James Spann: Two more hot, dry days before rain/storms return to Alabama

James Spann: Rain returns to Alabama by week’s end from Alabama NewsCenter on Vimeo.

SUMMER-LIKE WEATHER CONTINUES THROUGH TOMORROW: On the maps this morning there is a deep upper low over the Southwest U.S., and around here we have a downstream ridge in place. That upper ridge will mean dry and very warm weather continuing today and tomorrow. With a good supply of sunshine both days, we project afternoon highs in the 87- to 90-degree range, which is 7 to 10 degrees above average for mid-May in Alabama.

WET WEATHER RETURNS FRIDAY: The upper low will lift out and bring our next chance of showers and storms at the end of the week. The Storm Prediction Center has put parts of the state in a “marginal risk” of severe thunderstorms.

The high-resolution North American Mesoscale does show some fairly robust instability by Friday afternoon (surface-based CAPE values rising to around 3,000 j/kg over West Alabama), but wind fields still look fairly weak, and the overall severe weather threat is fairly low. A few storms Friday afternoon and evening could produce small hail and strong, gusty winds.

While we can’t totally rule out a shower Friday morning, it still looks like the main window for showers and thunderstorms will come from about noon Friday through midnight Friday night. It won’t rain the entire time, but occasional rain is likely. Rain amounts should average around one-half inch, with isolated heavier amounts.

THE ALABAMA WEEKEND: The sky becomes partly to mostly sunny Saturday as dry air returns to the state; the high will be in the upper 70s. Then, Sunday will feature sunshine in full supply, along with a high between 82 and 85 degrees.

NEXT WEEK: Global models suggest most of next week will be warm and dry, with highs in the 80s and lows in the 60s. A deep, cold upper trough will set up over the western U.S., moving little.

YO, ADRIAN: The first tropical storm of the season has formed over in the eastern Pacific; it is expected to become a hurricane by Friday night, meandering off the southern Pacific coast of Mexico and Central America. The hurricane season for the Atlantic basin begins June 1.

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