Flash flooding possible in the mountains

CHARLOTTE, NC (WBTV) – A slow-moving area of low pressure could bring heavy downpours, especially to those of us in the higher elevations early this week.  A Flash Flood Watch has been issued for Ashe and Watauga counties.

Southwesterly winds have brought in plenty of moisture across the Carolinas, but it's those in the high country that are most at risk of dangerous flooding conditions.

Imagine winds coming in from the Southwest.  Now imagine those winds hit a mountain.  They have nowhere to go but up.  This forced upward motion is known as orographic lifting.  It's why clouds form first, and hang around longer, in mountainous regions.  That warm, moist air rises, cooling as it climbs higher into the atmosphere.  When that air gets cool enough, the water vapor condenses.  At this point, clouds form, and if there's enough moisture in place, it will rain. Clouds form, and if there's enough moisture in place it will rain.

Anywhere from 2-4 inches will likely fall in the higher elevations through Tuesday, and between 1-2 inches is expected in the Piedmont.