Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 140322 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 1019 PM EST Fri Jan 13 2017 .SYNOPSIS... A cold front will drop through the area tonight with cooler conditions prevailing through the weekend. A warming trend will gear up Tuesday through Thursday as south winds prevail ahead of another cold front. Rain chances will ramp up late next week as the front stalls, followed by a low pressure system from the Gulf states. && .NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 AM SATURDAY MORNING/...
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As of 1000 PM Friday...The back door cold front was moving across the Forecast Area and will be moving south of LBT and SUT through 1030p and FLO and MYR just after midnight. Winds briefly gusted to 20 to 25 mph at ILM when the front moved through. Clouds were increasing in the wake of the front with winds shifting to the NE and ENE. Given the incoming airmass will be characterized by falling dewpoints, have refrained from any inclusion of fog overnight. The column saturates nicely between about 1 and 4 kft and so we expect skies to become cloudy. However, below 1 kft, there remains a sufficient amount of dry air which will make it difficult for developing light rain to reach the surface. Will include just the smallest of chances across portions of the area Sat morning when low-level saturation appears greatest per model soundings. Lows will be dropping into the mid and upper 40s with lower 50s southernmost areas.
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&& .SHORT TERM /6 AM SATURDAY MORNING THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Friday...Weak cold air damming will take hold Saturday morning as high pressure wedges down the Carolina Piedmont. Expect cooler and cloudier conditions to prevail with highs ranging from the lower 50s in the Lumberton-Burgaw corridor to the lower 60s closer to the Santee River. Chances for measurable rains look quite low in the absence of deep moisture, strong isentropic ascent and upper level forcing within the subtropical ridge. Lows will range from the lower 40s north to the mid 50s roughly along/south of US Highway 74/76. There are some signals that some low stratus and fog (due to stratus build-down) could occur across the interior and far southern areas early Sunday, but SREF probabilities (for vsbys <1nm and cigs <1000 ft) are still quite low. This will have to be watched as the GFS-based statistical guidance has been showing this signal for several consecutive cycles. Wedge briefly breaks down Sunday before reinserting itself Monday. The wedge looks to hold on the longest across the Wilmington Metro area, so expect the coolest conditions to occur there Sunday afternoon. Highs will range upper 50s northeast areas to the upper 60s across portions of Williamsburg, Georgetown and Florence counties withe upper 50s north to mid 60s far south for Monday. Lows will range from the lower 40s north to the upper 40s south. Rain chances will remain minimal with subtropical ridging hold firm aloft. && .LONG TERM /MONDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...Surface wedge of high pressure to our north begins to retreat on Monday while mid level ridge builds off the coast. Tuesday brings a further eastward shift of the surface high and increased magnitude of the mid level anticyclone. On Wednesday the upper ridge joins the surface high in its eastward progression. This should allow for a moisture- deepening southwesterly flow to develop. This leads to a late day and nighttime increase in rain chances that will persist into Thursday. Monday`s highs in the low 60s will be above climatology but also the coolest day of the forecast as the return flow continues and deepens. && .AVIATION /00Z SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 00z...Clear skies will give way to MVFR ceilings with FROPA later this evening. Moisture pooling below the frontal inversion will result in lowering ceilings Saturday morning. Guidance seems too aggressive with developing and persisting IFR through the day Saturday, so have opted to keep MVFR for now. Extended Aviation Outlook: Periods of MVFR/IFR Saturday into early Sunday due to low cigs. && .MARINE...
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NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 1000 PM Friday...A back door cold front was on the move across the waters and will move south of the mouth of the Cape Fear River around 1030p. In its wake, a brief cold and dry NE surge will develop. Wind speeds will be up to 15 to 20 kt with some gusts up to 25 kt. Seas will build up to 4 to 6 ft. A Small Craft Advisory is in effect for the northern two legs of our coastal waters from 05z til 16z on Sat. Across the remainder of the waters, a Small Craft Should Exercise Caution headline has been issued. SHORT TERM /SATURDAY THROUGH SUNDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 PM Friday...Initial post frontal surge will gradually diminish Saturday morning as the high pressure wedge settles in across the region. The combination of gusty winds around 25 kt and some 6 ft seas east of Cape Lookout necessitates keeping Small Craft Advisories in place from Surf City to Little River Inlet through late morning with Small Craft Exercise Caution headlines for remaining waters. Expect improving conditions as the day progresses with winds settling down to north 10 kt by afternoon and west to northwest 5-10 kt overnight. Seas will also subside 2-3 ft Saturday afternoon with 1-2 ft overnight. Fairly nebulous wind regime will prevail Sunday as the wedge briefly breaks down with winds becoming northeast Sunday Night into Monday as wedge reasserts itself. Winds look to peak 10-15 kt Sunday Night into Monday with seas 2-3 ft. LONG TERM /MONDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 300 PM Friday...Light NE winds on Monday will veer as high to our north begins to lift out to the NE. Despite winds dropping to just 10 kt there may be enough swell energy for a few 3 ft seas offshore but most of the 20nm zones should be more characterized by 2 ft. The high will remain well offshore on Tuesday and sink south just enough to turn local flow out of the SW but with no appreciable increase in wind speed. Seas will remain largely unchanged.
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&& .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES...
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SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...Small Craft Advisory until 11 AM EST Saturday for AMZ250- 252.
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&& $$ NEAR TERM...RJD SHORT TERM...CHS LONG TERM...CHS AVIATION...CRM

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