Sunday, July 27, 2014

July Going Out Like A Lion



Yes, I just made March mad.  Our 2 day mini heat wave will come to an end late Sunday as yet another very strong cold front moves through the state.  I really hesitate to even call it a heat wave since high temperatures are actually almost exactly average for late July.  I'm writing this early Sunday morning and I have noticed the data says it will be 98 to 99 degrees today in Little Rock.  I'm willing to bet this is too high since the soil still has plenty of water in it and it's tough to get those readings up that high.  Yesterday (Saturday) was a classic example of that.  The models forecast a high temperature around 96 to 97 degrees and the high was 93.  There's so much moisture in the ground and in the air, this really prevents the actual temperature from realizing what the computers say.  However, the heat index was horrible.   It reached 105 in many locations and will do so again Sunday.

That cold front will spark a few showers and storms late today and some could be strong to severe.  I'm not expecting an outbreak, but we'll watch radar today!  It's tough to undergo a transition like this without Mother Nature lighting a few fireworks.  The main threats will be wind and hail.  The tornado threat is extremely low.


We all know by now temperatures will go well below average starting Monday with low humidity too.  Daily record low temperatures will have to be watched, but I want to key in on late Wednesday and Thursday.  These last 2 days of July have the potential to bust more temperature and precipitation records.  Just like that cool and rainy day a couple weeks ago, this COULD be similar.  If one looks at the GFS MOS data this Sunday morning, you will see a high on Thursday of 87 degrees.  I don't buy that at all!!!! I think that could be at least 10-15 degrees too high.  With the cold front south of the state and a northwesterly flow delivering a strong disturbance, clouds and rain will hold down temperatures.  I think it's even possible to have yet another day when the daily high temperature breaks into the top 10 coolest July days.  We're also going to watch monthly temperature records as this will likely end up as one of the coolest July's in history.

I highly doubt we break a daily rainfall record Thursday.  That's 5.69 inches set in 1902.  I hope we don't break that because that would likely cause some serious flooding.  However, it will only take less than half an inch to break into the top 10 wettest July's on record.  As I have mentioned before, 7 out of the top 10 wettest July's had summers when the temperature NEVER hit 100 degrees.  That's why I say there's a 70% chance we will not hit 100 degrees officially in Little Rock this summer.  I know there's plenty of August to go, but troughing will likely hold across the central U.S. for the next week to 10 days.  Of course, all this could be ruined if the models are right for today and we approach 100. LOL.

Like I said, I really want to focus in on the last day of this month (Thursday).  Both the GFS and the Euro are pointing towards a wet and cool day.  That's the reason for the title of this post, "July Going Out Like A Lion.".  Once again, my apologies to the month of March for stealing your line.

The following maps displaying model data are from weatherbell.com

Euro total rain amounts late Wednesday into Thursday show more than 1 inch across most of Arkansas except the far east and northeast.  The track of the disturbance favors western and southwestern Arkansas for the heaviest rainfall.  REMEMBER, THIS CAN CHANGE SINCE IT'S SEVERAL DAYS OUT.
The European max temperatures from 1PM to 7PM Thursday just off the surface indicates highs only in the 60s and 70s!!!!!!  Remember, the GFS says 87 on its MOS data.  OUT TO LUNCH!
The GFS total rainfall looks kinda similar to the Euro with western Arkansas the target for the heaviest rainfall late Wednesday and Thursday.
The GFS max temperature from 1PM to 7PM Thursday even shows highs only in the 60s and 70s.  This is why I don't trust the MOS data.

Thursday, July 24, 2014

More Record Rain and Cool Weather On The Way



It was about 2 weeks ago I thought this pattern could be historic for Arkansas and it has lived up to that expectation easily.  There are more records to break and we're not stopping!

Now through the beginning of August is typically the hottest time of the year, but a dagger of cool weather will prevent that from happening and this summer is quickly going into the history books as one of the coolest on record, unless something drastic changes.

On the evening of July 23rd (Tuesday), I sent out a tweet saying I gave this summer a 70% chance of NOT hitting 100 degrees.  Could I live to regret saying that?  We are going to have a burst of heat this weekend before the blast of cool air arrives.  The models say mid 90s and even upper 90s will be possible.  While only 1 person knows what will happen, I have two reasons why we will not hit 100.  First, the ground is wet and the sun's energy goes into evaporation, then it can heat the air efficiently.  Second, the computer model forecast maximums have been too high lately and wrong.  Probably because of reason number 1.  Yes, it will get hot and humid this weekend, but it will not stay long at all.

We also have rain records to watch once again.  We are less than half an inch from breaking into the top 10 wettest July's on record.  This will be possible.  It's interesting to note 7 of the top 10 wettest July's NEVER hit 100 degrees.  That makes sense if the ground is wet!

You may have seen something new I launched on Facebook recently.  I have spent the past 1.5 years researching and developing an app.  It's finally completed and is available in both the Apple and Google Play stores.  It's called "Arkansas Weather".  The focus is all about Arkansas weather history.  My goal is to make this the encyclopedia of Arkansas weather so expect much, much more will be added.  This would not have been possible without my wife, Andria.  She was a huge help.  This project is something I have done on my own.  As you know, weather his more than a career for me, it's a hobby too.


Below, most of the maps are from weatherbell.com

European max temps Saturday afternoon are in the mid and upper 90s.  This might be a touch too hot, but it's going to be STEAMY!
Sunday looks the same.  HOT and STEAMY!  Will we hit 100?  It's possible, but unlikely in my opinion.  I would not be surprised to see a few isolated spots reach it.
Tuesday max temps show the cool air moving in from the north and suppressing the heat to the south.  Look at those highs only in the 80s again with LOW humidity too.
Does that look weird to you?  Max temperatures on Wednesday indicate the coolest air over western Arkansas and the warmest northeast.  Well, the model is seeing clouds and rain here.j  Look familiar?  We had this set up just a week or so ago.  These high temperatures are only in the 60s and 70s!  WOW!!!
Here's the Euro rainfall amounts on Wednesday afternoon with the focus over western and southern Arkansas.  You can see why the model thinks this area will be cooler.  PLEASE DO NOT TAKE THIS LITERALLY!!!!!  Future model runs will adjust where it think it will rain and this is unlikely to verify exactly.
BULLSEYE!  NOAA's 6-10 day outlook indicates a very high chance for well below average temperatures!  This is July 29th through August 2nd.
The 8-14 day outlook shows well below average temperatures continue from July 31st to August 6th.  AMAZING.  Right in the heart of the hottest time of the year.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Another Round Of Cool Air



There's really no doubt about it, temperatures will warm this week to where they should be in July, but more cool air will move into the state the following week.  It's the story of the summer... a burst of heat only to be tempered by a blast of cooler air.  At this time, I don't think it will be as strong as the previous round of cool weather, but it will be unusual for July.  This video goes over everything you need to know.