A mild midweek ahead of our next big storm system


Main Threats

Saturday: Heavy rainfall that could cause roadway and localized flooding

Sunday: wintry precip that could impact travel

Sunday night: bitter cold temperatures. Remember people, pets, and pipes.


After some freezing fog made things a bit frosty looking this morning, we’ll see mostly cloudy skies stick with us through most of the day. I think we could see some sun shine through this afternoon. These pesky, low-hanging clouds just don’t want to leave. It will stay chilly today, with highs in the 30s most of the day.

Tonight, clouds thicken up and rain showers will begin to move in for our Thursday. Rainfall amounts don’t look impressive at all, so we won’t look for any flooding issues. I had thought we could see a thunderstorm or two from this system, but it now looks like it may be a bit too chilly for such activity.

This is a quick-moving system, too, so that will also work to keep rainfall amounts down. Despite our cold air mass that is in place, the precip tomorrow will be predominately liquid and fall with temps above freezing, with no travel problems expected.

Friday looks mostly cloudy and warmer. Hopefully, we can get the sun to make some appearances but don’t hold your breath.

Then, our next big storm system makes its way into our neck of the woods. This system will pull a lot of warm, moist air up from the Gulf and that will set the stage for some very heavy rainfall and thunderstorms. Some of these storms could be a bit strong, so be mindful of that. I think the strongest storms will stay to our south and west but it’s worth keeping an eye on. The rainfall on Saturday could accumulate to 2-3 inches, with isolated spots picking up even more than that (esp if you get a t-storm).

The really cold air begins spilling in here late Saturday night. This is some cold arctic air, folks. Any leftover moisture will turn to sleet and snow, with up to an inch of accumulation possible before the precip moves out. This does not look like a big winter storm at this time. The big headline to focus on is the much colder temperatures that are coming for Sunday and early next week. This arctic air will be similar to what we experienced back in November. (Remember, there was one day we didn’t even get to 20 degrees.)

The good news is that this arctic blast looks short-lived, with high temps warming back into the 40s by Tuesday. Sunday looks to be the coldest night, with lows in the 5-10 degree range.

Below is a map of the forecast path of this cold, arctic high pressure. Notice that it slips right over the plateau by Monday. As it moves east by Tuesday, winds will shift from the south, ushering in warmer air. Thank goodness this thing is moving pretty quick! There are indications in the long-range outlooks that more arctic air is ready to move down our direction before the month is over.



It was a snowy day in Nashville on this day in 1948. By day’s end, the city was covered in more than half a foot of snow.

The Midstate was slammed with a major winter storm 16 years ago today. Nashville was forecast to get an inch or so of snow. The system surprised forecasters and dumped 7 inches of snow on Music City….during morning rush hour…on roads that hadn’t been pre-treated. It was the biggest snow to fall on the city in 7 years. Interstates became blocked, accidents were almost too numerous to count, and gridlock paralyzed the whole city. It was a disaster.

It’s one thing to have a surprise snow, but it’s a whole new level of disaster when that snow hits at morning rush hour.

I was in my final semester as a journalism major at Tech during this and I remember very clearly watching the news coverage of this event that morning. I think I even skipped my morning classes. It was true reality TV, folks! Several TV meteorologists with Nashville news stations were stuck in the traffic and just started broadcasting over their phones from where they were. The snow was moving east and all of Middle TN was put under alert. However, the snow ended up just falling in a narrow swath that just so happened to bulls-eye Nashville. The rest of us got what we were all expecting all along…an inch or two of snow.

If this had just happened a few tens of miles north or south of the city there wouldn’t have been much of anything said or remembered about it. As it is, this storm still haunts forecasters in this area even today, as we all hope to never see a repeat of this again. The only people who forgive you for surprise snows are teachers and students. (ha)



Record high: 66 (1990)

Record low: -9 (1982)

Tomorrow’s sunrise: 6:48

Today’s sunset: 4:51

Today’s Day Length: 10 hrs 01 mins 50 secs

Tomorrow’s Day Length: 10 hrs 03 mins 12 secs

One Year Ago Today

Whew! A year ago today we were in the middle of an arctic blast. We started the day off at three degrees and made it all the up to 30 degrees for a high temperature. We were literally freezing cold all day.

A trace of moisture was recorded when some light snow moved in during the morning. That snow lingered all day long, while winds remained calm to light.  A good dusting of snow was observed at the airport.


Venus dominates the pre-dawn sky these days, if you’re up for that. Look for her in the southeastern sky. You can’t miss it, as it is the brightest object around before sunrise. Point your telescope at it and you’ll be able to see a disk that is slightly more than half lit.

The big astronomical news is the total lunar eclipse coming Sunday night. It now looks like it will be clear for that! Fingers crossed! We’ll surely freeze to death watching it, though (ha). It will be quite the sight, as it is also a Super Moon. That just means that the full moon appears a bit bigger than usual that night. Still, that works out well for  total eclipse!



One year ago today I stood in the same room that GOES-17 was being housed in. What an experience! I still can’t believe that happened. I remember speaking to the Crossville Breakfast Rotary Club and I encouraged them to fill their lives with “hard to believe that happened” experiences.

I had this to share on Facebook one year ago today:

“This morning I became one of only a handful of people in the world to be in the same room with a GOES satellite! It was an incredible experience! I was able to speak with project managers and other scientists, and I will be sharing the info I learned as we go through the week! I’m in information overload!

One interesting thing I learned that pertains to recent news is that GOES 16 and 17 can detect rocket launches! I asked about the recent Hawaii rocket scare and I was assured that anything coming our way will be detected by GOES! The increased spatial and temporal resolution ensures that nothing like that ever gets past GOES! In fact, very little gets past GOES.”


And now, I wait for this government shutdown to end so I can see the launch of DEMO-1! I sure am ready to get back down there….

You all have a great day!

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