Monday, January 2, 2012

Cold Shot As Promised for Eastern U.S.; Freeze on Way to Florida...

As promised, a shot of arctic air is invading much of the eastern third of the U.S., with a lesser intense, but cool, airmass dominating the middle third of the nation this morning.

The latest surface weathermap is shown below, with temperatures shaded on a graduated scale (upper left corner of the image).  I have also noted the location of the freezing line as of 10am CST, which is shown in solid yellow (click the image to enlarge).

The latest run of the GFS computer forecast model is calling for morning low temperatures to average 20 or more degrees below normal across portions of the southeast, and particularly Florida, on Tuesday and Wednesday mornings before moderating (while still remaining below normal) by Thursday morning.  The corresponding images below are via Dr. Ryan Maue's website:

As alluded to in a post last Thursday, a hard freeze is on the way to much of northern and central Florida tonight and/or Tuesday night.  The next series of images show the GFS model's forecast of actual temperature near the surface for each of 7am EST on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday mornings.  I have noted the freezing line across Florida on the 1st image so that you can orient yourself:

Note that on Wednesday morning, the model is forecasting a hard freeze well into central Florida (perhaps as far South as Lake Okeechobee), after affecting much of northern Florida on Tuesday morning.

Hard freeze warnings have been posted for parts of northern Florida for tonight, with freeze warnings further South.  I would expect a similar scenario for Tuesday night/Wednesday morning as well.

The good news is that the cold snap will be relatively short lived, as expected.  Temperatures are forecast to moderate and once again rise above normal levels across  by the end of the week:

GFS computer model forecast departure from normal temperature
valid 7pm EST Saturday, January 7, 2011

Otherwise, the overall weather pattern looks pretty quiet throughout most of the continental U.S. this week.

We'll have to keep a close eye on a system taking shape for late this coming weekend or early next week for a possible winter weather impact on the central and southern Plains.  If you live in Kansas, Missouri, Oklahoma, Arkansas and north Texas, you'll definitely want to stay tuned for updates on that one!

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