South Florida lows in 50s by mid-week; watching the tropics for next weekend

Cold front

(Image credit: NWS-Key West)

The mid-week cold front is even expected to power through the Keys, where Thursday’s forecast highs are only in the upper 70s. The forecast low for West Palm Beach on Wednesday night is 63, and temperatures should fall into the 50s out in the Glades. A quick warm-up is expected and wetter conditions may return in time for next weekend.

In the tropics, forecast models were still focused Sunday on a possible end-of-month tropical system forming in the Caribbean, but the projected timing was inconsistent.

In Sunday morning runs, most showed at least a weak low forming next weekend. The European model (ECMWF) had it spinning up next Sunday in the southwestern Caribbean and then powering up over the next few days as it approaches the northeastern tip of the Yucatan Peninsula.

We’ll have to see if the models start coming together on some consensus for the storm — assuming it actually happens — over the early part of this week. It still has not been mentioned by the National Hurricane Center, although convection continues to fire up in the western Caribbean.

 

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Forecasters see ‘first tastes’ of fall for South Florida by mid-week

Caribbean SAT

SATURDAY UPDATE: The cold front due to charge through the Florida peninsula mid-week won’t provide much long-term relief, according to forecasts. But high pressure building in its wake over the Bahamas is expected to draw warmer and wetter air into Florida in time for next weekend. Some forecast models continue to show a low pressure system forming in the Caribbean or Gulf of Mexico as the month closes out. Saturday’s Caribbean satellite image showed showers and thunderstorms cooking up south of Cuba. (Credit: NOAA)

ORIGINAL POST: “The first tastes of the end of summer” are due to arrive in South Florida on Wednesday, the National Weather Service in Miami said.

Another cold front charging down the peninsula on Monday and Tuesday will set the stage for brisk temperatures as cool as the 50s overnight in some inland areas, according to forecasters.

Even in coastal South Florida, temperatures are expected to dip below 70s by Wednesday morning, and they may drop closer to 60 on the East-Central Coast.

Highs are forecast to be only in the mid- to upper-70s toward the end of the week.

In West Palm Beach, the low hasn’t fallen into the 60s since June 7, when the low was 67 degrees. In Miami, it hasn’t been in the 60s since May 8, when the temperature bottomed out at 67.

RAINFALL: Two-day rainfall totals (Wednesday and Thursday) around the peninsula: West Palm Beach, 2.34 inches; Fort Lauderdale, 0.56; Miami, 0.08; Fort Pierce, 0.13; Vero Beach and Melbourne, 0.04; Orlando, 0.30; Vero Beach, 0.89; Jacksonville, 0.02.

Areas on the West Coast generally received just a trace of rain.

RECORD WATCH: Thursday’s low in Melbourne, 78, set a new record for warm minimum temperature for the date. The previous record was 76 set last year, 76 degrees. Vero Beach and Fort Pierce tied record warm lows with 75 and 77, respectively. Vero Beach tied the mark set just last year, but Fort Pierce’s low tied a record set in 1926.

two_atl_5d0

(Image Credit: NHC)

TROPICS WATCH: Most forecast models are still trying to spin something up in the western Caribbean or southern Gulf of Mexico next weekend, with the Canadian (CMC) doing its usual job of delivering a stronger tropical system into South Florida, the Keys or the Bahamas. Officially, the National Hurricane Center Tropical Weather Outlook map for Friday morning predicted no development for the next five days in the Atlantic.

 

Wet, windy weekend forecast for Florida’s East Coast

Wet and breezy weather will be the rule this weekend on Florida’s East Coast, with more than 2 inches of rain possible through Monday and winds gusting up to 25 mph, the National Weather Service said.

It’s all the result of the cold front that brought cooler temperatures to the panhandle on Monday and Tuesday. The front was forecast to stall out over extreme South Florida, bringing wet conditions but not much in the way of cooler air.

High pressure building back into the north will create a pressure gradient with the trough of lower pressure to the south, according to forecasters, making for a windy weekend along the East Coast.

Rain chances are lower on the West Coast — in the 20-39 percent range — and lighter winds are in the forecast.

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1910 hurricane

(Image credit: NWS-Key West)

HURRICANE ANNIVERSARY: Yes, damaging Category 4 hurricanes can occur in late October. Tuesday was the 107-year anniversary of a powerful hurricane that made a crazy loop off Cuba’s West Coast in 1910. With peak winds of 150 mph, it then barreled into the Gulf of Mexico between Key West and the Dry Tortugas. It made a landfall near Fort Myers with winds of 110 mph.

TROPICS WATCH: Wednesday morning’s runs of the GFS and European (ECMWF) backed off on tropical development in the Caribbean next week, although the Canadian (CMC) and Navy (NAVGEM) continued to suggest a system or two brewing before the end of the month, either in the Caribbean of Gulf of Mexico.

The National Hurricane Center’s Tropical Weather Outlook map remained clear — no storms expected to form through Monday.

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The Farmer’s Almanac lists 20 signs of a hard winter in its latest edition, but editors are of course referring to the higher latitudes and not Florida. Particularly not South and Central Florida, and the Keys.

Here are the top five:

  • Thicker than normal corn husks.
  • Woodpeckers sharing a tree.
  • Early arrival of the snowy owl.
  • Early departure of ducks and geese.
  • Early migration of the Monarch butterfly

I decided to come up with my own top five signs of an approaching hard winter in Florida:

  • Out-of-state license plates begin appearing early.
  • Restaurants, especially on the barrier islands, introduce new menus with much, much higher prices.
  • Parking meters appear where there were none before.
  • The Department of Transportation announces it will close a lane on I-95 from November 15 to March 15.
  • Your in-laws announce that they’re coming for the holidays and will stay at your house for approximately two weeks.

Chilling out in Florida: Panhandle hits 51 degrees

Wednesday lows panhandle
Forecast lows for Wednesday morning. Click for larger image. (Credit: NWS-Tallahassee)

Honest-to-goodness autumn weather cooled parts of Florida on Tuesday, but only for those who live in northern tier of panhandle counties.

It was 51 degrees at 6:30 a.m. in Jay, Florida — about as far north and west as you can get in the panhandle — with a dew point of 48.

It was in the low 60s in the Tallahassee area and in parts of the northern peninsula, but upper 60s to around 70 from Cedar Key on the Gulf to Daytona Beach on the Atlantic. At the same time, it was in the upper 70s in South Florida and the low 80s in the Keys.

The primary impact of the cold front on South Florida — and Central Florida, too — will be rain.

“The cold front will move into South Florida later tonight before stalling and washing out across the region Wednesday,” National Weather Service forecasters in Miami said. “Even though this is a cold front we will not see any significant cooler air as temperatures will remain around normal.”

The front is expected to wash out over South Florida later this week, but lots of moisture remains in place, with precipitation probabilities as high as 50 percent right through the weekend.

NOAA’s Weather Prediction Center was predicting that the heaviest rain this week will be over Florida’s northeast and central coast, from around Daytona Beach south to Fort Pierce.

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two_atl_5d0 (1)

(Image credit: NHC)

TROPICS WATCH: Invest 92L was taken off the National Hurricane Center Tropical Outlook map Tuesday morning and the agency predicted clear sailing for at least the next five days.

However, NOAA’s GFS, the Canadian (CMC) and the Navy forecast model (NAVGEM) were still suggesting development in the Caribbean next week. The European (ECMWF) has not been on board with this, although some of its ensemble members are.

NASA’s GEOS-5 forecast model has also been showing a system spinning up in the Caribbean next week.

From Tampa to Miami, October temperatures continue to be wildly above normal

Dry season forecast

Chances of a La Niña in the Tropical Pacific  are between 55-65 percent this fall and winter, NOAA says, and that usually means a dry and warm winter in Florida. (Credit: NWS-Melbourne)

The first half of October went into the books as a sizzler, with abnormally warm temperatures up and down the Florida peninsula.

Miami has been running 2.7 degrees above average for the first half of the month after six days in the 90s and lows that have barely budged below 80. West Palm Beach isn’t far behind with 2.6 degrees above normal.

Fort Lauderdale was 1.3 degrees on the plus side and Naples, 2.2 degrees.

They Keys are about a degree and a half over normal, and Central Florida’s East Coast has been a real hot spot. Daytona Beach is a whopping 4.4 degrees above average this month.

Tampa is the real stand-out, however, at 5.3 degrees above normal for the first half of October. Highs averaged 90.3 degrees and lows, 76.3.

Tampa set seven warm temperature records so far — six in Daytona Beach and Melbourne. October records in other cities: Miami, four; Fort Lauderdale, five; West Palm Beach and Jacksonville, three; and Naples, two.

Heat index values this month were well over 100 many days in early October and even on Sunday, the 15th, the heat index was in the mid-90s around South Florida.

The long-range forecast, posted October 15 by NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center, calls for more above normal temperatures and above normal rainfall through the end of the month. However, the longer-range forecast through November 10 calls for a downturn in temperatures during the first week of November in Florida and much of the southeastern U.S.

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Bermuda may be in the path of Invest 92L, or whatever may develop from it. (Image credit: NHC)

TROPICS WATCH: The window for development of Invest 92L north of Hispaniola is closing rapidly, the National Hurricane Center said Monday. Forecasters put development chances at 40 percent by Wednesday, when atmospheric conditions are expected to become unfavorable.

Forecast models are still hinting at possible development in the Caribbean or Gulf of Mexico next week, but there’s been no consensus on exactly when or where this could occur.

Florida cold front update: Cool and crisp in panhandle, blustery over most of peninsula

Here’s the way National Weather Service forecasters in Tallahassee started their analysis Sunday morning: “The first fall front is on the horizon!”

There was good news and bad news about this much-discussed cold front, which has been on the radar of forecasters for the last several days.

The good news is that the front is now forecast to completely clear the peninsula by mid-week. Previous forecasts had it stalling over Central, or South Florida. The Sunday forecast was for it to stall over the Keys.

Tallahassee forecast

A week of true autumn weather is on tap for the Florida panhandle. (Credit: NWS-Tallahassee)

The bad news is that it’s not expected to bring much, if any, cool air over the southern peninsula, and along the East Coast in general. That’s because as soon as the front sinks through the area, easterly winds will transition to the northeast, and ocean temperatures along Florida’s East Coast aren’t exactly fall-like.

Water temperatures are still above average along the Atlantic Coast, and much above off northeastern Florida. Off the Lake Worth Pier in South Florida, water temperatures are running around 82 degrees.

Winds in the panhandle will be north-northeast, far enough away from the bathtub Atlantic to allow temperatures to fall into the mid-50s. The forecast low in Marianna, Florida for Tuesday night/ Wednesday morning is 55, with a mostly sunny high Wednesday of 78.

Highs in South Florida during this period will still be in the mid- to upper-80s, National Weather Service forecasters in Miami said, with rain chances stuck in the 30-50 percent range due to the proximity of the front to the south.

Highs Friday and Saturday in South Florida should be in the 83-85-degree range, with blustery winds, and lows only a few degrees cooler in the upper 70s. That’s pretty much a ditto for the East-Central and West-Central peninsula, although drier air is forecast to move in for next weekend with a forecast high in Tampa of 86 and a low of 70 under mostly clear skies.

We’ll take what we can get.

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RECORD WATCH: Saturday’s low in Vero Beach was 76, which tied a record warm low set in 2007. Record warm lows were tied and set in Jacksonville and Daytona Beach with readings of 76 and 78, respectively. In the case of Jacksonville, the reading matched a mark set 105 years ago in 1912.

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Ophelia will be post-tropical when it arrives in Ireland, but it will still deliver a wallop with strong winds and rain. (Credit: NHC)

TROPICS WATCH: The National Hurricane Center again increased chances of development of the system near the Lesser Antilles to 50 percent by Friday. If it develops it would be named Philippe.

Forecast models have become wishy-washy about development in the Caribbean/ Gulf of Mexico next weekend. The Canadian (CMC) was still hinting at a weak system brewing in the Central Caribbean, and the GFS Sunday run had something trying to spin up in the Gulf a week from Monday.

Hurricane Ophelia, with winds of 105 mph, was forecast to slam Ireland on Monday with hurricane force winds, although it was expected to transition into an post-tropical storm.