A lot of folks in Tennessee will be breaking record highs this weekend, especially on Saturday. I put the caution for heat on both weekend days, since we’re really not used to this kind of heat just yet. I mentioned yesterday that we’ve gone from spring straight to summer.
Three weeks ago yesterday morning we had snow on the ground.
Since yesterday’s forecast, the chance for afternoon and evening storms has increased a bit for today. Yesterday, it looked like about a quarter of the plateau would see rain today. Now, it looks like about half of us will see some rain. We have severe storms up around Chicago this afternoon and outflow boundaries, etc from these storms may be just enough to kick off storms in our very warm, humid, and unstable atmosphere this evening. There is more than enough instability for any storm to become strong, but other ingredients for severe weather are missing. Therefore, widespread severe weather is certainly not expected, but a storm or two could get intense.
In contrast, tomorrow now looks drier. I think big-time storms across the northern Plains will rob us of the energy needed to kick off a lot of storms. We will still see some isolated storms around, but I think coverage on the plateau will stay around 20-30%, meaning about a third of us should see rain but most of us should stay dry.
Isolated storms continue on Friday, before we break into a mostly sunny and hot pattern this weekend. Some unsettled weather may return by Sunday evening, with a slight chance of a storm. The unsettled weather continues into next week, though temps should come down to the low 80s.
A tropical disturbance may bring us some rain next week, but it’s far too early for specifics on that (see discussion below for more on this).
It really depends on how intense the storms in Indiana and Illinois get today as to how good our rain chances will be. I think we’ll have to watch what happens in Kentucky and then we’ll monitor those storms as they slip southward. Again, widespread severe weather does not look likely at all, but some of the storms could certainly be strong and, perhaps, briefly severe.
I mentioned above that we are already monitoring the tropics for possible development next week. Models have hinted that a system may develop and move this way the middle of next week. This would bring us really good rain chances. Unfortunately, this is so many days away that predictability is quite low. And yes, this is early for the hurricane season but the high pressure that will bring us summer-like weather this weekend is just like something we’d see in the summer that could lead to tropical development. Some of the models are even hinting that we may have an active, early start to this hurricane season. The season officially starts June 1, which is only a little over three weeks away.
If you missed it last night you still have a chance the next several nights to go out and see a very bright Venus in the western sky and a brighter-than-usual Jupiter in the eastern sky. Last night Venus was especially bright just after sunset and Jupiter became brighter and brighter as the planet got higher in the sky. Go out and look up tonight!
I tried to take a pic of Venus just after sunset and it turned out o.k., as far as cell phones go. Check it out this evening! You can’t miss it if you look west.
Looking at weather records for today, I found one from Alabama. On this date in 1985 lightning struck some trees about 150 yards away from a home. The lightning followed the driveway into the home (that was nice of it, right?) and then burned out ever single outlet in the house, destroyed all the appliances, and then blasted a hole through the concrete floor in the basement (not so nice, right?). Now that’s a lightning strike, folks!
Tomorrow, we have a very somber anniversary for the plateau that takes us all the way back to 1933. Eighty-five years ago today folks around here had no idea what disaster awaited them tomorrow.
I’ll have more on that in the morning so be sure and tune in for that.
You all have a great day! I’ll keep an eye on the radar and let you know if anything pops up this afternoon that you need to know about.
I should also mention that our hearts go out to the folks dealing with the volcano in Hawaii. The volcano continues to erupt, forcing evacuations and leading to some folks losing everything, absolutely everything. I’ll have more on this in Friday’s blog.