We're right on track as far as temperatures goes from Friday's post, but the clouds are definitely hanging around more than expected. Latest surface data and the KSC sounding shows (1) Dew points across the area are dropping off nicely this morning...hence..even drier air today (2) Strong subsidence inversion exists just below 850mb trapping any remaining atmospheric moisture at the lowest levels (hence, the stratocumulus clouds). (3) Mid level 'trough' pushing south overhead (sort of like an elevated cold front)
LAST NIGHT: With the clouds coming in, overnight lows didn't drop off as much as they could have. However, it didn't affect the blog forecast as far as lows along the coast goes. We still got down to the upper 40s. It was the inland areas that were spared from the expected low 40s as a result of the "cloud blanket"...and they saw mostly mid-40s instead.
TODAY/TONIGHT: Still think Monday morning will be the coldest of mornings as was alluded to several days ago. Also, the train of thought continues with the notion that we won't reach 60 degrees today..or if so..for maybe an hour (or two at max). Clouds you ask? Good question! As you can see by the attached satellite image there is a healthy dose of them...they are shifting from north to south..at least that's how it looks from the satellite loop...although the winds at that level are from the west. Believe that with the ground level dew points falling that these clouds will begin to erode from the bottom up but that they will not disappear entirely..especially along the coast. The RUC is currently showing that they shouldn't even be there...at all!...The NAM picked up on them a little better..but just barely. All in all - they both 'failed" on depicting this cloudy scenario. I believe they will continue to be around all day for areas east of I-95 with some breaks during the mid-afternoon...but not looking for any full sun today. With that thinking in mind, believe that the temperature will have a hard time reaching 60s degrees. It seemed we would have a hard time doing that even when not considering there would be clouds around...so now that notion is just being reinforced.
TONIGHT/TOMORROW MORNING: Should add that these clouds might also be being enhanced by the secondary weak trough of low pressure rotating around the back of that monster storm which impacted the DelMarVa area yesterday as related to above. Believe that (1) after the trough passes overhead today and (2) the low moves yet further off to the ENE, and (3) strong high pressure builds south from near James Bay -- being enhanced along the Appalachians AND snow covered, cold land mass to the north at the surface...that this will be enough to clear us out by or shortly after sunset (hopefully sooner). The end result of all of the just stated is that tomorrow morning will likely be the coldest morning of all for the entire peninsula as drainage flow down the spine of the state ensues without the cloud blanket.
Sure hope the launch can go..but honestly, I'm not 100% sold on the notion that it will just yet. We'll have a much better idea though well before bed time. Once the lower clouds clear out they'll be gone for good (at least in the short term). It's just IF they can clear out. Going to go on the optimstic side though (at least more optimistic than I was last night at bed time)...and give it the 'green light'.
TOMORROW: After a cold start, tomorrow should be warmer than both Saturday and today will be. In fact, it could be 5-9 degrees warmer tomorrow with a light north wind and partly cloud skies. Far from "pleasant'...but considering we're not buried in snow or having freezing temperatures...I'd be ashamed to complain. Be that as it may...these temperatures are not 'pleasing'.
TUESDAY AND POINTS ON: Winter has definitely come to stay as a series of fast moving systems continue to generate along the southern branch El-Nino like jet stream. The result is less than stellar conditions for a prolonged period of time. Tuesday will be the best of days...with milder sunrise temperatures as the wind will have swung to an onshore component by Monday afternoon...albeit a very light one. By sunrise Tuesday the wind will be more southeasterly and eventually SSW during the course of the day...resulting in a temperature in the mid 70s. Was tempted to say upper 70s but I believe there will be too many clouds that will offset sufficient heating for a warmer day. If we're going to see any rain it will be sometime after sunset Tuesday night through about one hour within sunrise Wednesday. After that? You guessed it..colder temperatures again, but not down to freezing (literally speaking). After another two days of very cool temperatures (back to the 40s for lows) another system will be on the approach. The surface low with the next one after Tuesday/Wednesday's (i.e., on Saturday) might actually pass across South Florida. This means we would not even see a warm front preceding its passage as we have been getting all winter...thus, no great warm up before it.
As for severe weather? This is always the most fun part to try to forecast...so you might get a hint by the statement that " I don't think we'll be having much 'fun'"...but it's definitely worth watching! Just don't see any for either of the next two systems. Wind fields look pretty impressive for this next one, but as has been the case this winter..and even more so for Tuesday/Wednesday...thermodynamics will be the pits...abundant cloud cover induced by isentropic lift ahead of the system will greatly inhibit instability across Central Florida. But don't give up the ship just yet!