Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Blacksburg, VA

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000 FXUS61 KRNK 191915 AFDRNK Area Forecast Discussion National Weather Service Blacksburg VA 315 PM EDT Wed Oct 19 2016 .SYNOPSIS... High pressure is centered just off the southeast Atlantic Coast. A cold front extends from New England, through the Ohio Valley, then southwest into Texas. This front is expected to stall north of our region today. Low pressure will move northeast along this boundary on Thursday, the front then accelerating east through the Mid-Atlantic States Friday, and off the coast by Friday night. && .NEAR TERM /UNTIL 6 AM THURSDAY MORNING/... As of 400 AM EDT Wednesday... High pressure is centered just off the southeast Atlantic Coast. A cold front extends from New England through the Ohio Valley, then southwest into Texas. Wind flow between the front to our northwest and the high to our southeast is from the southwest, with warm air advection bathing the southeastern United States, including the Mid Atlantic, with unseasonably warm temperatures. Cooler air resides northwest of the frontal boundary, but this cooler airmass is not expected to reach our local area until late Thursday night at the earliest. The cold front is forecast to stall today, remaining north and west of our region through Thursday. Flow aloft has become parallel to the front, thus allowing the surface front slow its forward/southeastward progress. A strong short wave currently moving out of the northern Rockies will move east, re-energizing the surface front Thursday. Until then, our forecast area will remain on the warm side of this feature with thicknesses supporting surface temperatures more indicative of summer, readings 10 to 20 degrees above normal (see climate section of this AFD for Records). No rain is expected until the arrival of the front, skies remaining mostly clear with the exception of areas north of I-64 closer to the front. Some scattered afternoon cu may develop elsewhere, but with little or no vertical development per subsidence from the surface high which will be the primary influence for our weather through tonight. && .SHORT TERM /6 AM THURSDAY MORNING THROUGH FRIDAY NIGHT/... As of 300 AM EDT Wednesday... A trough in the central United States will deepen and move east across our region by Friday night. This will allow a cold front to approach on Thursday and travel east through the eastern United States on Thursday night into Friday. The cold front will push off the east coast Friday night. The unseasonably mild weather will continue on Thursday with the south to southwest flow across our region in advance of an approaching cold front. Refer to climate section for records. High temperatures Thursday will range from the mid 70s in the mountains to the mid 80s in the Piedmont. Isolated to scattered showers and a few thunderstorms, will be possible across the mountains Thursday afternoon in advance of the cold front in the unstable air. Swody2 has highlighted a marginal risk of severe storms to our west with strong winds the main threat. The cold front will move east through the region Thursday night into Friday. Scattered showers and isolated thunderstorms will develop ahead and along the front. Low temperatures Thursday night will be about five degrees cooler than Wednesday night with readings from around 50 degrees in the mountains to near 60 degrees in Piedmont. The cold front will exit the area by Friday night and slide into the Atlantic Saturday morning. Showers will end in the east fairly quickly. Meanwhile in the west, we expect lingering upslope showers to continue given the forecasted northwest 850 mb flow around 35 kts continuing into Friday night. High temperatures on Friday will cool into the mid 50s in the west to the upper 60s in the east. In wake of the cold front, surface wind across the mountains will be gusty with wind gusts up to around 25 mph common. In the highest elevations, an isolated wind gust to near 40 mph may be possible. Wind gusts will remain below wind advisory levels. In the foothills and the Piedmont, gusts of 20 to 25 mph will be more likely. Late Friday night into early Saturday morning, enough colder air will move into the region to consider mentioning snow flurries mixed with rain in the highest elevations around 4000 feet agl. With a warm ground, no snow accumulations are expected. Low temperatures Friday night into Saturday morning will drop into the mid 30s in the northwest mountains to the mid 40s in the Piedmont. It is a good time to find your cool season gear and jackets. && .LONG TERM /SATURDAY THROUGH WEDNESDAY/... As of 130 PM EDT Tuesday... During the Saturday through Monday this portion of the forecast the general synoptic pattern over the region will be one of a zonal to northwest flow aloft as an upper ridge builds over the Rockies and then translates eastward into the Mississippi River Valley. Closer to home, high pressure will again take up residency over the southeast United States. The impact of our area will be one of little or no precipitation and temperatures trending milder each day, with Saturday being the coolest day of the next seven days with readings at, or slightly below normal. By Monday, temperatures around five degrees above normal are forecast. What precipitation that does exist will be lingering, and dissipating, upslope showers across the western portion of the area that will conclude Saturday night. Monday night into Tuesday, a shortwave trough is expected to progress through the northwest flow and cross New England. An associated backdoor cold front is currently forecast to drop south into and through the area. While precipitation is not expected at this time, a drop to temperatures around normal for this time of year is anticipated. && .AVIATION /19Z WEDNESDAY THROUGH MONDAY/...
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As of 310 PM EDT Wednesday... High pressure aloft will remain anchored over the southeast states through today. A cold front will approach from the north late in the day, but stall before moving into the area, then retreat to the north tonight and Thursday. Generally VFR conditions will prevail through the TAF valid period. Clouds close to the front, north of a KLWB to KLYH line will have ceilings of 4000-6000 feet and possible a few light showers. Winds will be light this evening, then increase out of the south-southwest late tonight and on Thursday. Higher elevations may have wind gusts up to 20 knots Thursday. Medium to high confidence that conditions will remain VFR through the 18Z end of the TAF forecast period. Extended aviation discussion... Showers will arrive in the mountains after 00Z/8PM Thursday and spread east across the region. The best chance of precipitation will be from midnight Thursday night through noon on Friday. This will be the most likely period of MVFR to IFR ceilings and visibilities. A much stronger cold front passes through the region Thursday night and Friday. A southwest to northwest wind shift is expected to occur Thursday night across the region with gusty winds behind the front continuing into Friday night and possibly Saturday. Areas of sub- VFR conditions will likely accompany the front and precipitation. A return to VFR conditions is expected for most areas Friday night into Saturday. The exception will be western parts of the region where a healthy northwest upslope flow, and lingering low level moisture, will prolong an IFR/MVFR ceiling during this time period. Even the mountain areas will become VFR again for Sunday and Monday.
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&& .CLIMATE... As of 400 AM EDT Wednesday... No records were set Tuesday, 18 October. Based on forecast temperatures, potential records may occur today at Danville and Blacksburg. Record maximum temperatures... Oct 19 Location Record Max Bluefield.....81 in 1984 Danville......85 in 1953 Lynchburg.....88 in 1938 Roanoke.......91 in 1938 Blacksburg....80 in 1991 Oct 20 Location Record Max Bluefield.....79 in 1993 Danville......88 in 1984 Lynchburg.....85 in 1993 Roanoke.......84 in 2005 Blacksburg....82 in 1985 && .RNK WATCHES/WARNINGS/ADVISORIES... VA...None. NC...None. WV...None. && $$ SYNOPSIS...PM NEAR TERM...PM SHORT TERM...KK LONG TERM...DS AVIATION...AMS/PM CLIMATE...AMS is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.