James Spann: Cold night, weekend rain ahead for Alabama

SUNNY BUT COLD: Temperatures across Alabama are only in the 30s and 40s this afternoon despite a sunny sky; tonight will be clear and cold with a low between 20 and 25 for most places early tomorrow morning. Colder pockets could very well see upper teens.

RAIN RETURNS: The day on Saturday will be dry with a mix of sun and clouds; we rise up into the low to mid 50s by afternoon. Clouds will increase late in the day, and rain moves in late Saturday night. Rain should be fairly widespread across Alabama from about midnight Saturday night through 10 a.m. Sunday; amounts of one-half to 1 inch are likely. There will be no severe weather worries, and probably no thunder; just good old-fashioned rain.

The sky should begin to clear late Sunday as dry air returns; the high Sunday will be in the upper 50s.

NEXT WEEK: Monday will be cool and dry, with a high in the low 50s; then another wave will bring clouds back into the state Tuesday. Rain and thunderstorms are likely Tuesday night into part of the day Wednesday; the European model continues to suggest there will be some surface-based instability available with potential for strong, maybe even severe thunderstorms. But the Global Forecast System isn’t as aggressive and suggests no big severe weather threat. We need to get through the weekend system and then we can focus on this one.

Thursday and Friday of next week look dry with seasonal temperatures. There is no sign of any snow or ice issues for Alabama for the next seven to 10 days.

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