Moderate Rain Mon AM; Wintry Mix Tues PM
Good morning folks! Yesterday and today have been a nice treat with spring-like weather across the region and we'll pay for it slightly, with a round of rain tonight into Monday morning, alongside noticeably cooler temps (not chilly, just not as warm as today). Showers end Monday morning and dry occurs late Monday afternoon, setting the stage for a sunny Tuesday with temps right around normal for early March (mid 50's). This fair weather will not last long as clouds fill in closer to sunset, followed by a mixed bag of rain and high elevation snow/sleet Tuesday night (nothing major expected). Precip should end before midday on Wednesday and it will take most of the afternoon for the cloud cover to clear the area, setting the stage for a sunny Thursday. This round of sunshine will also be short lived as the models point to another system crossing the region late Friday, bringing clouds and precip back to the region as we round out the work week and kickoff next weekend. All in all, not a terrible week and this up and down in temps with sunshine one day and precip the next is fairly typical as we enter the active spring season.
We'll wrap up the weekend today with temps soaring to the upper 60's - low 70's across the region, under more sunshine than cloud cover, although an isolated shower is still possible at any point throughout the day. Clouds build this evening and showers develop after midnight, heavier along the TN line and lighter closer to the SC line as the bulk of the precip moves through the TN valley. Temps tonight will settle into the low - upper 40's across the region.
We start the work and school week with regionwide showers that will eventually come to an end by the early afternoon hours, perhaps sooner for those further away from the TN line. Temps will be finicky as they quickly climb to the upper 40's - upper 50's before midday and then drop the rest of the afternoon as cold air advects into the region as NW flow sets up on the backside of the departing cold front; NW winds around 10 - 30mph depending upon elevation after midday. This drop in temps will be more noticeable across the higher elevations, so if you have work or plans above 4000' tomorrow, grab that jacket on the way out the door because you'll need it after midday. Temps continue to drop overnight into Tuesday, settling into the mid 20's - low 30's depending upon elevation. Rainfall totals for the Sunday PM - Monday AM event will range from 1.5 - 2" along the TN line to 0.50 - 0.75" along the SC state line.
Tuesday starts out sunny with NW wind speeds holding to the the 10 - 20mph range depending upon elevation, however the sunny start wont help temps much as they only reach the low 40's - mid 50's across the region; a degree or two shy of normal. Clouds build during the mid afternoon hours and its possible a light shower or two develops before sunset, with coverage ramping up to widespread closer to midnight. Temps overnight will dip into the upper 20's - upper 30's depending upon elevation and for those who live above 4500 - 5000', you are likely to experience a mixed bag of wintry precip, with a wet snow at the onset, transitioning to a sleet/snow mix before sunrise and likely ending as a cold rain with temps warming above freezing by the mid morning hours on Wednesday.
Wednesday brings an end to the cold rain across the valleys and wintry precip across the higher elevations, with most of the action drying up before midday. Rainfall totals from this event will reach a half inch across Macon, Clay, and Cherokee counties, while the rest of us pick up a 0.25" of rain, perhaps as low as 0.15" in Waynesville. Snow totals across the highest ridgelines could reach an inch of slushy, wet snow. Temps eventually warm to the low 40's- mid 50's Wednesday afternoon and its possible sunshine pokes through the thinning cloud cover as we near sunset. Temps bottom out to the upper 20's - mid 30's overnight into Thursday under clearing skies.
Thursday into Saturday is not a lock but the models do agree on sunny skies Thursday, followed by a rain/snow event Friday into Saturday. The rain/snow event is our least confident portion of the forecast timeline, so we will only mention the possibility at this point in time and wait till Tuesday morning to provide more details. Plan for temps reaching the upper 40's - mid 60's Thursday (hooray!) but cooling back down to the mid 40's - mid 50's Friday as clouds build ahead of the next system.
We'll stop here and circle back Tuesday morning. Enjoy the weather today and be sure to stay dry tomorrow morning!