Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Wilmington, NC

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000 FXUS62 KILM 141739 AFDILM Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Wilmington NC 1239 PM EST Sat Jan 14 2017 .SYNOPSIS... Relatively cooler high pressure will extend into the Carolinas through the weekend. A warming trend will take place Tuesday through Thursday in south winds 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 /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 1222 PM Saturday...Persistent stratus layer still enveloping our NC counties although steadily eroding from the south over our SC counties as a stalled back door cold front sits south of Georgetown county. Forecast good to go with no changes needed. Expect places with cloud cover will not hit 60 today, with some places to the south peaking in the low 60s. Previous discussion follows: Maximums to run 15-20 degrees cooler than yesterday, and much more aligned today with climatology for mid January. The current NE surge in wake if a cold front is not a strong one, but low- level moisture advection will bring a fair amount of clouds today. No rain chances today as moisture profile contains little depth. Clouds and NE winds to prevail tonight with min temperatures in the mid and upper 40s. && .SHORT TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT/... As of 400 AM Saturday...Good bit of clouds this period as low- level moisture remains high. This will be helped along by resurgence of high pressure late Sunday into Monday as a secondary wedge becomes established. Highs similar both Sunday and Monday but slightly cooler Monday as the wedge builds in. No significant rainfall in the forecast this period but a few sprinkles on Monday cannot be ruled out as moisture deepens to 700 MB. && .LONG TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 300 AM Saturday...Mid to upper ridge extending up through the southeast will shift east along with surface high, allowing a deep S-SW flow of warmer and moister air to feed into the Carolinas. Tuesday will warm and combine with some increasing sunshine to produce temps close to 70 while Wed will continue warm with temps in the 70s, but expect increasing clouds and chc of showers ahead of approaching cold front. The GFS shows a deeper trough aloft pushing cold front a bit farther south allowing drier high pressure to build in behind cold front Wed night into Thurs. The ECMWF keeps front draped closer, leaving a cloudier and wetter day for Thurs. Overall it looks like more unsettled weather may affect the Carolinas Thurs or Fri. Temps will drop back down several degrees behind front late Wed into Thurs but will continue to remain above normal. && .AVIATION /18Z SATURDAY THROUGH THURSDAY/...
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AS OF 18Z...Low confidence forecast for this valid period as stratus slowly erodes this aftn, but may redevelop overnight. Cold front has sagged well south of the terminals, and cool/moist advection has allowed MVFR stratus to envelop the area. This stratus is gradually eroding with aftn heating as noted on satellite pictures, and expect all terminals to slowly lift to VFR before sunset beneath weakning N/NE winds. What happens tonight is still very uncertain however, as guidance diverges with IFR potential. NAM guidance suggests winds backing all the way to the west and drying out the column enough to prevent IFR stratus, while the GFS has more subtle backing and redevelops stratus everywhere after midnight. While significant drying is not expected this aftn, setting up a situation where the low-level column could quickly re-saturate tonight, lack of model agreement plus the potential for some drier air, makes ceiling forecast difficult. Have walked back IFR a bit from inherited both in timing and intensity, but maintained IFR at all terminals except ILM, and will hope to gain some better confidence with the next TAF set. Any stratus will burn off only very slowly thanks to continued light winds on Sunday, so IFR/MVFR could persist into Sunday aftn with winds becoming north at 5-10 kts once again. Extended Outlook...Stratus/fog possible each morning through Tuesday. Cold front expected Wednesday will be accompanied by showers and MVFR. VFR Thursday.
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&& .MARINE... NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 1222 PM Saturday...Latest obs show NE winds in the 10 to 15 kt range with 3 to 5 ft seas. Have allowed all advisories and headlines to lapse as a result. Previous discussion follows: Advisory conditions until late morning or midday as the surge of NE wind plays out, but improving marine conditions tonight as winds tail off. E swell wave of long period around 11 seconds will interact with NE wind waves in 4-5 seconds intervals. NO TSTMS this period. SHORT TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH MONDAY NIGHT/... As of 400 AM Saturday...After a brief lull in Sunday, an uptick in NE winds will prevail as a secondary surge unfolds late Sunday into Monday. Not a strong surge so only a `Cautionary` headline may suffice this period as opposed to an Advisory. Expect gusts to 20 KT Sunday night through Monday with no TSTMS expected. LONG TERM /TUESDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 300 AM Saturday...South to southwest winds will develop on Tues and will increase ahead of approaching cold front. This will drive seas up to 3 to 5 ft through Wed, but as the front moves into area waters and possibly stalls late Wed, the winds will veer slightly becoming more westerly. The off shore component to the flow will keep highest seas well off the coast. && .ILM WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... SC...None. NC...None. MARINE...None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...RGZ NEAR TERM...MJC/REK SHORT TERM...MJC LONG TERM...RGZ AVIATION...JDW MARINE...MJC/REK/RGZ is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.