Monday, June 27, 2011

Less smoke, better air quality and more welcome rain on the way!

Monday, June 27, 2011

It is nice to start off this week without smoke making it tough to breathe or see. Visibilities should remain over 5 miles in all locations first thing. Over the weekend more needed rain fell in most locations and where we needed it most with 2 to 4 inches over the Espanola Fire and another inch of rain in the Okefenokee Swamp.

Today we still have all the ingredients in place for more rain. The dog days officially do not begin until July 3rd but the weather map is showing a lazy hazy pattern. It is a what you see is what you get pattern as the main jet stream stays well to the north in Wisconsin and the dry high pressure ridge that caused our drought to become extreme over the Spring remains west of the area. Portions of Texas are experiencing their hottest temperatures ever recorded. Amarillo hit an incredible 111 degrees. Closer to home it will be hazy, hot and humid but a more bearable lower to middle 90s. With lower pressures in place and temperatures falling quicker than normal with height expect more welcome rain today. Thunderstorms will impact 50% of us today. This includes St. Augustine and other spots like Mandarin that missed out on most of the heavier weekend rain. Once again a few of the storms could turn severe with damaging wind gusts the main threat.

The tropics are still active but there is only a slight chance of tropical development this week. A tropical wave may try to develop in the Bay of Campeche but it does look like what develops will be weak and move into Mexico due to the strong high pressure over Texas. Here at home we may not be getting much help with the rain from the tropics but I did put together a 10 day forecast showing that at least scattered rain chance are in the forecast almost every day.

I am concerned we do dry out late this week and over the fourth of July holiday with temperatures of 95 to 100 but this looks like a brief 3 day dry spell rather than 3 months of praying for rain. We will have to watch this closer because if this dry spell lasts only a day or two longer the wildfires could once again become a big problem. But for this week I do think we all notice it will be much easier to breathe and the needed rain will be the big story. Just keep your guard up the strong storms. Have a wonderful and safe day!

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