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State Forecast Discussion

FXUS62 KCHS 161933

Area Forecast Discussion
National Weather Service Charleston SC
333 PM EDT Tue Oct 16 2018

Above normal temperatures will prevail until a cold front
crosses the region Wednesday into Wednesday night. Cooler high
pressure will then move in through late week before a stronger
cold front pushes through Saturday night.


This afternoon and evening: Satellite imagery continues to show
a rather muted cumulus field across the forecast area, and that
closely correlates to the extent and presence of the ridge and
NVA aloft. Earlier convection closer to the Midlands has put out
some outflow boundaries, and these may be enough to initiate
convection across our inland zones. Still expect the coverage to
remain isolated to scattered owing to the less than ideal
larger scale environment. Mesoanalysis shows MLCAPE values at or
above 1000 J/kg across most of the area, and fortunately the
area of bulk shear around 40 knots is situated to our north.
Therefore, we continue to think the severe threat is quite low
given the lack of coverage and displacement from the best near
storm environment.

Tonight: The western Atlantic upper ridge will flatten out in
response to a trough crossing the Great Lakes and the Ohio
Valley. The result is that the mid-level flow will take on a
more westerly component, which should then provide a bit more
push to the upstream stationary surface front. As a result the
front should be somewhere across the Midlands by late tonight,
very close to the western edge of the forecast area. The
proximity of the front will allow for shower development for
much of the night, though the coverage is expected to be
scattered at worst, primarily across the area from Colleton
County north to the Santee River. Rain chances run in the 20-30
percent range through the night. The other forecast issue is the
fog and stratus potential. The overall atmosphere is similar to
last night when widespread fog and stratus developed around
daybreak. Model guidance is quite split, with the NAM being very
aggressive with fog development, while the hi-res models and
the GFS are much more conservative. There should be more cloud
cover tonight, which would work against development. For now,
added patchy fog to the forecast, but overall confidence is not
high. Expect a rather mild night with lows only falling into the
low 70s for most areas.


Zonal flow aloft will push a cold front into the area late
Wednesday afternoon. Ahead of the front, an unseasonably warm
and humid airmass will be in place with PWs around 1.75". Partly
sunny skies and compression ahead of the front will push high
temps into the mid to upper 80s. Weak forcing along and ahead of
the front should support isolated to scattered showers, along
with a few tstms given modest instability. The better forcing
will be across southern SC during the afternoon where a weak
wave may develop along the front. Severe potential appears quite
low due to limited instability.

The front should push through in earnest Wednesday night,
pushing any residual precipitation off the coast and ushering in
cooler, drier air after midnight. Wednesday night will be 10-15
degrees cooler than the night before, while Thursday's low/mid
70s highs will be about 15 degrees cooler.

Temps will warm a few degrees by Friday as the surface high
modifies and shifts off the NC coast.


Noticeably cooler and drier conditions will persist late week
heading into the weekend; only a brief period of temperature
moderation will occur as the surface high shifts offshore prior
to another cold front likely arriving into the area this
weekend, ushering in additional cooling. Chance POPs are
advertised Saturday into Sunday given the proximity of the
front. Dry and much cooler high pressure then builds back in
behind the departing front.


VFR conditions are expected to prevail through the evening.
Current thinking is that shower and thunderstorm activity will
remain north of the terminals. Overnight, the upstream front
will migrate closer to the area and there will likely be
isolated to scattered showers for portions of the night. The
best chances will be near KCHS and a VCSH has been added
starting at 10z. The biggest question mark revolves around fog
and stratus. The atmosphere is quite similar to last night (when
we had widespread fog/stratus right around sunrise) though just
a few degrees warmer. Model guidance is quite split with some
solutions showing another round of fog/stratus, and others
showing little to none. Have added a tier of patchy fog almost
everywhere, but no prevailing flight restrictions in the
forecast. The best chance for fog/stratus seems to be at KSAV,
where it could advect in from the west late tonight. Confidence
it too low at this point, but it will be worth watching through
the evening.

Extended Aviation Outlook: Low stratus and/or ground fog are
possible during the morning hours.


Tonight: Quiet conditions will prevail as a inland front draws
closer to the region through the night. This setup will promote
a modest southwest flow with speeds generally topping out in the
10-15 knot range. Seas will average 2-3 feet.

Small Craft Advisories increasingly likely by late Wednesday
night or Thursday as NE winds strengthen behind the cold front.
Thereafter, winds/seas will gradually diminish as high pressure
shifts off the eastern United States coast. Winds and seas could
increase again Sunday as another cold front crosses the region.


As of 3 pm today (10/16), KCHS has reached 90 degrees (breaks
the daily record), and KSAV has reached 91 degrees (breaks the
daily record).

Record high maximum and record high minimum temperatures will
be challenged until midweek. We have listed records that fall
within 2-3 degrees of forecast values.

Date          Location  Record High  Record High Minimum

Tue 10/16       CHS       87 (1942)     71 (1985)
                CXM       87 (1925)     73 (1933)
                SAV       90 (1941)       -

Wed 10/17       CHS        -            70 (1999)
                SAV       91 (1921)       -