"But seeing they could not See; hearing they could not Hear"
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"From its chamber comes the whirlwind, and cold from the scattering winds." - Job 37:9.

"The wind blows to the south and turns to the north; round and round it goes, ever returning on its course".

Friday, June 24, 2011

Showers and Thunder At Some Point Possible Just About Anywhere Today

WILL BE HIGH HUMIDITY/RAIN/LIGHTNING. Note that even in those areas in green that thunder can still occur but be of less overall coverage.

TODAY - SITUATIONAL AWARENESS: Really not much too say in regard to vigorous stormy low pressure troughs today. The climate around Florida today will be right on cue, that being, like a typical summer day that ends with showers and thunderstorms around the state - starting by early afternoon and lasting until late tonight.

The weather across most of the state will be dictated not by synoptic scale placement of stormy troughs but rather by high pressure at various levels (above the ground) which will dictate the strength of the sea -breezes as well as the direction of storm motion.  However, although the direction of motion is from WSW toward the ENE  in general, this will not necessarily be the direction that storms will 'move' since those winds are weak, perhaps not even as strong as the sea breezes will be once they develop.  Storms, once developed,  will more or less propogate along sea-breeze and Lake Breeze boundaries...but will first form along these boundaries and move along the motion of the boundary rather than be steered by upper level winds.   This makes the determination of just exactly where rain will or won't occur very tough to pin down, especially as we get later into the afternoon and sea breezes strengthen and Lake Breezes (particularly the Lake Okeechobee shadow)...changes direction.

NOW: For now, the West Coast Sea breeze so far today as of 1pm has a jump start on the East Coast sea-breeze. It is clear that at this hour, even way out on the barrier island where the wind is from the south..that there is a prevalent SW flow elsewhere. This can be seen by satellite animation as well as  detected by the smell of smoke over in Merritt Island and Cocoa Beach from a fire that is smoldering in the SW part of Brevard County..with a slight sea breeze on the islands creating sinking air which is trapping the smoke and some haze near the ground. 

Otherwise, the winds aloft for steering are the strongest over the Northern Part of the state from near Central Volusia County and north along a bit of a deformation zone which was further to the north of the state yesterday. Showers and some thunder have been ongoing up that way and are moving from west to east.. Some higher clouds from this area could impinge as far south as Flagler County oand over toward Cedar Key on the west side of the state and deter storms from growing stronger than normal, especially in the absence of a sea breeze boundary to work with at the low levels. Not really expecting tremendously strong storms well to the north in and near this zone, but one or two zesty ones are possible given the winds aloft. 


Daytime heating is bearing down on a very moist low level atmosphere with dewpoint temperatures will into the 70Fs. The atmosphere is expected to become moderately unstable this afternoon with cool air aloft, but nothing unusual. Winds aloft are very light and were nearly calm this morning at some levels of the atmosphere at the time the soundings were taken.  With daytime heating a thermal trough of lower pressure will form down the spine of the state, most pronounced from West of JAX toward Lake Okeechobee, more toward the East Side of the state.  Early day inhibition will hold off storms until after 2-3pm as the sea-breezes gain momentum..although some could start sooner in isolated fashion on Lake boundaries as well.

The strongest storms will occur between 5:30pm -8:30pm with some big rainfall accumulations possible due to slow storm motion and high moisture content of the atmosphere which tall storms will tap into throughout their growth stage. The heaviest rain will fall as storms begin to collapse under their own weight wherever that may happen to be. Some of those heaviest storms could put down strong wet-microburst like winds within and near those downpours.  This type activity will occur over the interior areas for the most part. The strongest storms will form during these hours due to meeting of Lake/Sea/and outflow boundaries (from previous storms earlier in the day as well as newer ones) after peak heating and when the sea breezes are at their strongest and start to approach each other.

WILL ANY EAST COAST BEACH-SIDE COMMUNITY RECEIVE RAIN TODAY?: This is where the models today are different from days past. There is a hint that the sea-breeze will not hold up much past 7pm under the more pronounced SW-SSW synoptic scale flow...and may collapse during this time frame. For now, I'm showing in the image above that the best chance of actual storms moving offshore is from North of SR528 and north to JAX where upper level winds are a bit stronger, but this is not to say that toward evening time up through 10pm that a storm could not move offshore elsewhere along the coast due to outflow from inland storms sending the sea breeze back toward the coast underneath this prevalent synoptic scale wind flow.   

ALSO NOTE: Some areas that appear will be most favorable for a storm today could quickly loose those credentials in the event that a storm further upstream sends up high level clouds (the storm anvil) out in that direction, spreading clouds over an otherwise unstable and favorable area for a future storm to form (and thus, making it much less likely at the flick of a switch). Storm anvils determine where it won't rain just as much as wind boundaries determine where it will.  At least, with much of any 'vigor'.

By early evening some sort of mesoscale system(s) will become dominant somewhere over Central or South Florida, and it is where and how one of these systems (or combination thereof) evolves that will be the deciding factor in regard to where mid-late evening isolated storms will move toward or linger for more rainfall accumulation.

This image shows the Downdraft CAPE; accessed through the Storm Prediction Center website at
This shows were the best potential is for stronger down drafts; however, these values are not overly impressive. It is interesting that the axis of higher values runs right along where the Lake Okeechobee shadow is currently located  toward Cocoa Beach(and thus subsiding air at the low levels...which leads to stronger down drafts in storms that  can form in the area).. However, once the surface winds change so will these values, both in their number and location.

SATURDAY: TBD, but looks a bit like today, only shifting things a bit further south. A lot could change by tomorrow depending on what happens where today, how much, and how for now, we can run with the pack and assume that storms are again possible tomorrow. Where will the be most likely? Anyones' guess.

TROPICS: Not tropical issues down the line. Will start hearing about the Bay of Campeche/Honduras/SW Gulf area for the next several days, but just exactly what will form there and where it will go if it does is up for grabs. Currently it appears though that anything that does get organized enough to become a depression or storm will remain there and move west toward the Mexico Border and possibly toward extreme Southern Texas. However, even as far away as this tropical activity will be, the overall synoptic scale pattern which  would favor (or not favor) any development will also indirectly impact the weather over the State of Florida most of next week.

At this point, it looks like the East Side of the state could see an end to the thunderstorms though beginning as soon as Sunday afternoon. This has been the trend of the GFS for several, what is still to be determined is whether this flow (from the ESE-SE) will be a moist flow favoring east coast ocean shower activity at almost any time...or be a dry one with few clouds in the sky. Either way, it would favor the west side of the state for the thunder.

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