From Sunny & Warm to Rainy, Windy & Cold

After a brief lull in forecasts here on the blog last week during WKU final’s week, we are back and will continue providing you up-to-date weather information here on the WKU meteorology blog throughout WKU’s winter break.

The sun has now returned to south-central KY after several cloudy and rainy days.  Even thunderstorms impacted the area with small hail reported near Morgantown (see pic) with other isolated reports of small hail in Logan and Warren Counties.  Most of the hail reports in the state yesterday occurred near near the Louisville area (check out the Louisville NWS recap).

Hail from just south of Morgantown on 12/17/12. Image courtesy of Landon Hampton (@BeechTreeWx) on twitter.

The storms have of course since pushed east and the low clouds from this morning have now pushed east as well giving way to mostly sunny skies.  Clear skies will continue throughout today as high pressure builds in at the surface at least for a couple of days before our next system moves in.  We are currently in a very active pattern with several disturbances or shortwaves moving across the US.  A disturbance and associated low pressure system in Iowa along with the high pressure over the Gulf of Mexico is allowing a warm SSW wind to set up over the mid-South.  This will allow highs to continue to be above average for this time of year with highs in the mid-50s today to low 60s tomorrow.  Our next weather maker is currently associated with an upper-level trough near the California coast.  This system will progress east in the coming days and could bring stormy and rainy weather to Kentucky by late Wednesday night and primarily Thursday morning.  Rain will likely move in after 2 am Thursday.  As you can see in the image below (at 9am Thurs) a surface low will be located near Chicago with a cold front extending to the south.  This will bring rain which could be heavy at times.  A few rumbles of thunder are possible though instability will be very weak due to the time of day.  Meanwhile heavy snow with near blizzard like conditions will be occuring from Iowa to Wisconsin.  Back here at home rainfall is expected to be greater than a quarter of an inch and could be as high as a half an inch.  Temperatures

NAM Mean Sea-Level Pressure, 850 temperatures & 6 hour precipitation at 15Z (9 am CST).

will then cool quickly behind the front which will pass through during the morning; temperatures will get colder throughout most of the day.  Temperatures should start out in the mid-50s on Thursday however temperatures are expected to drop to around 40 by 6 pm Thursday.  The colder temperatures will be ushered in by strong northwest winds Thursday afternoon.  Winds will be blowing between 20 and 30 mph with gusts up to 35 mph+ so hold onto your hats.  Those winds will make if feel much cooler than actually will be Thursday afternoon.  Friday should be cool as well with an upper-level trough over the Ohio Valley and northwest winds at the surface.

Daily Forecast:

Today: High near 56.  Clouds this morning will clear making for a mostly sunny day.  Winds will be from the south-southwest at 6-12 mph.

Tonight: Low near 38.  Mostly clear skies with light SSW winds up to 5 mph.

Wednesday: High near 64.  Warm with mostly sunny skies.  SSW wind becoming more southerly from 5-10 mph.

Wednesday Night: Low around 55.  Increasing clouds with 70% chance of rain after 2 am; thunder possible.  Winds from the south at 8-16 mph.

Thursday: 90% chance of rain especially before noon.  A rumble of thunder will be possible early.  Temperatures will warm to near 57 early with temperatures then falling throughout the day.  Noon near 50; near 40 by 6 pm.  Windy with winds from the northwest from 20-30 mph with gusts 35 mph+.  Total rainfall from 0.3 to 0.6 inches of rain.

Friday: Much cooler with a morning low in the mid 20s and a high near 41.  Sunny skies with continued blustery northwest winds.

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