Warmth and humidity increase

<B>(Saturday July 13, 2013)</B> We’re in a period of transition as temperatures warm and humidity rises through the weekend. Sunday initiates the start of a potential heat wave.

We are watching two systems in the upper atmosphere as we start off our weekend. One is an area of low pressure in the upper atmosphere centered the Ohio Valley, surrounded by showers and thunderstorms. Under normal weather patterns, we might be concerned that this low would head northeast and impact us here in central New York.  That doesn’t seem to be the case.  The reason why aren’t too concerned is a large and strengthening area of high pressure building westward from the Atlantic Ocean. It will have a big bearing on our weather next, which we’ll discuss below.  In the short term, this area of high pressure is actually going to force the upper low over West Virginia farther west Saturday and Sunday. Before the low gets far enough away, however, we run the slight chance of a shower Saturday afternoon south of Syracuse.

Early next week, the strong ridge of high pressure mentioned above will continue to build in from the Atlantic Ocean.  The strength of the high pressure, particularly in the upper levels, is forecast to be quite strong and since the high originating from the Western Atlantic Ocean, it’s likely we will have to “manufacture” our heat as opposed to advecting or transporting our heat from somewhere else.  Along with the heat will eventually come, once again, oppressive levels of humidity.

Irrespective on how the heat and humidity arrives, once it does so we expect several days where high temperatures are at or above 90°.  This may happen as early as Sunday and stick around through to late next week.  If this verifies, then we’d have no problem reaching the criteria (in our neck of the woods) of a heat wave, 3 or more days of 90°+ temperatures.

Fortunately, we are not expecting much in the way of showers and thunderstorms as the strong ridge will likely prevent clouds growing tall enough to produce anything, or at least anything widespread.  We may have to wait until well into next week to find any (small) chances for scattered showers and thunderstorms.

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