Dry this Wknd; Rain Each Day Next Week
We'll experience a round of heavy rain and strong winds this afternoon (Thursday), with the bulk of the action occurring after sunset. The forecasted totals have been lowered slightly to 1.5 - 3" regionwide, with the highest amounts occurring along the SC state line and Unicoi Mountains. Dry weather takes over for the weekend and temps run a touch above normal both days. A front approaches the region Monday, sparking rain to develop later in the day, becoming regionwide Tuesday and likely maintaining scattered coverage into Wednesday and Thursday. If the front lifts far enough north Tuesday, we could see temps reach the 70's on Wednesday!
Lower Elevations 1800' - 3000' We hit the 60's today and level back down to the low 50's Friday with a steady westerly wind throughout the day (sunny skies overhead). Temps warm to the mid - upper 50's this weekend and return to the 60's on Monday, holding to this level all of next week with a possible day or two in the upper 60's - low 70's! Overnight lows this weekend will settle into the mid - upper 20's Sat and Sun nights, leveling off to the mid 40's Monday night.
Higher Elevations 3000 - 5000'' Wind speeds will be higher across the higher elevations compared to the valleys on Thursday with wind gusts reaching 50 - 70mph at times. Cove Mountain in the Smokies reported a 78mph gust earlier this morning. Temps hit the low - mid 50's today but return to the 30's this weekend above 3500', with overnight lows in the low - mid 20's each night. Temps warm to the 40's on Monday and join the rest of SW NC on Tuesday with above average temps around 53 - 56°F! It's likely the higher elevations break into the 60's by Wednesday or Thursday.
Ridgelines + Plateau The Plateau will once again pick up the most rain from Thur into Fri with 2 - 3" across the entire area, sprinkled with a few isolated reports coming close to 4". This area, alongside the Snowbird, Cowee, Nantahala and Unicoi Mountains, will pick up another 3 - 5" from Monday - Thursday of next week, so plan for a soggy work and school week. The only silver lining will be the warmer temps. At 6000' and higher, temps will hold to the 30's through Sunday and level off to the 40's Monday and Tuesday, peaking around 51°F on Wednesday and Thursday.