Arctic air has a firm grip on the area this Christmas morning as we wake to temperatures in the teens. Wind chills this morning are in the single digits to near zero. Gusty northwest winds will diminish later as high pressure begins to build in. We can expect plenty of sunshine today but it stays quite cold through the day as high temperatures will struggle to reach 20 degrees.
Clouds increase tonight ahead of an approaching weak weather disturbance that will impact the area during Thursday. Temperatures are not so cold tonight and turn milder on Thursday. With the warmer temperatures comes a wintry mix that most likely begins mid to late morning and continues through the afternoon. Mostly light snow well inland, beginning as snow along the coastal plain, mixing with and changing to rain and then perhaps back to snow before ending. This will make for a sloppy day as we head back to work, the malls or depart home from your Christmas visit with relatives and friends. Very little, if any, accumulation of snow is expected.
Its all out of here early Thursday night as the system moves quickly toward Nova Scotia with another ridge of high pressure building in Friday and Saturday. Fair weather into Sunday is expected before a developing storm in the Gulf of Mexico approaches by late in the weekend. Early consensus is that the storm will move well offshore Sunday night having minimal impacts locally. This can change and will be watched late week for any changes in the computer models.
72 Hour Outlook:
Christmas Day: Mostly sunny, breezy and much colder. Clouds increase late day. High temperatures upper teens to 20 degrees. Northwest winds 12 to 20 mph, diminishing this afternoon.
Tonight: Increasing clouds, becoming mostly cloudy before midnight. Not as cold as temperatures remain fairly steady in the upper teens. Light south to southeast winds.
Thursday: Light snow, mixing with and changing to rain along the coastal plain and ending by evening. Highs in the mid to upper 30s. South winds 5 to 15 mph. Little to no accumulation likely.
Thursday night: Turning partly cloudy. Lows in the low to mid 20s. West winds 10 to 15 mph.
Friday and Friday night: Fair skies with plenty of sunshine. Mainly clear overnight. Highs in the low to mid 30s. Lows in the low 20s.