January 12: Warm Today, Storms Tonight, Chilly This Weekend


Buckle up, it’s time for another ride on the weather roller-coaster.

We started off with temperatures in the 60s this morning:
We won’t warm up a LOT, but even a modest warm-up will put us in near-record territory this afternoon:
Today’s record in the Triangle is 76 degrees, set all the way back in 1890. The record high of 79 in Fayetteville is much more recent, set in 2013.

It won’t be easy to get out and enjoy those warm temperatures, though…off-and-on showers will be with us throughout the day. Here’s the problem: while it won’t rain everywhere all day, showers will be possible at any point during the day. The HRRR model’s radar simulation through 6pm shows that scattershot pattern:
Even when it’s not raining, it will be generally damp. So wear the old sneakers if you’re going for a run, and leave a towel by the door before you head out for a dog walk, so you can wipe off those wet paws and bellies.

We’ll be watching a band of thunderstorms make its way in from the west this evening, well after sunset. Here’s the RPM model’s hour-by-hour radar simulation:

While the heavy rain won’t last too long, be prepared for some heavy downpours and wind gusts around 40 mph. There’s even an outside chance of a few severe (60+mph) wind gusts with the strongest storms. The Storm Prediction Center’s thunderstorm outlook shows a “Marginal Risk” (level 1 of 5) mostly to our east tonight, just barely clipping Sampson, Wayne and Edgecombe counties:
The SPC’s own ensemble forecast model (a blend of a bunch of different models) shows a 30% chance of severe weather ingredients coming together right here in central North Carolina this evening:
Those severe weather ingredients aren’t off-the-charts…far from it, in fact. I wouldn’t be surprised if the SPC expands the risk area to include more of our counties, but a Marginal Risk shouldn’t prompt you to re-arrange your life. Just plan on staying weather-aware this evening, in case a few of the storms get frisky.

Once the rain moves off to the east, temperatures will start dropping. We’ll start off Saturday morning around 50 degrees:
But that will be our high for the day. Temperatures by Saturday afternoon will be down to the mid 40s:

The chilly weather will make itself right at home for the rest of the holiday weekend:

Yes, you’re seeing a chance of snow in Wednesday’s forecast…I’m not going any higher than 30% with the chance though. The American GFS model shows a whole bunch of nothin’ for central North Carolina on Wednesday:
But the European forecast model is painting a different picture:
If those models traded places, I’d leave the snow out of the forecast. But the European model is pretty darn good at its job, and there are plenty of members of that model’s ensemble (same model run 50 different times with slightly different conditions) to support the snow chance. Nothing to warrant a winter weather freak-out at this point, though…just something we’ll keep an eye on over the weekend and into early next week.


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