Cold Front Brings Major Changes
A strong cold front pushing into Arkansas and southeastern Missouri this evening has a very sharp difference from one side of the front to the other! At 6 PM it was 77º in Little Rock, but only 43º in Springfield, Missouri:
This colder air will come rushing into the Tennessee Valley on Friday. Ahead of the colder air, the wind will be out of the south and temperatures will rise into the middle and upper 70s. Since it is coming in from the northwest, it’s going to get cooler and breezy around The Shoals first. As early as 3 PM, temperatures will start dropping from the 70s into the 60s from Florence and Muscle Shoals northwest to Waynesboro and Savannah, Tennessee. In Huntsville and communities to the east and south, it will take a little longer for temperatures to start that nosedive.
High school football games might be impacted by some isolated, light showers; however, there is no significant risk of heavy rain or thunderstorms with this front.
Saturday and Sunday are going to be much cooler, but how much colder it gets will have a lot to do with the future of Hurricane Sandy. Sandy is a Category 2 hurricane this evening moving north through the Bahamas, and as this storm gets tangled up with the passing cold front, it will enhance the southward push of colder air for days to come:
If the cold air “advection” is strong enough, the sky gets clear, and the wind can calm down, Monday and Tuesday mornings could feature frost and possibly a freeze:
We pay close attention to trends in model guidance – especially ensemble guidance which does not tend to flip-flop as much as the operational (every 6-12 hour) runs. The NOMADS ensemble guidance for Huntsville indicates the potential of a temperature below 32º F on Monday morning at 76% and on Tuesday at 95%!
It’s important to remember that this is model guidance, and the chance is not a guaranteed 100% for every single spot in North Alabama or Southern Tennessee. If sky conditions change or the wind is unable to settle down under 5 MPH, that could prevent frost and freeze conditions. We’ll keep you posted!