Virginia Weather: 12/26/16

Yesterday was cool, still, and mostly cloudy.  It cleared up in the evening, so we went for a walk near my parents’ house.

So far, this morning has been cool, still and overcast.

The National Weather Service (NWS) in Albuquerque forecasts a cloudy day today, with a high temperature of 50 F. The winds will be 5 mph from the south.  This evening will be cloudy with a 20% chance of rain after 1 am, with a low temperature of 47 F.  Winds will be from the southwest at 5-13 mph.

The visible satellite imagery shows overcast skies over the entire state again today.

The water vapor imagery shows deep moisture over the center of the state today.  There are two major bands of moisture that run east to west, including one over my parents’ house.

The 12Z sounding from Sterling, VA, shows that the atmosphere from 900 mb to 800 mb.  Above and below this slice of atmosphere, the air is still quite humid.  There was 0.91 inches of precipitable water present in the column. There was no Convective Available Potential Energy (CAPE) and no Convective Inhibition (CINH).  There was a large, deep thermal inversion above 900 mb, and the 0-3 km average lapse rate was 1.3 C/km.

The hodograph shows 11 kts of low-level shear (mostly directional changes) and 41 kts of deep-layer shear (mostly speed changes).

The surface observations (from the SPC Mesoscale Analysis Map) show cool temperatures, cloudy skies, high humidity (as told by low surface dewpoint depressions) and still winds.  There are no major frontal boundaries present over the state so far today.

The surface pressure chart shows that the high pressure system from yesterday has continue moving east, leaving us under moderately high pressure (1032 mb).  There is a moderate pressure gradient over the western part of the state, but the winds are not very strong.   The RAP shows that the pressure will stay relatively constant, and no strong gradients are expected to develop over the next six hours.

Synoptically speaking, the 300 mb NAM chart (from Unisys) shows strong zonal flow over the state.

The 500 mb NAM chart shows no strong vorticity advection over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

The 700 mb NAM chart shows no rapidly-rising air over the state today.  This chart has been excluded from today’s post.

The 850 mb NAM chart shows no strong thermal advection over the state today.  It does show the strong mid-latitude cyclone over the Upper Midwest, and shows us in the warm sector of this system.

The Precipitation chart shows no strong precipitation through 0Z.  The rain is expected to start early tomorrow morning.

I expect the skies to remain overcast and the winds still all day today.  I’m not expecting a rain until later this evening.  It’s a dreary day here in VA today.

Thank you for reading my forecast.

The upper air soundings and mesoscale analysis plots are from the Storm Prediction Center website.
The forecasted upper air soundings are from
The surface observation and upper level charts are from Unisys Weather.
The satellite data is from College of DuPage – SATRAD.


About highplainschasing

This blog is about my tales in storm chasing. My name is Seth Price and I am an instrumentation instructor at New Mexico Tech. My amateur radio call sign is N3MRA.
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