Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Newport/Morehead, NC

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FXUS62 KMHX 222225

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Newport/Morehead City NC
625 PM EDT Thu Mar 22 2018

High pressure will build in from the northwest through Saturday. Low
pressure will move across just south of the area Saturday night and
Sunday. High pressure will extend over the area from the north


As of 620 PM Thursday...Quiet weather tonight as high pressure
continues to build over the region from the NW. An area of mid
to high cloudiness persists over the northern half of the area
early this evening and is forecast to dissipate by midnight
leaving clear skies across the area overnight. Winds inland and
in sheltered locations near the coast should be able to decouple
late this evening, allowing temperatures to drop rapidly as the
airmass continues to dry with dewpoints currently in the 20s.
Overnight lows inland and sheltered locations will fall into the
upper 20s to lower 30s. Therefore a Freeze Warning has been
issued for Onslow and Carteret counties late tonight and early
Friday as lows of 32 or lower are expected in interior and
sheltered locations and where the growing season has officially
begun this week. Low dewpoints and light mixing should prevent
any frost formation tonight.


As of 310 PM Thursday...Strong mid-level shortwave will move
offshore by early Friday with rising heights as a weak surface
ridge builds across eastern NC. This should lead to another
sunny day with highs temperatures mostly in the mid 50s, similar
to today, with upper 40s over the northern Outer Banks.
Winds should be less than today, from the NW at generally 10-15


As of 400 AM Thursday...
Friday night...The upper trough across the eastern seaboard
lifts out while sfc high pressure builds into the region from
the east. Expect increasing high clouds Friday night as the
next storm system approaches from the west. Continued below
normal temps this period with low level thicknesses supporting
highs in the mid 50s inland but cool water temps will limit
highs to around 50 NE sections and especially the OBX.

Saturday through Sunday...A complex forecast this weekend and
two systems phase across the region. A southern stream shortwave
and sfc low pressure across the central Plains approaches from
the west while a northern stream shortwave digs south across the
mid-Atlantic with cold Canadian high pressure building in from
the north.

Moisture continues to increase through the day Saturday as the
low pressure area approaches from the west. Some timing
differences persist in the models as to when precip will start
with faster models indicating late morning though most hold off
mid to late afternoon as it will take some time to moisten the
column. The best chance for precip occurs Saturday night when
isentropic lift and moisture are maximized. The low will weaken
as it approaches the area as it encounters the high wedging into
the region but then redevelops off the coast as it encounters
good baroclinicity invof the Gulf Stream. Precip amounts
expected to be less than a half inch as the moisture tap from
the Gulf of Mexico is limited. Keeping p-type as rain for now
but some models have been suggesting the potential for wintry
precip, especially across the northern tier. The GFS has been
most bullish showing some snow impacting the northern areas but
the 00z ECMWF now showing an isothermal layer in this area as
well, so it is something to watch as this system develops.
Ultimately wintry precip chances will depend on the timing and
strength of the high building in from the north as well as the
track of the low, and especially the 850mb low, as it moves
across the area. Temps continue below normal this period with
highs Saturday in the mid 40s NE coastal sections to mid 50s
south. Lows Saturday night expected in the mid 30s to around 40
and continued cool Sunday with highs in the mid to upper 40s
most areas with lower 50s possible southern sections.

Monday through Wednesday...A blocking pattern develops early to
mid week as the upper trough lifts out early next week and
becomes a vertically stacked low across the NW Atlantic while
longwave ridging builds along the eastern seaboard. The upper
ridge will maintain dry conditions while sfc high pressure
continued to wedge in from the north keeping cool temps to the
area Monday. The high weakens as we move into mid-week with the
airmass gradually modifying, however how quickly it modifies
will depend on the position and track of the cut-off low off the
coast. A southerly track closer to the coast as suggested by
the ECMWF will keep northerly flow and cooler temps in to mid-
week while a farther offshore northerly track as indicated by
the GFS allows the high to push south faster bringing greater
warming as we move into mid week and could see temps into the
upper 60s/lower 70s as early as Wednesday, especially southern


Short Term /through Friday/...
As of 620 PM Thursday...Mid to high clouds persist over the
northern TAF sites early this evening and are forecast to
dissipate by midnight with clear skies expected through Friday
as high pressure builds over the area. Winds will gust to 15 to
20 kt at times early this evening and again Friday.

Long Term /Friday Night through Tuesday/...
As of 430 AM Thursday...VFR conditions will prevail into
midday Saturday as high pressure remains in control. A weak low
pressure area will approach from the west Saturday and move
across the area Saturday night. Could see sub-VFR conditions
develop mid to late Saturday afternoon but best chances for
reduced cigs/vsbys will occur Saturday night, with IFR or below
likely. The low pressure area pulls away from the area Sunday
but lingering low level moisture may continue to bring sub-VFR
conditions into Sunday. Expect pred VFR Sunday night and Monday.


Short Term /Tonight and Friday/...
As of 620 PM Thursday...The NW winds have temporarily
diminished to 10 to 15 kt early this evening but are forecast to
surge back up to 15 to 20 kt late this evening through Friday
as high pressure slowly builds over the waters from the NW. Seas
will continue a bit rough at 5-7 feet tonight then trend down
slightly in the advisory area for Friday to 4-6 feet, and will
drop to 2-4 feet elsewhere.

Long Term /Friday Night through Tuesday/...
As of 430 AM Wed...High pressure will move offshore Saturday
with a weak area of low pressure passing across the area
Saturday night, which deepens as it moves away from the area
Sunday into Monday. NW winds around 10-20 kt becomes N Friday
night, then weakens to around 10 kt Saturday veering to E
Saturday night as low pressure moves across the area. Winds
become N around 20-30 kt by Sunday afternoon into Monday.

Seas will gradually subside and should be below SCA criteria
across the northern waters by Friday evening. Seas continue to
diminish Saturday and Saturday night, but then build quickly
Sunday as low pressure deepens off the coast, reaching around
7-10 ft north and 5-8 ft south by Monday.


NC...Freeze Warning from 2 AM to 9 AM EDT Friday for NCZ095-098.
MARINE...Small Craft Advisory until 4 PM EDT Friday for AMZ150-152-154.


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