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Frigid Air Makes Its Way Into the Southeast

Winter, or really, a deep, cold fall is coming here.

Over the weekend, a trough of low pressure aloft was over southern Canada and the northern Midwest. The trough has since swung southeastward into the Midwest, Great Lakes, and into the Eastern United States.

Upper-level (300 mb) showing winds and heights as of Monday morning.
Upper-level (300 mb) showing winds and heights as of Tuesday morning.

The dip in the jet stream, along with a strong high pressure at the surface has brought cold and dry air to the eastern half of the country.

Surface map of the lower 48 of the United State as of Tuesday afternoon.

Temperatures as of Tuesday evening ranged from the 20s near Memphis, Tenn. to the upper 60s in Gainesville, Fla. And temperatures are expected to take a tumble Tuesday night into Wednesday morning – some of the coldest weather so far this season.

Temperatures as of 5 p.m. EST Tuesday. Source: Pivotal Weather.

As for the Tallahassee area, models have slowly trended downward for the Wednesday morning low since the weekend. What looked like the lower 40s is now likely the 30s. Some of the South Georgia locations could get near freezing. Freeze warnings have been issued for most of Georgia, Alabama, Mississippi, and the Florida panhandle. Temperatures between 27 and 32 are possible closer to the western Big Bend and South Georgia, but the warning lies just to the north and west of Leon County.

Weather hazard advisories – including the freeze warnings – as of Tuesday evening. Source: Pivotal Weather.

Those in the freeze warnings need to ensure precautions are taken to protect sensitive plants, crops, pets, and people.

With the change and spread with guidance models, it has made the forecast a slight challenge. But, as of Tuesday evening, the temperature is trending with the heart of the solutions. It’s a safe bet that it will be close to 34 Wednesday morning in Tallahassee, but the wind will die down slowly through the early morning. The wind will leave the temperature feeling colder than it actually is. I would not be surprised if normally colder, rural locations hit the freezing mark.

The high will likely not leave the 50s on Wednesday with plenty of sunshine. But the low for Thursday morning will not be as low as moisture will begin to roll back in, bringing the low to a less cold middle 40s.