We're in the middle of an uneventful week of weather, at least here in our own zone down south. High pressure has dominated our weather since Monday, when a back-door cold front brought a nice, refreshing change in air mass our way. It's about to get a bit more interesting, and just in time for Labor Day weekend.
We've been watching for a couple days a weak disturbance in the northwestern Gulf of Mexico that has produced bundles of showers and storms, mostly offshore. This morning, it's apparent this system has at least a minimal low-level circulation associated with it. And this being late August, and under the existing upper air pattern, the disturbance is being scouted for possible tropical development. This afternoon, the National Hurricane Center will send an aircraft into the Gulf to investigate the system.
Satellite/radar image Wednesday AM
Chances are it will come ashore in Texas before it has a chance to turn into anything more than a weak low. But it will have implications for our weather in any scenario. As the high over West Virginia gradually weakens, the east and northeast winds we've been enjoying will ease up, and a return flow from the south will materialize, bringing back moisture from the Gulf. By Friday, we can expect showers to break out close to the Gulf coast, and by Saturday, we will see our next chance of rain in Georgia and Alabama. This may be enhanced by a piece of the Texas system getting caught up in the upper flow and giving the showers and thunderstorms a boost.
Scattered showers and storms will be possible Sunday and Labor Day, mainly in the afternoons and evenings as daytime heating plays a role. The cool mornings in the 60s may be a thing of the past this weekend, courtesy of the higher dew points brought about by the influx of Gulf moisture. Highs will depend on how much sunshine we get, but almost certainly will top 90º each day.
None of that is unusual for the end of August/beginning of September. But what lies further into the upcoming month? Longer range model forecasts are leaning toward a trough over the West and a hot ridge over the Southeast and eastern U.S. It's too soon to hash out any specifics, but the overwhelming message is: we're staying hot down here through at least mid-September, so don't expect fall to come around anytime soon. In other words:
Here's the new month. Same as the old month.
GFS model upper air forecast for September 7