Tuesday, 11:30 A.M.
Much of my work here at AccuWeather.com involves communicating weather forecasts to radio clients and their listeners over the air waves. The stations I chat with on a daily basis run from the mid-Atlantic to Florida to the Midwest and the eastern Rockies. When I spoke with a couple of them in the East this morning, but made the comment about how hot and humid it felt on the back end of the Labor Day weekend, something they had not really experienced most of the summer!
Even out on my ride yesterday afternoon and evening, both before and particularly after the shower passed though, it was hard to breathe at times because the air seemed so thick with humidity! I'm sure most have experienced those oppressive summer days with high heat and humidity, a day that just zaps your energy, as if someone pulled a plug and it all leaked out of you!
We may be on the verge of autumn, but I'm here to tell you summer is far from dead! Most places from the eastern Rockies and across the central Plains to the Ohio Valley and mid-Atlantic states will see the temperature either exceed 90 at least once the rest of this week (and into Saturday in the mid-Atlantic), or get awfully close to it - and with very high humidity levels for so late in the season. Suffice it to say it will be hard to see it quite this hot and humid in most places for the rest of 2014! Of course, now that I have made that statement, you can pretty much bank on it coming back again sometime later this month!
Let's face it. We're in a different pattern now. The fronts that came barreling through with deep upper level troughs will instead run out of gas in the face of fairly persistent upper level ridging. For instance, the front coming through the Great Lakes into the Ohio Valley this afternoon will run into a similar mean upper level ridge. Initially it will be a pretty flat ridge, but it won't budge. And look how the heights quickly rebound behind this feature. Compare the 500 mb height forecast for 18z this afternoon to that of tomorrow evening:
The dew points have struggled to drop in northern Illinois so far today, one indication that this front just doesn't have the strong push behind it that others have had in recent weeks. If you compare temperatures in the mid-Atlantic from this afternoon to tomorrow, there maybe a 5 to perhaps five degree drop - but in most all cases, temperatures will still be on the high side of average. The dew points will also drop several degrees, but those low or even mid 50s dew points won't get anywhere close.
Of course, this lays the groundwork for the next surge of heat and humidity later this week. If it hits 90 in Denver tomorrow afternoon, it will be the first time in two weeks, and only the third time since late July, which gives you an idea of the lack of heat there for a while. That heat will then make a run at Chicago Thursday. If it reaches 90 there, it would be just the fourth time all year to get that high, and the first since July 22! That's a testament to just how much there's a lack of heat this summer.
That heat will try to come into the mid-Atlantic Friday, and may linger into Saturday, especially along the I-95 corridor, depending upon the timing of the next cold front. Much like in the middle of the country, 90-degree heat has been hard to come by this summer in the East. For instance, it's hit 90 just five times in Central Park, and it might get there this afternoon, and could again get there Friday and/or Saturday. And in Philadelphia, until Sunday, it had hit 90 only once since late July!
Autumn, though, is crouching at the door. There will be a cooler push of note behind this late week and early weekend cold front. There won't be any frost, but temperatures will drop into the 40s at night throughout the northern Plains and Upper Midwest Friday night and Saturday night, with day time highs in the 60s and lower 70s. In some places, you can already see some of the leaves changing. The days are rapidly getting shorter, and fall is now officially less than three weeks away!
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