Friday, October 26, 2012

Sandy's gift to us: Cold air

The Charlotte region will escape all but the edges of Hurricane Sandy as it moves up the East Coast this weekend, but as Sandy reaches the Mid-Atlantic coast and morphs into a super storm, it will contribute to a very cold stretch of weather next week in the area.

The cold air already was coming.  The big storm to our north will help make it even chillier.

In fact, if you like the warm weather, get outside this afternoon.  This is pretty much the finale.

Temperatures are in the mid and upper 70s Friday afternoon, but a cold front is approaching from the west. That front is predicted to stall Saturday in the mountains, but clouds from Hurricane Sandy will push into the Charlotte region.

A pressure gradient -- or difference in pressure -- between high pressure behind the front and low pressure from Sandy will help create rather gusty winds Saturday in Charlotte. The bottom line of all this: Clouds, a high in the upper 60s, and winds gusting to 25 or maybe even 30 mph (especially east of Charlotte) in the afternoon.

Outer rain bands from the hurricane are likely to cross the eastern part of the Charlotte region, especially in Anson, Richmond and Montgomery counties.

Then as Sandy pushes north of the Carolinas, the cold front will cross Charlotte, and temperatures will tumble. The coldest air won't arrive until Monday, so we're likely to eke out another day in the mid 60s Sunday, probably with a return of sunshine.

But our highs Monday through Wednesday likely will be in the low to mid 50s. The strong counter-clockwise circulation around the big storm to our north will bring cold air into the region.

Temperatures during trick-or-treating for Halloween on Wednesday evening probably will be in the low 50s.

There's another little twist to all this.  The strong northerly flow behind the storm and cold front could even trigger a few snow showers in the mountains. Heavy snow is not expected, though.  We're talking about snow showers that might coat the ground for a while. That would happen Sunday night, according to meteorologists.


Anonymous said...

Mr. Skeptical here, disputing the statement, "This is pretty much the finale." Once the mega-storm fades away, we'll be back to 80 degrees again. Why am I so sure? Because I don't want it. I wasnt a cold winter with plenty of snow. I'm sure I won't get it...

BH said...

This storm has the potential to drop a foot in higher mountain locales, depending on track. They are looking at blizzard conditions at times Mon-Wed.