TODAY AND TOMORROW: The sky across Alabama was mostly cloudy this morning with a rather large mass of rain and showers across southeast Alabama. Yesterday was quite comfortable, as both Birmingham Shuttlesworth Airport and the Shelby County Airport recorded highs of 84. Moisture levels have come back up with dew points in the middle and upper 60s, so showers are once again back in the forecast. It was certainly nice to have about four days of fairly pleasant weather and lowered dew points. But it is August. If the rest of August could be like yesterday, the summer would be great. Oh, well, some wishful thinking!
The chances for showers and thunderstorms will be good today, but the chances should be better for Friday. Highs today and Friday will be in the 84 to 88 range.
THE WEEKEND AND NEXT WEEK: The Global Forecast System indicates that the rain chances, especially across north Alabama, will drop on Saturday as some drier air manages to make it into that area. Central Alabama will be on the edge of the drier air, so rain chances will go down, but they probably won’t go to zero. The high Saturday should be in the upper 80s.
The flow aloft will remain nearly zonal all the way from Sunday to Thursday, so there won’t be much change to the pattern, with showers a possibility each day. I do note a weak short-wave trough coming across the Lower Mississippi River Valley on Tuesday and Wednesday, which could raise the potential for rain and showers. Highs through this period will be in the 87 to 91 range.
Rainfall amounts over the next five days will be varied due to the nature of showers, but places that do get rain could see amounts between three-quarters and 1 inch.
TROPICS: In the tropical Atlantic, a large area of showers and thunderstorms near the west coast of Africa was associated with a tropical wave. Environmental conditions are forecast to be conducive for gradual development, so a tropical depression could form by early next week from this disturbance. This system is forecast to move toward the west or west-northwest at 10 to 15 mph for the next several days. In the eastern North Pacific one area of disturbed weather is under surveillance, but development may occur into the weekend, with conditions becoming more favorable as it treks westward.
BEACH FORECAST: At the beaches of Alabama and northwest Florida, the chance for showers will continue through the weekend and into the start of next week. No complete washouts, but showers could be fairly numerous at times. You can expect to see highs mainly in the middle 80s and lows in the upper 70s. Click here to see the AlabamaWx Beach Forecast Center page.
BEYOND NEXT WEEK: Looking out into voodoo country, the GFS has whipped up some tropical mischief. The pattern begins with a nearly zonal flow across the Southeast that gradually becomes a well-defined ridge. Well, sort of. The GFS also introduces a tropical system that comes across the southwest Atlantic east of the Bahamas and chugs it steadily into the U.S. coast in the vicinity of Savannah, Georgia. The storm then moves steadily into eastern Kentucky as it moves around the edge of the Bermuda high. With the projected location of the Bermuda high, this pattern is certainly possible, but I won’t be making this forecast just yet.
WEATHER BRAINS: You can listen to our weekly 90-minute netcast anytime on the web, or on iTunes. This is the show all about weather featuring many familiar voices, including meteorologists at ABC 33/40.
Since we’ve been dry for several days, I hope your yard gets a passing shower today or Friday. Godspeed.For more weather news and information, visit AlabamaWx.