Monday, March 19, 2012

Potential For Season's First 80 on Thursday

The potential for the year's first 80 degree reading is definitely on the increase and Thursday may end up being the best chance for the region to cross that threshold.  The combination of warmth aloft, optimal positioning of high pressure to our south near Cape Hatteras, and a west-southwest breeze in the atmosphere will help push temperatures towards record territory for some locations.

The GFS guidance, below, shows the 5 PM forecast position of a cold front (where the lines shift from a NW-SE direction to a WSW-ENE direction) across the Northeast.  The wind shift is not an on-shore shift on Thursday so there wouldn't be much potential for sea breeze development and with the front coming in from the north during the afternoon, those west and southwest winds will create downsloping conditions for us and help boost our temperatures.

The Euro sorta sees the potential for it -- showing temperatures that will reach the 75-82 degree range by mid and late afternoon across the region (yellow shading on the map below).  It does show the potential for lower 80's farther north into Southern New England and in computer runs yesterday showed those lower and middle 80's across Metro New York.  This could be a day where Newark and points northeast end up a touch warmer than us -- but with all of us from Philly and Atlantic City on north making runs at record highs.

Record highs in the region are generally between 75 and 83.  The best chances of records getting knocked out would be (in order of most likely to least likely) Allentown, Trenton, Newark, Central Park, and then into Philadelphia, AC,  Wilmington, and Reading.   The record values in the 70's and Newark's 80 probably stand the best chances of getting knocked out.  We could tie...perhaps break it if everything breaks right.

This could be the best chance to knock a record out.  Friday looks warm as well but not quite as warm as the influence of the Hatteras high pressure system wanes a bit more in the wake of the cool front pushing through Thursday night.   It might be a day where we "only" get into the middle 70's.  Records on Friday are a touch cooler in Philadelphia -- 78 -- so if the front's passage is delayed a bit we could again flirt with a record.  However, Thursday's ingredients look more promising for a record run.