Scientific Forecaster Discussion
Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Tallahassee Florida
555 PM EST Wed Dec 24 2014
Near term [through tonight]...
at 23z, the surface cold front was very near Tallahassee and
moving eastward. The front will continue to push through the
remainder of the area overnight. However, at upper levels the
trough is positively tilted with the base of it still well back to
the west across the western Gulf. Water vapor imagery still
shows a lot of mid and upper level moisture streaming across the
area ahead of it. A fairly large area of light rain has developed
across the coastal waters southeast of Apalachicola and is moving
northeastward this evening. A couple of our local hi-res models
have picked up on this feature and spread very light rainfall back
into portions of the Florida Big Bend and adjacent south-central
Georgia during the first half of the overnight hours. Given the
radar trends, pops were increased across the southeast half of the
forecast area for the first half of the night. Rainfall amounts
will remain light, however. Also nudged low temperatures up a
couple of degrees with moisture slightly slower to exit the area.
[through 00z friday] skies will be clearing from west to east
overnight with VFR conditions returning. VFR will then prevail
through Thursday with northwest winds around 10 knots or less.
Prev discussion [246 PM est]...
Short term [thursday through Friday night]...
the upper trough to our west will be shearing out as it crosses the
area on Christmas day. As the next trough digs into the plains,
heights will rise over Florida. At the surface, high pressure centered
over New Orleans at the start of the period will move northeast to a
position off the NC coast by Friday evening. This pattern will bring
US a brief period of dry weather with below normal temps on
Christmas day and night. As we have been advertising for a while
now, afternoon temps will peak in the upper 50s to lower 60s in most
areas with mid 60s confined to areas south and east of Perry. Low
Thursday night will drop into the mid 30s across most areas at least
10 miles inland from the coast. While no freezing temps are
expected, a few or the normally colder areas will see some frost.
Highs on Friday will be 3-5 degrees milder than on Christmas day. By
Friday night, a cold front will be crossing the lower Mississippi
Valley as a warm front lifts north across the Gulf of Mexico.
Isentropic ascent over the boundary will bring slight to low rain
chances to the western half of the forecast area.
Long term [saturday through wednesday]...
another short wave will cross the Southern Plains on Sunday and then
zip across the Gulf Coast states early next week leaving nearly
zonal flow in its wake. As the cold front approaches form the west,
the warm front will lift further to the northeast and into the
forecast area by Sunday. The cold front will stall once it reaches
our forecast area and we are seeing more model consensus in this
regard than we did a day ago. The result will be daily rain chances
with the high pops northwest and lowest to the southeast. Temps will
be above normal for most of the period, dropping back to normal
levels on new year's eve.
as a cold front pushes east of the waters, westerly winds will start
out at advisory levels, but then drop to cautionary overnight as
they veer to the northwest. Seas will not drop below advisory
thresholds until Thursday morning. As high pressure build north of
the waters, winds will become light to moderate out of the east from
Thursday night into Saturday. A cold front will cross the
Mississippi Valley over the weekend as a warm front lifts north
across the local waters. This will veer winds to onshore for Sunday
recent heavy rainfall and another round of rain over the weekend
will keep red flag conditions away for the next week.
many area rivers have shown sharp rises through this afternoon. Only
some light rain will linger in the Florida Big Bend through this evening,
with a dry period from Christmas through the end of the week.
Rainfall totals were widespread from 3 to 5 inches with a band of
rainfall up to 9 inches from port St Joe, to Tallahassee, to
Thomasville, to Tifton. There will be moderate flooding on the
middle Ochlockonee River basin, on the shoal river near Mossy
Head, and on the far lower Choctawhatchee. In addition, several
rivers will reach minor flood stage, including Kinchafoonee creek,
as well as the Withlacoochee, St. Marks, and Apalachicola rivers.
With dry weather through the end of the week, most rivers should
have time to subside to below flood levels through the weekend.
Preliminary point temps/pops...
Tallahassee 44 62 36 67 50 / 30 0 0 0 10
Panama City 47 60 44 65 55 / 10 0 0 10 20
Dothan 39 59 38 62 49 / 0 0 0 0 30
Albany 41 61 35 64 46 / 10 0 0 0 10
Valdosta 46 62 37 67 49 / 30 0 0 0 10
Cross City 51 65 38 70 52 / 30 0 0 0 10
Apalachicola 48 60 44 64 55 / 40 0 0 10 20
Florida...rip current risk until 4 am EST /3 am CST/ Thursday for coastal
Bay-coastal Franklin-coastal Gulf-south Walton.
High surf advisory until 4 am EST /3 am CST/ Thursday for
coastal Bay-coastal Gulf-south Walton.
GM...Small Craft Advisory until 1 PM EST Thursday for Apalachee Bay-
coastal waters from Ochlockonee River to Apalachicola Florida
out to 20 nm-coastal waters from Suwannee River to Keaton
Beach Florida out 20 nm-coastal waters from Apalachicola to
Destin Florida out 20 nm-waters from Suwannee River to
Apalachicola Florida from 20 to 60 nm-waters from Apalachicola
to Destin Florida from 20 to 60 nm.