Better Chances For Precipitation This Week

Sunday 5/16 at 7:40 am

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A more active weather pattern is possible this week as a couple of areas of low pressure will move across the region. Higher elevations will be favored for precipitation each afternoon. Tuesday those showers could spread to the lower and mid-elevation areas throughout the forecast area. Temperatures will moderate this week. Tuesday may be considerably cooler than what we have been experiencing lately.

On Monday moisture will move in and numerous scattered showers could break out over higher terrain. The lower and mid-elevations may have to wait until Tuesday when deeper moisture will move into the area. We’ll see. Things will dry out slightly by Wednesday afternoon. This will be short-lived as another system works its way across the area on Thursday.

Rather than talk about potential precipitation totals just yet, I want to talk about moisture. One of the best ways to determine the potential for accumulating precipitation is to use the PWAT parameter with weather models. PWAT is the term meteorologists use to refer to Precipitable Water Values. It may sound complicated but it is simply a measure of all of the moisture in a specific column of the atmosphere. In other words, if you poured all of that water into one container, that amount measures an approximation of how much water can precipitate from a storm.

The key takeaway is that on Tuesday, our PWAT values will approach 200% of normal for this time of year.

I put the maps in motion to show you this. The brown shades are below-average values for this time of year. The white depicts average PWAT values. The greens and blues are above average PWAT values. There is a guide at the bottom of this GIF that shows the corresponding below-average and above-average percentages.

This shows the PWAT values beginning this morning through Wednesday at noon. As I mentioned, another system is expected to move through the region on Thursday, but there is still model disagreement on the track it will take.

Next update Monday. Thanks for following and participating in the contest!

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