1st Frost of the Season; Widespread Sun PM
Good morning folks! We're happy to report the first frost of the season for many valley locations as temps bottomed out to the low - mid 30's this morning across sheltered coves and hollers. Meanwhile, atop the highest ridgelines and peaks, temps plummeted to 25°F on Mt Mitchell, with a frigid wind chill of 9°F; the highest gust of wind occurred along Grandfather Mountain with a 72.9mph gust report. The frontal passage on Saturday was a nice way to introduce fall like conditions and today (Sunday) we'll benefit with sunny skies overhead and temps only warming to the upper 40's - mid 60's depending upon elevation. Another round of frost is likely tonight and coverage should be greater than this morning as ideal raditional conditions setup across the area Sunday night. Sunny skies and quiet weather will continue into Tuesday, with a noticeable uptick in moisture levels beginning Wednesday, although we should remain dry through the middle of the week. The models point to a cold front moving through the area Thursday, delivering a round of showers and as of today nothing looks severe or heavy, just a round of light - moderate showers. The front clears out by Friday and we'll enjoy another round of cooler weather, although not at cold as this current round. Temps do moderate as we move from Sunday into Wednesday, from the low - mid 60's Sunday to the low - mid 70's across the valleys, however this should be the hottest we get all week, with temps dropping to the upper 60's post frontal passage Friday into next weekend.
For those still thinking about visiting or taking time to enjoy the color season, this week and upcoming weekend (10/22 - 10/24) should be a perfect time to visit, with color extending well past the last week of October. It seems the ridgelines above 5800' are past peak, but elevations between 4000' - 5800' (across SW NC ) are just beginning to turn from moderate color to peak color this week.
We'll kick off the timeline on Monday and the only highlight of the week will be the frosty start on Monday, with most locations across SW NC experience light - heavy frost as temps dip into the low - mid 30's Sunday night. Its likely the ridgelines hold to the mid - upper 30's as ideal raditional cooling conditions lead to a temperature inversion. Sunshine owns the forecast Monday through Tuesday, with high clouds building as we near sunset on Tuesday. Temps warm to the mid 50's - low 70's depending upon elevation on Monday and push to the mid 70's for most of the valleys on Tuesday. Overnight lows settle into the upper 30's - mid 40's each night, with a few passing clouds overhead Tuesday night.
Humidity increases Wednesday but mostly sunny skies will still reign supreme, followed by increasing clouds overnight into Thursday. Temps hold to the mid 70's Wednesday and cool down to the low 70's Thursday with a mix of clouds and sun all day, followed by showers during the evening hours. This timeline is likely to change as we near the middle of next week, but overall the result will be the same, with clearing skies post frontal as we head into Friday. Temps cool down to the upper 60's by week's end for the lower elevations, while the ridgelines hold to the low 50's.
We'll stop here and circle back Tuesday morning with a better handle on timing the frontal passage Thursday into Friday. ENJOY!