergence and diffluence aloft. Dewpoints and moisture remain limited and no thunder or appreciable rainfall is anticipated. Since the front arrives later in the day, and a downsloping W wind will precede this surface boundary, look for mild temperatures well in the 60s Thursday, before the northern door swings open wide and brings a talked-about chill to the area. Wind chill values will bottom out very early Saturday in the upper teens to lower 20s. && .LONG TERM /SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... AS OF 300 PM Wednesday...A chilly start to the long term period. with the coldest air of the season overhead with temps down in the 20s to start the day. Deep CAA will wane through the day with diminishing winds and plenty of early December sunshine as the center of high pressure migrates over the Carolinas. But after such a cold start to the day and this cold dense air mass over the area, the temps will only reach into the 40s. The air mass will modify as GFS shows a slow but steady rise in 850 temps from close to -8c very early Sat morning up to +8 by Mon aftn. Light northerly winds will begin to swing around to the NE and E through early Sunday and eventually a warmer and moister southerly return flow will develop later in the day as high pressure shifts farther off shore. This will allow dewpoint temps to recover from the teens to 20s Sat into Sun up to mid 40s by Sun night. Sunshine will be plentiful once again on Sunday with WAA kicking temps back up into the 50s. A broad mid to upper trough will move east from the central CONUS pushing next cold front through the area on Monday. Decent LLJ will tap into enough Atlantic and Gulf moisture to bring values up from a quarter of an inch on Saturday to nearly 1.25 inches on Monday ahead of front. Overall expect increasing clouds and potential for showers Sunday night through Monday. The ECMWF continues to be slower with this system, but either way, expect good chc of pcp on Monday before front makes its way off shore by Mon night. Warm and moist advection will keep overnight lows Mon close to what the high temperature was just a day before. Monday will be the warmest with temps well into the 60s, but readings will be dampened by the clouds and pcp. Cooler and drier high pressure will move in behind front for Tues, but may see another system affect the area again already by Wed. Temps following cold front late Monday will be closer to normal...with mid to upper 50s for highs Tues and Wed. && .AVIATION /06Z THURSDAY THROUGH MONDAY/...
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As of 06z...A weak frontal wave is approaching from the northwest. Ahead of this system a fairly solid deck of MVFR ceilings have developed. This moisture was very poorly initialized by model guidance, lowering the forecast confidence regarding its tenacity. Normally the best course is to keep lowered conditions as-is until daybreak especially this time of year. There is some wind above the surface layer so any VSBY restrictions likely fairly transient and only MVFR. VFR after sunrise with just a windshift to the NNW spreading south across the terminals this evening as the Arctic front pushes through. Extended Outlook...VFR.
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&& .MARINE... NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 945 PM Wednesday...Latest obs show seas remain benign in the 2 ft range with very light and variable winds. Forecast remains on track with no changes. Previous discussion from this afternoon follows: A window of manageable marine conditions on tap this evening as weak high pressure settles in, offering N winds 10 KT or less tonight tending to W 5-10 KT early Thursday. Seas of 2-4 feet overnight...highest offshore, will be comprised of S waves 2-3 feet every 7 seconds, and E-SE waves 1-2 feet every 8-10 seconds. No TSTMS or restrictions to VSBY overnight. SHORT TERM /Thursday THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Wednesday...Deteriorating marine conditions the main headline this period as a powerful blast of cold air late on Thursday through Friday brings gusty N winds of 20-25 KT and choppy steep waves. Gusts to 30 KT will be common across the outer and slightly milder offshore waters. A Small Craft Advisory will be needed for this Arctic High in wake of a cold frontal passage late in the day Thursday. Offshore navigation is discouraged for small craft Thursday night and Friday, and with the season comes the potential for hypothermia in the event of an overboard situation. The Advisory will be likely be issued overnight, but will allow another model run as to glean more accurate timing of the event. LONG TERM /SATURDAY THROUGH MONDAY/... As OF 300 PM Wednesday...Northerly winds 10 to 15 kts early Saturday will will diminish as they veer around through the weekend become NE to E by Sunday as high pressure moves nearly overhead before shifting further east off the Mid Atlantic coast on Sunday. Seas will diminish as well through the weekend as the high pressure shifts closer overhead Sat night and then off the Mid Atlantic coast on Sunday. Seas near 3 ft Sat morning will be down less than 2 ft Sat night through Sun morning as winds become very light and more variable. By late Sun into Mon winds will increase out of the SE to S pushing seas rapidly back up possibly into SCA thresholds by Monday. A cold front will move through the waters late Monday producing a veering of winds to the W-NW up near 15 kts. && .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...RGZ NEAR TERM...MJC/REK SHORT TERM...MJC LONG TERM...RGZ AVIATION...MBB MARINE...MJC/REK/RGZ is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.