The start of next week will bring a complex weather pattern to the Central and Eastern US, and our forecast has a lot of moving parts beyond this weekend. A subtropical low is expected to develop into a subtropical depression or storm over the weekend. An upper level low cut off from the steering flow in the upper levels will drift across Texas, and a trough will start to dip south from the Midwest.
Here in the Tennessee Valley, we will be between all of it, underneath a ridge of high pressure. This ridge may weaken a touch through the weekend, leading to the chance for a few scattered showers and storms. Temperatures will trend a touch above average for this time of year, in the mid 80s Saturday and Sunday.
As we head into the start of next week, exactly how these pieces of the forecast puzzle behave is still a bit up in the air, but we know the subtropical system will lift northeast and be absorbed into the jetstream. The trough will continue to dive southeast, bringing cooler air to the Eastern US. The upper level low in Texas could drift into the Gulf and re-emerge across the Central Gulf Coast, or drift more easterly. Either way, this could aid in rain chances Sunday and Monday.
Based on the most recent data, it appears that both the eastern trough and upper low will undercut the ridging in place next week, thus temperatures may again actually dip below average rather than trend above average like we initially thought. Often, an east coast storm like the one forecast next week leads to above average temperatures and dry weather here, but this time, it looks like we may get cool again. If we were to stay overcast Monday and Tuesday, we could see high temperatures well below 10° below average. That’s cool, but we aren’t talking frost. Just cooler than average. As for now, we’re taking a cooler approach to Monday and Tuesday, but not quite that cool. In the long range, we still expect above average temperatures.
Ridging is expected to build back in by the second half of next week, which would lead to a drier and warmer pattern. Our long-term forecast is still on track for May, but we may see one more round of cooler and damper weather before the summer pattern sets in.