Prolonged Heat Wave Possible for Western Carolinas

Lead Forecaster Daniel Crawley,

Good Friday evening to everyone. The weekend is here and so is the heat for the Western Carolinas! We got a taste of that today in the Foothills and Piedmont as temperatures were widespread in the lower 90’s.

Water Vapor Image (7/22/22, 5:15 pm)

As you can see on the water vapor image the jet stream is way far to the north which is typical for late July. A recent weakness in the atmosphere across the Southeast is quickly filling in and will takeover the region in the foreseeable future. That has and will continue to shut down convective activity and allow the heat to increase region-wide.

The ridge looks to be firmly in place with a weak boundary sliding down Monday or Tuesday increasing thunderstorm activity and lowering temperatures a couple degrees. When you look at the 5-Day height anomalies below, you can clearly see where a southeast ridge dominates the pattern. The spread out lower heights across South Central Canada and the Northern tier of the US shows the path in which a trough next week will slide a boundary into our part of the world increasing the rain chances

500 mb height anomalies (5-Day average) through Thur July 28th

Once we get toward the end of the current 7-Day forecast cycle, heights will again build into the Southeast US, this time the origin of the high will come from the Western Atlantic rather than the Plains and Four Corners Region. This will spike temperatures up again in the long range. A trough axis may line up from the Upper Midwest down to the Souther Plains. Folks in Texas may appreciate that as it could break the absurd heat they have seen in recent times. For us locally, with the marine origin does the next heat spike also come with abnormally high moisture content? One has to wonder about that when looking at the orientation of the height pattern.

The main takeaway from this blog post is that we could be dealing with a lengthy bout of above normal temperatures as we exit the month of July and head into August. Again, not that unusual for the time of the year.

As you can see on the ensembles, 90’s may be common for the coverage area over the next 1-2 weeks.

Climate Prediction Center has also highlighted the region and a lot of the Eastern US for the same in the long range.

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