Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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140 FXUS62 KILM 170903 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 342 AM EST Sat Feb 17 2018 .SYNOPSIS... Cool and damp conditions will exist today as a cold front to the south wavers across the region. High pressure will build down from the northwest tonight giving the front a push southward again, bringing drier and more seasonable weather for Sunday. The front will lift back to the north as a warm front Monday. Bermuda High pressure will bring very warm temperatures for much of next week. A front will approach the area late next week. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 300 AM Saturday...Cold front cleared the local forecast area as it dropped south through SC. Dewpoint temps were on a steady decline down into the mid 40s while temps were holding steadier up around 60 with the cooler air to the north advecting slowly south. Mid to upper ridge to the southeast will maintain a W-SW flow above the surface which will hold the front over SC in a more front parallel flow. This steepening frontal inversion will keep moisture locked in up through around 5k ft through today. Ceilings should lower heading into this afternoon as column moisture lowers down closer to the surface in increasing but weak isentropic lift as SW flow aloft increases and runs over the shallow cooler air mass. This will produce low clouds and drizzle or light rain through this afternoon. Temps should continue to drop through the morning hours reaching around 50 degrees through mid morning with only a slow rise to the mid 50s by this afternoon with clouds, rain and a cooler easterly flow. The wedge of high pressure from the north will weaken later today as shortwave rides east from the Tennessee Valley. The winds will come around to the E and then S by early this evening as wave of low pressure develops to the west along lingering front, which should help break up some of the low stratus but shallow moisture remains and some fog may develop at this time. As the wave of low pressure lifts off to the northeast, and high pressure begins to build down behind it, the cold front will get pushed south and east around daybreak on Sunday which will allow for some drier air to move in. Temps Sat night will drop to within a few degrees of 50 for most places. && .SHORT TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 AM Saturday...High pressure to our N will shove a cold front to our S before the start of this forecast period. This high will quickly move E and offshore, allowing the front to move back across the area during Mon. Forcing looks weak through the period. Weak isentropic upglide should develop Sun night into Mon. Model depictions of moisture profiles show clouds will be decreasing from N to S during Sun. However, this will be short lived and clouds should begin to build back across the area Sun night. Model soundings show the moisture deepening with near saturation being achieved from near the surface up through about 6 kft. A pronounced near surface inversion will likely hold low clouds over the area through at least Mon morning. These clouds may begin to erode Mon afternoon as the low level inversion erodes with passage of the warm front and a return to a light southerly flow. Some light rain may begin to break out Sun night into Mon morning with perhaps a few showers Mon afternoon and eve. None of the rainfall is expected to be significant and in fact, we are keeping POPs in the slight chance to low chance for measurable rainfall. No winter-like temps through the period. Highs on Sun will be in the lower to mid 60s. Highs on Mon will jump to the lower to mid 70s. The beaches will be coolest each day, near 60 Sun and near 70 on Mon. Lows will be in the upper 40s to lower 50s Sun night and in the upper 50s Mon night. && .LONG TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...Bermuda High pressure will bring out of season warmth to the area. Highs Tue and Wed will rise to around 80 away from the beaches along with drier conditions and more sunshine, although cirrus within the subtropical jet may still plague the area. On Thu a shortwave rotating around the ridge will try to suppress the expansive ridge and push a weak cold front into the area. Guidance has backed off on the southern progress of this feature, which seems likely based off the strength of the aforementioned ridge. Still, this feature impinging on the local area will bring more clouds with better shower chances and slightly cooler temperatures. However, this front will wash out quickly by the end of the week bringing drier weather once again for Fri, and temps will remain above climo even during this more unsettled period late in the week. && .AVIATION /06Z SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 06Z...Winds have shifted to the N-NE remaining around 5 to 10 kts behind a cold front sagging south into SC. Cloudy and damp conditions will exist through today as this front wavers across the area. Warm SW winds above the surface will ride over the shallow cool air mass producing low clouds and drizzle or light rain through today. Steep frontal inversion will keep this moisture locked in with VFR/MVFR ceilings dropping to IFR this afternoon. Potential for LIFR ceilings will exist later this afternoon with potential for fog this evening. Winds will continue to veer around to the E and then S by later today as the front lifts northward. Extended Outlook...MVFR/tempo IFR Sun morning becoming VFR. Tempo MVFR/IFR/SHRA cig/vsby Sun night/Mon. Becoming VFR Tue. VFR/SHRA Wed. && .MARINE... NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT... As of 300 AM Saturday...Have dropped all headlines with passage of cold front. Winds behind the front shifted to the N-NE and diminished to under 10 kts or so with some higher gusts. This allowed seas to settle down to 3 to 5 ft overnight. Winds will shift around through today becoming more easterly this afternoon and turning to the S-SW as a wave of low pressure develops along front to the west helping it lift back north. Seas will be 2 to 4 ft overall, but the enhanced on shore push this morning should cause a brief bump up in seas to near 3 to 5 ft but not expecting any headlines at this time. As the wave lifts off to the northeast overnight, the front will get pushed south and east through the waters around daybreak on Sun. Winds will veer around once again at this time to the W then NW and around to the N mainly just after this period. Seas will drop to 2 to 4 ft most waters through Sat night. SHORT TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 AM Saturday...A cold front will lie S of the waters on Sun and then move N of the area on Mon. N winds will veer to NE Sun morning and then to E Sun night. The direction will continue to veer, becoming SE Mon and then S Mon night. The strongest winds will occur on Sun, up to 15 to 20 kt. Wind speeds will be 10 kt or less overnight Sun and through Mon night. Seas will be 2 to 4 ft Sun, subsiding to 2 to 3 ft overnight Sun and then persisting through Mon night. LONG TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...Bermuda type high pressure setting up offshore through Wednesday. As this develops, winds will slowly veer from south to southwest, but speeds will be only around 10 kt regardless of direction. With light winds and a prolonged period of S/SW winds, seas will be primarily driven by a SE swell but remain low amplitude. Highest seas are forecast Wednesday when wave heights will reach around 3 ft. && .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...None. && $$ NEAR TERM...RGZ SHORT TERM...RJD LONG TERM...JDW AVIATION...RGZ is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.