Coldest Air Arrives to End a Hot Year

You may have heard there is a slight chance of some snow flurries in the forecast overnight and tomorrow morning.  Snowbird will not be pleased with my assessment, but this will not be enough to close schools. But it will be cold…really cold…the coldest air for the season.


A blast of cold air from the north will move in, this will bring lows to the teens this weekend in Middle Tennessee.


A cold front will bring in the cold air tonight. There is some snow along that front now, but it looks like it will diminish before reaching Tennessee with the exception of a few flurries. The cold air will rush end on a strong northwest wind.  So the highs will only be near 40 and the wind will make it feel even colder, near freezing.


Friday and Saturday mornings will drop to the teens in many areas.  The sun will be out, but the high will only be in the mid 30s Friday and mid 40s on Saturday.  The next chance of rain will approach Sunday night.


Some things to keep in mind with this cold blast…I’ll call it the 3 P’s of winter.  Watch out for people, pets and pipes during this extreme cold.


While we are talking about cold air, warm air data for the year is being examined. Just like the past two years, 2016 is on track to be the hottest year recorded around the world. In the United States, the average temperature for the year is on pace to be the second hottest in 122 years of records. Every state in the country list 2016 among the top 10 hot years.


In Nashville, 2016 is deemed the hottest since 1875 by Climate Central. This summer certainly seemed like the never ending summer.


Cold air will definitely have the headlines over the next several days.  I’ll have an update on Channel 4 News at 10pm.

Lisa Spencer



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Unusual Warmth a Fading Memory

Remember the warmth we had earlier in the fall?  To be honest, it’s already difficult for me.  It seems like so long ago that we were talking about highs in the 80s.

Here’s a refresher in case you need one…

1) October felt more like August.  The entire month ended up being more than seven degrees above average!

2) Two thirds of the month of October had highs at least in the 80s.  The hottest weather occurred on the 19th when we set a new high temperature record of 91!

3) Only a month ago we got very close to 90!  It was November 1st. The official high that afternoon was 88 degrees…a new record for the date.

This was Sampson just chillin’ in the pool in Chapmansboro, TN (courtesy of Joe Giardono) during one of our hot stretches.  I wonder what he was dreaming about….zzzzzzzzzz.



Over the last few weeks, our weather has been quite different.  We’ve had many days in the 50s, which is much more typical.

We’ll keep the pendulum swinging in that same direction moving forward as even colder air moves in!  Our next cold blast is hanging out just to the west, soon to be at our doorstep. It’ll move in tonight.


Look at the change I expect for tomorrow.  The wind chill will struggle to get to freezing!!  That means winter coats, gloves, and hats are all a good idea!

This cold blast will stick around into the beginning of the weekend.  Then, a potentially more significant shot of cold air will move in during the middle of next week.  It’s not a sure bet this next surge will make it this far south yet, but the folks at the Climate Prediction Center seem to be buying off on it.  Take a look at their outlooks for temperature for the next couple of weeks for the Mid South.  Brrrrr!!

Coming up today on Channel 4 News beginning at 4pm, we’ll talk more about these cold waves.  We’ll also let you know when rain and more moderate temperatures will return to Middle Tennessee.  We hope you tune in!


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December 7: Cold Weather Ahead, Daily Links


The stubborn clouds of the past several days have finally broken up, allowing some weak December sun to shine through.  Despite the mix of clouds and sun overhead, temperatures will remain cool all day, only reaching the mid to upper 40s for highs:

Those temperatures will drop to near freezing tonight, with a very slight chance of a sprinkle or flurry as the next system makes its way through.  Futurecast is decidedly unimpressed with our precipitation chances overnight:
rpm-10p-wed rpm-1a-thu rpm-4a-thu

Cold weather settles in for the rest of the week…highs Thursday will top out around 40°:
It will feel substantially colder than that, though — northerly winds at 10-15 mph will keep the wind chill around freezing all day!

We’ll start off near 20° for lows both Friday and Saturday mornings.  When temperatures drop to that level for the first time in a while, it’s time to think about the 4 P’s: plants, pipes, pets, and people.
Plants: Odds are you’ve already brought them in or given up on the garden for the winter, so I’m not too worried about this one.
Pipes: Make sure your outdoor faucets are winterized, but you don’t need to worry about your indoor plumbing at this point.
Pets: Don’t let the cold air catch your furry friends without preparation!  Outdoor animals need a shelter and some blankets to snuggle up in.  Or you can make them indoor animals for a couple of nights.
People: Check your furnace, if you haven’t already, and make sure your chimney is clear if you’re going to use the fireplace for additional heat.

The next chance of rain heads our way Sunday…there could be some sleet mixed in IF the rain starts in the morning, but for the most part we’re just looking at cold rain showers:

Another significant shot of Arctic air could head our way by the latter half of next week — that’s a LONG way off in forecasting terms, but the long-range forecast models have been consistently pointing toward that trend:
However, those forecast models have been inconsistently depicting the specifics of how cold it will be, how long it will last, and whether or not we’ll see any wintry precipitation.  We’ll keep an eye on it…



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4 Things to Know about Our Upcoming Weather

There are 4 things to know about our upcoming weather to ensure you’re prepared.  They are…

1) Coldest air in months arrives Thursday.

It’s been well advertised in the computer models for several days now, and they’re not backing off.  The coldest blast of Canadian air we’ve experienced since last February will push into the area on Thursday.  As it does so, a northwest wind will get established, making it feel even colder.  Check out the expected wind chill on Thursday….

2) A few flurries, but no accumulation…

You may hear from a friend or family member…or even your iphone that it’s going to SNOW!  My neighbor said this to me the other day: “I have to get those landscaper guys to come back and pull out these bushes today.  It’s going to snow on Thursday!!”  I asked….”Who in the world are you getting your weather from?!?!”

Sure…the cold air sliding in will help to squeeze out a few flurries on Thursday or even late tomorrow night.  It won’t stick though….and few of us will actually see any.  Here’s how the latest FUTURECAST is showing how it will all play out.

It won’t turn out exactly this way.  It will go SOMETHING like this though….with the system having very little moisture and lift to work with to generate snow.

3) Pets need extra care Thursday through Saturday!

This one is critical!  With the very cold air coming, your pets can’t sleep outdoors Thursday night or Friday night.  It’ll be far too dangerous, with lows by Friday and Saturday morning mainly in the teens.  SO…please ensure they have a nice warm place to sleep INDOORS.  ALSO, it’s a good idea to periodically check on their bowl of water outside if they have one there for the daytime.  It’ll likely freeze a couple of times as we head toward and into the weekend.

4) Rain returns Sunday.

It seems like every few days another storm comes through to give us some much needed rain.  After a few-day break, more looks to return on Sunday.  Right now it just looks like a light/nuisance type system, but even a little rain can impact outdoor activities, like a Titans game!

Coming up tonight on Channel 4 News at 10pm, we’ll talk more about Sunday’s rain possibility.  We’ll also have additional information on this upcoming taste of January!


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December 6: Rain Ending, Cold Weather Ahead, Daily Links


More very-welcome rain fell across the Midstate last night and into this morning — the radar-estimated rain map as of 8am shows the heaviest amounts to the south and east of Nashville:video-radarThat’s more than 2″ in the yellow-shaded spots, more than 1″ in the dark green, and more than a half-inch in the light green.  Officially in Nashville we’ve picked up 0.34″ since midnight (again, as of 8am).

The widespread rain this morning is moving off to the east/northeast, which will leave us with just isolated showers along the Cumberland Plateau this afternoon:

The cloud cover will remain stubborn all day, so temperatures won’t change much — a cold front moving in by midday will usher in northwesterly winds to drop our temperatures very gradually throughout the day:

We’ll drop to the mid 30s tonight…
…and only warm up to the mid 40s Wednesday:

Just a very slight chance of a shower on the way Wednesday night.  Futurecast’s satellite-and-radar simulation shows lots of clouds, but next to nothing in terms of precipitation:
rpm-10p-wed rpm-1a-thu rpm-4a-thu

Cold weather settles in Thursday and makes itself right at home through the first half of the weekend — lows Friday and Saturday will drop to around 20°!
We’ll warm up before the next chance of rain arrives on Sunday — the timing on that rain chance is still up in the air.  A couple of the forecast models say it will be a rainy Sunday overall, while the generally-more-accurate (but far from perfect) European model holds the rain off until Sunday evening.  (Personally, I’m rooting for the later arrival, since I’ll be at the Broncos-Titans game, and I’d rather not sit in the rain!)



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Rainy Days and Mondays

“Rainy Days and Mondays Always Get Me Down”…nice Carpernters’ song, but not really true when you are in a drought.  More needed rain is moving in tonight.  Some heavy downpours will produce over 2” of rain in some areas.

Here’s what #4WARN Live Doppler Radar is showing right now as I’m writing this.


An area of low pressure south of Tennessee will help bring more rain into the area especially overnight between 12mid to 3 am. Although we may hear a few rumbles of thunder, the potential for severe storms will stay to the southeast. Here’s the latest on Futurecast.


The morning drive could be sloppy, Paul Heggen will navigate you through in the morning.


A half inch to 1.50″ of rain is possible across Middle Tennessee.  The Gatlinburg area could get 2.5″.  This is not a drought buster it will be helpful.


Wednesday will be mostly dry, but the next approaching system will bring some showers Wednesday night into early Thursday.  That rain could end with some snow especially in the higher elevations.  With that said that is the big hint that much colder air is on the way.  This will be the coldest air of the season with lows in the teens Friday and Saturday.


How does that stack up to average December lows and the record for the dates? Not close on either count.

Lisa What to Expect 1.png

I’ll have an update on Channel 4 News at 6pm and 10pm.

Lisa Spencer



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Heavy Rain on the Way

After a round of soaking rain over the weekend another storm system is moving in right now.

Take a look at 4WARN Live Doppler Radar as of 3:20pm.  Showers are showing up in clusters along and south of Interstate 40.  All that you see is sliding toward the east-northeast.


While Nashville will likely get a few showers for the afternoon commute, the heaviest rain will hold off until late tonight.  Look at how much more wet weather is lining up to our south.  The window of heaviest rain for the Mid State should be between midnight and 5am.


A Tornado Watch has been issued for the Florida Gulf Coast as well as southern Alabama.  The best chance for severe storms overnight will be well to our south.  However, some thunderstorms are possible over southeastern Middle Tennessee especially as dawn approaches tomorrow, as more energy in the upper atmosphere moves in.

Take a look at how FUTURECAST shows the rain shield expanding in our area through the overnight and how bursts of heavy rain are likely.

Many spots are likely to receive more than 1″ from this storm.  That will help continue to chip away at the deficit for 2016 which in Nashville currently stands at 7.5 inches!


Tomorrow, rain will move out gradually from west to east.  Since clouds will stick around for the majority of us, temperatures won’t make it past the low-mid 50s.  That’ll seem warm however compared to what’s in store for late this week!  The three top headlines late this week will be:

1) January-like conditions are expected for Thursday and Friday.

2) Patchy rain showers will turn to snow showers as the Arctic air moves in.

3) Lows in the teens are likely for a couple mornings, making this the coldest spell of weather we’ve had since the middle of last February!

We’ll tell you more about this inbound Arctic blast….and have even greater specifics on the rain that’s now beginning to move in coming up on Channel 4 News, beginning at 4pm.  We hope you join us!


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