Fewer storms mean hotter weather for Thursday, Friday and beyond…
Wildfire smoke causing Air Quality Alerts and a smoky, hazy sky north of us lately begins to thicken around Tennessee and Alabama on Thursday.
The smoke on the East Coast this week came from fires in the western US and Canada
That smoky layer of air is also dry, and that helps suppress showers and storms: especially from around Huntsville, Athens and Scottsboro northward.
There’s not a single day of the next week that we can identify as ‘guaranteed’ dry; there’s also no certain day that we can guarantee it rains again.
Thursday sets up like that: a chance of some downpours nearby, but not widespread, steady, plan-ruining rain.
Spotty, hit-or-miss storms cover less and less territory each day through Sunday and Monday. That means more opportunity for the sun to really heat us up: highs in the 90s, a heat index near 100°F over the weekend and early next week.
The big ‘ridge’ is almost here
Ridges make it hot and dry, troughs usually make it cooler and wetter. The ridge building through the next week or so does it’s job efficiently: cutting down on storms and cranking up the heat!
There will be another better chance of some scattered storms early next week: mainly around Tuesday as a weak disturbance passes on the east side of this big ridge in the middle of the country.
That may temporarily cool us down a touch, but the heat is on for the rest of July and early August. The hottest weather of the season so far is on the way.
Later in the week, the ridge could push temperatures as high as the middle to upper 90s with a heat index well over 100ºF if it’s strong enough to keep the daily downpours at bay.
The hottest day in Huntsville (93°F) came on June 13th; Muscle Shoals’ hottest came on June 12-13 at 95°F. We’ll challenge those numbers next week!
This is all fairly typical of late July, by the way. Huntsville’s average high is around 92ºF in late July and early August. ‘Average’ is the middle of extremes, so having some hotter days in the middle or even upper 90s would not be uncommon as we enter what is climatologically the hottest part of the year.