Tropical Storm Nicholas became a hurricane at 10 PM Monday. It slowly drifts northward from the western Gulf into southeastern Texas overnight into Tuesday: producing tremendous rainfall (some 20″+ possible) and up to 5′ of storm surge on the coastline. The system was downgraded to a tropical storm Tuesday morning.
Steering currents are relatively weak for the next few days, and that prevents fast-paced movement to the northeast. It also increases the uncertainty of over-all timing and amounts of rain in the forecast around Alabama.
The main idea as of now is that a weak front in the area (and the upper-air flow driving it) on Wednesday helps ‘string out’ some of the moisture from Nicholas’ remnants: sending it northeast into Mississippi, Alabama and Georgia. A stripe of heavier rain on Wednesday and Thursday is likely because of that orientation; the question is exactly where will it happen.
That’s something we will keep an eye on through the next few days!
What about the upcoming weekend?
The past two weekends may have spoiled us a little; the upcoming weekend presents some weather challenges because the tropical moisture goes nowhere: just hanging around waiting on a cold front to blow it out of here.
Expect a better-than-average chance of scattered, locally-heavy storms with uneven rainfall from place to place on Friday night for football, Saturday for college football, and for anything you have going on outside this Sunday. The extra clouds and rain keep temperatures near or just below normal in the afternoons (low/mid-80s), but we can’t realize that usual mid-September cool down at night because of the thick humidity. That’ll keep lows around 65-70 degrees on Saturday morning and Sunday morning.
The next ‘good’ cold front is well over seven days away, so get used to the idea of sticky air and daily storms.