NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE TALLAHASSEE FL
608 AM EST Sat Jan 25 2014
Near Term [Through Today]...
A weak disturbance moving through the region late last night
generated patches of very light rain. There were several reports from the public of light sleet mixed in with the rain. Intermittent light rain will be possible through this morning as another weak disturbance approaches.
As that weak upper level disturbance moves east of the area today,
clouds are expected to decrease.
High temperatures are expected to range from the upper 50s to lower 60s degrees this afternoon due in part to increasing insolation and winds shifting to the southwest.
Short Term [Tonight Through Monday]...
A weak and dry cold front (with an air mass of continental origin)
will pass through the region tonight, with some low temperatures
dropping just below freezing across parts of GA and AL.
Temps will then recover to the mid to upper 50s to the N and W and the lower 60s to the S and E.
Then, yet another low pressure system will approach the region on Sunday night and Monday with increasing rain chances and a very brief warmup before yet another in a series of Arctic air masses heads our way for the early to middle portion of the week.
Then, the situation could become very interesting with some possible wintry precipitation on Tuesday night into Wednesday morning, as discussed below.
Long Term [Monday Night Through Friday]...
The main story is the potential for wintry precip on Tuesday night.
Both the 24/00z ECMWF and 24/12z GFS agree on the large scale pattern, featuring a positively tilted upper level trough, a weak area of low pressure in the Gulf, and an Arctic airmass.
However, as with almost all cases of wintry weather in this part of the country, the fine details are what really make the difference, and there are HUGE differences in the vertical temperature profile between the GFS and ECMWF.
One can see this just by examining the 850 mb temperatures on 12z Wednesday, which range from -5C on the 24/00z ECMWF to +4C on the 24/12z GFS for Tallahassee.
The GFS forecast soundings in BUFKIT look more like freezing rain soundings for areas that can manage to get a surface temp below freezing.
Meanwhile, the ECMWF looks more like snow.
At this point still being several days away, there are way too many
uncertainties with this potential unusual event to be too specific, other than to say that there is a chance of a mix of precip types across a large part of the area.
Behind this system, another cold airmass appears likely.
VFR conditions likely through the period.
SW winds will increase today with gusts of 15-20 kt possible across the region.
Winds are gradually veering around from the east to southeast across
the marine area early this morning, and should begin to swing more
quickly around to the southwest then west later this morning.
By later this afternoon, they are expected to continue to swing around
to the west and increase to just below Small Craft Advisory levels
out ahead of the next cold front, so will just use a cautionary
headline at this time.
These elevated conditions will linger for a while into tonight before winds and seas weaken as winds shift back to the north overnight.
Looking ahead to next week, a better chance for advisory level conditions is expected on Tuesday into Wednesday as another surge of Arctic air moves into the area with strong northerly winds.
Temperatures will increase today but so will low level moisture as
winds swing around to the southwest.
Red Flag conditions are unlikely at least until the middle of next week.
Increasing winds today will drive dispersion values well above 75.
Area creeks and rivers are steady or falling with no hydrologic concerns.
No significant rainfall is expected through next week.
Preliminary Point Temps/PoPs...
Tallahassee 62 36 60 46 66 / 10 10 0 20 30
Panama City 60 42 59 51 65 / 10 10 0 20 40
Dothan 57 31 56 45 61 / 10 0 0 20 30
Albany 59 31 56 42 61 / 10 0 0 20 20
Valdosta 60 33 58 44 65 / 10 10 0 20 30
Cross City 62 41 63 48 69 / 10 10 0 30 30
Apalachicola 60 42 57 51 67 / 10 10 0 20 30