Tilting temperature trends until the end of September


CHARLESTON, WV (WOWK) – Now that fall has arrived, temperatures are always expected to drop over time with the change into the cool seasons, but at least for the rest of this week local temperatures will be rising above normal.

Temperature trends through Saturday

High temperatures in the area will warm a little through Sunday when a weak cold front moves through the area, followed by a second and stronger cold front on Tuesday.

Predictor model output for Tuesday, September 29, 2020

It has been dry for several days in the area and the next chance that any of us can see rain comes on Thursday thanks to a feed of moisture from the Gulf of Mexico that used to be a part of Tropical Storm Beta earlier this week. The limiting factor on rain locally will be the area of high pressure that has been in control. Look for the showers to be light and limited to areas along of south of I-64.

Predictor model output for Thursday, September 24, 2020

Once the two cold fronts cross the region on Sunday and Tuesday, the door is open to some much cooler air. Model outputs currently show a few days in the 50s for highs. (We currently have the region in the low 60s, but with more model evidence we may need to lower the highs starting Wednesday in future forecasts.)

Predictor model output for Wednesday September 28, 2020 shows highs locally in the 50s

Another forecast tool used by meteorologists is to look at the North Atlantic Oscillation, or NAO.

From NOAA: “The North Atlantic Oscillation (NAO) index is based on the surface sea-level pressure difference between the Subtropical (Azores) High and the Subpolar Low.”

When this index is strongly positive, the eastern United States generally sees warm conditions and when the index is negative, that phase is generally correlated with colder air in the eastern U.S.

The current forecast of the NAO index shows a fairly strong negative signal around October 1, which lines up nicely with the model output calling for colder than normal temperatures which should be in the mid 70s.

Current NAO Index forecast through the start of October shown in red leads to a negative phase and colder temperatures for the eastern United States – from NOAA Climate Prediction Center

So be ready to break out the fall wardrobe with some long sleeves and sweaters next week.

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