We’re in the sweet spot today- located between a front to the south and another one well to the north. With a dry atmosphere in place, the stage is set for abundant sunshine although some streaks and filaments of feathery clouds may stream in as a strong jet exists over New England. Decent boundary layer mixing will transport the higher momentum down to the surface resulting in a freshening westerly wind to 15-35 mph. The gusty wind combined with a crashing relative humidity will result in elevated fire weather conditions plus there will be lots of blowing tree pollen in the air. So it’s not all good but many of you will be thrilled with the warmth as the temperatures rise to the upper 70s for the midday hour then continue to reach the peak of 80-82 around 4pm. I predict that Boston’s high will be 82 and that is the first time the temperature has reached or exceeded 80 in the city since the 81 degrees back on September 14, 2012. Many inland locations have already warmed to 80 or slightly higher this spring but coastal areas have not participated due to the many cooler sea breezy days. The warm air will be driven right to the coastline thanks to the brisk offshore westerly wind. Only a few places will be cooled a bit by the ocean and those are west-facing shoreline communities such as the outer elbow of Cape Cod and those areas facing Buzzards Bay. The high tide occurs just after 4:30pm at most east coastal beaches. The record high for today is 93 set in 1932.
The northern cold front will be pushing southward into the mountains with an outbreak of a few scattered late afternoon and early evening showers or thunderstorms. This activity will dry up and only a few patches of clouds may be seen in southern New England as the front passes through in the early morning hours. Cooler air will invade the region in its wake but it will still be delightful with temperatures near the average inland while the coast gets cooled by the development of daily sea breezes starting tomorrow afternoon. That ocean wind will become a bit more pronounced over the weekend so coastal areas will have highs in the upper 50s to lower 60s while farther inland, the readings bump up to the upper 60s to 70 or so. 1 or 2 weak “backdoor” types of cold front will swing into the area on Friday and Saturday so Sunday will be a bit cooler than Saturday. It appears that all frontal passages will be dry and only patchy cloudiness will be seen.
Looking ahead, as the fronts combine and stall southwest of the region, some overriding moisture will eventually produce more clouds and an increasing risk of spotty showers as the new work week commences. The high pressure system building southward from the Canadian Maritimes will eventually park itself over the western Atlantic south of New England resulting in a south to southwesterly flow of air into the region. This will increase the humidity and escort a very warm air mass over us. With any breaks of sunshine next Tuesday and Wednesday, the temperatures should easily spike up to the middle 80s. There is some uncertainty with this prediction because it is highly a function of the position of a cold frontal boundary. If that front stalls across parts of northern New England, southern sections of the 6-state region will be in a zone of summery air and many of the showers and storms would fire father north and west of Boston. It is too premature to be confident of that solution at this time.
Scattered severe thunderstorms erupted across portions of northern Texas last evening. The hardest-hit town was Granbury where six people were killed. The twister struck the area around 8:30 pm and produced considerable to severe damage. Eyewitnesses report the width of the tornado exceeded a mile! A National Weather Service survey team will investigate the damage to determine its category. Early analysis suggests that it was a strong EF2 or an EF3 on the Enhanced Fujita Scale. Granbury is located about 73 miles west-southwest of Dallas. The same cell that devastated Granbury moved over Cleburne which is about 51 miles southwest of Dallas. That town was declared a disaster area. Parts of that region were pummeled with grapefruit and baseball size hailstones! The metro Dallas-Fort Worth area dodged the most severe activity. Prior to last night’s deadly twister and one on February 13th of this year, surprisingly, TX has had no tornado fatalities since April 24, 2007! Thankfully, the tornado count, so far, for 2013 is down about 50% versus the 10-year average! The much colder than average spring has contributed to this low count. Interestingly, from May 2012 through April 2013, there were 197 EF1 or higher tornadoes which is the lowest count in any 12-month period since 1954!
Todd Gutner will post his blog early this evening and I shall return early tomorrow morning.
Make it a great day!