Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 211503 AFDILM AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WILMINGTON NC 1003 AM EST SUN DEC 21 2014 .SYNOPSIS... A WEDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE WILL KEEP CLOUDS AND RAIN CHANCES IN THE FORECAST TODAY. RAIN CHANCES INCREASE ON MONDAY AS LOW PRESSURE MOVES ALONG THE COAST. THE WEATHER WILL REMAIN UNSETTLED TUESDAY BUT GROW A BIT MORE SEASONABLE. A STRONG COLD FRONT WILL BRING SHOWERS AND MAYBE THUNDERSTORMS WEDNESDAY INTO WEDNESDAY NIGHT. SUNSHINE FINALLY RETURNS ON CHRISTMAS DAY WHILE IT TURNS COOLER. DRY AND FAIRLY SUNNY WEATHER SHOULD LAST INTO THE WEEKEND. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/...
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AS OF 10 AM SUNDAY...EASTWARD MOVEMENT OF WEAK SURFACE WAVE ALONG FRONT STALLED OVER NORTHERN FLORIDA HAS SHIFTED THE AREA OF WEAK ISENTROPIC LIFT...AND ASSOCIATED PRECIP...OFF THE COAST. THE LOSS OF LIFT ALONG WITH A SOUTHWARD PUSH OF COOLER/DRIER AIR WILL WORK TO BREAK UP LOW CLOUD THIS MORNING. SKIES WILL NOT FULLY CLEAR OUT BUT THERE WILL BE GLIMPSES OF SUN DURING THE LATE MORNING AND EARLY AFTERNOON HOURS. LATER TODAY CLOUD COVER STARTS TO INCREASE AHEAD OF THE NEXT WAVE EMERGING FROM THE GULF. THIS WAVE IS STRONGER THAN THE PREVIOUS ONE AND WILL HELP PULL DEEPER MOISTURE AND THE STALLED BOUNDARY FARTHER NORTH. AS THIS HAPPENS ISENTROPIC LIFT INCREASES WITH LIGHT RAIN TO THE AREA LATER THIS AFTERNOON AND EVENING. ALTHOUGH DO EXPECT TO SEE SOME BREAKS OF SUN DO THINK THIS WILL BE LIMITED OVERALL WITH MINIMAL IMPACT ON TEMPS. KNOCKED HIGHS DOWN A FEW DEGREES BUT DEPENDING ON TENACITY OF CLOUD COVER FURTHER REDUCTION MAY BE REQUIRED.
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&& .SHORT TERM /MONDAY THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT/... AS OF 3 AM SUNDAY...CLOUDS HANG TOUGH MONDAY TO KEEP TEMPS BELOW CLIMATOLOGY ONCE AGAIN AS SURFACE WEDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE RIDGES IN FROM POINTS NORTH. FRONTAL BOUNDARY STALLED WELL OFFSHORE AND IT WILL HAVE A WAVE OF LOW PRESSURE RIDGE UP ALONG OUR LATITUDE LATE IN THE DAY. AS THIS OCCURS SOME AREAS MAY EXPERIENCE SOME WEAK ISENTROPIC UPGLIDE THAT LEADS TO SOME LIGHT RAIN. WITH THIS FORCING VERY WEAK AND MOISTURE CONFINED TO RELATIVELY LOW LEVELS NON-MEASURABLE SPRINKLES SEEM JUST AS LIKELY AS MEASURABLE RAINFALL ESPECIALLY INLAND. THE WEDGE STARTS TO BREAK DOWN ON TUESDAY AND THE UPPER PATTERN WILL REALLY BE AMPLIFYING. THIS WILL CERTAINLY LEAD TO A MILDER AFTERNOON BUT THE INCREASED MOISTURE ADVECTION WILL KEEP THE SKY CLOUDY. RAIN CHANCES WILL ALSO INCREASE FAIRLY RAPIDLY...MORESO FROM MOISTURE ADVECTION RATHER THAN FORCING LEADING TO ASCENT. IN FACT IN SUCH A SITUATION MODELS ARE OFTEN A BIT FAST ON ADVECTING MEASURABLE RAINFALL AND SO THERE MAY BE A FEW RAIN-FREE HOURS EARLY TUESDAY. && .LONG TERM /WEDNESDAY THROUGH SATURDAY/... AS OF 3 AM SUNDAY...WEDNESDAY PROBABLY REPRESENTS THE BEST RAIN CHANCES THAT THE AREA HAS SEEN AND POSSIBLY WILL SEE FOR QUITE SOME TIME. HIGHLY AMPLIFIED PATTERN TO DRIVE A COLD FRONT THROUGH BY WEDNESDAY NIGHT. THE AMPLITUDE OF THE SYSTEM WILL BE SUCH THAT IT WILL SCOOP UP PLENTY OF GULF MOISTURE. IN THE WAKE OF THIS SYSTEM CHRISTMAS IS SHAPING UP TO BE RATHER BRISK AND COOLER BUT WILL AT LEAST FEATURE A RETURN OF SUNSHINE WHICH BY THEN WILL HAVE BEEN ABSENT FOR SEVERAL DAYS. THIS COOL HIGH THEN WEAKENS AND MOVES INTO THE REGION BY FRIDAY WHICH SHOULD SHUT OFF THE COOL ADVECTION. SATURDAY MAY BE EITHER SEASONABLE OR A FEW DEGREES WARMER AS ANOTHER COLD FRONT APPROACHES FROM THE NW. && .AVIATION /15Z SUNDAY THROUGH THURSDAY/... AS OF 12Z...CIGS HAVE IMPROVED TO VFR THIS MORNING...BUT AT KFLO/KLBT OCCASIONALLY VSBYS HAVE LOWERED TO MVFR IN BR. WITH A SHARP COASTAL TROUGH JUST OFFSHORE LOW VFR/HIGH MVFR CIGS WILL REMAIN A GOOD POSSIBILITY THROUGH THIS AFTERNOON. WEAK ISENTROPIC LIFT WILL PRODUCE LIGHT RAIN TODAY. AS THE PRECIPITATION INCREASES IN COVERAGE/INTENSITY AND FURTHER MOISTENS THE LOW LEVELS...CIGS WILL EVENTUALLY LOWER TO MVFR THIS EVENING AND TO IFR BY MIDNIGHT. COULD HAVE SOME TEMPO MVFR VSBYS MID/LATE AFTERNOON BUT NOT IN TAFS ATTM. EXTENDED OUTLOOK...RAIN LIKELY MON WITH MVFR/IFR CIGS AS A COASTAL TROUGH PERSISTS OFFSHORE. SHOWERS/TEMPO MVFR EXPECTED TUE/WED AHEAD OF A STRONG COLD FRONT. GUSTY WINDS WED/THU BEFORE AND AFTER FROPA. THU WILL BE VFR AT ALL TERMINALS. && .MARINE...
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NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... AS OF 10 AM SUNDAY...SCEC WILL CONTINUE FOR ALL ZONES TODAY. FLOW REMAINS NORTHEASTERLY WITH WATERS IN PINCHED GRADIENT BETWEEN HIGH BUILDING DOWN THE COAST AND FRONT/WAVES PASSING SOUTH OF THE AREA. THE PINCHED GRADIENT WILL KEEP NORTHEAST FLOW BETWEEN 15 TO 20 KT THIS AFTERNOON AND FOR MUCH OF TONIGHT. SEAS WILL RUN 4 TO 5 FT IN WATERS OPEN TO NORTHEAST FETCH. WATERS SHELTERED FROM NORTHEAST FLOW WILL RUN CLOSER TO 3 TO 4 FT. SHORT TERM /MONDAY THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT/... AS OF 3 AM SUNDAY...NE WINDS ON MONDAY WILL VEER SLIGHTLY ON TUESDAY AS A WEDGE OF HIGH PRESSURE OVER LAND WEAKENS. MONDAY WILL ALSO BRING ABOUT 5KT OF HIGHER WIND SPEED AT TIMES AS LOW PRESSURE MOVES UP ALONG A FRONTAL BOUNDARY OFF THE COAST. TUESDAY NIGHT THE FLOW WILL VEER AGAIN MORE DECIDEDLY AS THE APPROACH OF A COLD FRONT AND DYNAMIC UPPER SYSTEM APPROACH. WINDS WILL ALSO INCREASE LATE TUESDAY NIGHT ABOVE THE BOUNDARY LAYER...THOUGH COOL SSTS MAY TEMPER THE INCREASE IN WINDS SOMEWHAT AT THE SURFACE EARLY IN THE NIGHT. THIS EFFECT HOWEVER WILL BE OVERWHELMED TOWARDS THE END OF THE PERIOD BY THE OVERALL INCREASE IN MOMENTUM OF THE ATMOSPHERE AND A SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY WILL BE NEEDED. LONG TERM /WEDNESDAY THROUGH THURSDAY/... AS OF 3 AM SUNDAY...STRONGLY FORCED COLD FRONT APPROACHING ON WEDNESDAY AND SOLID SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT. SUSTAINED GALE FORCED WINDS WILL BE LURKING NOT TOO FAR ABOVE THE SURFACE AND AS THE EVENT GETS CLOSER ATTENTION WILL SHIFT TO HOW DEEP MOMENTUM TRANSFER OVER THE COOL SSTS WILL BE. SHOULD MIXING OVERWHELM THE STABILIZING EFFECT OF THE COOL WATERS THEN WINDS MAY BE HIGHER THAN CURRENTLY FORECAST, ALTHOUGH SURFACE GALES STILL SEEM RATHER UNLIKELY. SHARP VEER WED NIGHT WITH FROPA AND BOUNDARY LAYER WIND SPEEDS DROP OFF CONSIDERABLY BY THURSDAY.
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&& .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...NONE. NC...NONE. MARINE...NONE. && $$ SYNOPSIS...MBB NEAR TERM...III SHORT TERM...MBB LONG TERM...MBB AVIATION...MRR

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