July 31, 2010: Heat wave!

Hot weather is going to continue for the foreseeable future. Unfortunately, the coming days will likely bring the highest temperatures of the season thus far. I would not be surprised to see real temperatures in the upper 90s to near 100 during the Monday into Wednesday time frame. Heat index values will be even higher.

The National Weather Service Office in Paducah, Kentucky has put out a statement concerning the continuing heat wave. You can visit their web site for more information.

As far as precipitation goes - it appears that just a few scattered thunderstorms will be around today and tonight. Then small chances the rest of the week. For the most part high pressure will be in control. Current radar.

The risk for severe weather over the next seven days appears low. A few storms today across Kentucky and Tennessee - could be some isolated severe reports. We will be watching a frontal system towards the end of the week - IF and that is a big if - if it can make it far enough south then we might have to concern ourselves with a risk for thunderstorms. Any storms this time of the year can produce heavy rainfall and gusty winds.

A quick look at the tropics - everything is fairly quiet. The NHC is watching a few disturbances. It has been my forecast and continues to be that activity will increase dramatically after August 8th or so. That isn't to say that something can't develop before that time - but just that I believe activity will increase dramatically after that date. I do believe we are in for an active season when all is said and done. Many other meteorologists agree - including the NHC.

Long range - above normal temperatures will likely be the rule.  Still hoping for a bit of cooler weather towards August 7th or 8th.  Have mentioned that in the Facebook posts.  Long shot - but we will see.

I have been posting my winter thoughts on Facebook. A La Nina winter appears likely - however, we learned last year that El Nino and La Nina is not the only contributing factor in how the winter plays out. My early thoughts have been that we will see above normal temperatures overall for this winter and above normal precipitation. An increased risk for significant ice from Quincy, Illinois to the Ozarks and then into Tennessee. I believe there will be an above normal risk for a significant ice event or two in the above mentioned region.

Of course, everyone should remember that specific winter events are impossible to forecast more than a few days out. The best we can do with the long range is to give some overall ideas as to how a season is shaping up - above normal/below normal temps and precip - and so on. Nobody can specifically forecast a snow storm or ice storm months in advance.

We are also going to have to watch to see when the La Nina peaks - right now it appears it could peak quite early. This will make for a more difficult winter weather forecast. Still a long time to watch how all of this unfolds - but fun for weather weenies and watchers.

Hopefully we will break our dry spell as we move into the winter months and spring of 2011.

Remember you can sign up for my email list by sending me an email at beaudodson@usawx.com - you can also find me on Twitter and Facebook. During severe weather you can hear me on the emergency management radio frequencies as COM 10.

That is all for now! Try to stay cool out there.