Forecast Blogs

Wet Monday, Wet/Stormy Tuesday, Strong/Severe Storms Possible Wednesday

Rainy Monday

Light rain will arrive while we sleep, and continue through the morning commute. The HRRR model thinks this rain will last through mid-morning:

Other models, particularly the NAM3 model, think the rain could linger off and on into Monday afternoon.

This model thinks we will see 0.2″, which is enough to start raining out ball fields. Our NWS office thinks that model may be slightly overdoing it, so don’t cancel Monday evening outdoor plans just yet.

More Rain Tuesday, Afternoon & Evening Thunderstorms Possible

Timing is not exact, but we think rain will come in waves.

The first wave looks like it will move in late Monday night into the wee early hours of Tuesday morning.

The second wave should move through during the day, in more of an off/on pattern.

One example of this is seen on the NAM3 model:

Another example is the GFS model:

A third wave is expected Tuesday night.  Our NWS office thinks we’ll see more than 0.5″ of new rain Tuesday, which is more than enough to rain just about everything out.

Thunderstorms are possible Tuesday afternoon. These storms will be “elevated” instead of “surface based,” which means we could see some lightning (and maybe even some small hail) Tuesday afternoon and evening. There is very little/no concern about severe weather Tuesday afternoon and evening.

Severe Storms Possible Wednesday as a Cold Front Arrives

The outlook for Wednesday from the Storm Prediction Center remains unchanged. A new one will be issued tonight after midnight.

What — Damaging winds along a squall line.

The winds, although very strong, will be unidirectional. This suggests a squall line with damaging straight-line winds.

If the winds were blowing in from different directions the higher up you go, this would be more of a tornado concern. However, that’s not what we expect Wednesday. We aren’t saying a tornado cannot occur Wednesday — to be clear, a tornado certainly is possible — but the much more likely storm mode are those damaging straight line winds. Hail may also fall in the tilted updrafts that form just out ahead of the cold front.

When — Probably before sunset. Specifically when, well, we aren’t sure. The models disagree.

The GFS model thinks the front will have cleared all of Middle Tennessee by noon, which would mean an early/morning storm arrival. The NAM thinks the storms will arrive around the PM rush hour (please no: do not want!). The Euro splits the difference and expects the storms by early afternoon.

If the storms come early, they should not be that bad. However, a late storm arrival suggests the storms could be packing quite the punch.

Freak-Out Level — This has our attention, but it’s not time to freak out. Currently this looks like a straight-line wind event, not a once-every-five-years tornado outbreak. I think the storms may encounter lower instability (and therefore weaken) when the storm line reaches us. Don’t ignore it, though. We’re entering severe storm season, and this system looks a little more impressive than the past few storm systems we’ve had.

We all want specific ETAs and to know exactly what to expect. Currently there’s too much model uncertainty to draw any specific conclusions. We will have much more on this tomorrow and through the week, here and on Twitter @NashSevereWx, as usual.

After the Storms, Returning to Seasonal Norms

The cold front will clear us out and cool us off.  We’ll do the 30°s in the morning, 50°s in the afternoon dance until Saturday, when we warm back up to the mid 60°s.

Any Late Season Snows?

Doesn’t look like it. I’m not saying it won’t happen, but I don’t see anything in the models through mid-March suggesting a late-season cold snap that’ll bring us any snow. I know we all wanted a snow day to go sled (well, most of us did), but at least we may have avoided having to do this:

Finally….

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