Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Mt. Holly, NJ-- Highlight Changed Discussion --
-- Discussion containing changed information from previous version are highlighted. --
FXUS61 KPHI 192026
Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Mount Holly NJ
326 PM EST Sun Feb 19 2017
A cold front will move south through our region early Monday. High
pressure will build over the Mid Atlantic Monday afternoon through
Tuesday before shifting offshore. A warm frontal passage occurs
early Wednesday. It will be followed by a cold front dropping down
into Pennsylvania and New Jersey early Friday which should return
north as a warm front early Saturday. Low pressure is probably
going to move from the Great Lakes region into southeast Canada
Saturday and sweep a cold front off the east coast this weekend.
.NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 AM MONDAY MORNING/...
Yet another spring-like day across the entire area, with even some
new record high temperatures occurring.
An upper-level trough in eastern Canada is forecast to amplify
southward some especially across New England. This will push a cold
front down from the north, also known as a backdoor front, later
tonight. As this occurs, cold air advection will strengthen some
later tonight however this is more notable across the northern
zones. This will allow temperatures to drop much more later tonight.
As surface high pressure begins to build in from the west and
northwest overnight, a subsidence inversion is forecast to
strengthen with some moisture pooling beneath it. This moist layer
looks rather shallow, however some guidance indicates some low
clouds developing toward daybreak especially for portions of
northeastern Pennsylvania into northwestern New Jersey. Areas
farther to the south, the moist layer looks delayed and therefore no
low cloud development is expected. A north-northwest wind will be
light tonight despite some cold air advection on the increase, as
surface high pressure draws closer.
Low temperatures were mostly a blend of MOS and continuity. The
hourly temperature and dew point grids are being adjusted this
afternoon based on the latest obs, then the LAMP/LAV guidance was
blended with continuity through early this evening. A forecast
challenge through this evening could be just how quickly the
boundary layer cools.
.SHORT TERM /6 AM MONDAY MORNING THROUGH 6 PM MONDAY/...
A strong upper-level trough/closed low is forecast to exit New
England through about early afternoon on Monday. This will allow
surface high pressure to slide across our area, although it remains
centered well to our north. This will provide a northerly wind
across the entire region, although this should be on the light side
given a loose pressure gradient. Some cold air advection is forecast
to continue through much of the day, with the coldest air aloft
found over our northern zones. This all translates into a cooler
day, however highs will still be several degrees above where we
should be for this time of year.
A strong subsidence inversion to start the morning may trap in some
lower clouds across mainly portions of northeastern Pennsylvania and
northwestern New Jersey, otherwise this should weaken as the
boundary layer warms enough. Otherwise, plenty of sunshine should
become dominant as the forecast soundings indicate the column
overall dries out through the day. High temperatures are mostly a
continuity and MOS blend. The winds may turn a bit more
northeasterly along the coast to assist with cooling off the chilly
.LONG TERM /MONDAY NIGHT THROUGH SUNDAY/...
This draft will update around 4PM, especially with discussion
Friday-weekend. However, most of this will stand pretty close to
as we are reading it.
500 MB: A strong ridge in the Great Lakes Monday night slides east.
A weak short wave cuts eastward into the ridge across New England
Wednesday. In the wake of the short wave, a ridge dominates over the
mid Atlantic States Thursday into Saturday before a strong short
wave moves into the Great Lakes over the weekend.
Temperatures: As our forecast area proceeds to a top 1 or 2 warmest
February on record and a top 10 warmest winter in the period of
record dating back to the late 19th century, the coming week of
Tuesday through Sunday should average 12 to 17 degrees above normal.
The coolest day is expected to be Tuesday...only several degrees
above normal, but thereafter, some model guidance points to a three
day period of temperatures 15 to 25 degrees above normal between
Thursday and Saturday. BUT... a wrinkle has developed. After near
record warmth on Thursday and high temperatures almost 30 degrees
above normal, a cold front will probably interrupt the excessive
warmth one day with a cool easterly flow on Friday.
Forecast basis: Unless otherwise noted, a 50 50 blend of the 12z/19
GFS/NAM MOS guidance Monday night-Tuesday night, thereafter the
12z/18 GFS MEXMOS Wednesday, and then the 15z/18 WPC guidance
Thursday-Sunday, with exceptions that follow.
The dailies including any possible significant insight...
Monday night...Fair.. some high cloudiness that may slightly limit
otherwise ideal radiational cooling. nearly calm wind.
Tuesday...WAA increasing high clouds limiting max temperature
potential. Chance showers may invade ne PA late in the day in the
leading portion of the instability burst. Wind southeast to south.
Max gust 15 MPH. Confidence: average on max temps.
Tuesday night...Chance of light showers during the evening ahead of
a warm front. Low probability there could be a touch of freezing
rain highest terrain above 1500 feet north of I-80. This ice risk
isnt in the HWO or zones since confidence is below average and
guidance favors min temps during any rain, above freezing.
Confidence: average or below average on the occurrence of any rain.
Wednesday...Becoming Sunny and warmer. Forecast temps may end up
several degrees warmer than now predicted. West wind. Confidence:
Wednesday night...Fair (thin high clouds). patchy fog possible in a
few countryside locations.
Thursday...mixed clouds and sun with near record warmth.
Considerable cirrus as per the GFS. Max temps may end up 5f warmer
than the now predicted 70 to 74F. Southwest wind. Confidence: above
Friday...early morning stratus/fog along a cool front that has
settled into our area. maybe a shower north of the boundary during
the afternoon or maybe the boundary doesn`t make it down into our
forecast area? otherwise considerable clouds. Confidence: below
average on the scenario. Note: considerable instability is
showing up in the GFS and ECMWF.
Friday night...a good chance of showers ahead of the cold front
moving east toward our area and/or the qstry front moving north
as warm front from I-78. Shower timing and temperature uncertainty
as well as wind uncertainty, though probably southeast turning
south to southwest, depending on latitude in our area. Note: Note:
considerable instability is showing up in the GFS and ECMWF.
Saturday...Maintained continuity. I think we need a 90 pop
here...as it should rain ahead of the cold front and there may
be a tstm. Operational EC and GGEM as well as the 12z/19 GEFS
are slower and at this time, did not want to raise hopes for
the GFS blustery dry westerly flow on Saturday. The UKMET is
kind of unsettling and if the next run is similar...we need to
rethink progressive cold frontal passage for Saturday morning.
Sunday...Becoming mostly Sunny and cooler but still above normal
temps as the sfc lows move northeast making it difficult to
import too much of the cold air from the midwest. Breezy with
west winds gusting 20 to 25 mph. Confidence: average.
.AVIATION /20Z SUNDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/...
The following discussion is for KPHL, KPNE, KTTN, KABE, KRDG, KILG,
KMIV, KACY and surrounding areas.
Rest of this afternoon...VFR with some lingering high level clouds
across the area. Northwest winds around 10 knots with some localized
gusts up to 20 knots possible.
Tonight...VFR. However, some guidance shows few to scattered
stratocumulus around 2500 feet developing towards daybreak mainly to
the north and west of PHL. Winds will remain out of the north to
northwest at 10 knots or less.
Monday...Some clouds near 2500 feet possible early mainly north and
west of PHL, otherwise VFR. Light north-northwest winds increase to
10-15 knots between 15-18Z.
Monday night...VFR with some cirrus. Light mostly north through east
wind or calm. Confidence: Much above average.
Tuesday...Cirrus ceilings may briefly lower to MVFR during the
late evening in scattered rain showers. South wind max gust around
15 kt during the afternoon becoming southwest at night.
Wednesday...VFR. This cirrus afternoon and night. west wind.
Confidence: Above average.
Thursday...Patchy fog possible early with mvfr vsby. Otherwise,
mostly VFR occasional cigs. West southwest wind. Confidence:
Friday...Patchy IFR or MVFR CIGS along a cold front that stalls and
begins returning north at night. Chance of a shower at night. Wind
east turning southeast. Confidence: Below average.
High pressure will gradually build in from the west and northwest
later tonight and Monday. This will result in a northerly wind,
however an increase in cold air advection overnight and Monday
morning should result in some increase in the winds especially
across the northern coastal waters. It appears that any gusts to 25
knots mainly across the northern ocean zones look to be short in
duration, therefore we opted to hold off on a Small Craft Advisory.
Otherwise, the conditions are expected to remain below advisory
criteria through the day Monday.
Monday night...northerly winds may gust near or above 20 kt at
times, but should stay just below 25 kt during the evening then
diminish during the night and turn northeast to east. Confidence:
Tuesday through Thursday...winds and seas will remain below SCA
criteria. Winds southeast Tuesday turning southwest Tuesday
night and continuing west to southwest Wednesday and Thursday
with local southerly afternoon sea breezes. Confidence: Above
Friday...easterly becoming southerly. Confidence: below average
with considerable uncertainty regarding direction and speed.
Several places have either tied or set a new record high
temperature for today, as of 3 PM. Preliminary Record Event
Reports (RER) are being issued for the sites breaking their
record highs, and the final RER`s will be issued late this
New records for this date have been established at PHL ILG ABE
and tied at TTN and RDG;
Here are/were the previous record highs for today:
Records will be added by 4 PM for next Wednesday and Thursday
as an overall unusually warm February continues.
The following monthly and seasonal expectations was number
crunched with our forecast at 9am this morning. We will tweet
and facebook this post tomorrow morning around 10 am with
basically one final check on the numbers, which could run even
warmer than what we now have posted.
We checked our past 24 hr max/mins, as well as the new max/min
fcst fm our office issued at 330 AM and the FTPRHA guidance
beyond. That also accounts for possible midnight mins tonight at
PHL ILG ACY, and also possible midnight mins Saturday night the
The only day in question is Friday when a cold front could settle
south to the Delmarva and leave us in cooler southeasterly
flow, thereby lowering the forecast average temperature by 7
degrees. Even so that would only lower the monthly average by
half a degree and that might be made up by warmer than fcst
temps on a couple of other days, especially non the 28th.
So, the forecast numbers continue warming. There is guidance
variability but its virtually certain we`re looking at a widespread
top 2 warmest February on record in our forecast area and a top
10 warmest winter season... records dating back to the late
19th century. Confidence: well above average. Details below.
PHL 43.3. #1 Normal 35.7 Record 42.2-1925 POR 1874
ABE 37.6 #2 Normal 30.7 Record 38.6-1998 POR 1922
ACY 42.2 #1 Normal 35.3 Record 41.6-1890 POR 1874
ILG 42.3 #1 tie Normal 35.1 Record 42.3-1903 POR 1895
PHL 40.1 #7
ABE 35.4 #5
ACY 39.6 #10
ILG 39.1 #6 tie
Past two years of monthly average temperatures through February
2017, a summary of above normal months listed below:
For ABE: 23 consecutive months of above normal temps!
FOR PHL: 22 of the past 23 months have been above normal.
For ACY: 19 of the past 23 months have been above normal. For
ILG: 17 of the past 23 months have been above normal.
(Jan Feb March 2015 was the last time we had significant and
persistent below normal monthly temps.)
February least on record:
Atlantic City may end up tied for 5th with very little opportunity
for snow on the horizon?
Long Term...Drag 326