Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Raleigh/Durham, NC

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000 FXUS62 KRAH 260130 AFDRAH Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Raleigh NC 930 PM EDT Mon Sep 25 2017 .SYNOPSIS... High pressure over much of the Eastern states will bring mainly dry and warm weather over the region through Thursday. Maria is forecast to move northward over the western Atlantic, staying off the North Carolina coast, through midweek, before moving quickly northeast and out to sea on Thursday. A cold front will cross the region Thursday night, bringing much cooler air for the upcoming weekend. && .NEAR TERM /THROUGH TONIGHT/... As of 930 PM Monday... High clouds streaking over NC, toward the NW off the top of Maria, will persist overnight. But more significant will be the low clouds, currently noted by observations and prelim/non-op GOES-16 imagery over the central and northern coastal area of NC. These are expected to push westward over central NC over the next several hours, bringing a trend to overcast skies over all but the far western CWA (western Piedmont) overnight. Spotty showers are currently located just east of the forecast area, and while a few of these may work into the coastal plain tonight, they would be isolated, very shallow, and unlikely to generate measurable precip. As such, will have just isolated sprinkles over the far east overnight. Using a blend of current trends and high res temp guidance, and factoring in the usual cooler spots of the last couple of nights (far western and northern Piedmont, which also will see fewer clouds and better radiational cooling), expect lows from the low 60s NW to around 70 SE. -GIH && .SHORT TERM /TUESDAY AND TUESDAY NIGHT/... As of 130 PM Monday... Maria is expected to slowly lift northward and remain a couple hundred miles off the NC coast. Thus, central NC will remain well west of the track of the hurricane. Most locations across the area will remain dry, with only a few light showers associated with some weakening outer bands possible Tuesday-Tuesday night across the far eastern Coastal Plain counties. The main impacts will be mostly cloudy to overcast skies and some breezy conditions, with gusts up to 30 mph mainly across the Coastal Plain and eastern Sandhills. High temps are expected to be in the lower to mid 80s and lows in the upper 60s to near 70. && .LONG TERM /WEDNESDAY THROUGH MONDAY/... As of 310 PM Monday... Unseasonably warm and dry conditions will occur through the first half of the extended, followed by a return to more seasonable temperatures by the weekend. Tropical Cyclone Maria will make its closest approach to the NC coast Wednesday and Wednesday night, though still a couple hundred miles offshore. The difference in pressure between Maria and high pressure anchored over the New England will result in a steady northerly sfc wind over central NC Wed, with sustained winds 9-13 mph, and gusts 20-25 mph confined mostly to the far northeast Piedmont and northern coastal plain. The long ne low level fetch will pull Atlantic moisture into the ne third of central NC, resulting in variably cloudy skies. Elsewhere, skies will vary between partly cloudy to mostly sunny. Afternoon temperatures will run 7-10 degrees above normal for late September, reaching well into the 80s across the north, and near 90-lower 90s across the south. While well above normal, these projected high temperatures will be just shy of record highs for September 27. The threat for showers still appears to be minimal as best low level convergence and deeper moisture will reside well to our east-ne. Have confined the slight chance PoP to an area along and east of a Wilson-Roanoke Rapids line. Thursday into Friday, a s/w crossing from the Great Lakes into New England will propel a cold front sewd toward central NC Thursday, passing overhead late Thu-Thu evening. Moisture limited with this feature and convergence anemic; so will maintain a dry frontal passage at this time. The approach of this weather feature will cause Maria to turn to the ne and accelerate away from the U.S. coast. Prior to frontal passage, expect another unseasonably warm afternoon with temperatures back into the upper 80s-lower 90s. Notably cooler air mass will filter into central NC by Friday as afternoon temperatures will be 7-10 degrees cooler compared to Thursday. Another s/w will cross southern New England/northern Mid Atlantic Saturday, propelling another sfc front sewd across central NC. This front will reinforce the dry air mass already in place. Forcing associated with the s/w may result in a scattered/broken stratocu deck, primarily north and east of Raleigh on Saturday, though moisture appears too shallow to support any showers. The cooling trend will continue Saturday with high temperatures 75-80. Canadian high pressure will build into our region Sunday into Monday, maintaining dry and seasonable conditions. Afternoon temperatures in the mid-upper 70s, with morning lows generally 50-55 with upper 40s probable in the normally colder locations. && .AVIATION /00Z TUESDAY THROUGH SATURDAY/ As of 800 PM Monday... 24 Hour TAF Period: VFR conditions to start out the TAF period will fall to MVFR and then IFR at eastern TAF sites overnight as lower clouds move in from the east with Hurricane Maria moving closer to the NC coast. Restrictions should be limited to low ceilings but there is some indication from models of at least MVFR visibilities at KRDU and KGSO prior to ceilings moving it. Low confidence in this scenario at this time but it is possible. Wind gusts of up to 20 kts and possibly the occasional higher gust will begin in the east after sunrise. This activity should continue through the end of the TAF period. Outlook: Showers and wind gusts associated with Hurricane Maria will continue at eastern TAF sites through Wednesday with a return to VFR conditions for the end of the week. && .CLIMATE... Record high temperatures across central NC for September 27 and 28. RECORD MAX (9/27) RECORD MAX (9/28) RDU 94 / 1998 95 / 1998 GSO 90 / 2007 92 / 1939 FAY 94 / 1986 95 / 1933 && .RAH WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... None. $$ SYNOPSIS...Hartfield NEAR TERM...Hartfield SHORT TERM...BSD/Franklin LONG TERM...WSS AVIATION...Ellis CLIMATE...RAH is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.