Dothan Area Forecast May 9

Near Term [Through Tonight]...

Our earlier updated discussion examined the likelihood of a sharp
gradient in rainfall tonight and into early Saturday somewhere near
the western border of our forecast area.

This still seems like it will be the case, although the latest suite of 12Z model guidance (including both global and hi-res) is almost unanimous in keeping the heavier rain just west of our area.

Overall, this trend makes sense as the majority of the heavy rain "ingredients" will be focused west as well - the LLJ, the right entrance region of the upper level jet streak, and the axis of highest PWATs to name a few.

Therefore, even though convection has focused a little further east
than what models have been showing (due to an earlier outflow
boundary), the synoptic setup should maintain convection to our west
for much of the night.

There remains a small chance, perhaps 15% or so, that the thunderstorms could reach the western parts of our forecast area and produce heavy rainfall, but that does not seem to be the most likely scenario at this point.

PoPs in our far western zones are up around 50% for tonight.

Cloud cover should keep temperatures overnight fairly warm with lows in the mid-upper 60s.

Short Term [Saturday Through Sunday Night]...

As an upper level shortwave trough propagates through the longwave
pattern and lifts the approaching longwave trough northeastward, the
energy feeding the approaching frontal system will be forced north
and east of our area.

This will decay the southern end of the system and most likely keep heavy rain out of our forecast area, with estimates staying under 0.75 inches.

The highest chances for rain Saturday will be in southeast Alabama, southwest Georgia, and the Florida Panhandle, with the highest accumulations likely to stay just west of our area.

By Saturday night, rain chances will be decreasing, although there will be a slight chance for rain again Sunday afternoon.

While most models are keeping higher rainfall totals to our west, the local convection allowing model (CAM) guidance is suggesting that mesoscale factors could play a factor and keep some higher
precipitation storms going over the western Florida Panhandle,
possibly extending far enough east to affect some of our western
zones.

If things set up like the CAM are showing, we could see isolated areas with around 1-3 inches of rain on Saturday.

Long Term [Monday Through Friday]...

The early part of next week should bring generally fair weather as our forecast area remains under the influence of the Bermuda high to
our east.

There is a minimal chance of a few diurnal showers Monday and Tuesday as as low level flow becomes more southerly and advects
moisture into the region.

A weak and very diffuse front will move across the area mid-week as as a broad upper level trough pushes very slowly across the eastern U.S.

This will bring scattered showers and a few thunderstorms but looks to be rather anemic with respect to instability and precipitation amounts.

By Thursday and Friday high pressure will build in again with dry conditions and lower humidity.

Temperatures will be several degrees above normal at the beginning
of the week with readings around 90 inland, dropping closer to mid-May normals in the mid 80s by the end of the week.

Aviation...

Mostly VFR conditions are expected with a mixture of some scattered low clouds (2000-5000 ft) and high cirrus.

There is a small chance of some rain showers or thunderstorms making it to DHN or ECP from the west later tonight or early Saturday, but for now we have only mentioned VCTS in the TAFs due to low
confidence.

Showers and thunderstorms would be more likely in the afternoon on Saturday - albeit scattered - which is just after the current TAF period.

Marine...

Winds and seas will lower this evening from their elevated levels
this morning.

Southeast winds around 10 knots or less will prevail through Tuesday with occasional surges to around 15 knots.

On Tuesday night, winds will begin to shift to the north and approach
cautionary levels on Wednesday night and Thursday night.

Winds will generally be around 2 to 3 feet through the period.

Fire Weather...

Relative humidity levels will remain above critical thresholds so no
red flag conditions are expected.

Scattered showers and storms are expected, but widespread wetting rains are not likely.

Hydrology...

The only rivers that remain above flood stage at this time are the
Choctawhatchee River at Bruce and several sites along the Suwannee River and stages are falling at all these locations.

There is a small chance of some heavy rainfall tonight and early Saturday in the far western part of our area - mainly in the Choctawhatchee drainage basin (which includes some smaller streams and rivers).

Otherwise, scattered showers and thunderstorms are possible this
weekend, but amounts should not be sufficient to cause major rises
on rivers.

The latest river forecast information can be found at:
http:/water.weather.gov/ahps2/index.php?wfo=tae

Preliminary Point Temps/PoPs...

Tallahassee 66 85 63 89 65 / 10 20 10 10 0
Panama City 70 80 68 83 70 / 30 40 10 10 0
Dothan 66 83 64 89 66 / 40 30 10 10 10
Albany 67 85 64 90 66 / 10 30 10 10 10
Valdosta 66 86 63 90 65 / 10 20 10 20 10
Cross City 66 86 64 89 65 / 10 10 10 20 10
Apalachicola 69 81 68 83 69 / 10 20 10 10 0

TAE Watches/Warnings/Advisories...

FL...
High Rip Current Risk until Midnight EDT /11 PM CDT/ tonight for Coastal Bay-Coastal Franklin-South Walton.

GA...None.
AL...None.
GM...None.


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