After a couple of chilly, raw days, temperatures will work back towards and slightly above normal for the remainder of the week.
The warming began overnight as temperatures rose from the 50s of Monday afternoon into the low 60s this morning.
By this afternoon, most areas should pleasantly be in the low 70s, just a couple of degrees below seasonal norms.
Clouds remain thick across the region and a couple of showers still dot the area. This will continue into the afternoon but most areas will see very little if any rainfall.
Late in the afternoon, some of the cloud cover should break up allowing for a few glimpses of sunshine.
Wednesday will start out rather cloudy again, but even more sunshine is expected by the afternoon. Temperatures should push into the mid 70s, which will be just above normal.
Some showers will return on Thursday, especially for the southern areas, while all of the Finger Lakes has a decent shot at some rain on Friday. Neither day will be a washout, though.
Both days will start to feel humid again and highs will range from around 80 degrees in the north to the mid 70s in the south.
An early look at the weekend shows more of the same with clouds, a little sun, and a few rain showers. Temperatures will warm a bit more with most areas near or slightly above 80 degrees.
Dangerous Hurricane Florence
There is now very little doubt that a very dangerous scenario is unfolding across the Carolinas and southern Mid-Atlantic region in regards to Hurricane Florence.
Hurricane Watches now extend along all of the North Carolina coast and most of the coast of South Carolina.
As of the 5am update, Florence was a Category 4 hurricane with wind speeds of 140 mph. Florence is expected to strengthen a little more today before undergoing some weakening as it approaches the coast Wednesday into Thursday. At landfall, Florence is forecast to be on the cusp between a category 3 and category 4 storm.
Florence should grow in size as it weakens, meaning greater impacts over a large area. Tropical Storm force winds will start to come on shore Thursday morning with landfall of the eye occurring Thursday night.
Perhaps one of the greatest threats from Florence will be the torrential rain and catastrophic flooding that results as Florence slows down or even stalls out once it strikes land. Rainfall amounts of a foot or more may be widespread across North Carolina with maximum amounts well over 20 inches likely. This flooding will impact areas well inland.
Given the size and expected impacts of Florence, the exact location of landfall matters less. This will be a widespread disaster for the region regardless.
There is still a very small chance that Florence slows and stalls before making landfall, but that scenario is very unlikely at this point. Even then, direct impacts would be felt along the coast.
Moisture from Florence could eventually make its way north towards the Finger Lakes towards the middle of next week. By that time, the moisture would merge with a progressive, non-tropical low. Any rain would be quick to move and would not amount to enough to cause problems. Major flooding is not expected in our area.
Words on September 11th never come easy and never are able to capture the impact of that fateful day.
My work today is dedicated to those that lost their lives seventeen years ago and in remembrance of the many heroes that died that day, and in the months and years after.
Please take a moment to honor them today.