Images: (1) Possible funnel sited in NE Sumter County, via Twitter link sent from a generous contact of mine. Doppler radar indicated storm rotation near this location and as it crossed near The Villages. For a radar review showing the height of the storm (s) with warning box issuances see: http://www.srh.noaa.gov/mlb/?n=012511 (Storm Survey and total event summary generated by the NWS, Melbourne, FL) or click on the Title of this post. (2) Synoptic set up tonight near midnight
TODAY: Pleasant and cool with a high temperature generally in the mid 60s, mainly clear until later this afternoon. We see that the low pressure system that impacted Florida on Tuesday in the second image above will be passing just east of Maine today, after having dropped copious amounts of snow (with some thunder snow reported from Virgina, to Maryland, Pennsylvania, and New York at a minimum during its passage).
TONIGHT/ EARLY SUNDAY: We see in the second image, and as noted yesterday, that high pressure will be building southeastward from the Intermountain Region, across Texas and into the Western Gulf of Mexico, then east across Florida. This will be our predominant weather influence through early Sunday. In the meantime, a more 'elevated cold front' (used very loosely) will pass the state over night tonight with another to follow about 24-36 hours later. These are also shown on the image.
The only impacts from these systems as they ride over the surface ridge building across the Gulf of Mexico and Florida will be increased high level cirrus clouds as soon as late this afternoon but mostly overnight tonight with early clearing Friday accompanied by a temporary backing of the surface wind from NNW to W or WSW. Wind speeds 15-20mph at their height. The only impact from these fronts will be to re-enforce the cool, and somewhat (but not overly) dry air over Florida. Thus, continued overnight lows in the low to mid 40s and highs in the mid 60s, more toward the upper 60s and low 70s SE Florida (West Palm and south) and the Keys. Temperature spreads over Central and much of south will be fairly uniform with many areas seeing tempeartures in the 40s, even far south. Coldest far North Florida of course, where it was below freezing across the Panhandle and over to Tallahassee this morning. Other cold pockets extended as far south as Brooksville with Gainesville hovering near freezing at sunrise.
LATE SATURDAY: High pressure center will be passing directly over Florida after the second front clears to the east resulting in near calm winds into Sunday morning, with a warming trend becoming more evident Sunday afternoon to continue through Wednesday. The trend will be first most assuredly noticeable along the east coast overnight Sunday into Monday when overnight lows will fail to drop into the 40s there, mid-upper 50s perhaps, as winds becoming light from the east initially and gradually southeast into Tuesday then south and increasing.
TUESDAY AFTERNOON - WEDNESDAY NIGHT: At this time, it appears an area of low pressure will again track from off the Texas Coast and is then forecast to ride along a similar track as the system which impacted Florida on Tuesday, with again, an attendant cold front extending into the Gulf and a warm front extending eastward from it across Florida and eventually north of Florida. Timing on just exactly when all of this should occur is easy to see on paper, but just exactly how this system will evolve and where it will track is too soon to say. The information on paper could be as much 24-48 hours off in regards to timing, let along the location of even the most general surface features.
But as portrayed based on last night's 7pm (00 Zulu time) model runs, the low would track just along or north of I-10. This system may again be a severe weather maker, namely for Southern Louisiana, Mississippi, Alabama, and perhaps a portion of the Florida Panhandle. Again, and as shown by current dreamcasts, Central Florida north of a Tampa Bay region east to the Beach Line Corridor toward Cape Canaveral line could hear some thunder from this system Wednesday afternoon/evening. But that chance looks very slim. South of that line, even the chance of any rain at all looks pretty darned slim.
This does not appear currently to be another "Heavy Weather" deal for numerous reasons. This appears it will be a moderate instability and low wind speed/directional shear profile situation which would not result in rotating storms. I'd throw in the chance of thunder for Central Florida because the main weather impacts are forecast to be moving in during peak heating hours, so we'll have some thermal instability to play with.
Another area to watch will be the Keys and extreme South Florida (Miami metro and south) on Thursday as the front will be clearing Central at sunrise on that morning and will have yet another day to clear this area later Thursday. Additionally, the Keys and South Florida might have an additional boost of tropical moisture shoot in overnight Wednesday night in advance of the approaching cold front.
But this is all VERY preliminary, and there is ample time for some big time adjustments to timing, precipitation/storm intensity locations, etc, etc. Again, and in case you missed the link provided above, here is a link to the Melbourne storm situation of Tuesday. Some additional images will be added to this web page some time today.
The National Weather Service (NWS) out of Tampa, Fl also has completed their storm survey: