Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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379 FXUS62 KILM 242340 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 740 PM EDT Sun Sep 24 2017 .SYNOPSIS... Hurricane Maria is expected to remain offshore as it moves very slowly north, with its center passing within 250 miles of the Cape Fear coast through Wednesday. Hazardous beach and boating conditions will continue for much of the week. A cold front is expected to reach the area Friday, bringing cooler weather for next weekend. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH MONDAY/... As of 230 PM Sunday...While diurnal cumulus has formed with the strong insolation this afternoon the low-level band of convergence far offshore has been the nearest focus for showers today. Otherwise, the H85-H5 layer has been dry and the low-level trajectory will keep the showers at bay through tonight. These showers could approach the Cape Fear area and coastal northeast SC later Monday. Followed blend of MAV/MET numbers tonight and Monday. Breezy conditions expected to continue especially along the coast where the northeasterly pressure gradient increases. Strong rip currents and high surf will persist at all area beaches through Monday. && .SHORT TERM /MONDAY NIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Sunday...This period will basically function off the indirect and possible direct effects generated by Hurricane Maria as she tracks northward during this week over the open waters of the Atlantic remaining well offshore from the U.S. mainland which includes the local FA. The exception is the Outer Banks of NC which will see Maria`s closest approach. Once the generally troffiness associated with Jose off the Mid- atlantic and New England coasts dissipates, modest to strong upper level ridging will take it`s place. This will slow Maria`s forward northward movement with models indicating her well offshore from Cape Lookout to Cape Hatteras latitude by Wed morning. With this track, enough of it`s expansive pressure field and moisture will result in breezy NNE-NNW winds across the local area during this period with the hiest winds along the immediate coast, especially from Cape Fear northward. As for pcpn chances associated with Maria, locations across coastal southeast NC will be under a slight RW- chance beginning late Mon night thru Tue. The ILM SC CWA will remain pcpn free this period. With the mid-levels remaining quite dry thruout this period, the cirrus shield associated with Maria will encompass all of the ILM CWA. The lower levels will see a moisture increase across all locations, with the deeper low level moist profile across areas from Cape Fear northward. PCPN will be produced from the low level clouds and remain below 0.10 inches total thruout this period. Temperatures will continue to run at 1 to possibly 2 categories above the climo norms. The thick cirrus shield and eventual low level clouds will limit highs across the Cape Fear northward region, but still above climo. Beaches along the entire ILM CWA will be under a High Surf Advisory and High Rip Current threat for the majority of this period. This a result of 6 to 9 foot long period Maria swell affecting the local waters for an extended period of time. && .LONG TERM /WEDNESDAY THROUGH SUNDAY/... As of 300 PM Sunday...Maria, forecast to be well to the east- northeast of the area at the onset of the period, will continue moving north and east away from the area. A cold front will drop into the area Thursday night and move out to sea Friday, ushering in cooler and drier air for the weekend. Outside of a small chance of showers Wednesday, mainly over northeast sections of the forecast area, the extended range looks mainly dry. High temperatures in the mid 80s to around 90 Wednesday and Thursday will cool to the mid 70s by Sunday. Min temperatures in the upper 60s to lower 70s Wednesday night will cool to the upper 50s to lower 60s by Saturday night. && .AVIATION /00Z MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 00Z...Will maintain a VFR forecast at all the terminals through the valid period. The center of Hurricane Maria will continue to move N and at its closest approach, it should pass within 250 miles of the Cape Fear coast Tue-Wed. The wind direction will be NNE to NE through the period. Expect wind gusts to about 20 kt at the coastal terminals for much of Mon. High level ceilings are expected to lower to 4-6 kft at the coastal terminals by late morning or early afternoon on Mon. Will introduce some stratus at KILM, but will keep the layer SCT near 1 kft with this forecast package. Extended Outlook...MVFR ceilings may develop at the coastal terminals as stratus advects onshore Mon night and Tue. Wind speeds at the coastal terminals will gust as high as 15 to 25 kt Mon through Wed. && .MARINE... NEAR TERM /THROUGH MONDAY/... As of 230 PM Sunday...High pressure to the north and Maria moving northward from the southeast will result in a continuation of northeast flow across the coastal waters, with the highest speeds across the waters off Cape Fear. The flow will slowly back to the north-northeast during Monday as the hurricane moves farther north. Large swells coupled with the waves from the northeasterly fetch will create hazardous maritime conditions through the period. Widely scattered showers across the outer waters tonight could increase in coverage during Monday. SHORT TERM /MONDAY NIGHT THROUGH TUESDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Sunday...SCA conditions will continue across the area waters thruout this period. With the local waters on the westward side of Hurricane Maria as she tracks northward, remaining well offshore from the local area, wind directions will run from the NNE- N Mon night into Tue, and from the NNW-NW there-after as Maria`s eye moves north of the local latitude. The sfc pg associated with Maria, will be conducive to wind speeds in the 15 to 25 kt range south of Little River Inlet and 20 to 30 kt north of this Inlet. Could see Gale Gusts from Cape Fear northward thruout this period. Significant seas this period will be dominated by the 13-16 second period, ESE-SE Maria Swell. The short period locally produced NNE- NNW wind waves will create choppy conditions on top of this swell. This a result of a limited fetch. The area inlets to and from the Atlantic as well as the mouths of Cape Fear River and Winyah Bay will experience dangerous and hazardous navigating conditions. LONG TERM /WEDNESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 300 PM Sunday...Northwest winds of 15 to 25 KT Wednesday morning will diminish to 10 to 15 KT by Thursday morning. A shift to the north then northeast will occur Friday and Friday night. Seas of 4 to 7 FT south and 7 to 9 FT north Wednesday AM will gradually subside through the period, falling to 2 to 3 FT by Friday. && .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...High Rip Current Risk through Tuesday evening for SCZ054-056. High Surf Advisory until 9 PM EDT Tuesday for SCZ054-056. NC...High Rip Current Risk through Tuesday evening for NCZ106-108- 110. High Surf Advisory until 9 PM EDT Tuesday for NCZ106-108-110. MARINE...Small Craft Advisory until 6 PM EDT Wednesday for AMZ250-252- 254-256. && $$ NEAR TERM...SRP SHORT TERM...DCH LONG TERM...RAN AVIATION...RJD

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