LocalSYR

Isaac's effects on CNY Labor Day Weekend

Tropical storm Isaac will make landfall along the Gulf coast later today. Will it mean rain for our Labor Day plans? It's not too early to take a look.
(WSYR-TV, Syracuse, NY)  Whether it's a hurricane or tropical storm, Isaac will roar ashore later today, bringing strong winds, tornadoes and unbelievable amounts of rain to the Gulf Coast.  A lot of people are wondering if what's left of Isaac will affect outdoor plans for the unofficial end of summer this weekend.  The true answer this far out is:  we don't know.  I thought I'd provide some insight into different scenarios that we're looking at, so you can be prepared.

One thing is for sure: record heat is coming our way.  The final day of August, could feature temperatures approaching 95 degrees.  If that happens, it would be a new record high for August 31st and the second warmest day ever for any day during the State Fair.  As of Tuesday morning, everything that we look at continues to point toward that heat.

While the heat is building over us, Isaac (or what's left of him) will slowly be moving up the Mississippi River valley.  At 8 am Saturday, the remnants of Isaac will be somewhere in the western sections of Missouri.  Given that location, and the slow movement of the storm, Saturday should end up dry for us.  While it's a subtle change over us, a very weak cool front is forecast to slip southward through NYS, bringing afternoon highs into the upper 80s to near 90 Saturday.

By Sunday, the remnants of Isaac are forecast to be over central Illinois.  Meanwhile over us, the weak cool front will have slid to the south of New York state, allowing an area of high pressure to build southward from Canada.  In essence, this would act as a barrier to any approaching moisture, keeping us dry.  As of Noon today, we still have a slight chance of a thunderstorm in the forecast, but if new information which comes in this afternoon, increases our confidence of this scenario, then Sunday could very well end up dry, with highs in the 80s.

As Monday, Labor Day approaches, that is where uncertainty enters the forecast picture.  Some of the guidance we use when writing the forecast, indicates Isaac's remnants at 8 am Monday, will be near Detroit, Michigan.  Meanwhile, a more reliable set of computer information indicates that Isaac's remnants will be in SW Ohio.  That's a big difference, and is most likely a result of the uncertainty of how strongly high pressure mentioned above will build south out of Canada.  If we see this again in the afternoon guidance, we'll likely have to put in a thunderstorm chance for Monday.

For the most part, the upcoming weekend will provide us with more of the same of what we've seen this summer.  Warm to hot, and dry.  We can thank the slow movement of Isaac's remnants for that.  There are still some question marks as to how everything plays out in terms of our weather, but this far out, Monday appears as though it will give us the best chance of rain.  It's only Tuesday though, so hopefully you will allow us some leeway and you'll now be able to follow our thinking behind the forecast as we go through the week.
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