Scientific Forecaster Discussion
Area forecast discussion
National Weather Service Baltimore Maryland/Washington District of Columbia
309 PM EDT Sat Jul 30 2016
a weak front will remain across the area today and tonight. An
area of low pressure will track along the front on Sunday. The
front will move southward on Monday, with high pressure building
in for the middle portion of the week.
Near term /through tonight/...
not a ton of organization on radar this afternoon. The initial
area of thunderstorms to develop were on the nose of the 850 mb
thermal ridge. That area now just west of the Chesapeake Bay. The
best moisture (axis of precipitable waters 2.00-2.25 inches) co-
located with this activity. Additional storms have more recently
developed in the Potomac Highlands. All storms have reasonable
cape (1000-1500 j/kg ml...2000-3000 j/kg sb/mu) and decent
effective shear (30-35 kt). But mid level lapse rates poor and
freezing level/wet bulb zero high...with isentropic upglide really
the only synoptic scale lifting mechanism into the evening. A few
wet microbursts possible.
The flood threat may be the more achievable hazard. Due to the
organization (or lack thereof) of the activity and the struggle
for model guidance to simulate it, its been tough to pinpoint an
area of greater concern. If I had to name someplace, Metro
Baltimore may be it, based on recent radar trends, and ensemble of
qpf solutions, and hrrr-tle probabilistic output. Even there,
confidence isn't exceptionally high, as hrrr has been playing
catch-up all day, and synoptic scale guidance seems to be overdone
on areal coverage of convection. Therefore will not Post a Flood
Watch at this time. Obviously we will continue to monitor. If a
watch is posted, it may end up being short-fused.
Guidance suggesting that a trough axis/surface convergence line
will be crossing the area (slowly) this evening into the
overnight hours. That may support an uptick in convective
activity. Will reflect that in the evening, with confidence waning
in specific late evening into the overnight.
Short term /Sunday through Monday night/...
height falls and the passage of the weak surface boundary will be
the features on Sunday. Moisture shouldn't be quite as deep, but
think that there will be enough to initiate at least scattered
convection upon diurnal destabilization. Precipitable water values
seasonable, which means that heavy rain will again be a
possibility. Best convergence likely to be in the east (i-95
Gradual drying will occur by Monday. Still have widely scattered
pops, as the 500 mb trough axis likely will be primary
instigator, but the time frame will be more limited.
Temperatures will be seasonable through the period. Have not
strayed far from a MOS blend.
Long term /Tuesday through Saturday/...
dry conditions expected on Tuesday and Wednesday with surface
ridging and trough aloft. Guidance suggests some afternoon showers
and thunderstorms possible on Wednesday... mainly to the western
part of our County Warning Area. Shortwave trough will keep the chance of showers
and thunderstorms on Thursday and Friday... and then an
approaching front Friday night into Saturday will continue this
trend. High temperatures will be mainly in the 80s and reaching
the 90s Friday and Saturday at some locations.
Aviation /19z Saturday through Thursday/...
radar starting to fill in. Flight restrictions will be spotty,
coincident with where strong storms track. Its problematic to
pinpoint specifics in tafs, even for tempo groups, so they
reflect an optimistic outlook. May be making frequent updates.
Local IFR (or lower) likely within storms. The most likely period
of adverse weather will be late afternoon and early evening. In
addition to low vsbys, wind gusts of 30-40 mph possible.
While residual low level moisture suggests fog will be a
possibility tonight, there are also indications that flow may
turn westerly, with slightly drier air attempting to work east
overnight. For that reason, don't have much in terms of fog
restrictions overnight...just areas of MVFR. If that doesn't work
out, then IFR will be a concern.
Sunday will be unsettled again, but storms should not be as
widespread or as intense. Still a risk of scattered afternoon-
evening storms, with flight restrictions contained within.
Monday will follow the same trend, as storms will be fewer and
Mainly VFR conditions expected for Tuesday through Thursday...
with some showers and thunderstorms possible... bringing periods
of sub-VFR conditions.
south gradient winds have increased ahead of an area of
thunderstorms. Have raised small craft on the Bay south of Pooles
Island as well as the mouth of the Potomac to account for this.
On top of the gradient winds, there is a threat of higher winds
near thunderstorms. Special marine warnings will be likely this
afternoon and evening. Am uncertain how long into the overnight
this will last.
Thunderstorms will be fewer each day Sunday and Monday. Outside of
thunderstorms, do not see significant winds.
Sub-Small Craft Advisory conditions expected as winds will be below Small Craft Advisory criteria.
Showers and thunderstorms possible over the waters during this
period could bring gusty winds.
due to an increase in south winds, water levels have risen today.
Water levels range between 3/4 ft to almost 1 ft above
astronomical normals. The lower of the two high tides ongoing now.
A few caution stages threatened, but that's it. However,
departures should remain the same or rise slightly tonight, which
causes concern. Have opted to raise coastal Flood Advisory for
Anne Arundel and Calvert counties for the overnight hours.
Tides will need to be monitored next couple of days. The night
time tide cycle will be the one of concern.
District of Columbia...none.
Maryland...coastal Flood Advisory from 11 PM this evening to 8 am EDT
Sunday for mdz014-018.
Marine...Small Craft Advisory until 10 PM EDT this evening for