Fast Moving Front = Rain Free Trick or Treat
Good morning folks! For the second time this week I apologize for not getting out the discussion in time, but we encountered yet another setback and although all is well, I sure hope we can get back to normalcy soon. Everyone is eyeing the fast moving front and for us we are fortunate to be in a location where the front will be off to our east during prime Trick or Treat hours. For those who are planning to stay out late, you'll trade the lack of rain with plummeting temps and increasing winds, so dress warmly and don't be fooled by the lack of rain. On the back-end of the frontal passage we expect light snow showers for the TN line and nearby ridgelines, marking the 1st snowfall of the season! Friday through Monday will bring us sunny skies, however temps will be roughly 6 - 8 degrees below average for early November. The mid - long range models hint at a few light rain events sometime around Tuesday/Wednesday of next week, but we'll wait several more days before discussing any details.
Today is Halloween and the front is off to our west this morning, marching eastward but southerly flow ahead of the front is strong enough to develop widespread showers across the region. We have already picked up a healthy 1.75 - 3.5" of rain across the majority of the region since Tuesday evening and Lake Toxaway is flexing its muscles with a leading 4.22" total. We'll add another 1 - 2" by the time everything wraps up this evening, exceeding our forecasted totals by 1.5"; adjusted, final forecasted amounts should be in the 4.5 - 6" range. The timing of the front will occur sometime around 3 - 5pm and heavy rains will occur around 2 - 4pm, with light showers lingering into the 5 - 6pm timeframe. Rain should be all wrapped up by the time sunset rolls around, however NW flow will quickly follow and with the minor amounts of moisture remaining, light snow showers will wring out along the TN line and nearby ridgelines. Much like any NW flow event, places such as Mt LeConte, Cataloochee, Great Balsams and so on will experience snow, while the valleys experience clearing skies. A light dusting is possible for the favored NW flow locations, as temps plummet to the mid 20's - low 30's depending upon elevation. Although the 1st snow of the season is exciting, it will be the wind everyone is talking about as NW winds setup shop this evening with speeds around 10 - 20mph for the valleys and 20 - 45mph along the ridgelines.
Clear skies tonight roll into Friday uninterrupted setting up a sunny day and as high pressure approaches the winds will calm down to almost nothing by the early - mid afternoon hours. Temps struggle to reach the low 40's along the ridgelines, while the valleys warm to the upper 50's. Overnight lows may result in a temperature inversion as clear skies, dry air and little no wind plays out, allowing temps in the valleys to dip into the upper 20's while the ridgelines hold to the low - mid 30's.
Saturday and Sunday will be similar to Friday in that sunny skies will be overhead and temps holding to the low 40's - upper 50's, although Sunday may be a degree or two colder than Saturday. A second cold front will swing through Saturday evening, but there will be no moisture to work with, only another round of strong NW winds, with overnight lows in the low - upper 20's across the region. Also, don't forget, we "fall back" an hour Saturday night due to Daylight Saving Time, which occurs at 2am Sunday morning. This means our sunsets will occur around 5:30pm as opposed to 6:30pm.
Monday features sunny skies, a slight bump in temps, while Tuesday and Wednesday battle it out as to which day experiences passing light showers. We'll stop here and circle back this Saturday with a more detailed look at the upcoming week, which by all accounts looks to be quiet, even with the light rain event.