Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Raleigh/Durham, NC

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801 FXUS62 KRAH 242042 AFDRAH Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Raleigh NC 342 PM EST Fri Feb 24 2017 .SYNOPSIS... Strong high pressure aloft over the region today will shift east and offshore overnight in advance of a cold front that will cross the area on Saturday. Expect near record warmth ahead of the front, with cooler temperatures on Sunday. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/...
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As of 342 PM FRIDAY... Near record warmth expected again today. Strong upper ridging will extend from the Gulf of Mexico NE across the Carolinas and SE Virginia. The surface high pressure will extend from offshore to over the SE states including NC, with resultant onset of southerly return flow allowing for an increase in low-level moisture, evident in an extensive but flat cumulus and stratocumulus field today, along with an increase in BL dewpoints into the mid to upper 60s. The southerly return flow and dry soil conditions will aide in challenging record high temps for a second consecutive day. Low- level thicknesses yesterday evening verified at 1380 meters(~50 meters above normal). Thus, with today`s projected thickness of 1300 to 1305, we should match or surpass yesterday`s readings by a few degrees. Highs 76 to 81, warmest SE. Tonight... the S-SW wind flow is forecast to begin to increase ahead of the deepening cyclone pivoting NEwd through the Ohio Valley and Great Lakes. Associated sfc cold front is expected to reach the southern Appalachians by daybreak. Strengthening moist WAA in advance of the front could support an isolated shower across the far NW zones, otherwise, any rain chances will hold until after 12z Saturday with the timing of the cold front through the area between 15z to 00z. The increasing cloud cover and southerly winds will make for a mild night. Lows in the mid 50s.
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As of 342 PM FRIDAY... Deepening cyclone will lift north into Ontario and Quebec, with attendant trailing sfc cold front crossing the area Saturday afternoon/evening. With the better dynamics and deeper moisture lifting off to the north, accompanying band of convection will weaken across North Carolinas, with only isolated to scattered convection skirting across the northern tier. Temperatures will approach record territory once again, especially across the south-southeastern tier where it will remain mostly dry. Highs ranging from mid 70s NW to lower 80s SE. It will be breezy as well, with sustained winds of 15 to 18 kts, gusting to 25 to 30kts. As far as severe potential: Steep low-level rates from the unseasonably strong diurnal heating along with mid-level lapse rates of 6.8 to 7.50 C/Km will result in weak destabilization of 500 to 1000 J/Kg across central NC. Given impressive 50 to 60kts of unidirectional shear, it will be possible to see an isolated strong to severe wind gust across the northern tier. Strong post-frontal dry cold air advection Friday evening/night will result in abrupt clearing and seasonable overnight lows in the lower 30s NW to upper 30s/near 40 SE.
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&& .LONG TERM /SUNDAY THROUGH FRIDAY/... As of 205 PM Friday... A broad upper level trough covering most of the contiguous U.S. will result in a slightly unsettled weather pattern across the U.S. this period. Temperatures, overall, are expected to remain above or well above normal through mid-week. Afterwards, lower than normal heights translates to near or slightly below normal temperatures for the later half of the work week. A series of upper disturbances will keep the atmosphere slightly unsettled across central NC for the beginning of this period. High pressure building into our region Sunday in the wake of an exiting s/w and attendant sfc cold front will lead to drier cool conditions Sunday. This high quickly scoots offshore Monday, leading to an appreciable warm up with high temps expected to be about 8-10 degrees warmer than Sunday afternoon highs. Models in general agreement lifting a mid-upper level across the Deep South and the Southeast U.S. Monday night into Tuesday, leading to a chance of showers. At this time, the highest threat for rain across central NC appears to be late Monday night into early Tuesday. A more amplified s/w will begin to affect our region Wednesday with another chance for showers and possibly a few thunderstorms late Wednesday into Wednesday night. This system exits our region Thursday morning, leading to a more stable and cooler period. Ahead of the mid week system, temperatures will once again average 10-20 degrees above normal with Wednesday`s high temps most likely in the 75-80 degrees range. Cooler temperatures anticipated Thu-Fri as a l/w trough develops over the eastern U.S. && .AVIATION /18Z FRIDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 130 PM Friday... 24 Hour TAF Period: The expansive VFR cu field will dissipate with loss of heating with south to southeasterly winds of 10kts or less. A cold front will approach the area from the west late tonight and is forecast to cross the area between 15z Saturday to 00z Sunday. With the approach of the front, southerly winds will increase at KINT and KGSO late tonight between 09 to 12z, which should preclude fog development across these western TAF sites. However at KRDU, KRWI and KFAY, winds are expected to remain light, which along with mostly clear skies could favor the development of sub-VFR ceilings and visibilities in fog/stratus. Strong heating and mixing ahead of the front will quickly disperse any fog or stratus that develops overnight. Expect sustain winds out of the SW of 15 to 18kts with gusts of 25 to 30kts, strongest in the east. A broken/weakening band of convection is expected to accompany the frontal passage through the area Saturday afternoon. With the better dynamics/forcing and deeper moisture lifting off to the north, the best chance will lie across the northern terminals. Thus, a few showers and possibly a thunderstorm or two is possible at KINT and KGSO between 16 to 20z and at RDU and RWI between 19 to 23z. Outlook: Strong post-frontal dry cold air advection will lead to a return to VFR conditions Saturday evening/night, with VFR conditions continuing through at least Mon as high pressure builds into and over the region. The chance for sub-VFR conditions and showers and a few storms will return Mon night into Tue as a warm front shifts northward through the area. && .CLIMATE... Record highs for February 24 and 25: Greensboro: 79 (1982) and 81 (1930). Raleigh: 81 (1982) and 82 (1930). Fayetteville: 83 (1930) and 85 (1930). && .RAH WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...Badgett NEAR TERM...CBL SHORT TERM...CBL LONG TERM...WSS AVIATION...CBL CLIMATE...Badgett is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.