Blacksburg, Virginia to Joplin, Missouri

We’re going on a westward journey, trying to head away from Tropical Depression Florence. The trip will take a day and a half, spending a lot of time astride of the waterlogged Appalachians, and covering 907 miles. The first day will be through after 528 of our miles have been covered thanks to a pace of 66mph. Let’s find some dry land.

DAY ONE (Monday)
As we head southwest out of town, it will seem we are headed for the part of the country that had the worst taste of Florence, but we will be on the Tennessee side of the border, likely able to avoid the threat of flash flooding on the well maintained interstates. Florence will be moving northeast, as it happens, so while we will still be driving through her rains, they will be diminishing throughout the drive. We might even break into some dry roadways around Nashville. Rain will be intermittent to non existent for our drive in western Kentucky. We’ll stop in Calvert City, Kentucky, a town that might not endure any rain from the broad scope of Florence. That will be nice, as we will definitely want to dry out. 

DAY TWO (Tuesday)
Tuesday will be about as different from Monday as you could hope. High pressure will be seated right in the middle of the country. A disturbance in the Dakotas might bring some clouds or a very isolated shower as far south as northern Missouri, but we’ll be sitting pretty in the southern part of the state, where Joplin will be hot, humid and bathed in sun.

Joplin, Missouri

The weather community in the United States is rightfully keeping our focus on the Carolinas this weekend as Florence continues to drench the region. Joplin is another place, though, with a sad note in American weather history. Hopefully, there is nothing traumatic on the way for the Ozarks this September.

At 453PM, CT, Joplin was reporting an extraordinary 89 degrees with mostly clear skies. Temperatures this warm this late into the year a pretty unusual, and the sunny skies in the region don’t suggest a change in the near future.
The current pattern is quite long ranged, with a broad upper level jet stretching from California to the St. Lawrence Seaway. The essentially straight jet, in addition to Florence holding up traffic in the east, means that the broad area of high pressure in the central Plains isn’t going anywhere. Expect more sun and more warmth to begin the week in Joplin,
Tomorrow – Sunny, High 90, Low 68
Tuesday – Sunny, High 92, Low 71

TWC: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny skies.  High 90, Low 67
Tuesday – Mainly sunny High 90, Low 71

AW: Tomorrow  Mostly sunny; very warm and humid High 89, Low 67
Tuesday – Mostly sunny; humid High 90, Low 71

NWS: Tomorrow – Sunny, High 90, Low 69
Tuesday – Mostly sunny, High 90, Low 70

WB: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny, High 89, Low 67
Tuesday – Partly cloudy, High 90, Low 70

WN: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny, High 90, Low 69
Tuesday – Mostly sunny, High 90, Low 70

FIO: Clear throughout the day. High 88, Low 68
Tuesday Clear throughout the day. High 90, Low 69

I’m going with a warmer solution, contrary to my counterparts. The NAM isn’t usually the most reliable, but in the middle of the continent, it can be, and it has been in the past 24 hours. Satellite here is focused on Florence, but even if it doesn’t afflict Joplin, it’s worth looking at. 

Gordon comes Grazing

As we sit around watching the destruction of Florence in and around Wilmington, we can think back to last week when it was Gordon we were worried with. He traveled up towards the Great Lakes, and is now a floating mass of detritus in eastern Canada. Before it got to that point, there had been a chance that the feature would bring a little bit of rain to Knoxville, and it sure did. It brought a very little bit of rain to Knoxville. The mountains deflected wet inflow, for the most part, and they stayed dry until a tail extending from the storm brought a little bit of moisture to Rocky Top. There was a 4 way tie atop the leaderboard that would have been undone by, had they had any rain at all in the forecast. 
Actuals: Saturday – High 89, low 71
Sunday – .01 inches of rain, High 89, Low 71

Grade: B

Blacksburg, Virginia

As we await the arrival of Florence on the Carolina coast, there is a hair of good news for Blacksburg, as the storm is forecast to take a bit of a job to the south. This is terrible news for Wilmington and Myrtle Beach, which now stand to take a more direct impact. Let’s see what Blacksburg will endure.

At 1135AM, ET, Blacksburg was reporting a temperature of 73 degrees with overcast skies across the region. A lingering surface trough is draped on the Atlantic side of the Appalachians, with a dwindling supply of light rain showers and overcast dotting the landscape. Florence loomed off the coast, and her slow drift towards shore will work to disintegrate the smattering of moisture. 
Thursday will actually be quite pleasant, without a threat for showers nor the onset of tropical winds. As Florence moves closer to the coast, some of the spiral bands may start to lap Blacksburg. Isolated showers and storms are possible. Overland hurricane bands are more apt to produce lightning, as well as brief, isolated tornadoes. It won’t be a wash out for Friday, but Florence won’t quite be on shore by the end of the day yet either. 
Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy, High 80, Low 66
Friday – Isolated showers and thunderstorms, High 77, Low 68

TWC: Tomorrow – Cloudy. A stray shower or thunderstorm is possible. High 80, Low 66
Friday – Variable clouds with scattered thunderstorms. High 76, Low 67

AW: Tomorrow – Mostly cloudy; humid High 80, Low 68
Friday – Cloudy, a little rain; humid High 78, Low 69

NWS: Tomorrow – A slight chance of showers before 7am, then a slight chance of showers and thunderstorms after 3pm. Patchy fog before 9am. Otherwise, partly sunny,High 81, Low 66
Friday – A chance of showers, with thunderstorms also possible after 3pm. Mostly cloudy,High 78, Low 67

WB: Tomorrow – Patchy fog in the morning. Mostly cloudy in the morning then mostly sunny with a slight chance of showersand thunderstorms in the afternoon. High 77, Low 67
Friday – Mostly cloudy with a chance of showers. A slight chance of thunderstorms in the afternoon, High 75, Low 68

WN: Tomorrow – Parly cloudy with isolated storms, high 80, Low 66
Friday – Mostly cloudy with scattered showers, High 78, Low 66

FIO: Tomorrow  Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 81, Low 64
Friday – Overcast throughout the day. High 78, Low 68

Things are going to go down hill fast in the Carolinas and Blacksburg, but in Blacksburg, there is more time to prepare. Check out the satellite of the looming storm, headed for the Carolinas.

Gordon slips by

There was a dramatic radar loop attached to the forecast for Dothan, but, at least in that southeast Alabama town, it was for naught. The storm moved up the Mississippi Valley and left Dothan unperturbed. Accuweather had no rain in the forecast, and picked up the top forecast for the day because of it. 
Actuals: Wednesday, High 86, Low 74
Thursday – High 91, Low 73

Grade: A-D

Anniston, Alabama to Weirton, West Virginia

As Florence continues to bear down on the Eastern Seaboard, we’re taking a 2-day road trip from northern Alabama to extremely northern West Virginia. Why are we driving into the possible future path of Florence? Heck if we know.


High pressure controls the Great Lakes down into the Deep South, keeping scattered shower activity mainly east of the Appalachians. We can expect increasing clouds throughout the day as we head north to Chattanooga then to Knoxville before continuing northward to Lexington, where we finish up the day.


High pressure loses its’ grip a bit on the region, leading to mostly cloudy to overcast skies throughout the day. While we should see dry conditions on our route through southern Ohio, there’s still a chance a couple stray afternoon showers could dot our windshields. It really shouldn’t be an issue though, so an easy jaunt into Weirton is expected.

Weirton, West Virginia

Today we visit Weirton, WV, way up in the stovepipe of the state. While much of the Eastern US is looking ahead to what impacts Hurricane Florence will have in the region towards the weekend, let’s take a look at what the weather will be like in the lead-up to this powerful cyclone.

At 1153pm EDT, the temperature at nearby Wheeling, WV was 62 degrees under overcast skies. An area of low pressure is quickly exiting the Northeast, which trails a boundary down to the Virginias. Some isolated shower activity is found to the south, but the Weirton area stays dry tonight. High pressure builds in behind it and while Tuesday should remain dry, clouds will continue to persist over the region. The system backs up a smidge on Wednesday, so the clouds will continue to cover the region and while some scattered shower activity should remain off to the south, one cannot completely rule out that a couple stray showers could find their way northward into the city. Overall, not a bad couple of days! Now… about that hurricane…

Tuesday: Mostly cloudy. High 73, Low 58.
Wednesday: Cloudy, a few isolated evening showers. High 78, Low 59.

TWC: Tuesday: Cloudy. High 72, Low 56.
Wednesday: Cloudy. High 79, Low 59.

AW: Tuesday: Times of clouds and sun. High 73, Low 57.
Wednesday: A passing shower or two. High 78, Low 61.

NWS: Tuesday: Mostly cloudy. High 71, Low 57.
Wednesday: Mostly cloudy. High 76, Low 57.

WB: Tuesday: Partly sunny. High 70, Low 58.
Wednesday: Mostly cloudy. High 76, Low 60.

WN: Tuesday: Mostly cloudy. High 71, Low 57.
Wednesday: Mostly cloudy. High 76, Low 64.

FIO: Tuesday: Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 71, Low 57.
Wednesday: Mostly cloudy throughout the day. High 78, Low 60.

We have some high clouds streaming over the region right now, but nothing in the way of precip is expected tonight. Meanwhile, Florence looks menacing as it continues to intensify and take aim on the Mid-Atlantic.

Coming Soon…

We are in the throes of hurricane season, and the first major threat to the coast is coming for the Carolinas. We are going to have a forecast for Blacksburg,, Virginia left over from the last Coming Soon and we will get a follow up later on in the week. This will be terrling. Not only that, but we have this array of forecasts across the country.

Joplin, Missouri
Road Trip from Blacksburg, Virginia to Joplin

Blacksburg, Virginia

Utica, New York

Pascagoula, Mississippi
Road Trip from Utica to Pascagoula

Manchester, New Hampshire

Ogden, Utah

There is always discussion about the coasts, and in the summer, we worry about tornadoes for the middle of the country. Attention is difficult to come by for the mountains in the middle. Whats going on in that part of the world? 

At 853AM, MT, Ogden was reporting clear skies with a temperature of 65 degrees. High pressure is entrenched over the inter-mountain West, with warm, dry air leading to some red flag warnings for the mountains away from the Salt Lake Basin.
There is a poorly angled upper level trough north of the Canadian border, extending into the north Pacific, and it is slowly trying to work its way south into the western US, but the eastward progress is going to slow down dramatically, to the point that any substantial change to the weather in Ogden should not be anticipated, but temperatures will be a bit cooler thanks to a refreshing breeze. 
Tomorrow – Hazy but mostly sunny, High 86, Low 61
Wednesday – Cooler and still sunny, High 80, Low 59

TWC: Tomorrow – A mainly sunny sky. High 86, Low 61
Wednesday – Sunny skies. High 80, Low 61

AW: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny High 87, Low 60
Wednesday – Plenty of sunshine High 82, Low 60

NWS: Tomorrow – Sunny, High 88, Low 61
Wednesday – Sunny, High 83, Low 59

WB: Tomorrow – Sunny, High 87, Low 58
Wednesday – Sunny, High 81, Low 59

WN: Tomorrow – Mostly sunny, High 88, Low 61
Wednesday – Mostly sunny, High 83, Low 59

FIO: Tomorrow – Clear throughout the day. High 88, Low 61
Wednesday – Clear throughout the day. High 83, Low 61

Well that doesn’t sound bad at all, just so long as the threat for fires isn’t realized in the Wasatch. Aside from some of the peaks in the south, here is a crystal clear satellite image. 

Sunny on Labor Day Weekend

As we looked forward to Labor Day weekend, we were monitoring a weak wave through the Ohio Valley. In Gadsden, the worry was that some of the waves intake would lead to some popcorn showers and storms and some ruined outdoor plans. Those storms were not to be, however, as storms stayed well to the west of town. It was hot and humid, though, and a fitting send off for summer. Accuweather had the victory, thanks to their dry forecast.
Actuals: Saturday – High 87, Low 66
Sunday – High 89, Low 68

Grade: B-D

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