RECAP: It's been interesting the past two days for East/South Florida the past two days. A funnel cloud near the Space Center, waterspouts over Lake Okeechobee and offshore West Palm Beach, and weak EF-0 tornadoes in Boca Raton and New Smyrna Beach. Also some locally heavy rainfall here in Cape Canaveral with 2.81" recorded over a very small area yesterday from a slow moving back-building cell just south of the Cape. More is in the offering to various degrees for portions of Central and especially South Florida (south of a line from Ft. Pierce on the east coast to Port Charlotte on the west coast) through Tuesday!
SYNOPSIS: The quasi-stationary boundary discussed yesterday that was in S. Georgia seems to have sunk into N. Florida and is now south of I-10. It currently appears to be just south of St. Augustine-Gainesville. It should sink further south during the day to near Daytona or even Oak Hill by sunset. Meanwhile, a complex area of low pressure from the surface to the upper levels is developing from the Bahamas-across Central/South Florida/eastern Gulf of Mexico and along the Florida W. Coast from Tampa and points south. The ridge axis that has the bane of our dry existence for Central Florida all summer seems to have sunk toward the Florida Straits and is pretty much out of the picture for the next two-three days, at least.
TODAY: Plentiful atmospheric moisture (PWAT above 2.0" all locales) combined with the weak surface boundary to the north as stated in the 'synopsis' portion, combined with an early afternoon on set of the East Coast sea breeze and instability with heating of the day should once again provide the dynamics for some decent rainstorm/thunderstorm coverage particularly south of a line from Daytona Beach on the east coast to west of Brooksville on the west coast of the peninsula. There is a very persistent area of storms well off the Central Florida east coast near the N. Bahamas which has been there for over 24 hours (which is perhaps a sign of things to come). This area is moving slowly south..and may be 'coupling' with another disturbance along Florida Gulf Coast on the other side of the state. Light west winds this morning should give way to a sea-breeze boundary around noon time which probably won't even make it as far west as Orlando area due to deep (but somewhat weak)westerly flow aloft. Expect spotty showers/storms to impact the east coast as early as noon time, considering there already is a small shower near Daytona as of this writing. Initially motion of activity will be from the W-WNW but may very well swing around to more of a NNW direction by mid-late afternoon from Sebastian and points north as an area of low pressure becomes more organized at the surface and aloft.
It must be noted that chances of rain along the east half of Central Florida is totally contingent upon where the low pressure at the mid-levels finally organizes during the course of late this afternoon and into the overnight hours. Thus, rain chances could go from very high to very low by late afternoon...for now it's probably best to err on the wet side until morning model runs and radar/satellite trends are established. There are hints from local the local WRF that all rain activity will be shunted toward the SW-W Florida side of the state by late afternoon...leaving East Central Florida rain free.
(Possible active weather today as well: Although not expecting especially strong thunderstorms today YET due to 500mb temps around -6C there is always the ever present threats from cloud to ground lightning. 700mb temps have dropped maybe 1 degree since days of late..and an additional one or two degree drop could occur during the course of the afternoon if indeed low pressure starts to develop over or near the state...this bears watching since this if it does drop that would provide a boost to storm activity later in the day. Additionally, the threat for funnel clouds and waterspouts (some which may becoming land falling), particularly on the intracoastal and near shore Atlantic waters remains ever present at almost any time after 1pm for the entire Florida east coast from the Cape to S. of Miami).
MONDAY-TUESDAY: As stated above, everything is contingent upon where low pressure organizes. It currently appears to me that a weak surface low may end up actually developing right over the peninsula west of Ft. Pierce with the mid-level low forming just east of that location sometime overnight into Monday. This will be a pretty broad and disorganized area of low pressure though, and will affect a broad expanse of real-estate. Particularly from Ft. Pierce and points south around the tip of South Florida and up the west coast near Pt. Charlotte and everywhere across the peninsula between those locations. Outside of this zone, the region further north to a N. Brevard County to N. Hillsborough county line will also be in the pot for enhanced rain chances, just not as much so as those areas further south.
As the area of low pressure organizes and moves generally westward into the Gulf there may actually be a complete lull in activity along the east coast north of Vero Beach, but then as the low moves further into the Gulf and high pressure builds in its wake a deep SSE-SE flow will target East Central Florida, namely Brevard-Indian River-St. Lucie County...sometime late Monday into Tuesday. Thus, after a lull later tonight and Monday rain chances could climb on Tuesday.
WEDNESDAY: Transition day as the low pressure area moves further away and high pressure begins to reassert an influence. Thunderstorms likely in a generic summer pattern.
LATE THURSDAY-NEXT SUNDAY: Ridge at the surface and aloft still appears as though it will reassert itself over S. Central Florida (as mentioned yesterday) around the latitude of the South Shores of Lake Okeechobee, if not further south than that as another front and mid-level trough deepens down the U.S. East Coast. As a result, steering flow from the SW will commence in this time frame favoring the west side of the state for morning - early afternoon storms and central and eastern portions of all of Florida from early afternoon into the evening hours.