Tennessee Valley Weather Blog

Thursday 04/17/2014
Early Weekend Rain Chances; Excellent Easter Weather

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As we round another week here in the Tennessee Valley, we've got some more changes in the forecast, but thankfully I'm not talking severe weather or freezing conditions. I'm talking about an increase in cloud cover and some rain chances arriving throughout tomorrow as well. 

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We actually have two separate systems traversing the Southeast - 1) the approaching front to the west, and 2) the surface low pressure system in the northern Gulf of Mexico. Clearly, the stronger of the two will be the southern system in the Gulf. By 7 AM in the morning, the surface low should be at a point a little south of Pensacola with widespread rain to the north and east of the circulation center. Notice the rain may spread as far north as I-20 at this point. 

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By 8 PM tomorrow night, the aforementioned front has basically washed out and lost its identity by this time. The surface low will be working into the Florida Peninsula/southern Georgia, plenty of moisture will exist on the north and northwest side of the system. There will be a sharp gradient in the cloud/rain coverage and the rain-free areas tomorrow night, and for right now I"m expecting that to be over the far southeastern sections of the viewing area. 

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Taking a little bit of a closer look with our in house higher resolution model, it suggests the bulk of the rain will be mostly outside the Tennessee Valley counties. However, I'm a little hesitant to believe this entirely; I think the best course of action is to use a blend of the two forecast models I've shown here. The bottom line is the best chance at a few passing showers will be over the southeastern sections of the area, including places like Gadsden, Fort Payne, Guntersville, and Scottsboro. While a shower cannot be ruled out across the entire TN Valley, these areas stand the best chance of rain tomorrow night into early Saturday morning. 

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That surface low pressure system will slowly move eastward on Saturday, but lingering clouds and rain will be likely especially over north Georgia. Some of this activity could linger over far eastern and northeastern Alabama through midday, but the majority of the valley should see a clearing sky with temperatures rising into the low and mid 70s by the afternoon. In places where the clouds linger the longest, temperatures will hold in the mid 60s. 

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Everyone wants to know about the Easter forecast, and the good news is that there is lots of sunshine on the way! Temperatures will top out in the mid to potentially upper 70s with a good supply of sunshine. We will be under the influence of mid-level ridging which suggests sinking air, and therefore I'm not expecting any rain chances Sunday. Our next rain chance will return late Monday into Tuesday, but even then the rain chance is only at 20%. 

Isaac Williams

WAAY-TV Weather

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Pleasant Thursday Evening Ahead for the TN Valley

CaptureThe weather is feeling fantastic across the Valley this afternoon with temperatures in the mid to upper 60s area-wide with lots of sunshine. There's been a few high clouds throughout the day, but these are way up in the atmosphere above 25,000 feet and pose no threat for rain. 

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Heading throughout the evening, temperatures will hover in the mid 60s by 6 PM with a good supply of sunshine continuing. Temperatures will slowly fall into the upper 50s by the late evening with a bit more cloud cover likely to spread into the area during the overnight hours. A stray shower is possible towards the Shoals, but the confidence in this is not high enough to warrant any rain chances. 

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A dynamic, complex storm system will quickly move through the Southeastern states/Gulf of Mexico tomorrow that will spin up a surface low pressure system over the Florida Panhandle. We will be on the northern periphery of this system, but the cloud cover will be around tomorrow and rain is possible by tomorrow night. Our forecast model shows some rain for southeastern sections of the TN Valley by 8-10 PM tomorrow night. The rain shouldn't be overly heavy, but be aware of some passing showers in these areas. The rain could last into Saturday morning as well before tapering off into the afternoon. 

I will have more information on the rest of your weekend forecast as well as some additional rain chances next week coming up in another blog post a little later this evening. Be sure to join me on WAAY-TV for First News at 5 this afternoon and at 10 this evening for all your forecast details. 

Isaac Williams

WAAY-TV Weather

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Wednesday 04/16/2014
This Could Our Last Freeze Until The Fall

FROM CHIEF METEOROLOGIST SPENCER DENTON

Updated WEDNESDAY 5:00PM

LEAVING THE FREEZING WEATHER BEHIND! Lows were on target this morning ranging from the upper 20s to low 30s. No records were broken in Huntsville or Muscle Shoals. Everyone stays above freezing tonight with lows generally in the mid to upper 30’s. This may have been our last freeze until next fall, but it is still possible until early May. I may go ahead and plant some stuff soon.

LATE WEEK WARMING TREND HEADING INTO EASTER: Temperatures will gradually warm up by the end of the week. Highs will reach the 60s to near 70 tomorrow and Friday with lows back in the 40s and 50s. A weak front may produce a few showers Friday, but widespread rain is not likely.

As of now, Easter weekend is looking mainly dry. The good news…highs will be in the low to mid 70’s and maybe even upper 70’s if we see enough sunshine. Great weather for all those outdoor activities and Easter egg hunts. Expect the mild pattern to continue into next week with another chance of rain by Tuesday.

You can check the specific numbers on the 7 day forecast by clicking here http://www.waaytv.com/weather/7_day/

 

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Tuesday 04/15/2014
Freeze Overnight - Cover Up Tender Plants!

FROM CHIEF METEOROLOGIST SPENCER DENTON

Updated TUESDAY 5:00PM

Forecast lows across the TN Valley by Wednesday morning

Overnight Lows

Freeze warnings in place across much of the southeast overnight

Freeze Warnings Southeast

FREEZE/FROST OVERNIGHT – PROTECT TENDER PLANTS! After seeing some light flurries and snow this morning in portions of the TN Valley, we turn our attention to a brief cold blast by Wednesday morning.  The wind will die down by morning with a clear sky. This will help lows will drop to around 30º on average, but some colder valley’s may see the mid to upper 20’s. Plan to cover up any tender plants and vegetation. Farmer will certainly be keeping an eye on how long it’s below freezing since a hard freeze could damage crops.

LATE WEEK WARMING TREND HEADING INTO EASTER: Temperatures will gradually warm up by the end of the week. Highs will reach the 60s to near 70 by Thursday and Friday with lows back in the 40s and 50s. A weak front may produce a few showers or storms Friday, but widespread rain is not likely.

As of now, Easter weekend is looking mainly dry but the models have been back and forth on possible rain chances. We will adjust the forecast if necessary, so check back later this week, especially if you have outdoor easter egg hunts planned. The good news is highs will be in the low to mid 70’s and maybe even upper 70’s if we see enough sunshine. Expect the mild pattern to continue into next week.

You can check the specific numbers on the 7 day forecast by clicking here http://www.waaytv.com/weather/7_day/

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Sunday 04/13/2014
Tennessee Valley Weather Update - 8:30 PM

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The SPC has issued a slight risk for some severe storms tomorrow in the areas highlighted in the yellow. Notice only a small portion of the Tennessee Valley is included at this time, and I don't expect this to change too much heading into tomorrow. 

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Regional radar imagery shows an active weather evening shaping up for areas to the west. A swath of rain and thunderstorms exists from central Louisiana into eastern Arkansas/Missouri; these are currently not severe and I'm not expecting this activity to become severe overnight tonight. However, a potent line of thunderstorms just ahead of an advancing cold front is severe with numerous severe thunderstorm warnings.

The convective evolution this evening remains a bit murky. Some of the latest high-resolution guidance available shows that potent line of thunderstorms accelerating east-southeast overnight and weakening. This model also shows the cluster of storms in Louisiana strengthening toward daybreak over central Mississippi as it moves eastward slowly. 

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While I'm not expecting any severe threat to materialize here overnight, no doubt we will see some rain and thunderstorms. Our latest in-house computer model shows some heavier rains spreading into the Shoals and approaching Huntsville by 6 AM tomorrow - just in time for the morning commute. Some of the rain could be heavy at times, and some gusty winds could accompany the strongest storms, but again I'm not expecting any storms to reach severe limits. 

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The evolution of tomorrow's events also is a bit uncertain. It is entirely possible that the morning storms will linger to the south of the valley and act to "cut off" our moisture supply. Should this happen, I would only expect some scattered showers or perhaps a storm in the early evening hours. If some sun is able to peek through the clouds tomorrow afternoon, then we might see a bit more widespread nature to the showers and storms. Should the sun break out some, our instability, or how unstable the atmosphere is, would increase. As this happens, any storm that moves into this area would have the potential to become strong. As the ascent, or rising motion, approaches from the west as the upper-trough moves in, these storms could potentially become marginally severe with gusty winds the primary threat. This would be from around 4 PM until 10 PM. 

THE BOTTOM LINE: The forecast for tomorrow afternoon and evening remains uncertain. It will be a day that you will want to keep up with the latest weather information, but it is entirely possible, and frankly quite likely, we escape this event with no severe weather issues. However, we have to account for the possibility that a few severe storms could develop tomorrow afternoon and evening, so stay tuned. 

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No, this is not a mistake in our computer model - a freeze is becoming increasingly likely Tuesday night/Wednesday morning as a shot of fairly cold air moves in from the north. This is after Tuesday's highs only manage the low 50s! Temperatures should bottom out in the 29 to 33 range Tuesday evening, and some spots could end up being at or below freezing for several hours. This could be a potentially damaging freeze, so planters/farmers should make precautions now to protect sensitive vegetation. The good news is that this cold shot of air will not last long; we will warm back into the 60s for the middle of the week. 70s return for next weekend. 

Isaac Williams

WAAY-TV Weather

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Tennessee Valley Weather Update - 4:00 PM

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Today was another gorgeous one out across the Tennessee Valley with most places climbing to the 80 degree mark with an abundance of sunshine. The wind was and will continue to be breezy at times out of the south heading into the evening, as temperatures only slow fall into the upper 60s by Midnight. 

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We continue to monitor developments off to the west as a storm system continues to organize. There are severe thunderstorm and tornado watches in effect from western Missouri into northern Texas in anticipation that severe storms will continue to develop eastward throughout the afternoon. We also continue to monitor the area of rain and storms in Arkansas and northeast Texas as it continues to slowly move toward the east and northeast. 

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Some rain and embedded storms will become possible heading into the overnight hours tonight, especially towards the Shoals. This band of rain and storms will work across the Valley through the morning hours before ending around midday. However, additional storms are likely to develop later Monday afternoon into the evening, and I will have a full discussion concerning this potential a little later this evening. 

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Taking a quick glimpse into the middle of the week, high pressure builds in from the northwest providing tranquil weather and a clearing sky. Wednesday and Thursday will be beautiful early Spring days with highs in the 60s and lots of sunshine. 

I will discuss Monday afternoon's strong storm potential as well as a frost/freeze Tuesday night this afternoon and tonight on WAAY-TV First News at 5 and at 10, so join me then! 

I will also be along a little later this evening with another update here on the blog that will feature everything you need to know for the next couple of days weather-wise!

Isaac Williams

WAAY-TV Weather

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Saturday 04/12/2014
TN Valley Weather Update - 8:20 PM - A Look at Next Week

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As we begin a new work week on Monday, the threat for rain and storms returns, and much like last week, we have the potential at some stronger storms in the forecast. The Storm Prediction Center has issued their standard slight risk of severe weather, and this includes southern portions of our DMA. Also like last week, I'm not thinking at this point we will have to contend with much in the way of severe storms. 

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Our forecast models continue to suggest that this might be a 1-2 punch type of an event. The first batch of rain and storms will likely arrive Monday morning. Our forecast model paints a wet picture for the northern half of the state by 9 AM Monday with a heavier band of activity from Jackson to Birmingham. This will continue moving eastward through the day at a rather quick pace. 

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One of the parameters we use to determine severe weather potential is Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE); basically, this tells us how potentially energetic the atmosphere would be to surface parcels rising into the atmosphere. Models show that we have no CAPE during the morning hours when that first batch of storms is expected to arrive. However, this is only examining surface instability; there is some CAPE in the mid-levels of the atmosphere during this timeframe. What this means is that some of the storms could become strong with potentially some small hail or gusty winds, but the overall severe weather threat should remain very low. 

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Heading into Monday evening, this is the second round of storms I mentioned earlier. If, and that is a rather big if, the atmosphere can recover from the morning storms, we should have another round of showers and storms move through during the afternoon and evening hours. Once again, it appears the heaviest activity will remain to the south of the Valley over central and south-central Alabama, according to our in-house computer model. 

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Our forecast model think that the atmosphere will be able to sufficiently recover by the afternoon. As the core of the upper-level system approaches the area, at least scattered showers and storms should redevelop along the advancing cold front. This activity could be enhanced by a surface wave of low pressure that will be moving northeast along this boundary (see model valid at 8 PM above). Should any of these storms become strong, small hail and gusty winds would again be possible. There remains a slightly higher potential at an isolated severe storm Monday afternoon and evening, but even then this potential appears relatively low at this time. However, we will continue to monitor this situation closely. 

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After this cold front passes, it will bring in some much colder air Tuesday and especially Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. Check out these lows - low to mid 30s area-wide with some spots getting to or just below the freezing mark. While these potentially freezing temperatures will be short-lived, planters should make preparations now to protect any sensitive vegetation as at least a widespread frost is likely Tuesday night into Wednesday morning. Temperatures could also visit the upper 30s Monday evening as well as the nose of the colder air plows into the area. 

I'll have much more on your forecast tonight on WAAY-31 First News at 10, so join me then! Otherwise, have a great Saturday evening!

Isaac Williams

WAAY-TV Weather

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TN Valley Weather Update - 345 PM

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On this Saturday afternoon, we are looking fantastic weather wise - lots of sunshine and temperatures running near 80 degrees. Just about the only complaint there is would be about the excessive pollen that continues plaguing the area! If you like today's weather, you will love tomorrow's weather as well - just add one or two more degrees to current temperatures. 

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Tomorrow will be a wonderful pool day for all ages! Expect a warm afternoon with just fair weather cumulous clouds across the sky through the afternoon with temperatures rising into the low 80s for most locations with a southerly breeze continuing. If you are outside for long periods of time, be sure to apply sunscreen as UV indices will be in the high to very high category. 

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Enjoy the sunny weather today and tomorrow, because more rain is on the way for the TN Valley as we head into Monday. Our forecast model shows some showers becoming possible as early as 3 AM for the Shoals, but periods of rain and storms are likely to continue throughout your Monday. The rain could be quite heavy at times, and some minor flooding issues could arise once more. 

Be sure to join me on WAAY-TV for First News at 5 this afternoon and at 10 this evening for a complete check of your forecast. I'll have another update here on the blog a little later this evening to discuss Monday's storm system more in depth.

Isaac Williams

WAAY-TV Weather

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Friday 04/11/2014
Warm Weather, Storms & Cold...All In The Next 7 Days

CHIEF METEOROLOGIST SPENCER DENTON

Updated FRIDAY 5:00PM - BREEZY/WARM EVENING:There's a small chance of an isolated shower or storm in southern middle Tennessee this evening. Otherwise, it will be a great evening to be outside. Temperature will be in the low 70’s falling into the 60’s before 8pm. Lows are only dropping into the mid to upper 50’s, so it will be fairly mild overnight.

DRY WEEKEND - A nice broad area of high pressure will sit just to our east over the weekend.  This will keep our wind out of the south and our temperatures nice and warm.  We'll also start to feel some humidity this weekend. Highs will range from the upper 70s to around 80 both days. The wind will gust up to 30 mph on Sunday.

EARLY WEEK RAIN/STORMS -  A stronger cold front will come in Monday, and at this point it doesn't look like a big threat for severe weather.  We will, however, have a lot of rain around along with a few thunderstorms.  Some storms could be a hair on the strong side with gusty wind, but again, this doesn't look like a big severe threat. Rainfall totals will exceed one inch in many areas.

 

FROST/FREEZE WEDNESDAY MORNING? The forecast models are indicating a brief cold snap behind the front by Tuesday night into early Wednesday. Lows could drop as low as 34 to 35 degrees in spots.  That means a potential frost area wide. I don’t think we will see a hard freeze but a few spots could drop close to freezing.  Something to keep an eye on for planters and growers.

Have a great weekend!

 

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Thursday 04/10/2014
Up And Down Weather Pattern Continues

FROM CHIEF METEOROLOGIST SPENCER DENTON

WARM END TO THE WEEK: A broad area of high pressure is set up just to our southeast, and it will keep us dry and warm through the weekend.  It's also spinning clockwise, so that's kicking up our wind out of the south, helping us to warm up quite a bit while staying dry at the same time.

ABOVE AVERAGE TEMPS THROUGH THE WEEKEND: We'll be in the mid to upper 70's on Friday. Most spots will be close to 80 this weekend and some of you may see the low 80's with enough sunshine. No Rain is forecast through Sunday. Winds will be gusty out of the south at times...nearly 20 mph. 

EARLY WEEK COLD FRONT: The next chance for rain and storms arrive Monday of next week.  There will be the chance for a few strong storms, but at this point, it doesn't look like a good setup for tornadoes.  Anytime we can say that this time of year in Dixie Alley, that's a good thing. Behind the front, we may see a light frost with lows in the mid to upper 30's by Wednesday morning. We'll keep an eye on that as it could affect early planting. 

POLLEN LEVELS HIGH: The pollen count will be on the high side through the weekend, so if you have allergy issues, especially with Oak, Birch or Juniper, you may want to limit your outdoor activity. 

Weekend Pollen Count

The 7-Day Forecast can be found right below this text! Enjoy the warm weather!

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Man charged with two break-ins at Madison business

MADISON, Ala. (WAAY) - Police have arrested a man for breaking into the same store twice in a four-month span.

Huntsville firefighters battle fire at Willowbrook Apartments

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Sandwich Farm’s BLT regionally recognized as “The Best Sandwich in the South”

HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAAY)-- Huntsville’s Sandwich Farm is bringing home the bacon – in terms of award wining sandwiches.  Sandwich Farm's BLT won third place in the “Best Sandwich in the South” competition at the Merchants Food Service conference.