WHERE’S THE COLD AIR? A trio of cold fronts are expected to roll down the Florida peninsula this week and late in the weekend. But big-picture-wise, it doesn’t look like there’s much Arctic air to work with as we head toward mid-January. At left is the 6-10-day outlook and at right is the 8-14-day outlook for the U.S. A lot of above-normal temperatures are in the forecast except for the East Coast, where close-to-normal temps are expected. There are no below-normal temperatures in these long-range forecasts anywhere — even in Alaska. (Image credits: NOAA/ CPC)
Florida-style winter weather is on the way — get out the long pants, but keep the shorts and flip-flops on standby.
The week should end in typical Florida winter fashion: Mid-week warm-up followed by a cold front, followed by high pressure building in, then once the high pressure slides off the coast, an east wind modifies the air mass and a warming trend begins. Rinse and repeat.
Frost is possible in North Florida on Thursday morning as the second of two cold fronts slides across peninsula late Wednesday, the National Weather Service says. Another slides through late Sunday.
Central Florida and South Florida should be safe, forecasters said, and in fact lows in coastal South Florida should only fall into the 50s. Inland areas may bottom out in the 30s, but breezy conditions should negate any frost potential, even in areas northwest of Lake Okeechobee, according to National Weather Service forecast discussions.
Thursday’s highs in South Florida will be in the upper 60s; the lower 60s in East-Central Florida; near 60 in the Tampa and Orlando areas; and upper 50s in the Gainesville area after a cold start to the day just above freezing.
Although these temperatures are below normal, they’re expected to modify quickly on Friday and a pretty nice weekend is on the horizon with highs in the 70s up and down the peninsula.
Even Key West should see lows near 60 on Thursday morning, with highs back up in the upper 70s on Saturday and Sunday.
In any case, there’s no ultra-cold air anywhere in the country, looking at Tuesday morning’s temperature map from Weather Underground. The only sub-freezing weather was in the Upper Midwest, the Plains States and the Mountain States — and in northern New England.
Tuesday early morning temps were in the 50s as far north as southern Illinois.
NOT TO WORRY: Unscheduled radar maintenance in Key West shouldn’t have much of an effect, since no precipitation is in the forecast through at least Thursday in the Keys. If you need to check things out, use the Miami long-range radar. (Image credit: NWS-Key West)