BLOG: Cool front... so where's the Cool? - | WBTV Charlotte

BLOG: Cool front... so where's the Cool?


Typically when we talk about a cold front making a pass across our area, we forecast colder or at least cooler temperatures to move in behind that front. So this week's forecast may leave you a little bit confused, as the forecast features rising temperatures following the Thursday front. 

So what's going on?

It all has to do with where the air is coming in from behind the front. Obviously, a north wind brings in colder temps.

Typically, we see a Northwest wind kick in post-front along with an area of high pressure at the surface that builds in from the north. Sometimes we'll talk about a cool, Canadian high, which will have colder temps with the air mass origins over Canada.

This time the set-up is a little bit different. Upper-level winds are oriented more West to East as opposed to Northwest to Southeast. Since we're not getting that Northerly component to the wind, that colder air to the North is going to STAY there because it won't have any way of being brought in our direction since the steering wind is taking it East instead of South.

At the same time, high pressure is going to continue to build and strengthen in the upper levels of the atmosphere over the Southeast (we call this a "ridge"). Any time this pattern sets up, temperatures tend to rise because of all the sinking and compressing air beneath the high pressure. This is the pattern that will stay locked in place through the weekend.

As the numbers continue to climb, we could find ourselves in near record territory this weekend. The standing high records for Saturday and Sunday respectively are 82° (with a forecast of 80), and 84° (with a forecast of 83°). Both may very well be in jeopardy - stay tuned!

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