Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 251633 AFDILM AREA FORECAST DISCUSSION NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE WILMINGTON NC 1133 AM EST THU DEC 25 2014 .SYNOPSIS... SUNSHINE WILL RETURN THIS AFTERNOON AS DRY HIGH PRESSURE SOUTHWEST OF THE AREA OVERSPREADS THE SOUTHEAST TONIGHT INTO FRIDAY. THE HIGH WILL MOVE OFFSHORE EARLY SATURDAY. A COLD FRONT WILL DROP INTO THE CAROLINAS ON SUNDAY AND MAY REMAIN STALLED OVER THE AREA BEFORE MOVING SOUTH BY TUESDAY...RESULTING IN UNSETTLED WEATHER ACROSS THE CAROLINAS THROUGH MID WEEK. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/...
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AS OF 1000 AM THURSDAY...WHAT A DIFFERENCE A DAY MAKES! COLD FRONT IS WELL OFFSHORE THIS MORNING...AND RAPID DRYING IS OCCURRING THROUGH THE ATMOSPHERIC COLUMN. THIS IS EVIDENT IN BOTH MORNING SOUNDINGS...AND SIMPLE VISUAL EXAMINATION OF SATELLITE IMAGERY. 12Z UA SOUNDING FROM KCHS SHOWS A RESIDUAL SATURATED LAYER BETWEEN 700MB AND 500MB...AND THIS IS MODELED WELL ON NAM BUFR SOUNDINGS...AND SEEM TO BE MATCHING THE CLOUD LAYER/DEPTH AS WELL. TWO FORECAST ISSUES TO RESOLVE TODAY - TIMING THE CLEARING LINE...AND DETERMINING THE HIGH TEMPERATURES. THE FIRST IS THE EASIER OF THE TWO...AS THE CLEARING LINE WILL STEADILY MOVE SE THANKS TO RAPID DRYING IN THAT AFOREMENTIONED LAYER. EXPECT A DRAMATIC CHANGE IN SKY COVER ACROSS THE AREA DURING THE NEXT 2 HOURS...AS SKY CONDITIONS CHANGE FROM NEARLY OVERCAST TO NEARLY CLEAR IN A VERY BRIEF TIME AND ACROSS A SHORT DISTANCE. FOLKS OUTSIDE DURING THIS TRANSITION WILL LIKELY SEE AN ABRUPT BACK EDGE TO THE WALL OF MID-LEVEL CLOUDINESS. SOME SHOWERS ARE SHOWING UP ON KLTX RADAR UP IN THESE CLOUDS...BUT NO PRECIP WILL REACH THE GROUND AS THE LIGHT RAIN QUICKLY EVAPORATE AS IT FALLS INTO A DRY LAYER BENEATH 700MB. ONCE THE CLOUDS BREAK LATE THIS MORNING...THE REST OF THE PERIOD WILL BE CLEAR. TEMPS HAVE BEEN FALLING SINCE 7AM DUE TO CAA BEHIND THE OVERNIGHT COLD FROPA. THIS IS CREATING AN ATYPICAL DIURNAL CURVE...AS IT WILL LIKELY NOT BEGIN TO WARM UNTIL THE CLOUDS BREAK...AND EVEN THEN TEMP RISES WILL BE SLOW AS INSOLATION FIGHTS CONTINUED CAA. HIGHS TODAY WILL LIKELY BE WARMEST IN THE SW PEE DEE WHERE CLEARING OCCURS FIRST...AND COOLEST IN THE CAPE FEAR REGION. EXPECT MAX TEMPS REACHING TO SLIGHTLY ABOVE 60 INLAND...AND AROUND 60 AT THE COAST. A CLEAR AND COOL NIGHT WILL HELP TEMPS PLUMMET AFTER DARK...AND MINS WILL DROP WELL INTO THE 30S AREA-WIDE.
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&& .SHORT TERM /FRIDAY THROUGH SATURDAY NIGHT/... AS OF 330 AM THURSDAY...HIGH PRESSURE SPRAWLED ACROSS THE SOUTHEAST WILL MOVE OFF SHORE LATE FRIDAY INTO SATURDAY. THE RIDGE EXTENDS FROM THE LOW LEVELS UP THROUGH THE ATMOSPHERE WITH PLENTY OF DRY AIR AND SUBSIDENCE OVER THE CAROLINAS. PCP WATER VALUES WILL BE DOWN NEAR A QUARTER OF AN INCH THROUGH FRI BUT WILL BEGIN TO REBOUND FRI NIGHT INTO SATURDAY REACHING ABOVE AN INCH BY SAT EVE AS A DEEPER MOISTER RETURN FLOW SETS UP. SKIES SHOULD REMAIN MAINLY CLOUD FREE THROUGH FRI INTO SATURDAY BUT WILL SEE SOME CLOUDS MOVING IN FROM THE SW BY SAT EVE. OVERALL EXPECT PLENTY OF SUNSHINE DURING THE DAYS WITH TEMPS WARMING INTO THE 60S AS AIR MASS MODIFIES. TEMPS WILL BE WARMER ON SATURDAY AFTER A SLIGHTLY WARMER START TO THE DAY AND INCREASING WAA. WITH THE HIGH NEARLY OVERHEAD STILL ON FRI NIGHT...DECENT RADIATIONAL COOLING WILL BRING TEMPS DOWN NEAR 40 MOST PLACES. BY SAT NIGHT...DEWPOINT TEMPS WILL BE UP ALMOST 20 DEGREES BY SAT NIGHT. THIS COMBINED WITH INCREASED CLOUD COVER SAT NIGHT WILL KEEP LOW TEMPS CLOSER TO 50. HAVE INCLUDED LOW END POPS NEAR DAYBREAK SUNDAY AS MOISTURE STARTS SPREADING NORTH INTO THE CAROLINAS AHEAD OF AN APPROACHING COLD FRONT. && .LONG TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... AS OF 330 AM THURSDAY...MID TO UPPER RIDGE WILL GET SUPPRESSED FARTHER SOUTH THROUGH MID WEEK AS A VERY BROAD TROUGH ROTATES OVER THE NORTHEAST. THIS WILL PRODUCE AN ALMOST ZONAL FLOW WITH A SLIGHTLY SW TO NE FLOW ALOFT. A COLD FRONT MOVING IN FROM THE WEST ON SUNDAY WILL GET STRUNG OUT IN THIS ALMOST ZONAL FLOW. LOOKS LIKE THE COOLER AIR MAY REMAIN NEAR OR JUST TO THE NORTH IN STALLED BOUNDARY UNTIL IT GETS A PUSH FROM MID TO UPPER TROUGH BY TUES. THIS WILL MAINTAIN WARMER TEMPS...CLOUDS AND INTERMITTENT PCP SUNDAY THROUGH TUES AS FRONT REMAINS STALLED NEARBY AND A FEW WAVES OF LOW PRESSURE DEVELOP ALONG IT. ONCE FRONT MOVES SOUTH...TEMPS SHOULD COOL OFF A BIT BUT WARM AIR ALOFT WILL OVERRUN SHALLOW COOL AIR TO PRODUCE LOW CLOUDS THROUGH AT LEAST MID WEEK. OVERALL...A CLOUDY AND DAMP LONG TERM FORECAST WITH WARMER TEMPS TO START AND A COOL DOWN FRO MID WEEK...HEADING INTO THE NEW YEAR. && .AVIATION /18Z THURSDAY THROUGH TUESDAY/...
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AS OF 18Z...MID LEVEL TROUGH WILL BE OFF THE COAST SHORTLY...TAKING THE MID CLOUD CEILING WITH IT. LOOK FOR WEST WINDS TO DIMINISH LATER THIS AFTERNOON WITH LIGHT WINDS TONIGHT. LITTLE TO NO FOG EXPECTED DUE TO DRY MOISTURE PROFILES. FRIDAY...HIGH PRESSURE NEARLY OVERHEAD WITH LIGHT WINDS AND CLEAR SKIES. EXTENDED OUTLOOK...VFR THURSDAY THROUGH SATURDAY. RAIN RETURNING SUNDAY AND POSSIBLY MONDAY. VFR TUESDAY.
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&& .MARINE...
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NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... AS OF 1000 AM THURSDAY...COLD FRONT IS WELL OFFSHORE THIS MORNING...AND WHILE THE GRADIENT WILL WEAKEN TODAY...GUSTY WINDS STILL EXIST OVER THE WATERS. LATEST BUOY OBS STILL SHOW WINDS OF 15-20 KTS WITH GUSTS OVER 25 KTS FROM THE WEST...DRIVING SEAS TO 4-7 FT AWAY FROM THE IMMEDIATE NEAR-SHORE WATERS. AS HIGH PRESSURE BUILDS NORTHEAST FROM THE GULF COAST STATES...THE GRADIENT WILL RELAX FURTHER...AND THE COMBINATION OF EASING WINDS PLUS THE OFFSHORE COMPONENT WILL CAUSE WAVE HEIGHTS TO DROP BELOW SCA THRESHOLDS THIS AFTN. CURRENT HEADLINE IS IN EFFECT UNTIL 1PM...AND SEE NO REASON TO CHANGE THIS AT PRESENT. THIS HIGH PRESSURE WILL CONTINUE TO BUILD EAST THROUGH TONIGHT...SO WINDS WILL EASE TO 10 KTS OR LESS WHILE VEERING GRADUALLY TO THE NE. WAVE HEIGHTS WILL FOLLOW...BECOMING JUST 1-2 FT LATE. SHORT TERM /FRIDAY THROUGH SATURDAY NIGHT/... AS OF 330 AM THURSDAY...HIGH PRESSURE OVERHEAD ON FRIDAY WILL MOVE FARTHER OFF SHORE THROUGH SATURDAY AS A COLD FRONT APPROACHES THE CAROLINAS. A LIGHT NORTHERLY FLOW EARLY FRIDAY WILL COME AROUND TO THE SOUTH BY SAT NIGHT BUT WITH HIGH PRESSURE REMAINING NEARLY OVERHEAD AS IT SHIFTS SLOWLY EAST...WINDS WILL MAINLY BE LIGHT AND VARIABLE...10 KTS OR LESS FRI AND SAT. OVERALL SEAS WILL BE 3 FT OR LESS BUT WNA SHOWS A VERY LONG PERIOD UP TO 17 SECOND NE SWELL MIXING IN OVER THE WEEKEND. LONG TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY/... AS OF 330 AM THURSDAY...HIGH PRESSURE WILL SHIFT FARTHER OFF SHORE AS A COLD FRONT DROPS DOWN FROM THE NORTH. THIS FRONT MAY GET HUNG UP OVER OR JUST NORTH OF THE LOCAL WATERS ON SUNDAY WITH A SOUTHERLY RETURN FLOW PERSISTING SUNDAY INTO MONDAY BEFORE THE FRONT ACTUALLY GETS PUSHED SOUTH BY TUES. UNCERTAINTY EXISTS AS TO HOW FAR SOUTH THE FRONT WILL MAKE IT AND IT MAY BISECT OUR WATERS FOR PART OF THE TIME WITH NORTHERLY WINDS ON THE NORTH SIDE AND SOUTHERLY WINDS ON THE SOUTH SIDE. WINDS MAY PICK UP SLIGHTLY AS FRONT NEARS THE WATERS. THEREFORE SEAS MAY SPIKE UP A BIT TO NEAR 4 FT LATE SUNDAY INTO MONDAY BUT OVERALL EXPECT SEAS TO REMAIN 3 FT OR LESS.
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&& .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
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SC...NONE. NC...NONE. MARINE...SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY UNTIL 1 PM EST THIS AFTERNOON FOR AMZ250-252-254-256.
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&& $$ NEAR TERM...17 SHORT TERM...RGZ LONG TERM...RGZ AVIATION...43

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