Good afternoon folks and Happy New Year! We have a soaking rain event heading our way with most of SW NC picking up 2", while a handful of spots along the N GA and SC state lines make a run at 3". All of this occurs Thursday afternoon into early Saturday morning and on the backside of the system, we'll enjoy some high elevation snow for the TN line Saturday night. Sunshine returns Sunday and sticks around for Monday, followed by another precip event Tuesday into Wednesday. This second event has the possibility for snow across the higher elevations, but don't get too excited as we wont know for sure till Friday or Saturday. Temps all the while warm Thursday into Friday, cooling down 10 - 12 degrees Saturday and leveling out to normal levels Sunday into early next week.
Clouds start the day Thursday and light showers will begin to dot the landscape after midday, first for the southernmost portions of the region and then for all of SW NC by the evening hours. We'll pick up a quarter of an inch before the clock strikes midnight and showers will continue to stream across the region Friday. There will be a frontal passage sometime Friday morning and its during this window of time we expect the heaviest rain to fall, with no severe weather expected. Temps Thursday warm to the mid 40's along the ridgelines to the mid 50's across the valleys, settling into the mid 40's for all of SW NC Thursday night. As southerly flow ramps up Friday, so will our temps as they soar to the low 50's - low 60's depending upon elevation. 1 - 2" of rain will fall Thursday afternoon into Friday evening and another 0.5 - 1" will fall Friday night; low temps settle into the upper 30's - low 40's.
Saturday starts out the day with showers and we'll be watching for a changeover to snow later in the day for elevations above 4500'. Coverage will wane as the day moves along, except for the TN line as precip coverage remains steady throughout the day. SW flow will veer to a NW flow after the sun sets, bringing temps from the mid 40's - low 50's during the day to the low - upper 20's overnight into Sunday. In addition to rain kicking over to snow, we'll deal with strong NW winds Saturday late afternoon that will likely extend into Sunday for the higher elevations.
Sunday brings us sunshine but temps will only make it to the mid 30's - upper 40's, which is right around normal for this time of year. Temps warm a degree or two Monday and breezy conditions will end Sunday evening, setting up a pleasant start to the week (by early January standards). We'll post our next discussion Friday afternoon, focusing on then current rain event and next rain/snow event slated for Tuesday/Wednesday.