Kirk Mellish's Weather Commentary 

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Humidity and heat relief, fall will return

  • 3:20 pm Wednesday, October 11th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

One front is coming through this Wednesday night and will lower humidity from the extremes of this week, not exactly dry air, but less humid Thursday:

However, as I discussed in my radio 5-day forecast this morning on “Atlanta’s Morning News”, a wave of low pressure forms on the front and brings back some moisture from the Atlantic Friday into the weekend as a weak wedge pattern forms:

So the humidity on the weekend will also be less than the start of this week, but still not quite dry air. A few scattered showers Friday with the wave but most of us [More]

Updated modeling on winter

  • 8:32 am Tuesday, October 10th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

Considerable agreement among the various models on both the temperature and precipitation pattern. It definitely has a LaNina look to it.

The upper left panels (NMME) is the blend of U.S. models, the lower right panels are the international model blend (IMME).



Suggests the primary jet stream storm track just to our north and west with a SE upper ridge. This much agreement doesn’t happen that often. But, I have seen strong agreement be wrong in the past, so it’s not a lock.

At least for now, no help from the sun for [More]

Nate is here

  • 10:04 am Sunday, October 8th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

As I forecast yesterday most of us will just have a day with rain and occasional wind gusts of a non-severe nature.

Most of the metro area will have periodic wind gusts under 35 mph, but a few gusts to near 50 mph can not be ruled out far west and north suburbs and into the mountains. A small brief isolated weak tornado can not be ruled out anywhere this afternoon or early evening, but mostly east half of Georgia.

A Flash Flood Watch is in effect through Monday morning mainly north of I-85.





Hurricane Nate

  • 5:00 pm Saturday, October 7th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

Nate makes initial landfall tonight!

Most areas of metro Atlanta should have winds near or BELOW tropical storm strength. But, some gusts of 35-40 mph are possible. The highest level risk for downed trees and power outages still looks to be in the mountains and in the far West and North/NW suburbs. BUT just looks like isolated cases except for the mountains. (This is opposite of how Irma impacted the area, where the worst was South and East of downtown).

For most of the area the expected winds will be no worse than a strong thunderstorm, or a breezy day anytime of [More]

Nate on the way

  • 5:00 pm Friday, October 6th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

It’s a tropical storm now but NHC forecast strengthening to a minimal 80 mph hurricane CAT 1 before making landfall late Saturday night or early Sunday morning in SE Louisiana and Southern Mississippi.

The models are in good agreement on the track, which has been shifted slightly east and sped up, but future intensity is highly uncertain due to competing and conflicting influences.

The greatest risk for downed trees and power loss in some spots is in the mountains and far North and West suburbs. This reminds me of a flip of Irma… instead of worst I-85 south and east then, this [More]

Nate or it’s moisture still loom even here

  • 5:08 pm Thursday, October 5th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

However, this is far from certain. NHC still has a CAT 1 hurricane, even a Tropical Storm can have significant impacts in LA/MS/AL and West FL Pan Handle.

More data from hurricane hunter planes should help firm up the forecast between now and Saturday afternoon:

It has been 15 years since a hurricane last hit that part of the Gulf where Nate is predicted to go:

With Nate still being so disorganized and so far away, the details of impacts on the U.S. coast and here in Atlanta and the rest of Georgia remain uncertain. Much will depend on how strong it gets [More]

Nate no sure bet for U.S.

  • 12:23 pm Thursday, October 5th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

Tropical Storm Nate’s track continues to be shifted a bit west with each new forecast cycle, still expected to be a hurricane by NHC, but not all models on-board with that.

I mention this just to underscore the uncertainty, I am not a big fan of the 06z GFS. I also prefer an ensemble approach rather than single operational deterministic model take.

As I said in previous blog post, the normal and expected error 5 days and beyond is measured in hundreds of miles, so it’s just silly to think that ANYONE knows where its going and how strong it will be [More]

Tropical Storm Nate

  • 5:15 am Thursday, October 5th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

Unfortunately the blog post I put out 8 days ago warning about this potential threat has come to be.

The latest NHC track has landfall Sunday in the area of the LA/MS/AL coast as a minimal hurricane, but…

The NHC has shifted the track West a couple times already, that could continue or it could swing back East. It’s way too early to know where a storm over a thousand miles away will go OR how strong it will be.

****But anywhere from West of New Orleans to the East Florida Pan Handle should get ready just in case as model spread is [More]

Is there a way to winter snow even with La Nina?

  • 6:01 am Tuesday, October 3rd, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

The short answer is yes. The ENSO, solar cycles and QBO all work in tandem along with the AMO and PDO etc.

Last winter the nature of the warm and cold pools in the Pacific changed during the winter in ways unexpected, that can always happen again.

Even in a winter that averages warmer than normal and drier than normal a single system with the right timing can still bring a winter event of some kind.

On the other hand, a warm winter also increases the risk of fall and winter severe weather.

This is NOT a forecast but an explanation.

A weak La Nina [More]

An early look at coming winter

  • 8:18 am Friday, September 29th, 2017 by Kirk Mellish

Last winter had a combination of La Nina and El Nino like weather patterns and an unexpectedly strong and persistent Pacific Jet Stream. This winter is not expected to have that combo.

I’ve already covered the “typical La Nina” winter in a prior post.

As I pointed out in that post there is more to what will influence a winter than just El Nino or La Nina, or the sunspot cycle or any other single thing. Here’s just a partial  list of things we look at:

And it all flexes over time.

The type and timing and strength of the La Nina matters, [More]

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