January 9: Warmer Weather Ahead, Looking Back At 2016


After a bitterly cold weekend, the thaw finally begins today, as temperatures will warm to above-freezing for the first time since Thursday.  We should eclipse 32 degrees between 10am and 11am, then we’ll reach highs in the low to mid 40s this afternoon:
That’s still slightly below-normal, but temperatures won’t drop much tonight…we’ll be in the mid 30s by late evening/early overnight:
Then temperatures will actually warm up by sunrise Tuesday:

The real warm-up kicks in tomorrow, as the whole weather pattern across the country shifts dramatically.  The jet stream, which acts as the main storm track over North America, will be oriented from southwest-to-northeast, which allows warm air to surge northward…along with enough moisture to feed numerous rain chances:

Highs will be in the 50s tomorrow, with even warmer temperatures to follow:

A good chance of rain showers moves in from the west tomorrow evening and continues into Wednesday morning:
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More rain chances in the extended forecast, but I can’t go higher than 40% on any particular day at this point, even though I’m positive that at least one of those days will bring us a much better chance of rain.  The higher rain chances will be sparked by little ripples traveling along the jet stream — those subtle features are almost impossible to predict more than a couple of days in advance.  So while I’m confident in the overall “warm and showery” forecast, I’m not confident in the specific timing of the rain chances after midday Wednesday.

Just stay plugged-into the forecast, and we’ll keep you updated so you can get out and enjoy the warm temperatures without getting wet!



With the snow chances last week keeping the forecast complicated, I’m just now getting around to a wrap-up of the past year’s weather.  It was quite a year overall…

Rainfall was about five inches below average — we picked up 42.73″ of precipitation, but parts of the Midstate had flooding problems early in the summer, especially northwest of Nashville.  After the wet start to summer, dry weather settled in…only 0.81″ of rain fell from September 19 through November 27.  That stretch of dry weather allowed extreme to exceptional drought conditions to develop across the Midstate…fortunately, a wet December brought some relief.

The National Weather Service office in Nashville issued 242 Severe Thunderstorm Warnings throughout the year, along with 24 Tornado Warnings.  I couldn’t find the exact number, but there were just a few confirmed tornadoes in the Midstate all year — somewhere between 4 and 6, if memory serves.  (It was a quiet year for tornadic activity across the country as well.)

Warmest temperature in 2016: 98 on June 16.
Coldest temperature in 2016: 12 on January 18 and 24.

2016 brought a slew of new records…we set 14 new daily record highs in Nashville:
February 2 — 75
March 15 — 87 (also the record for the warmest temperature that early in the year)
May 11 — 90
June 13 — 97
October 17 — 86
October 18 — 87
October 19 — 91 (also the record for the latest-in-the-year 90-degree temperature)
October 29 — 86
October 31 — 85
November 1 — 88 (all-time warmest November temperature)
November 2 — 85
November 3 — 83
November 17 — 81 (also the record for the warmest temperature that late in the year)
December 25 — 76

We didn’t set ANY record low temperatures.

The temperature reached 90 degrees on 87 days, second-most on record in Nashville.

Two record “streaks” occurred over the summer: the longest stretch of 70+ temperatures (49 days, ending August 20), and the most consecutive days with an average temperature at or above 80 degrees (46 days, ending August 17).

Finally, 2016 was THE warmest year on record in Nashville.  The average temperature throughout the year was 62.7 degrees, breaking the old record of 62.4 degrees from 1921.  Record-keeping in Nashville dates back to 1875, so that record is significant.  (2016 was also the warmest year on-record globally.)

About paulheggen33

Morning meteorologist for WNCN-TV in Raleigh.
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3 Responses to January 9: Warmer Weather Ahead, Looking Back At 2016

  1. already tired of this weather…

  2. Fred says:

    Some year it was, indeed. Although the number of days with measurable precipitation was almost exactly average(120), precipitation was very unevenly distributed: only February, March and June had discrepancies within 0.5 in (all on the plus side) with July, August and December being much wetter than normal, while January, April, May and every month of fall were all dry to very dry. Here’s a clickable graph to accompany the description: http://www.hprcc.unl.edu/graph.php?sid=13897&quick=accumprecipgraph
    Middle Tennessee had a quiet year tornado-wise. Just four tornadoes occurred, tied fewest with 2004 and 2014 since 1993 when only 3 tornadoes were registered. Fortunately, there were no fatalities and only 1 person was injured. The totals for severe thunderstorm and tornado warnings while much higher than the second half of the 1980’s and early 1990’s were not great, either. The links
    Well, 2016 is in the books, we can only hope that this rather quiet dynamic will hold true for 2017.

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