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Submitted by Tim Buckley on Thu, 11/04/2010 - 9:48am.
Well it's no secret that the seasons are changing. It might just be a little faster than you'd like this weekend. Cold weather is on it's way from the north and by Saturday we'll see temperatures more suitable for mid January rather than mid November, whether you're ready for it or not!
First things first. As is usually the case before a big temperature change, there's plenty of weather to deal with before the new air mass arrives. We're tracking light and moderate rain showers across the Carolinas from start to finish on this Thursday. While we'll have a few low pressure centers ride up along the coast, most of them will pass to the southeast - meaning we'll be spared the worst of the rains.
The cold front that is the leading edge to this Arctic Air will be the driving force behind the exit of these weather systems. Expect this front to plow through the area quickly overnight tonight. In fact, by the time we're waking up Friday I'd be surprised if there's any lingering showers here in the Wilmington area.
The main change as advertised will be the cold weather. Highs Friday will likely get into the 60s just barely, but the cold arrives Friday night. Clear skies will allow temperatures to plummet into the 30's - meaning real concerns for our first frost of the season, especially in inland areas. Even if you don't see frost are your house, it won't be a bad idea to cover up any plants that are susceptible to those early season frosts both Friday night and Saturday night.
This winter chill won't just be affecting us here in the Southeast. Many folks in the north will see some of their first significant snows of the season, especially in the Great Lakes region. The Lake Effect Snow machine will be in full effect once this cold front plows through the region later today.
You can see some bands of Lake Effect Rain/Snow just off the shores of Lake Superior and Lake Michigan. This happens frequently in the late fall into the winter months as cold air masses pass over the relatively warm waters of the Great Lakes. Since warm air rises through the atmosphere, the Great Lakes act as a perfect heat source to form these intense bands of rain and snow. If conditions last long enough with a similar wind direction, these bands can often dump snow in the winter that's measured in feet rather than inches.
You might find that I blog about some impressive Lake Effect Snow totals quite frequently as we head into the winter months. My hometown of Pulaski, NY sits on the eastern shores of Lake Ontario and typically recieves between 150-200 inches of snow each and every year. Something I don't miss about our Wilmington winters!
That's all for now everybody.
By: Tim Buckley