Area Forecast Discussion
Issued by NWS Newport/Morehead, NC

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FXUS62 KMHX 221238

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Newport/Morehead City NC
838 AM 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 915 AM Thursday...Stratocumulus moving off the coast at
mid-morning with some sunshine expected into early afternoon.
Additional mid-level cloudiness is likely this afternoon
rotating around deepening low well east of the Delmarva/Mid-
Atlantic region. Other than some tweaks to the sky cover, no big
changes to the forecast as high temperatures should be able to
reach to low/mid 50s, except mid/upper 40s Outer Banks. High-
resolution guidance indicates winds subsiding after midday.


As of 400 AM Thursday...Cooler and drier air mass will continue
to spread in with high pressure from NW. Winds not expected to
totally decouple with continued cold air advection but will
diminish enough to allow temps to drop to around 30 for
sheltered inland sections while coastal sections remain in mid

Issued Freeze Watch for Onslow county where growing season has
begun and several hours of temps below freezing possible,
especially NW of Hwy 17.


As of 400 AM Thursday...
Friday and Friday night...The upper trough across the eastern
seaboard lifts out while sfc high pressure builds into the
region from the east. Expect dry conditions with mainly sunny
skies Friday though will see 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 12Z Friday/...
As of 720 AM Thursday...VFR conditions expected through the TAF
period. Upper low has moved off mid Atlantic coast but another
shortwave moving through in cyclonic flow aloft will produce
some SCU and AC through the day with NW winds gusting to 20 KT.
Mostly SKC and light winds tonight but dry conditions expected
to preclude fog development.

Long Term /Friday through Monday/...
As of 430 AM Thursday...VFR conditions will prevail into mid-
day 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 /through Tonight/...
As of 915 AM Thursday...At mid-morning, still seeing gusts as
high as 27 knots at Diamond Buoy, off of Ocracoke and at
Hatteras Coast Guard Station with seas still running 6-9 feet.
Latest high-resolution wind guidance shows wind subsiding by
midday with seas are likely to remain elevated into Friday,
especially central waters. No major changes to the marine
forecast at this time.

Long Term /Friday through Monday/...
As of 430 AM Wed...High pressure builds across the area Friday
and moves 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 around 4-6 ft north to 2-4 ft south Friday morning
gradually subside through the day and expected to be below SCA
criteria across the northern waters by 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 Watch from late tonight through Friday morning for
MARINE...Small Craft Advisory until noon EDT today for AMZ130-131-135.
     Small Craft Advisory until 4 PM EDT Friday for AMZ150-152-154.
     Small Craft Advisory until 5 PM EDT this afternoon for AMZ156-



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