A tricky eclipse forecast

At this time last week the models were painting a very gloomy picture for the eclipse. They showed widespread showers and storms all across the plateau. As we’ve grown closer to eclipse day, the models have, thankfully, trended toward more isolated shower activity. This morning, the models all paint about the same picture. They show the majority of the state being rain-free at 1:00 pm. However, there are isolated showers on the plateau. This is where things get tricky. There is a chance that location where you are might be cloudy, while just down the road is still rather clear. I would be prepared to move.  Just keep in mind that everyone else may be on the move too. This is the latest model forecast, which indicates isolated showers across the plateau. I circled the plateau on the map.  It’s a typical summer day, except we have a total solar eclipse occurring (ha).

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Regardless of cloud cover, expect the temperature to drop 5-10 degrees during the eclipse. This will mean that Monday will be a bit cooler than we otherwise would be, though we’ll still be in the 80s. At least we don’t have the problems California is facing. The state gets 40% of it’s electric power from the sun. With the eclipse, that output is going to be cut by half! Folks  who rely on rooftop panels will have to switch to the regular power grid, putting a strain on the whole system. I hadn’t even thought about the impact on solar power. If we do have showers/storms around during the eclipse, it’ll be incredibly interesting to see how they respond to the eclipse. Will they suddenly dissipate? With they get weaker/stronger? I guess we’ll find out! (This is a hot topic in the meteorology community right now, so all eyes will be on us if weather develops!)

As for today’s forecast, we can expect mostly to partly cloudy skies with isolated showers and storms. The weekend is looking hot but dry, with highs near 90 and high humidity. Keep me in mind in the morning, as I’ll be in Nashville running a 10K that raises money to fight sex trafficking in Tennessee (have you seen the horrific stories in the news lately on this?). Hopefully, we won’t get too hot out there running!

Yesterday was the anniversary of Hurricane Camille hitting the Gulf Coast. A devastating storm that will never be forgotten. Today, we move north to Iowa where, on this day in 1925, a hailstorm like they had never seen before struck in the late morning hours. The hailstorm completely destroyed all crops and killed most of the livestock in its path. That path was 75 miles long and 10 miles wide! Corn fields were so demolished that the farmers had to leave their farms to find work elsewhere. It was, to this day, one of the worst hailstorms in US history. We have our own incredible hailstorm anniversary coming on August 29, you know? You’ll want to check back here on that day, for sure, when I write about that historic event. I’ve got some good stuff (ha)!

Meanwhile, I’ll be checking that eclipse forecast and posting updates here on Monday morning and over the weekend at https://meteorologistmark.com/.

You all have a great, safe weekend and let me know if you ever have any weather or eclipse questions!

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