Weekend Prospects

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After 12 days at 90 degrees or higher in July, there have been none in August in Boston. How sad I am! NOT! It was close but no cigar yesterday as the city’s official observing station at Logan Airport maxed out at 89 degrees at 3:46 pm after the sea breeze flipped to a land breeze around 3:30 pm. Yet, it has been an awesome August with 12 days in the summery 80s and great weather especially on the weekends. No complaints from me. With a southwesterly breeze blowing all day today, it is possible that the temperature nudges 90 but more and more clouds will be showing up which may limit the full potential. If it doesn’t strike 90 today, there isn’t another shot to do so until perhaps the last day of the month. The longer range guidance is revealing the risk of some sizzling days over the Labor Day Weekend but that is definitely too far out to be highly confident right now.

I’m watching 2 zones of showers and thunderstorms this morning. One is associated with an upper level trough of low pressure approaching the Mid-Atlantic region. Most of its action will travel out well south of this area but the steering currents will propel the northern fringe of its energy across northern NJ, southeastern NY and into CT and RI. There is a slight risk that a few isolated showers and boomers will pop up over MA mainly closer to the MA Pike after lunch. Sunshine will yield to varying amounts of clouds and the wind will remain southwesterly all day at speeds of 10-20 mph. This will keep south-facing coastal locations a bit cooler in the upper 70s to lower 80s. The humidity is increasing ever so gradually and the muggiest air will exist over the South Coast of New England. It is another decent beach and boating day but not close to perfection like the 2 preceding days. Despite the arrival of some cloudiness, apply the sunscreen due to the high ultraviolet index. Meantime, the second zone of showers and boomers is strung out as a rather long skinny string aligned over the St. Lawrence River Valley early this morning. This activity will steadily sink southeastward so the northern mountains are destined to receive them later this afternoon and evening. The action will weaken after sunset so only isolated showers may pass over a few locations in northern MA after midnight. Temperatures will dip into the 60s tonight then rise to the lower 80s or so tomorrow except along the coast as a north-northeasterly wind blows at 10-20 mph with the highest gusts over Cape Cod. Some patchy clouds will occasionally cross the sky as a sprawling zone of high pressure plows eastward into the Northeast. The timing is perfect because this system will govern the weather through the weekend then gradually lose its grip on the area next week. There may be just enough instability to ignite scattered to broken small puffy clouds for a spell later in the morning into a portion of the afternoon on Saturday. After that on Sunday, dry and more stable air will result in an almost clear sky most of the day. Temperatures will max out in the upper 70s Saturday and near 80 on Sunday. It will be cooler along the coast Sunday afternoon due to a sea breeze. That will follow a crisp Saturday night when it will cool off to the upper 50s to near 60 in Boston and as low as the middle to upper 40s in the colder lowland locations.

Looking ahead, a significant heat wave will be in the works for the Plains States which have been cooler to much cooler than average this summer. This intensifying heat may make a run at us over the holiday weekend but it will run into resistance before that time next week as a northwesterly flow of air aloft acts as a block while providing a boundary to direct disturbances from the Great Lakes to the Northeast. The latest output suggests that boundary will be close enough to our region to deliver a couple of batches of showers. The first one on Monday could totally miss this area with showers only probable over mainly CT. The second batch could be rather productive as a more vigorous short wave triggers a wave of low pressure to form from NY into New England. This setup could release some heavy rainfall and boomers later Tuesday night into Wednesday. This rainfall will soothe the thirst of our lawns and various gardens. Hopefully, it will materialize.

Thankfully, the tropics remain quiet due to the presence of dry and dusty Saharan air plus the amount of wind shear. Unless a major change happens in the next few days, tropical cyclone formation is unlikely this month making this the first August without a hurricane in the Atlantic Basin since 2002! For more information, logon to the National Hurricane Center.

Many large fires continue to burn out of control over 11 western states. Check out this report from CBS News. It is possible that 2 or 3 tropical disturbances will move north-northwestward in the next 7-10 days and dump copious amounts of rain over CA and AZ and some of that will plume northward into the fire-ravaged region to put down some flames and decrease the fire threat across that area. It is possible that torrential rains may occur in places to enhance flash flooding and mudslides!

Todd Gutner posts his blog early this evening and I shall return early tomorrow morning for my last regular weekday morning shift. Todd will be taking over starting Monday morning as the new member of the WBZ Weather Team, Eric Fisher, becomes the evening meteorologist. Joe Joyce and I will cover the weekend weathercasts with me in the morning and JJ at night.

Make it a great day!

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