Temps in the 40's Friday Morning!
Good morning folks! Most of the rain has moved off to the north and east as remnants of Ida slide out of Eastern TN this morning, however we'll likely experience a round of scattered showers later today (Wednesday) before fully drying out this evening. An upper level trough will take over later tonight and usher in dry air, so dry that this will be our first taste of fall this season, setting the stage for a gorgeous end to the work and school week. Sunny skies sit overhead Thursday through Saturday, with a slow return to shower activity starting Sunday afternoon as a second upper level trough replaces the one arriving early Thursday morning. Temps will run a degree or two below normal Thursday and return to normal (low 80's for the valleys) Friday and Saturday, with a chilly start on Friday morning as overnight lows bottom out to the mid 40's - low 50's Thursday night! Overnight lows moderate Friday night but the dry air and sunshine will keep the fall like feeling going well into the weekend. We couldn't have asked for a better forecast for Western's 1st game of the season, kicking off Saturday at 6pm in Cullowhee, when temps are forecasted to be in the low - mid 70's, dropping to the mid 60's by game's end (9 - 10pm). Looking at early next week, we may be able to sneak in a sunny day on Labor Day but by Tuesday shower activity will ramp up to scattered levels and the overall pattern looks pretty normal for late summer in SW NC for the remainder of the week; partly cloudy, afternoon showers, temps in the low - mid 80's.
A real quick breakdown before we dive into the detailed forecast portion of the discussion. Rainfall amounts from Monday into Wednesday morning met and exceeded forecasted totals, with the highest (unofficial) amount coming out Toxaway Mountain at the Southern Highlands Reserve, where 9.07" fell. Elsewhere across the Highlands Plateau, official stations picked up 4 - 5.5" of rain (Highlands picked up 4.29") and further into SW NC totals leveled off to a range of 2 - 3.5". A full list of totals can be found on our social media accounts.
We'll kick the timeline off on Thursday and sunny skies will start the day for the higher elevations, while the valleys contend with some stubborn fog; should be a nice undercast by sunrise. Temps start in the low - upper 50's and warm to the mid 60's above 5500', while the valleys push into the low 80's. Dry air, light winds, and clear skies will setup a perfect radiational cooling effect on the region Thursday night, bringing temps down into the mid 40's for elevations above 4000', while the valleys bottom out to the low 50's!
After a cool start on Friday temps rebound to the upper 60's - mid 80's and we'll stick to this elevation dependent range Saturday and Sunday, with overnight lows leveling off to the to the mid 50's - low 60's beginning Friday night. Sunshine dominates the landscape Friday and Saturday, with some passing clouds possible Friday night and clear skies expected Saturday night. Sunday offers up partly cloudy skies late in the day with a slight chance for showers but 95% of the region should remain dry, so keep those outdoor plans.
Labor Day (Monday) is shaping up to be sunny but this is not set in stone and may end up featuring some cloud cover as the models work out when moisture levels return to levels conducive for scattered shower coverage. For now, keep your outdoor plans and even if shower coverage increases, it will only be scattered and plenty of sunshine will be around to enjoy the day outside. We'll stop here and circle back Friday afternoon with a better look at early next week.