ALERT For Strong Winds ( And Wind Driven Rain ) Continues Overnight Along Mountain Ridges Above 2700 Feet ( Gusts Of 30-40+ MPH ). Locally Strong Gusts Will Be Possible At Lower-Middle Elevations.
Overnight Into This Morning
Showers & thunderstorms. Some storms could be strong. Moderate to heavy rainfall at times. Windy. SSW to SW winds 10 to 25 mph, with higher gusts, along mid-upper elevation ridges & plateaus. Unseasonably mild. Temps widespread in the 50s to around 60 degrees.
Mid-Morning Through This Afternoon
Showers & storms ending. Becoming partly sunny. Winds becoming WSW-WNW at 5-15 mph, with higher gusts. Mild but turning cooler toward sunset. MAX temperatures from the 50s at highest elevations in the High Knob Massif to the middle 60s to lower 70s.
Tonight Into Saturday Morning
Increasing clouds. A chance for rain developing. Turning colder. Winds W-WNW at 5-15 mph, with higher gusts, on middle-upper elevation mountain ridges-plateaus. Temps dropping into lower 30s at the High Knob Massif summit level by morning, with 40s at middle-lower elevations below 2700-3000 feet.
*There is a small chance that rain could mix with or turn to snow at the summit level of the High Knob Massif overnight-Saturday morning as air turns colder. Stay tuned for updates.
Weather Discussion ( March 31-April 1 )
A ROARING close to the month of March, with strong S-SW wind gusts of 40-50+ mph being common during Thursday, also featured a band of much needed evening showers & storms finally arriving to wet the mountain landscape.
Thursday PM maximums again varied significantly from 50s to mid-upper 60s in Norton-Wise and Sandy Ridge upward into the High Knob Massif verses middle 70s to the northeast amid strong downslope flow, into the Russell Fork basin, from Pound-Haysi.
Nice mountain wave clouds developed through the day along the High Knob Massif, with a break before evening showers-storms revealing singular and stacked lenticular wave forms.
March looks to have ended as the driest on record in the City of Norton, with 1.62 ( the preliminary tally ) of total precipitation being well below the previous driest of 2.10″ observed during March 2003.
March ended as the 4th driest on record in Clintwood, with 1.54″ of total precipitation being measured.
*National Weather Service sites ended the recording period during the morning ( 7:00 AM in Clintwood and 9:00 AM in the City of Norton ).
I have continued my alert for strong SW winds across mid-upper elevation mountain ridges overnight where wind driven rain will also fall moderate-heavy at times.
*Up to 0.60″ to 0.75″ of rain has fallen, as of 1:30 AM Friday, in the Big Cherry Lake basin of the High Knob Massif with the first wave of rainfall. A second wave will arrive during the next hour, with a final chance for local downpours along-ahead of a cold front moving across Kentucky into the morning.
As the first wave of rain moves east a second wave will be lifting northeast out of Tennessee along the Cumberland Mountains during the mid-late overnight period.
The forecast setting heading into tonight and Saturday morning remains a little uncertain, with the NAM Model group developing another significant wave of rainfall over the area as colder air arrives from the northwest.
The NAM forecast’s a significant wave of rainfall to move northeast along the Cumberland Plateau and Cumberland Mountains tonight into Saturday morning ( note the 12-hour change in amounts between 8 PM and 8 AM ).
Stay tuned for updates on this potential.
For those heading to the NASCAR Race in Martinsville it is looking like a windy, cooler Saturday as showers give way to drier conditions into the afternoon.