An active weather pattern

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Main threats

TODAY: FLASH FLOODING

SATURDAY: FLASH FLOODING & STRONG STORMS

Summary

I have some good news! The newest data this morning shows a less significant severe weather threat for Saturday night! While we are still in a threat, and we certainly can’t let our guard completely down, it looks like the worst of the worst will stay well to our west and be weakening as it approaches the plateau. Let’s hope that trend continues!

Below is a map showing the severe threat for Saturday. Notice that the slight and enhanced risk areas have been taken away from the plateau, leaving us in only the marginal risk (category 1 in the chart below this map). If you have plans to travel west of Nashville on Saturday please pay attention to the weather. They are still expecting high winds and tornadoes out that way.

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In last night’s special blog update I mentioned that instability might be lacking for robust t-storm activity Saturday night. The models are showing less instability today, and that is very good news. Let’s hope that holds true because wind fields will be ideal for both straight line winds and tornadoes. If the storms can’t get strong enough to utilize those wind fields, we’ll be alright and we’ll just be left with more flood issues. Never the less, it wouldn’t take much wind at all to push some of these trees over, so be aware of that.

Meanwhile, we still have some dangerous flooding potential out there today and tomorrow. Please be careful if you’re out and about. We’re in for a very rainy day and some of that is coming down in heavy downpours. We’re liable to pick up another 1-2 inches of rain just today. Some of you may see even more than that.

On Saturday, a strong cold front will be organizing to our west and pushing this way. We should see a bit of a break in the rain during the day, but that rain returns with a vengeance Saturday night. We could be looking at some serious flash flood potential when that cold front comes in. Again, let’s hope the severe threat stays lower. I can’t imagine the tree damage a squall line could do right now with our saturated soils. The greatest threat of heavy rain and strong storms looks to be between 9:00 p.m. and 3:00 a.m.

The sun finally comes out on Sunday! Hold on to your hats, though, because it is going to be quite windy! Those brisk north winds will be coming off snowpack across the Plains states, so it will feel much chillier than that forecast high of 50 degrees.

Winds relax for Monday and Tuesday, as we continue with partly cloudy skies.

Records

This day is referred to as “Cold Sabbath” in New England history. That’s because on this day in 1773 people actually lost extremities to frostbite as they tried to walk to church. Talk about some dedicated church goers!

Although the spring and summer months of 1936 would bring more punishing heat and drought to the Plains (the 30s were a terrible time on the Plains), the winter of 1936 was very snowy! On this day that year Sioux Center, Iowa reported 42 inches of snow on the ground, which set a new state record!

Almanac

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Record high: 70 (1980)

Record low: -4 (1963)

Today’s sunset: 5:28

Tomorrow’s sunrise: 6:16

Today’s day length: 11 hrs 10 mins 50 secs

Tomorrow’s day length: 11 hrs 13 mins 02 secs

One year ago today

It was another warm day on the plateau, with a high of 69 degrees and a  low of only 53. It was still 67 degrees at 1:00 a.m. this day! Off and on showers produced a quarter of an inch of rain. The day was cloudy and fog rolled in just after sunset.

Astronomy

Sky viewing conditions tonight: POOR

Moon phase: waning gibbous, 88% illumination

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News

Yesterday, NASA published an article on the historical importance of next week’s launch. It really is so incredibly cool that NASA wants weatherTAP to be there to witness this moment. Not only do they want us there, we’ve been exclusively invited for behind-the-scenes tours, interviews, etc. Only 120 people were selected for this and weatherTAP made the cut!

This is the mission that prompted Vice President Pence to fly down and visit with the folks who made this mission possible.

It’s certainly a testament to how recognized our social media has become, as that is how the 120 of us were invited. NASA wants organizations with a strong social media presence to cover this event, so we can spread the word about the excitement of the future of space exploration.

I’ll be there one week from today and that Friday is jam packed with activities. I’ll be covering it all and bringing you the latest. Be sure and follow weatherTAP on Twitter and Instagram, as they both allow me to do as many updates as I wish. Facebook, on the other hand, is often delayed. Therefore, I will be posting less frequent, but very informative, posts on that site. As for my personal Facebook page, I will be updating that often. As Facebook goes, personal pages can be updated more often than business. And, of course, I’ll be updating the blog with info. I’ll be a busy man! ha

I am so excited to be a part of all of this and I can’t wait to share the excitement with you! Invite your kids and grand kids to follow along too! If we get them excited about science there’s no telling where they might go in life!

Here’s that article (https://go.nasa.gov/2H2rYYW)

You all have a great day!

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