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The beginnings of the upward climb

…of temperatures, that is.  A weak cold front that squeezed through early Sunday afternoon opened the door for a brief push of cooler – but not cold – air today (Monday).  This morning’s overcast should break up as the dryer air spills over the mountains; in fact, clear skies aren’t far away as seen in this visible satellite image from 8:31 a.m.:

Temperatures east of the mountains are warmer than those to the west courtesy of some warming that occurs as the air flows over the Blue Ridge and down the eastern slopes (a process known as adiabatic warming).  This surface observation map indicates that as well:

The red numbers are air temperatures (green numbers are dew points), so check out the temperatures for stations EZF (Shannon Airport), OMH (Orange Airport), SHD (Shenandoah Valley Airport), and HSP (Hot Springs).  They range from 19 degrees (F) at Hot Springs to 45 degrees at Shannon.  [You also may notice that temperatures near the Chesapeake Bay and the Atlantic Ocean are a bit warmer than those inland.  That's due to the mitigating effects of those bodies of water as they don't heat up or cool down as fast as land surfaces do.]

Enough weather lessons for now.  Suffice it to say that today the ‘Burg will see a high temperature in the mid-40′s with breezy northwest winds.  Overnight temperatures will drop down to near the 30 degree mark before the warmup begins for the rest of this week.  There is still some model disagreement on just how warm it will get later this week but rest assured it will not feel like January for several days.

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Permalink: http://news.fredericksburg.com/weather/2013/01/07/the-beginnings-of-the-upward-climb/