ONLY ISOLATED SHOWERS: Alabama’s weather will be fairly quiet through midweek; we expect only a few isolated showers over the eastern half of the state today (we have a few on radar early this morning). The high this afternoon will be in the 79- to 82-degree range. On Wednesday and Thursday, most places will be dry with a partly sunny sky, warm afternoons and pleasant nights.
FRIDAY AND THE WEEKEND: Clouds should increase Friday afternoon ahead of the next cold front, and we will mention a chance of showers Friday night into Saturday morning. Timing remains in question because of fairly significant differences in the global models (the Global Forecast System is faster, the European model slower). For now we expect the main window for rain to come from about 9 p.m. Friday through 9 a.m. Saturday, but this could change when we get closer to the weekend. Rain amounts should be generally on the light side, less than one-half inch for most places.
Some clearing is possible Saturday afternoon, and a new surge of cooler air arrives with a high between 65 and 70 degrees. Sunday will be dry with a sunny sky; we start the day down in the upper 40s, followed by a high in the low to mid 70s. It will be a picture-perfect autumn day.
NEXT WEEK: Global models now show an increase in moisture and a chance of showers Tuesday; otherwise the week looks dry with seasonal temperatures.
TROPICS: A hybrid storm system is expected to form off the east coast of the U.S. later this week; it will move northeast and stay generally offshore. Another system in the Atlantic has a medium chance of becoming a tropical depression or storm, but it will most likely remain far from land. The Gulf of Mexico is quiet.
RACE WEEKEND AT TALLADEGA: A few showers are possible around the Superspeedway late Friday night or Saturday morning; Sunday looks picture perfect for the 1000bulbs.com 500 with sunshine in full supply. The high Saturday will be in the upper 60s, followed by low 70s Sunday.
FOOTBALL WEATHER: For the high school games Friday night, the sky will be mostly cloudy and scattered showers are possible. Temperatures will be in the 70s at kickoff, falling into the 60s by the fourth quarter.
Alabama travels to College Station to take on the Texas A&M Aggies (kickoff at 2:30 p.m. Central Time). The sky will be sunny with a kickoff temperature near 71 degrees.
UAB will also be in Texas Saturday, playing at UTSA (kickoff at 5 p.m. Central Time). Temperatures will fall from near 70 at kickoff through the 60s during the game with a brisk northwest breeze. The sky will be mostly fair with no risk of rain.
Jacksonville State will take on Eastern Illinois Saturday (kickoff at noon Central Time) in Charleston, Illinois. The day will be cool and dry with mid 50s at kickoff; sunshine will be in full supply during the game.
ON THIS DATE IN 1871: The Great Chicago Fire burned much of the city to the ground, fanned by strong southwest winds. An estimated 250 were killed. On the same night, forest fires swept through Peshtigo, Wisconsin. An estimated 1,500 to possibly as many as 2,500 died as gale-force winds pushed flames across town. Severe drought was blamed for tinder-dry conditions. An additional 200 died in Michigan fires.
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