I think the Atlas will launch this morning..but what's there to enjoy "while it lasts"? (you know the saying) If one enjoys very cool/cold weather then you'll be in heaven for a LONG time. Okay, the sun is out now, but it got down to 41 on the porch this morning while PAFB was reporting 40. Temperatures were right on track ala Tuesday's post...although it didn't get quite as cold inland as expected...but only by a few degrees. Just away from the coast it was in the mid-upper 30s. It's still cold...but not freezing unless one heads toward the panhandle.
Okay, so about the time the sun will be at its prime today those clouds you see on the satellite image will be moving in. As a result, the high temperature will held at bay and remain in the mid-upper 50s. Given those clouds are coming in, it might actually end up being cooler than yesterday (which had full sunshine) by a degree or two. Winds to remain NW but not as strong as yesterday.
TODAY: Sunny this morning with increasing clouds beginning around 11AM-noon time. Cool with a high in the mid-upper 50s with a noticeable NW wind, in the 8-18mph range.
TONIGHT: Not as cold under a good blanket of high and mid-level clouds. All areas of the state will be noticeably warmer than the last two with wide spread 40s across the boards. Warmest along the east coast with continued NW winds but decreasing in strength.
FRIDAY: Start out the day in the mid-upper 40s under a dense overcast with rains approaching.
Low pressure which is now taking shape in the extreme western Gulf this morning will be moving steadily east and approaching the state on Friday. A warm front ahead of this system will evolve across the state but likely never make it further north than a Sarasota-Sebastian line....and it is this front that will act as the precursor of things to come during the day. Very generous isentropic lift along/over this barrier will result in widespread rain along and north of the front. First around the Big Bend of Florida then spreading east and south (and more directly related/along the warm front) during the morning hours as the low pressure system approaches and exerts its force across the front.
Expect that once the rain starts, whether one is up by Ocala..over in Tampa...or south to West Palm..that once the rain starts it will be around for about 12 hours. Heaviest rainfall totals will be right along and just north of where the warm front decides to set camp. At this time...it looks like Central Florida on a line from NE Polk County east to Cocoa Beach area is in for as much as a 1" + of rain...with a secondary area from Ocala-Jacksonville.
Could be worse though. It looks like snow can be expected from Dallas - much of Louisiana-South half of Mississippi-South half of Alabama- and much of Georgia starting this morning through Friday night. Heck, we can even throw in that possibility (although minimal) into the mix for the NW Florida Panhandle.
Temperature. It won't be quite as cold as was feared during the rain. Thus, no sleet (particularly due to warm upglide at the 950-800mb level over head along the warm front). But due to prolonged period of preceding cloudiness before the rain...then evaporative cooling..then eventually rain...it will be a cold rain here..but if we're lucky around Canaveral it could get into the mid 60s. But that's a BIG "IF". As always, cooler to the north and warmer to the south.
Wind: From a Tampa to Palm Bay line and points north the wind will likely never achieve a southerly component at all (again, all contingent upon where the warm front ends up). Instead, the wind will become NE for a while until the low moves well into the Atlantic and high pressure reasserts its influence over the state.
FRIDAY NIGHT: The low pressure will track almost right along wherever the warm front lays across the state and exit off the east coast round 11PM -1AM. But it could rain well in the wee hours of the morning, mainly right along the east coast from Melbourne Beach, north to Daytona.
SATURDAY-SUNDAY: Saturday could dawn with residual clouds around from backwash behind the low as it moves away, but for the most part it will be partly cloudy if not better with brisk NW winds..and you know what brisk NW winds in the winter means! More cold for Sunday morning. Sunday will likely be even colder than this morning was for a vast majority of the state with mid 30s encompassing a large area and right around 40 along the A1A corridor from Canaveral, south.
THE FUTURE: They'll be more to talk about in the coming week(s) ahead. Already there are indications that at least two more systems will be affecting the area with cold impacts in the next 10 days...and beyond! But just thought I'd throw this little gem in...but do it with a grain of salt or dash of pepper. We might not see 70 degrees for the immediate east coast north of Canaveral for the remainder of February. That really is off the wall though...and seems highly unlikely. But note...that would only be from Canaveral north...right along the coast.