Heaviest rain expected midday, turning cold this weekend

Weather

Thursday: Cloudy and breezy with steady rain continuing, becoming heavy at times. Flooding is possible, mainly in the metro areas and mountains. Winds: NE 10-20 mph, High: 56 (52-57)

Thursday night: Cloudy with rain tapering to showers. Winds: NNE 8-12 mph, Low: 43 (40-45)

Friday: Mostly cloudy with scattered AM showers, then turning breezy with clearing skies in the PM. Winds: NNW 10-20 mph, High: 50 (46-53), Low: 30 (25-33)

Halloween: Sunny skies. Highs will be in the upper 40’s to lower 50’s with lows in the 30’s.

Sunday: Mostly cloudy with isolated PM showers possible. Highs will be in the upper 50’s to lower 60’s with lows in the middle to upper 30’s.

Monday: Partly cloudy, chilly, and breezy. Highs will be in the middle to upper 40’s with lows in the upper 20’s to lower 30’s.

Tuesday: Mostly sunny skies. Highs will be in the 50’s with lows in the 30’s.

Wednesday: Mostly sunny skies. Highs will be in the upper 50’s to lower 60’s with lows in the middle to upper 30’s.

Forecast Discussion

It’s been the main focus all week, and now the rain has finally arrived. Right around 3 AM showers arrived and quickly turned over to a steady rain across the entire area. The center of what’s now Tropical Storm Zeta is still over northern Alabama, but this storm will quickly zip up our way, and pass just south of the DC metro this afternoon. Being on the northwest side of this storm, rain is going to continue straight through the day in a steady fashion. Through the late morning and early afternoon is when rain could turn heavy at times, before we start to see things taper down to just showers by sunset. Precipitation totals are expected to be between 2 to 3”, with slightly less to the north and locally higher amounts over 3” possible. A Flood Watch is in effect until 11 PM for all areas east of I-81 as a result. Flooding, if it does occur, won’t be widespread and would mainly occur from clogged storm drains and in the metro areas.

As mentioned above, Zeta will be exiting tonight, but there is still a secondary low in its wake to deal with tonight and Friday morning. This system will bring continued shower chances, especially as it re-strengthens along the Atlantic coast. By tomorrow afternoon this system should also be long gone though, and skies will clear quickly. A Freeze Watch has already been issued for Friday night for parts of the area, as under clearing skies and calmer winds lows will plummet into the upper 20’s and lower 30’s for a solid frost by Saturday morning. Halloween itself will be chilly but beautiful, as high pressure gives us lots of sunshine.

Trends lately have favored a fairly strong low and cold front crossing nearby to the north late Sunday into early next week. This means that into Sunday a southerly return flow will quickly push us back toward 60 degrees with clouds returning, and then some isolated showers will be possible Sunday afternoon. The main concern heading into Monday will be very breezy northwest winds, up to 25-35 mph. We should be fine given recent rainfall, but these winds will keep highs mainly in the 40’s to get next week started. From there, strong high pressure will warm us up and keep things quiet through the middle of next week.

Stay dry out there and have a great Thursday!

Meteorologist Damon Matson

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