Kirk Mellish's Weather Commentary 

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New weather trend coming

  • 6:59 am Thursday, June 14th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

We’ve returned to a tropical air mass with more than usual cloud cover and more than usual coverage of showers and storms, something we’ve done three times already here in the spring and early summer.

While I can’t issue the all clear on rain or storm odds or give a completely sunny forecast, it does look like the trend is our friend the next 5-7 days, and MAYBE beyond.

Higher than normal moisture in the air and upper level low pressure, surface fronts or troughs, and bits of energy aloft have all conspired to give us our latest bout of unsettled weather.

Notice [More]

Shifting storm odds

  • 9:43 am Tuesday, June 12th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

It’s that time of year when it’s rare to get a day with zero chance of rain or a thunderstorm or even a very low chance.

Today it looks like the highest threat will be gradually shifting south by late afternoon and evening:

AFTERNOON THUNDERSTORM COVERAGE:

THUNDERSTORM COVERAGE AFTER 8PM:

5-day forecast.

Thunderstorm chances change from one day to the next, and as I’ve written so many times in the past, UNLIKE other types of forecasts, thunderstorm forecasts in some patterns have to be updated every 3 or 4 hours.

Looks like a little hotter, drier and sunnier as we get into the weekend but [More]

Forecasting without computer models

  • 12:15 pm Wednesday, June 6th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

Meteorologists look at synoptic charts for the position of upper-level ridges of high pressure and troughs of low pressure in the jet stream, both analysis (current data) and forecast projections from models of the future.

Because upper-level ridges and troughs go a long way in determining wet/cool and warm/dry areas.

However, research has shown we don’t have to rely just on computers. Patterns of ocean sea surface temperatures can signal ahead of the models where troughs and ridges will be favored due to energy exchanges between ocean and atmosphere. The same is true of dry areas and wet areas on land due [More]

Hurricane season projections

  • 5:30 pm Tuesday, June 5th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

Now that we are in June tropical cyclone season is here, generally just called “hurricane season” running from June through November reaching a peak September 10th:

The most active season was 2005, during which 28 tropical cyclones formed, of which a record 15 became hurricanes. The least active season was 1914, with only one known tropical cyclone developing during that year.

We are in a transition in the Pacific Ocean pattern to an expected El Nino. El Nino usually acts to suppress the tropical cyclone season. However, its predictability in the spring is not very good. Therefore, the speed at which the El [More]

Severe storms

  • 3:10 pm Friday, June 1st, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

The worst of the weather expected the rest of the afternoon, diminishing between 8 and 10pm give or take an hour. Dangerous destructive lightning and heavy downpours for isolated flooding. Risk of a tornado is very low.

The rain odds go down dramatically for all areas after midnight.

Severe weather risk

  • 9:49 am Friday, June 1st, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

Parts of North and Central Georgia have a risk of damaging straight line winds and hail today. Isolated flooding possible thanks to the already wet soils.

The complexity of the atmospheric set-up makes defining the most certain location and timing more uncertain than usual.

While a tornado is not out of the question odds of that are very low. But frequent dangerous and destructive lightning along with damaging winds are possible in the strongest storms.

There’s a chance the worst of it will miss much of the Atlanta area, but the specialized models for thunderstorms are all over the road so to speak. [More]

Shift to more normal weather for a while

  • 9:10 am Thursday, May 31st, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

The MJO (Madden Julian Oscillation) forecast movement is into drier phases the next couple weeks, but temperature and humidity will swing from above-normal to below normal and back again.

We move from the wet 1 and 2 to the drier 5-7 phases.

(WxBell graphics above)

Lakes and rivers are full to overflowing thanks to the tropical downpours of the past couple weeks:

Much of Georgia had twice as much rain as normal for May:

30-day rainfall 75-200% plus above normal for the Month of May:

Bye-Bye drought in Georgia:

Temperatures for May on a national basis have been record warm, beating even the Dust Bowl May of [More]

Tracking Alberto

  • 5:17 am Tuesday, May 29th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

Remember two weeks ago (May 16) when in this blog space I warned about how the models over exaggerate the rain from tropical air masses? Well we’ve certainly seen proof of that the past five days. The models “see” the moisture but they use it to generate too much rain instead of just clouds and humidity.

But now the impact of Alberto is actually upon us so we finally get the rain, but there will be breaks when it’s not raining and some sun at times for the lucky.

Alabama takes the brunt of the rainfall. Keep in mind a tree can [More]

Keeping an eye on Alberto

  • 4:15 pm Sunday, May 27th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

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Alberto

  • 10:06 am Saturday, May 26th, 2018 by Kirk Mellish

LATE MONDAY:

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