Grab a Jacket!

Visibility was a real struggle this morning! I captured this screen shot between weather hits, which was surprisingly one of the better looking ones over Downtown Nashville. There was a point when the screen was completely gray, no sign of which city I was sharing. Widespread fog led to visibility down to a quarter mile in localized spots.


As the fog continues lifting this morning, thick cloud cover does not budge…


This keeps temperatures ranging anywhere from the upper 40s to upper 50s…cool enough for a warm jacket as you step out the door.


Clouds stick around again today, which will be the reason for another cooler than average day. Besides the last four days, every morning this past month has been in the 60s or 70s. A cool goodbye to September! With a few more peaks of sunshine, today will be a touch warmer than the 67 Nashville hit yesterday — breaking the low 70-degree mark…if the clouds really do break.


So far, Tennessee has dodged the rain but showers are slowly working there way in from the north with an upper level system — currently centered over Kentucky. Here’s a radar update…


Light rain works its way into Hopkinsville and Franklin and headed on a slow southeasterly path into northern Middle TN. No heavy downpours and no thunder. I expect most of the activity to remain north if I-40 through the early evening before diminishing by dinner tonight. Grab a light sweater and enjoy your Friday evening out and about!


Lingering moisture keeps a slight chance for a few showers on Saturday but not a plan canceler by any means (I kept it at a 20% and mainly north of I-40 again). After that, a long stretch of dry and gradually warmer weather makes itself comfortable in the week ahead. Middle 80s knock on the door by Wednesday. Here’s a peak ahead and what I’ll be diving into at noon on channel 4 today.


Paul Heggen will be filling in for Chief Meteorologist Lisa Spencer tonight at 4, 5, 6 and 10. Be sure to tune in for any updates!


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A Crisp and Refreshing Change

Plenty of clouds cover the bright blue this afternoon but there’s not a whole lot of action with them.


Radar depicts just a few isolated showers widely scattered north of

Most of the region…in the clear. The main impact from these clouds are shown on the temperature map.


Upper 50s to upper 60s have been steady since late morning, running about ten degrees cooler than average for this time in late September. After a long summer stretch of extreme heat, this is a welcomed treat by many! The cherry on top? Humidity has been out of our hair. Dew point values in the upper 40s to lower 50s is a very dry and comfortable place to be.



Outdoor plans are a two thumbs up and highly recommended this evening. You may want to grab a light jacket since it will still be on the cooler side in the lower 60s but you can leave the umbrella at home.


An upper level system keeps spotty showers and storms in the forecast on Friday, mainly during the afternoon and mainly for areas north of the I-40 corridor. Many spots will dodge the rain but just keep an eye to the sky if you do have outdoor plans. You can download our FREE ‘WSMV’ app to monitor the radar at any given time yourself.


Temperatures hop back on a warming trend in the days ahead. Lower 70s on Friday will transition into seasonable upper 70s by Sunday and Monday. Middle 80s return by mid-week — all accompanied by plenty of sunshine. Here’s a peak at the next seven days and what I’ll be going more in depth with at 4 today.


Be sure to join Paul Heggen with updates at 5, 6 and 10 tonight.


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September 29: Cool and Showery, Daily Links


After spending so much of September baking underneath a late-summer heat wave, we’re finishing off the month in a cooler-than-normal pattern.  We’ll see more clouds than sunshine the next couple of days, with cool temperatures and intermittent light rain showers.  Temperatures will only warm up to the mid 60s today:
The HRRR model’s radar simulation shows the scattered nature of the shower chances:
Overall, your best chance of a shower will be this afternoon, but even then it’s less than a 50-50 chance in any one particular spot:
Far from an all-day rainout, but keep an umbrella handy just in case.

A very similar pattern tomorrow, but a few more cracks in the clouds will allow temperatures to climb back up to around 70° on Friday.

The rain chances diminish as we head into the weekend — just a very slight shower chance on Saturday, then partly cloudy and warmer on Sunday.
The warming trend continues through the first half of next week…no HOT weather in sight, but well above-average by the middle of the week.

We’re also keeping a close eye on Tropical Storm Matthew in the Caribbean.  Matthew is unlikely to have a direct impact on our weather here in the Midstate, but we’ll still keep you updated, since the storm could have an impact along the Atlantic coast.  Matthew is a strong tropical storm this morning:
The National Hurricane Center anticipates that Matthew will reach hurricane strength (74+mph sustained winds) within the next 24 hours, with further strengthening over the weekend as it tracks through the warm waters of the Caribbean:
The NHC’s extended-range outlook into early next week shows a larger “cone of uncertainty”:
The greater uncertainty is due to differing output from the various forecast models — they do agree (more or less) that Matthew will take a turn to the north, but they disagree on exactly when and where that right turn will occur.  The “spaghetti plot” shows the forecast model paths for the center of Matthew’s circulation:
We’ll keep you updated through the weekend with the latest information about Matthew’s strength, impacts, and forecast path.



Last batch of nerd-links this week — I’m filling in for Lisa Spencer tonight and tomorrow…double-shifts don’t allow much time for browsing the internet for nerdy stuff!  So here’s a good-sized dose of brain candy…

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More Cool Air…Fall Color Woes

Cool fall air is sweeping across Middle Tennessee as a front moves across the state. The temperature in Nashville dropped almost 10 degrees from 2:30 to 5:30 this afternoon. By morning the low will be near 50 again.

Unlike today, temperatures will not rebound tomorrow. A big area of low pressure now over the Great Lakes will slowly drop southward keeping clouds and some showers in the mid-state through Friday.  As a result temperatures will be held down to the upper 60s tomorrow and near 70 Friday.


The low pulls away Saturday leaving behind great weekend weather. The highs will rebound to the mid to upper 70s over the weekend.


Fall is in full swing the temperatures are cool, almost chilly, so many folks are getting ready for checking out the annual explosion of fall foliage. Weather does have an effect on the color…usually a drop in the temperatures and a change in the amount of daily sunlight are the usual triggers for trees to start shutting down for the winter and as a result changing the color of their leaves. The intensity and timing of that change is tied in part to summer and fall temperatures and rainfall.


Generally speaking, temperatures and precipitation each year are helpful predictors for when that blast of color will occur at a certain latitude. High heat stress or drought can cause colors to appear earlier and disappear faster. Even moderate heat stress can delay the color transition.


An increase in rainfall usually delays the appearance of color, but too much rain can be stressful for the trees and also cause leaves to change color early.


My colleagues at Climate Central point out that with climate change expected to alter both temperatures and precipitation, fall foliage will also be affected.  My colleagues at Climate Central point out , “Projections for the end of the century suggest the warmer temperatures would delay the onset of peak colors, but also make them disappear sooner, leading to a shorter season. Nationwide precipitation projections are a bit less certain, but signs point to an increase in the Northeast, further delaying fall colors there. The effects of this are both ecologically and economically important. Leaf-peeping is a multi-billion dollar a year ecotourism industry for many states.” Tennessee is one of those states.  The Great Smokey Mountains is the most visited National Park in the country and fall is a popular time.

I’ll have an update on the weather for the rest of the week on Channel 4 News at 10pm.

Lisa Spencer

posted 8:55 PM





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Another Weather Change is Beginning…NOW

After a bright, sunny and warmer day, clouds and showers are arriving from the north.  Take a look at the perspective looking south, from downtown Nashville.  It shows lots of blue and just a few clouds.


Now look toward the north from the Adventure Science Center.  Doesn’t it look ominous!?!


These dark clouds are producing a band of rain along the TN/KY line, that’s spilling southward…


It’s likely Nashville gets clipped by these (meaning, Nashville will get a few…probably toward the end of dinnertime).  As they push farther south this evening, they may even expand southwestward.  Here’s FUTURECAST’s view of things…

Temperatures right now are above average for many of us, except where the cold front triggering these showers has passed (i.e. northwestern Middle Tennessee).  Look at Parsons and Savannah.  Wow!!


Come tomorrow, we’ll all be MUCH cooler, with lingering clouds and showers.

We’re also watching brand new Tropical Storm Matthew, now entering the eastern Caribbean Sea.  It became our 13th named storm of the season late this morning.


The forecast track from the National Hurricane Center shows it pushing due westward, and then being drawn northward toward and over Jamaica early next week.


Coming up on Channel 4 News beginning at 4pm, we’ll share an updated track for Matthew (which should arrive shortly).  We’ll also pinpoint just how cool it will be in your area tomorrow.  Here’s a hint, many of you will want to have your jacket nearby for the entire day (i.e. some spots may very well not climb out of the 50s)!

We hope you join us!


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September 28: Another Cool Burst, Daily Links


Yesterday’s weather was nothing short of spectacular.  Very nice weather in store for us most of today, with temperatures warming up quickly to around 80° this afternoon.
Abundant sunshine through early afternoon will give way to increasing clouds by this evening, with a chance of spotty showers around sunset, mostly north/east of I-24.  The HRRR model shows that pattern, and also shows how light the showers will be:
Grab the umbrella just in case, but I wouldn’t count on any free lawn-watering this evening.

Another wave of cooler air settles in the next couple of days, with spotty showers still possible Thursday and Friday, and high temperatures only in the upper 60s to around 70°.  The culprit will be an upper-level storm system centered to our north — little spokes of energy will rotate around that and spark the hit-and-miss showers:

The rain chances will diminish in time for most of the weekend…we’ll be quite a bit warmer next week, but at least we’ll avoid a return to flat-out HOT weather:

We’re still monitoring an area of disturbed weather in the tropical Atlantic — this will likely be classified as a tropical depression within the next 24 hours, and it looks like it will rapidly reach tropical storm or even hurricane strength by the weekend:
The next name on the list (tropical systems get a name when they reach tropical storm strength) is “Matthew.”  The spaghetti plot of various forecast models brings the strengthening storm into the Caribbean this weekend…
…then most of the model guidance forecasts a sharp right turn, taking the storm due north over Cuba, the Bahamas, and near the east coast of the United States:
That quick turn might look weird, but it matches up with the bigger picture — an area of high pressure that will be weakening, allowing potential-Matthew to make its move:
It’s waaaaaaaaaay too soon to put much faith in forecast model guidance that’s looking 7-10 days into the future — but this one has our attention, and we’ll keep a close eye on it.



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Tuesday Weather Twist

Today’s weather would put a smile on your face.  It did mine.  Sunny with a high of 78 in Nashville.  This morning did start out on a cool and foggy note. It was 54 in Nashville with even some 40s in outlying areas.


With a clear sky this evening the sky will be perfect for some celestial viewing. The International Space Station will fly by at 8:31pm, but there is a better pass tomorrow, but the clouds could be an issue. Tonight will just be very low on the horizon. By the way if you are out this evening or early in the morning you’ll want to take at least a light jacket.


Here’s the information on tomorrow’s pass of the ISS…

Wed Sep 28, 7:39 PM 4 min



max height

11° above SW


31° above ENE


With the clear sky, the temperatures will drop again near 50 degrees and even some 40s again.


Tomorrow, take your umbrella along if you are going to be gone all day.  Some rain is expected in the late afternoon.  A front will bring those late day showers. Here’s the timing with Futurecast.


The chance of showers will stick around through Thursday and Friday.  Temperatures will be even cooler during the day, thanks in part to the increase of clouds and showers. Many folks will stay in the 60s for the high.


Looking even farther ahead the weekend looks great, with highs in the upper 70s.

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

posted 8pm

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